Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Super Easy Southwest Chicken Salad

Adapted from the salad bar "signature salad" at work. Seriously, if you don't love a good salad bar, pssshhh. C'mon!!! You get to create your own thing!

The salad at work is my usual go-to. I love the really awesome chick that always makes me my special salad who knows I say "I want this already designed salad, but not this, and add this" and doesn't eye roll at me.  The standard salad at work goes a little something like this:

Combo of salad (you know the kind you get bagged at grocery)
Black Beans
Red Onion
Cherry Tomatoes
Shredded Cheddar
Tortilla Strips
Chipotle Lime Dressing
Chicken Strips

Sorry, place-of-work, that combo sounds great to most, but didn't work for this girl.

I always say - no red onion (onion breath at work is an afternoon ladykiller), no tomato, add red pepper. Switch for ranch dressing. I didn't say this was a healthy salad. Oy Vey.

The chicken is always meh at work, so I decided to change it up and get really fancy with it: season with Taco seasoning. Revolutionary, huh? 2 chicken breasts (for the 2 of us) at 350 degrees for 25 minutes and let them sit for about 5-10 so it doesn't completely wilt your salad.

I always tell my friend at work to 86 the tomatoes but I think I just have a thing - I don't like cherry tomatoes in a salad - sorry!! I do like chopped tomatoes…. Cherry Tomato,  Chopped Tomato? (Toe-may-toe, Toe-mah-toe?)

Anyway, I drained black beans and rinsed them because your salad would be a weird gray color and taste only of black beans and be soggy if you didn't... and drained a can of sweet whole kernel corn and put as much as I wanted of both on top of my salad mix! Yes, my salad mix. It's a big bag of crisp good stuff that I thought was fresh and had the most distant expiration date.. Just do what you want when you make your stuff! I bet this salad would be great with baby spinach, but it's a little too much for my boo. Plus, I always add way too much cheese for my own good that would make others be grossed out. This time I added a mexican cheese mix.

For the dressing I went a bit crazy. I had left over taco seasoning….and OMG added it to my bottled ranch dressing. It was awesome.

So I made my fave salad! What do you like on yours? I always love listening to the combos people request on theirs in line at work and they disgust me, but it makes them happy! I always wonder if the person behind me thinks I have horrible taste in salad toppings!

Plus, I am brainwashing my husband into thinking this salad is healthy….it is, sorta. ;-)

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