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Southwest Salad Recipe with Chicken

5 from 49 votes

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This Southwest Chicken Salad is a crunchy, fresh, salty, sweet, and creamy salad perfect for dinner, parties, or by itself!

Southwest Salad

Southwest Salad Recipe

The other day I thought I’d experiment with some leftover black beans and roasted chicken I had in my fridge. Best decision ever. The results are a tasty Southwest Salad with a little something for everyone! Plus, there was no cooking involved! BONUS.

Main Ingredients Needed

You should expect 20 minutes of work time, I’d say. Besides that, you should be good to go. This is a really straight forward Southwest Salad recipe and superly awesomely amazing tasting. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Corn, Avocado, Tomatoes, Green Peppers, and Romaine Lettuce – all of this fresh produce makes up the filling of this salad and helps make it southwestern.
  • Chicken and Black Beans – IF you’re vegetarian or just don’t have chicken on hand, don’t worry about it and just add in the black beans.
  • Scallions and Cilantro – these make the salad so much more flavorful!
  • Tortillas Chips – pick your favorite brand and add them in. They give the most wonderful crunch to this chopped salad.
  • Southwest Salad Dressing – This is made from ranch mix, taco seasoning, sour cream, and mayo. It’s beyond delicious, I promise.

If you’re looking for other salads, don’t look far, here are a couple of favorites: macaroni saladcucumber saladclassic coleslaw, chicken salad with grapes or broccoli salad.

Chicken, Black Beans and Green Peppers

How to Make Southwest Chicken Salad

  1. Prepare or chop the chicken, green pepper, black beans, corn, tomatoes, scallions, lettuce, and cilantro.
  2. In a large bowl, stir all ingredients together, excluding the tortilla chips and avocado.
  3. Make Southwest Salad Dressing (outlined below).
  4. When ready to serve, toss the salad with dressing then gently stir in avocado and tortilla chips.


Southwest Salad Dressing

  1. For the dressing, take equal parts of mayo and sour cream and stir together with some taco seasonings, ranch dip mix, and pepper and salt to taste.
  2. Stir it up and voila! Creamy Southwest Salad Dressing.

Note: Pour just enough dressing over the salad to moisten everything and toss.

Adding Tortilla Chips


To make this recipe ahead of time, simply chop and combine everything except the avocados, tortilla chips, and dressing. Refrigerate the dressing and salad separately, then when ready to serve, top with the dressing and stir in some crushed tortilla chips with that ripe avocados.

If you let the salad, tortilla chips, and dressing mingle too long together in the fridge things tend to get soggy, that’s why it’s best to wait until you’re ready to devour this salad.

Southwest Chicken Salad


Any leftover Southwest Chicken Salad can be refrigerated, in an airtight container, for up to 2 days. After that things tend to get soggy and gross.

Southwest Salad

More Salads To Try!

Once you stir it all together you can see how yummy and colorful this Southwest Salad looks! Mmmm…

I hope you like this one, guys! Have a great day!

Southwest Salad
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5 from 49 votes

Southwest Salad Recipe with Chicken

This Southwest Salad Recipe is a crunchy, fresh, salty, sweet, and creamy salad perfect for dinner, parties or by itself!
servings 4 servings
Prep Time 20 mins
Total Time 20 mins


  • 2 cups rotisserie chicken diced
  • 1 green pepper diced
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1 cup sweet yellow corn canned or frozen and defrosted
  • 2 roma tomatoes diced
  • 4 scallions washed and sliced, white and green parts
  • 1 large romaine heart washed and chopped
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro washed and chopped
  • 2 just under ripe avocados diced
  • 2 cups tortilla chips crushed

for the dressing-

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 tablespoon ranch seasoning
  • 1/2 tablespoon taco seasoning
  • 1/2 tablespoon lime juice optional
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • In a large bowl, stir all salad ingredients together, excluding the tortilla chips and avocado.
  • In a small bowl, stir all dressing ingredients together until smooth.
  • When ready to serve, toss salad with dressing then gently stir in avocado and tortilla chips.


Calories: 912kcal | Carbohydrates: 71g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 60g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 80mg | Sodium: 819mg | Potassium: 1279mg | Fiber: 16g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 3465IU | Vitamin C: 44.6mg | Calcium: 188mg | Iron: 4mg
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Southwestern
Keyword: southwest chicken salad, southwest salad, southwest salad recipe

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Recipe Rating

112 Responses
  1. Turkey Tuesday: Southwest Turkey Chopped Salad | My Other More Exciting Self

    […] You could also add a couple of diced avocados to up the flavor and nutrition profile even further. Adapted from Lauren's Latest […]

  2. KarenM

    5 stars
    My favorite salad! Always a big hit when I make it. My daughter love the dressing, and actually uses it to dip chips and veggies in.

  3. Elissa nelson

    Yummmm! This looks so fresh, yummy and healthy! I am trying to make more salads like this so saving this recipe for sure. Thank you for all your fabulous recipes !

  4. Grandma's Cucumber Salad Recipe | Lauren's Latest

    […] If you don’t like cucumbers or cucumber salad, here are a few other summer salads that are delicious and perfect for potlucks, family get togethers and BBQ’s: Simple Macaroni Salad, Classic Coleslaw, Amazing Broccoli Salad, Southwest Chicken Chop Salad. […]

  5. Classic Coleslaw Recipe | Lauren's Latest

    […] summer salad of choice, be sure to check out my macaroni salad, cucumber salad, broccoli salad or southwest chicken chop salad. All fabulous sides for the hot summer […]

  6. Simple Macaroni Salad Recipe | Lauren's Latest

    […] If macaroni or pasta-based salad isn’t your summer salad of choice, here are a few other delicious options: coleslaw, cucumber salad, broccoli salad, southwest chicken chop salad. […]

  7. Broccoli Salad Recipe | Lauren's Latest

    […] If broccoli salad isn’t your thing, try these other tasty salads: macaroni salad, cucumber salad, classic coleslaw or southwest chicken chop salad. […]

  8. Joann Hippel

    Lauren –
    Please PLEASE give us your Chinese Chop Salad. Summer is boiling here in Arizona, and it is too hot to approach the stove for making any dinner. Besides salads, I can only deal with crock pot meals. There are never too many supper-salads, so any more you have on file would be deeply appreciated!

  9. Sam

    I’m from South Africa and we don’t have readymade ranch dressing here neither do we have taco seasoning. Any ideas on how to make my own or which ingredients I can use to substitute??

  10. Sandy Manning

    5 stars
    Oh how our family loves this salad! I have four adult kids and if I ever make this, they are thrilled! I usually grill some chicken one night and make extra to use for this salad a couple nights later. The blend of all of these ingredients is perfection!

  11. Sharon S.

    5 stars
    Hello there! I decided to make this recipe on a whim when I had a bunch of leftover arugula that I didn’t want to waste. I should say I “used” your recipe, because I used it as a guide. For one, I had no chicken, so I used ground beef. The big thing was, though, I made the dressing as written, and it was DELICIOUS! I’ll just double it next time. Thanks for a great recipe!

  12. Courtney @ Alkeks Abroad

    5 stars
    This was solo good! I made mason jar versions to take for lunch and it was even better after sitting in the jar over night. Great recipe, I will be sharing a link to it on my blog.

  13. Ews

    5 stars
    Tthis salad is so good. We have made it before, but this time we did not add the dressing until we were ready to eat. So tomorrow when we take it to lunch we can add the dressing then. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

  14. Vi

    ** Can’t believe second time I am trying to post. That why I should have just waited for later this morning. starting again at 3:50 am. Lose it this time I will def. wait!!**
    Comment for posting:
    The picture looks fabulous and simple (which I love).
    However I have 1 **maybe** 2 questions:
    1. How long can I keep in frig if my son doesn’t like it (since it has avocados).
    2. Does the beans need to be cold and drained like I use for taco salad (I use dark red kidney beans).
    **Please don’t post what I typed what I put in **asteriks** (or in between, since I can’t spell double asteriks . I getting so tired, going to bed as soon as I hit submit!

    1. Lauren

      I wouldn’t store it too long with the chips and dressing. If you want to make it in advance, throw all the ingredients into your bowl and cover with the chips and dressing on the side. Then when you’re ready to serve, toss everything together.

      I would rinse and drain the beans you use for this recipe; refrigeration not required since they are canned.

  15. What’s for dinner next week??!?! (A few Pinterest picks!) | favoritefamilyfoods

    […] Meal Option #4 Cheesy Ranch Chicken Southwest Chicken Chop Salad […]

  16. Jerene Skeie

    5 stars
    I made this for my extended family, post Christmas gathering. It was fabulous. I made it without the chicken since it was a side dish, I used red peppers and yellow cutie tomatoes. It was a HUGE success. I might try a small drizzle of Sweet and Spicy BBQ sauce to garnish each plate next time when I make it with the chicken and as an entrée, just to spice it up a bit. Since it was after Christmas, everyone was ready for salad after a month of too many sweet treats. Just don’t skip any of the other main ingredients because the combination is truly a party in your mouth.

  17. Family, Food & Fun on the Fourth | My Other More Exciting Self

    […] Southwest Chicken Chop Salad via Lauren’s Latest – A super yummy chopped lettuce salad with a light, creamy dressing […]

  18. sue

    5 stars
    Usually, recipes for 4 are just right for my husband and I as we are hearty eaters. This one is definitely for 4 ! It makes 4 hearty portions and it’s fabulous. Easy to make and so very tasty. I portioned 1/2 of it out on two plates, dressed the plated salads and put the rest in a ziplock bag with paper towels on the bottom so the moisture would wick down. Now we will have it again today for lunch. Yummmmmmy salad. Can’t wait to serve it to company. Also, I used two boneless and skinless chicken breasts baked with bbq sauce instead of the rotisserie chicken.

  19. All My Loose Ends · Goodbye June--AND the menu plan - All My Loose Ends

    […] Wednesday Southwest Chicken Chopped Salad […]

  20. Fiesta Chicken Salad | Spero et Somnio

    […] original recipe found here: < https://laurenslatest.com/southwest-chicken-chop-salad/ […]

  21. Diana

    5 stars
    Made this last night. I left out the bell pepper and avocado, because my 13 year old son is picky. He loved it, loved it. . My husband commented that it was so good, but would be even better with avocado (without knowing that’s what the original recipe called for). They both asked for more of the delicious dressing, so next time i make this – the Friday after Thanksgiving with leftover turkey- I’ll be liberal with the dressing and add avocado. I usually make turkey enchiladas the day after Thanksgiving, but this is so perfect. Thanks for the oh so yummy recipe.

  22. Kendra

    5 stars
    Eating this salad as we speak. This is seriously the best salad I have EVER had, and I haven’t even added the avocado yet! The only substitutions I made were red peppers (I don’t care for green), and I added a dash of cayenne and chipotle seasoning to the dressing because I only had “mild” taco seasoning. I also reduced the corn and substituted black soy beans in order to make this fit my low carb lifestyle. This will be my “go to” salad from now on. Thank you for taking the time to share!

  23. savoring some delish dishes. | Living Life Half Full

    […] the midst of her final exams…for a dinner of pulled pork tacos (my pal Judy’s recipe), southwest salad (adapted from Lauren’s Latest)…and creme brulee for […]

  24. Cindy Lynn

    Wonderful looking salad, but before I start I have one question. Does the avacado keep over night or should I put it in later?
    One of your commentors said they went camping a few weeks ago?? Wow , its still snowing here. 🙂

    Thank you

  25. Michelle in Canada

    5 stars
    Made this in honour of a fridge clean out and have since made again. We left out the corn and added a few more beans. Found that leaving the lettuce, avacado and chips out before dressing makes it a great lunch the next day as well as nothing is soggy and easy to throw those three ingredients back in. Gives me another reason to buy deli chickens 🙂

  26. The Better Baker

    5 stars
    I am not a big lover of salads, but I SO love this wonderful dish. Great tutorial too. I will be sharing a post at my blog one of these days – with a link back to your recipe here. Thanks so much for sharing…love your sense of humor too.

  27. Lauren's Latest » Chinese Chop Salad

    […] made a version of their Southwest Chicken Chop Salad a few months back that went over swimmingly so I decided to expand my horizons and turn it Asian. […]

  28. fall farmer’s market and menu planning « Living Life Half Full

    […] tuesday-southwest chicken chop salad with zesty avocado cilantro buttermilk dressing and cornbread muffins […]