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Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad {Gluten Free}

When you’re craving Tex Mex, but need something a little lighter, look no further than this smoky Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad recipe. 

This Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad is a healthy, smoky, spicy salad that will satisfy the whole family!

There’s only one thing worse than Mondays, and that’s the day after vacation. You wake to an overflowing inbox, suitcases silently judging you for not unpacking them, and a laundry pile the size and shape of the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

The Mr. and I spent the last week in Texas with his family. We enjoyed days filled with niece and nephew snuggles, rodeos, a late Christmas celebration, and plenty of shared family meals. We ended our trip with a short jaunt to Austin where we spent 48 hours eating our way through the city. It was a wonderful, relaxing, refreshing vacation, but today I find both my body and my stomach are in need of a rest.

The South isn’t exactly known for its healthy food. I’ll be sharing more of our eats over the next few weeks, but suffice it to say much of it included deep frying, bacon, syrup, and/or gravy. I loved every artery-clogging moment of it, but my stomach is ready for a big bowl of greens.

Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad Recipe

This Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad was actually one of the first posts on this blog. I found it in the excellent Cooking Light: Dinner Tonight Cookbook and it quickly became a favorite. I’ve made it often in our married life, and it’s always as satisfying, and refreshing as the time before. After making it again recently, I decided to rescue this forgotten recipe from the depths of my blog (and poor photography skills), and reintroduce it to all of you.

The salad requires only about 15-20 minutes of prep time if you’ve got some cooked chicken breasts or shredded rotisserie chicken on hand. It’s loaded with greens, tomatoes, avocado, red onion, and beans, and covered in a smoky chipotle lime sour cream sauce. It’s hearty and filling, but won’t leave you needing an after-dinner nap.

Healthier Chicken Taco Salad from neighborfoodblog.comWhile I may not be ready to give up Tex-Mex food, today I’ll face my inbox and laundry pile with a lighter version of a southern favorite. I hope you love this dish just as much as we do!

Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad {Gluten Free}

Prep Time 20 minsPrep Time
Cook Time
Total Time 20 mins Total Time
Yields 4


    For the sauce

    • 2/3 cup sour cream
    • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
    • Juice of 1 lime
    • 1 minced Chipotle chili pepper in adobo + 1 -2 Tablespoons of the sauce
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • *San Marcos and La Costena brand are gluten free-Check product labels to make sure the recipe hasn't changed.

    For the Salad

    • 4 cups chopped lettuce (I used romaine and leaf)
    • 2 cups chopped chicken breast
    • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
    • 1 avocado, sliced
    • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
    • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
    • Shredded Mexican cheese (optional)
    • Gluten free corn tortilla chips


    1. Mix together all ingredients for the sauce, and pour on the bottom of a large bowl.
    2. Layer salad ingredients over top of sauce. Stir gently to coat salad mixture with sauce. Serve immediately with shredded cheese and gluten free corn tortilla chips.


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    Thanks for cooking with me today!

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     Recipe adapted from Cooking Light Dinner Tonight Cookbook

    P.S. Just for fun, here’s a picture from the original post. It’s amazing what a little natural light and food styling can do!

    Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad 2jpg

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    • Joanne (eats well with others) May 3, 2015, 7:03 AM

      After vacation, I ALWAYS feel like I need a huge salad week to make me feel like things are back to normal lol. And with tasty salads like this it’s not as much of a shock to the system!

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