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Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing

Please don’t tell me that salads are boring, because this Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing is loaded with flavor, and this tasty low-carb salad is also Keto, low-glycemic, gluten-free, and can easily be South Beach Diet friendly! Use the Diet-Type Index to find more recipes like this one.

Click here to PIN Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad.

Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing found on KalynsKitchen.com

I might be pushing it a bit giving you a salad recipe before the weather is consistently warm, but I figure it was time to take at least a short break from Asparagus Recipes. And this poor recipe for Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing had been hanging out back in the archives on Kalyn’s Kitchen since 2007 with a couple of photos that wouldn’t have enticed anyone to make it!

And I do want to entice you to make this salad! I know that sometimes salads can seem a little ho-hum, but I promise that this Southwest Chicken Salad is loaded with great flavors. It’s definitely a sum-is-greater-than-the-parts kind of salad, and I use a few tricks to bump up the flavor in ways that I think you’ll enjoy. This is a perfect salad to make with leftover Roast Chicken, or use one of those packs of rotisserie chicken they sell at Costco for the chicken. And if you’re not quite in the mood for salads just yet, PIN, YUM, or bookmark the recipe so you can make it later!


Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing found on KalynsKitchen.com

First make the Chipotle Ranch Dressing. I confess, I use a packet you mix with buttermilk and mayo for the Ranch, but you can you can make your own Homemade Buttermilk Ranch Dressing or Buttermilk Dressing to use as the base if you prefer. I like to buzz the salsa in the food processor for a smoother dressing, but you can also just stir it together with the ranch dressing and Ground Chipotle Chile Pepper if you prefer. Make the dressing ahead and chill a while if you can.

When you’re ready to make the salad, cut up or shred the chicken and toss with a few tablespoons of Chipotle Ranch Dressing while you prep the other ingredients. Wash salad greens and spin dry in a salad spinner, slice sweet mini-peppers or red bell pepper, slice olives, chop cilantro (if using) and get some grated cheese ready. Combine lettuce, peppers, and cilantro with the chicken that’s tossed with dressing. Add a little more dressing if desired, then add the olives and grated cheese and gently toss again. That’s all there is to it!

Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing found on KalynsKitchen.com

Serve Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing right away! If you’re wanting a salad to take to work, I’d prep all the ingredients before hand. In the morning mix the dressing with the chicken and store in a snap-top container. Put the lettuce, peppers, cilantro, cheese, and olives in another container with a snap-top lid and mix the salad together right before you eat it.

More Tasty Low-Carb Salads with Chicken:
20 Low-Carb Beat-the-Heat Chicken Salads to Make with Rotisserie Chicken ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Low-Carb Buffalo Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocado ~ Sugar-Free Mom
Chicken and Avocado Salad with Lime and Cilantro ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Spinach Artichoke Chicken Salad ~ Wonky Wonderful
Leftover Turkey or Chicken Salad with Indian Spices, Lemon, and Cilantro ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Grilled Lemon Pepper Chicken Salad with Greek Yogurt ~ Aggie’s Kitchen

Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing

Southwest Chicken Salad gets extra flavor from the Chipotle Ranch that the chicken marinates in while you prep other ingredients.

Ingredients:

Dressing Ingredients (Makes about 2.5 cups dressing):

Salad Ingredients:

  • about 2 cups diced cooked chicken (I used rotisserie chicken, but if you don’t have any just poach two boneless-skinless chicken breasts in barely simmering water for about 15 minutes.)
  • 1/4 cup Chipotle Ranch Dressing (or more, to taste)
  • 1-2 heads Romaine lettuce, chopped and spun dry with salad spinner (or dry with paper towels)
  • 6 red, orange, or yellow sweet mini-peppers, seeds cut out and sliced (or chopped red bell pepper if you prefer)
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (Or use thinly-sliced green onion if you’re not a cilantro fan.)
  • 4 oz. sliced olives (optional, but good)
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese (I used Four-Cheese Mexican Blend from Costco)

Directions:

  1. Put salsa in food processor and puree about one minute with steel blade. (Could also use a blender or immersion blender.) Add Ranch Dressing and ground Chipotle and process 30 seconds more, or until well combined. (You can also just stir the dressing together if you don’t mind it a little chunky. Chill dressing 1-2 hours if possible.
  2. Mix diced chicken with desired amount of salad dressing and set aside to marinate while you prep other ingredients.
  3. Combine lettuce, red pepper and cilantro in large mixing bowl (not the bowl you’re serving salad in.)
  4. Stir in chicken with dressing and mix lightly, until dressing is distributed throughout salad.
  5. Add the grated cheese and olives and stir gently a few more times, then serve.

Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing was created by Kalyn, inspired by a long-ago Rubio’s salad that’s no longer on the menu there.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing found on KalynsKitchen.com

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing is a good main-dish salad for any low-glycemic or low-carb diet, including any phase of the South Beach Diet.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Diet Type Index to find recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, you can sign up for a free membership with Yummly and use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information. Another option is entering the recipe into this Recipe Nutrition Analyzer, which will calculate it for you.

Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing found on KalynsKitchen.com

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17 comments on “Low-Carb Southwest Chicken Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing”

  1. Kalyn, I’ve been meaning to make chicken salad for a while now but the recipes I had seen didn’t make my mouth water – this one certainly has!
    It looks delicious!

  2. Kalyn I see you are a fourth grade teacher. I wonder if your pupils might like to join in our Great Big Veg Challenge with my eight year old son who is munching his way through the A to Z of vegetables…he would love to have some ideas sent to the blog by any of your young students!

  3. I love chicken with chipotle — I make chipotle mayo and spread it on everything!

  4. Hi Kalyn
    This looks excellent. Chipotle seasoning is a great way to “liven up” a salad and will probably encourage some of my pickier salad eaters to try some of this. I might also add some black beans to this as well – I think that might be a good addition to get some added fiber!!!

  5. Yum!! I have a Rubios right up the street and I get this salad all the time…I love it. I like the idea of adding some black beans, I’ll have to make one of these for myself. Thanks Kalyn!

  6. Wow, that sounds great Kalyn! I’ll be trying this soon.

  7. Patricia, thanks. It’s one of my favorite things to have for lunch.

    Great big veg challenge, I love what you’re doing with your son, but this is the very end of school for me, so it’s not a good time for me to get this class involved in anything. Next year I’ll be teaching third grade, so maybe that class could do it.

    Karen, I think black beans would be a great addition!

    Dani, isn’t Rubios great for relatively healthy fast food. Much better than a lot of things you could get.

    Sara, I love the dressing. Hope you like it.

  8. I still LOVE this salad and tend to make is A LOT!!!!

  9. Naudee, thanks. Me too!

  10. This was fabulous! Does anyone have a recipe for a Southwest Chicken salad that has tortellini in it? I used to have it in a Tea room in Naperville Illinois, but it is a “secret” recipe. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks

  11. Thanks for the awesome dressing recipe Kalyn! I will for sure be making that ALL the time.

  12. Kalyn,adding a twist.made dressing,vacuum packed with fresh chicken breasts and going to smoke .let you know how it turns out.

  13. Is this south beach diet phase 2 friendly?

  14. I love the sound of that ranch and this entire salad! Those mini peppers are my favorite!
    Thanks for the shout out to my chicken salad! <3

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