This taco chicken salad recipe is loaded with delicious vegetables, cooked chicken, black beans, cheddar cheese and crunchy tortilla chips. It’s topped with a creamy taco salad dressing. This recipe is easy to put together and something the whole family will love.
Healthy Chicken Taco Salad
This easy chicken taco salad is loaded with good stuff. Filled to the brim with beautiful colors and simple flavors. Although this salad might look fancy, it’s actually super simple.
- FULL OF FLAVOR – The salad is filled to the brim with healthy veggies, shredded chicken, black beans, and a creamy taco dressing. With so many textures and flavors, it truly is delicious!
- FILLING – Black beans and shredded chicken provide lots of protein leaving you feeling full and satisfied.
- EASY – Wash and chop the veggies, shred the chicken and cheese and toss it all with the easy homemade salad dressing. It couldn’t be easier!
Cooked chicken can be seasoned with our homemade chicken taco seasoning. You can bake the chicken in advance to save time or do it right before assembling the salad. It only takes 20-30 minutes to bake (depending on the size) and can be tossed in the salad while it’s still warm. I did the same thing for my chicken taco soup recipe.
If you’re in a pinch for time just grab a cooked rotisserie or chicken breast and shred it with a sharp knife or two forks.
Here are the delicious healthy ingredients you’ll need to make this salad:
- CHICKEN – You’ll need two cups of chicken breasts that can be shredded or cubed. You can also use a store-bought rotisserie chicken.
- VEGETABLES – This salad uses two romaine lettuce heads, corn, cherry tomatoes, red onion, green onion and fresh cilantro.
- BLACK BEANS – 1 ½ cups of drained and rinsed black beans are added to the salad. Feel free to swap with chickpeas, lentils or navy beans.
- TORTILLA STRIPS – I love using tortilla strips in my salads because they add delicious flavor and crunch. You can also use crushed-up tortilla chips.
- CHEDDAR CHEESE – This recipe uses ½ cup of shredded cheddar cheese. It can also be cut into small cubes. You can also use a Mexican blend cheese.
- SALAD DRESSING – The salad dressing uses a mix of ranch dressing (make your own homemade ranch dressing here) and taco seasoning (you can easily make your own here) to create the best flavor.
- GROUND BEEF – Swap shredded chicken with ground beef like our ground beef taco salad recipe.
- AVOCADO – Slice a ripe avocado and add it to the salad just before serving.
- LIME JUICE – Drizzle freshly squeezed lime juice overtop of the salad.
- BELL PEPPER – Add chopped bell peppers for more crunch.
- SOUR CREAM – Add a spoonful of sour cream or plain greek yogurt to the soup bowl. You can swirl it into the soup for an even creamier option.
- HOT SAUCE – Drizzle Franks hot sauce or your other favorite sauce on top of the soup.
- SWEET POTATO – Roast some vegetables like our sweet potato taco bowl.
How To Make This Chicken Taco Salad Recipe
This salad has lots of delicious flavors! Everything comes together in a few simple steps. You’ll have the salad done and ready to serve in 30 minutes! Here’s how to make this recipe with full instructions in the recipe card at the bottom:
- PREP – Wash and chop the romaine lettuce, slice the cherry tomatoes, chop the red onion and green onion, and chopped cilantro. Shred the cheddar cheese, drain and rinse the black beans. Heat the corn in the microwave (if the corn is frozen) to warm it through.
- ASSEMBLE – Add the cooked shredded chicken, romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, corn, red onion, green onion, black beans, cheddar cheese and chopped cilantro to a large bowl. Toss everything together.
- DRESSING – In a medium bowl mix together the ranch dressing and taco seasoning.
- MIX TOGETHER – Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss everything together. Sprinkle the tortilla chips and drizzle with freshly squeezed lime juice and serve.
Helpful Tip: To make your own tortilla strips, purchase a pack of corn tortillas and cut them into strips. Coat a large baking sheet with extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil making sure to spread evenly and line it with the tortilla strips. Pop that in the oven at 350ºC until you have crispy tortilla strips.
Can You Store Leftovers?
This salad is best served fresh. Over time the lettuce and tortilla strips will begin to turn soggy as they soak up the dressing ingredients.
It is better to make this recipe and serve it right away. If you want to store leftovers, keep the dressing separate from the other ingredients and store them in an airtight container in the fridge. Once you’re ready to serve dinner salad, toss the salad with the dressing.
- Use a rotisserie chicken to help save time. This can be shredded up with two forks and added straight to the salad bowl.
- Serve immediately. Ingredients won’t stay fresh overnight once they’re mixed together. So it’s best to eat this salad the same day that you make it.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are a few ways to make a taco dressing. My recipe uses ranch dressing and taco seasoning. You can also make one using sour cream, salsa and taco seasoning. You can use a store-bought seasoning or try our homemade chicken taco seasoning recipe.
We love to use black beans and corn, corn, avocado, green onions, tomatoes, cheese and bell peppers.
No, you can also use leftover fully cooked chicken breasts, that are chopped into small bite-sized pieces. To save time, you can grab a store-bought pre-cooked rotisserie chicken and shred or chop it yourself to add to the soup.
This taco chicken salad is simple and really flavorful. Ranch dressing and taco seasoning make a delicious sauce drizzled overtop of chicken, lettuce, black beans, corn, onion and cheese. It’s a delicious salad to serve as a full meal for lunch or as a side dish for dinner.
More Taco Recipes
- Chicken Taco Soup
- Chicken Taco Seasoning
- Ground Beef Taco Salad
- Sweet Potato Taco Bowl
- Beef Rice Chickpea Taco Bake
- Taco Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Taco Casserole
- Taco Seasoning Mix
- One Pot Taco Pasta
- Chicken Lentil Taco Soup
Taco Chicken Salad
- 2 cups cooked chicken breasts - shredded or cubed
- 2 cups romaine lettuce heads - chopped into strips (about 10 cups worth)
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes - sliced in half
- 1 cup corn - canned or frozen
- ¼ cup sliced red onion
- 4 green onions - chopped small (about 1 cup)
- 1 ½ cups canned black beans - rinsed and drained
- ½ cup cheddar cheese
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ½ freshly squeezed lime
- 1 cup tortilla strips - or crushed tortilla chips
Make The Taco Dressing:
- Add the ranch dressing and taco seasoning to a medium bowl. Mix together until it's smooth and creamy.
Assemble The Salad:
- Wash, chop and prep all the ingredients. Add them to a large serving bowl.
- Drizzle the salad dressing overtop and toss all the ingredients together until they're evenly mixed.
- Sprinkle the tortilla strips and drizzle lime wedges overtop.
- This salad is best served fresh. Over time the lettuce and tortilla strips will begin to turn soggy as they soak up the dressing ingredients.