Grilled Chicken Salad

Sometimes you just need to step away from the noise and settle down with a simple grilled chicken salad.

Serving Size: 6

Grilled Chicken Salad / Katie Workman
There is much to love about a grilled chicken salad.  And while grilled chicken salads can get very ornate, piled with various ingredients, they can also be just perfect made simply, like this one.

This was inspired by a recipe my friend Christopher Idone published in his groundbreaking book New Glorious American Food, which was published in 1985, before every restaurant had one on their menus.  And yes, you can use chic baby lettuces, or bitter endive or radicchio, or that green of the decade, kale (if you do, use baby kale, which is more tender), all of which I love, but I made mine with iceberg lettuce, just like Christopher said to.


Grilled Chicken Salad



  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • Kosher or coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 3 pounds)
  • 3 jalapeno peppers

Salad and Dressing:

  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • Kosher or coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce - outer leaves discarded, quartered, cored, and thinly sliced
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 ripe avocados

1. Make the marinade: in a container large enough to hold the chicken breasts, combine the olive oil, lime juice, onion, garlic and salt and pepper. Add the chicken and the jalapeno peppers, turn to coast the chicken and peppers well, and refrigerate, covered, for about 3 hours.

2. Preheat the grill to medium high. Remove the chicken and the peppers from the marinade and grill for about 8 minutes in total, turning the chicken and peppers as they develop grill marks, until the chicken is cooked through and the peppers are softened and have brown marks all over the outside. Remove the chicken and peppers to a plate and allow to cool to just warm or room temperature.

3. Make the dressing: In a small container or bowl combine the 1/4 cup lime juice and 1/3 cup olive oil with the oregano and salt and pepper. Peel the jalapeno peppers, discard the core, seeds, and inner ribs and mince them, then add them to the dressing, and stir or shake to combine.

4. Assemble the salad: Slice the chicken breasts crosswise. In a large bowl toss the lettuce with the dressing, then place it on a large serving platter. Sprinkle over the tomatoes. Peel and thinly slice the avocados. Arrange the chicken and the avocados attractively over the salad, and serve. Or, you can divide the ingredients between 6 plates, if you’re going restaurant-style.

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