Skinny Southwest Chicken Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing

Salads can actually be a killer for people trying to watch their weight.  So many people order salads at restaurants thinking they are a healthy meal choice, but after the cheese, dressings and other fatty toppings, they have more calories than a cheeseburger and fries!  This salad is actually a skinny alternative to those loaded with saturated fats, but it is so yummy, you'll never know it's low in fat and calories!

This Skinny Southwest Chicken Salad is delicious, even my 12 year old was a fan.  In fact, it's so good, I usually double the recipe so I can have the chicken in wraps or on salads for a couple of days!  The key thing to remember is that the chicken cooks fast since it's cut in thin strips, so just be careful not to overcook. The dressing is heart healthy alternative to regular dressings which is lower in saturated fat, and the extra can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days and used as a dip or dressing.  

Whether you are trying to lose weight or just eat more healthy, this Skinny Southwest Chicken Salad is a perfect meal!  

Skinny Southwest Chicken Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing

Ingredients for Skinny Southwest Chicken

  • 1 lbs Chicken - sliced 
  • 2 teaspoons Oregano
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin    
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 Cup Water
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

Ingredients for Avocado Ranch Dressing

  • 1 Avocado 
  • 1 Lime - zest 1/2 teaspoon and 1/4 cup juice
  • 1/4 Cup Water
  • 1/4 Cup 0% Fat Plain Greek Yogurt
  • Fresh Cilantro Bunch - chop leaves
  • 1 Garlic Clove
  • 2 teaspoon Dry Ranch Seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • Pepper

Toppings for Salad

  • Salad Greens
  • Corn - 14 oz can drained 
  • Black beans - 14 oz can drain and rinse
  • Cucumber - seeded, pealed and cut
  • Tomatoes - chopped
  • Avocado - chopped
  • Red Pepper - chopped
  • Red Onion - chopped

Skinny Southwest Chicken: Slice Chicken into thin strips.  Put all seasoning ingredients in gallon size bag with 1/4 cup water and 1 tablespoon olive oil, and mix together.  Add chicken and mix until chicken is coated.  Can be made ahead of time and placed in refrigerator.  Place aluminum foil on grill (so pieces don’t fall through) and spray with cooking spray.  Grill until cooked through.

Avocado Ranch Dressing: Zest lime and squeeze 1/4 cup juice.  Put avocado, zest, lime juice, water, yogurt, cilantro, garlic clove, dry ranch seasoning, salt and pepper in blender.  Blend until smooth and creamy.  Can be made ahead of time and stored in refrigerator.

Make salad with desired toppings and top with chicken and dressing.  

Chicken:  Servings 4, Calories 201, Fat 6.9g (sat fat 1.5g) Cholesterol 87mg, Total Carbs 0, Dietary Fiber 0g, Sugars 0g, Protein 33g  Dressing Per Tablespoon:  Servings 24, Calories 16, Fat 1.2 (sat fat 0.2g) Cholesterol 0mg, Total Carbs 1, Dietary Fiber .6g, Sugars .2g, Protein .4g

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