Let’s face it. Sometimes you just want to have something for dinner that does not take a lot of work to prepare, yet looks and tastes like you did. My family is teetering on the edge of paleo and the wheat belly diet so trying to figure out what to make for a large crowd that can appease everyone is often a challenge. Having a go-to dish that everyone can agree on and is easy to prepare is key. This grilled taco salad can be prepared in advance and then tossed together at the last moment.
One of the many benefits of having fresh home-grown vegetables and locally farmed poultry is the confidence of knowing you can simply open up the freezer and thaw out ingredients for an upcoming meal. This taco salad takes a step out of the ordinary so you can set aside diet-restrictive ingredients such as dairy or tortilla chips. Ingredients such as those can be placed in bowls so the base salad is the main event and any extras are just that, extra.
The secret to evenly and quickly grilling chicken breast is to paillard them. Many people swear by pounding chicken breast to achieve even thinness but I am a firm believer in thinly slicing the breast horizontally and therefore keeping the integrity of the flesh intact. Once you try the paillard method, I think you will be hooked. Once you try this grilled chicken and grilled corn taco salad, I think your family and guests will be hooked.
Grilled chicken and grilled corn taco salad
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon of blackened seasoning
- 4 fresh corn-on-the-cob
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- sea salt
- cracked black pepper
- 4 heads of romaine lettuce
- ¼ of a medium sized jalapeno
- 2 medium orange bell peppers
- 3 green onions
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 cup of shredded Mexican cheese blend
- 4 vine-ripened tomatoes
- 2 cans of organic black beans
- 1 avocado, thinly sliced
- ½ cup salsa
- ½ cup Caesar salad dressing
- blue tortilla chips, optional
- Preheat gas grill or charcoal grill for grilling.
- Paillard chicken breast so that you have evenly thick slices of chicken breast. Coat in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and season with ¼ teaspoon of blackened seasoning.
- Coat corn with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and season with ¼ teaspoon of blackening seasoning. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Grill the chicken and corn for 5-10 minutes both sides until thoroughly cooked and you can see the beautiful grill marks.
- Wrap both the chicken and corn in tin foil. Set aside to rest.
- Wash and dry romaine lettuce. Thinly slice into long strips and place in large serving bowl.
- Remove seeds from jalapeno and thinly slice. Add to salad bowl.
- Seed the bell peppers and slice into thin slices so that it keeps the circular shape. Of course, you can chop into desired size. I think the round slices give good visual appeal. Add to salad bowl.
- Trim green onions and thinly slice at an angle. Add to salad bowl.
- Clean and chip cilantro. Add to salad bowl.
- Add cheese to salad bowl.
- Cut tomatoes in half and thinly slice. Set aside in a colander to drain and place colander in small bowl to contain the drained juices. Add to salad bowl. If you are making this salad early, toss tomatoes with salad as very last step so that the juices do not wilt the romaine.
- Open cans of black beans and run under running water to remove the bean juice and set aside to drain. Add to salad bowl. If you are making this salad early, add beans at the end with the tomatoes.
- Add sliced avocado to salad bowl.
- In a small bowl, mix the salsa with the Caesar salad dressing until fully blended. Set aside.
- Remove the chicken and slice diagonally. Add to salad bowl.
- Remove corn and carefully run knife down the kernels to remove from the husk. Add to salad bowl.
- Add salsa dressing to the salad bowl and carefully toss all the ingredients together and serve.