Mexican Chicken Salad

Mexican Chicken salad

If chicken salad is on the menu, I’ll order it. I’ve had decent chicken salad, bad chicken salad, and really bad chicken salad. But what I rarely find at a restaurant is a really good chicken salad.

I ask for a lot. I want big chunks of juicy chicken, not chicken obliterated into a fibrous paste. As much as I love mayonnaise, I don’t want a drippy mess when I bite into my sandwich but I do need something to hold it all together. I like a binder complimentary to the other flavors: mayo for traditional chicken salad or an Italian version with a little pesto added, plain yogurt for a Greeky twist, raspberry yogurt for a ladies’ lunch or shower brunch appetizer, and sour cream for either a South-of-the-Rio version or just when I’m out of mayo and yogurt.

There should be crunch. There must be crunch! Tart apples, roasted pecans, or roasted walnuts are good in a sweeter chicken salad and spicy nuts, onions, red bell peppers, and jalapenos are good in a more savory chicken salad. Loads of fresh herbs are a must: cilantro, parsley, basil, chives, or rosemary.

Mexican Chicken Salad

Spicy, Tex-mex inspired chicken salad.


  • 2 cups leftover chicken, shredded
  • 1/3 cup mayo, plus more as desired
  • 2 Tbsp white onion, chopped
  • 1 Roma tomato, seeded and diced
  • Small bunch of cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and diced
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • liberal pinch of salt
  • fresh ground black pepper


  1. Toss all ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Add additional mayo if necessary. Taste for seasoning and adjust.
  3. Serve on toasted bread spread with cilantro-pecan pesto and Monterrey Jack cheese.
  4. Refrigerate the leftovers.


Yields: 4 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 15 minutes

8 comments… add one

  • looks fabulous! i have some leftover grilled peppercorn chicken that i need to do something with! i think i might need to try this!

  • I’m always looking for that perfect chicken salad recipe, so I’d love to try yours. It sounds and looks delicious.

  • Looks like a winning recipe!

  • You’re right, it’s hard to find a good chicken salad dish at a restaurant! This looks great!

  • Thanks for sharing this – I’m always looking for a good chicken salad!

  • I love the colors in this! Definitely sounds like a great variation on chicken salad!

  • Jackie


    How did you cook your chicken breast to use in this salad.

  • Jackie – It’s whatever I have left on hand. I’ve used store bought rotisserie, poached, grilled, baked. You name it.

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