The taco salad first came into being in the 1960s when it first appeared in the US as a dish inspired from Mexican cuisine. If you are following a healthier diet and still love to indulge in the occasional taco salad, take heart! You can easily swap out some of the more caloric ingredients with healthier options like black or pinto beans, tomatoes, low-fat cheese and a low-fat dressing.
Chicken Taco Salad with Avocado Cilantro Crema Dressing
(Yields 4 salads)
- Romaine lettuce
- 4 radishes, sliced
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
- 1/4 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
- Cheese Crisps (see below)
- Onion Salsa (see below)
- Avocado Cilantro Crema Dressing (see below)
Divide these ingredients, plus chicken taco meat, among 4 salad bowls. Top with cheese crisps, onion salsa, and Avocado Cilantro Crema Dressing.
- 1 pound chicken thighs
- Salt and pepper
- 1 heaping teaspoon of Eat Happy Kitchen Taco Seasoning
- 1/2 jar of red or green salsa
Season chicken thighs well with salt and pepper. Place in instant pot. Sprinkle EHK Taco Seasoning over chicken thighs. Pour over salsa. Cover with Venting switch set to sealed. Select Manual for 25 minutes. Let pressurize, cook, and depressurize naturally. Remove lid when safe to do so and break chicken up into bite sized pieces with a fork. Set aside.
- Brick of Colby or Colby Jack, cut thinly into .5” x 2” strips
- 1 teaspoon Eat Happy Kitchen taco seasoning
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place cheese slices on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Let cook 6-8 minutes, or until cheese is crispy. Remove from oven and sprinkle on EHK Taco Seasoning.
- 2 tablespoons finely minced white onion
- 2 tablespoons finely minced jalapeno
- 1 tablespoon finely minced cilantro
- Juice of 1 lime (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Mix all ingredients.
Avocado Cilantro Crema Dressing:
- 1 ripe avocado
- 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1-2 tablespoons water, if needed
Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until creamy. If too thick, add water 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency.
Recipe courtesy of ANNA VOCINO, EAT HAPPY KITCHEN