Southwest Grilled Chicken Caesar

Southwest Grilled Chicken Caesar

In this Southwestern spin on the classic Caesar salad, avocado stands in for raw egg and some of the oil in this rich, creamy dressing. Grilled spice-rubbed chicken makes it satisfying.

From EatingWell: The Simple Art of EatingWell
Yield: 4 servings, about 3 cups each
Active Time: 30
Total Time: 30


  1. 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, tenders removed (see Tips)
  2. 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cumin, divided
  3. 1 1/4 teaspoons chili powder, divided
  4. 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  5. 1 avocado, diced, divided
  6. 1/2 cup shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese, divided
  7. 3 anchovy fillets, chopped
  8. 3 tablespoons water
  9. 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  10. 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  11. 1 clove garlic, chopped
  12. 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, or to taste
  13. 10 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  14. 1 cup croutons, preferably whole-wheat


  1. Preheat grill to high.
  2. Pound chicken breasts between 2 pieces of plastic wrap with a meat mallet to an even 3/4-inch thickness. Combine 1 teaspoon each cumin and chili powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt; sprinkle on the chicken.
  3. Oil the grill rack (see Tips). Grill the chicken until no longer pink, 3 to 4 minutes per side.
  4. Puree half the avocado, 1/4 cup cheese, anchovies, water, lemon juice, oil, garlic, pepper and the remaining cumin, chili powder and salt in a food processor until smooth. Gently toss with romaine, croutons, the remaining avocado and cheese in a large bowl. Serve topped with the grilled chicken.

Tips & Notes

  • Tips: It’s difficult to find an individual chicken breast small enough for one portion. Removing the thin strip of meat from the underside of a 5-ounce breast—the chicken tender—removes about 1 ounce of meat and yields a perfect 4-ounce portion. Wrap and freeze the tenders and when you have gathered enough, use them in a stir-fry or for oven-baked chicken fingers.
  • Oiling a grill rack before you grill foods helps ensure that the food won’t stick. Oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack. (Do not use cooking spray on a hot grill.) When grilling delicate foods like tofu and fish, it is helpful to coat the food with cooking spray.


Nutrition Per Serving: 360 calories; 21 g fat (5 g sat, 10 g mono); 66 mg cholesterol; 18 g carbohydrates; 27 g protein; 8 g fiber; 751 mg sodium; 777 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (215% daily value), Vitamin C (63% dv), Folate (55% dv), Potassium (21% dv), Calcium (18% dv), Iron (16%)

1 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1/2 starch, 2 vegetable, 3 lean meat, 3 fat