Southwestern Chili Taco Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing

Taco chicken chili over a bed of mixed lettuce, crisp tortilla strips, cheese and topped off with a spicy homemade chipotle ranch dressing.

Southwestern chili taco salad with homemade chipotle ranch dressing. Recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Kids shows aren’t just for kids. We especially love the educational kids shows… yes, even the kids! Anything on PBS is a winner. Case in point, The Cat In The Hat. Today, I heard them talk about tomatoes being fruit because they have seeds. Now, I know this is regularly debated. Fruit or vegetable, which is it?

I couldn’t take the idea of something being a fruit just because it has seeds in it. But sure enough, that’s exactly how they’re classified. Seeds inside = fruit. Roots = vegetable. Or at least that’s the rough explanation. Just focus on the seed part for a minute…

Cucumbers are fruit. Peppers are fruit. Corn and even squash… yup, fruit. What?!

I feel like I’ve been lied to my entire life.

Of course then there is the sweet vs savory issue. We think of fruit as sweet, so how could those items be fruit?

We need to reclassify this stuff. There needs to be a new definition because I can’t handle this new information.

Southwestern chili taco salad with homemade chipotle ranch dressing. Recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Also… this is an amazing chili salad that needs to happen in your kitchen asap. It’s a recreation of one of my favorite meals from our trip to Aruba this year. SO delicious. I obviously changed it up a bit. One, because I didn’t have their recipe. And two, because I can’t help but make things my own.

The original had beef and I used chicken. I’m willing to bet theirs wasn’t made in the slow cooker either, but who knows. I love my slow cooker. Any chance I have to use it, I will. And bonus here, if you want to enjoy the chili as is, just increase the amounts below for a super amazing hearty chili you’ll go crazy for! Hands down one of… or maybe THE best red chili I’ve ever made.

Homemade slow cooker taco chicken chili over a bed of mixed greens, topped off with cheese, tortilla strips and a spicy homemade chipotle ranch dressing.

De-licious!

Southwestern chili taco salad with homemade chipotle ranch dressing. Recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Yield: *see notes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

Total Time: 4 hours

Southwestern Chili Taco Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing

Taco chicken chili over a bed of mixed lettuce, crisp tortilla strips, cheese and topped off with a spicy homemade chipotle ranch dressing.

Ingredients:

Chili:

  • 1lb ground chicken, cooked and crumbled
  • 1/2C yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2C green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 15oz black beans, drained and rinsed well
  • 15oz red beans, drained and rinsed well
  • 1/2C tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1 1/2C chicken stock
  • 1/4C all purpose flour

Dressing:

  • 1/2C mayonnaise
  • 1/2C sour cream
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp dill
  • 1/4 tsp chives
  • Mixed greens
  • Monterey Jack cheese
  • Tortilla strips

Directions:

  1. In a large measuring cup, whisk together flour and chicken stock. In the bowl of a slow cooker, at least 3 quarts in size, add cooked and crumbled chicken along with remaining chili ingredients. Cook on high for 4 hours or until vegetables are tender and mixture has thickened.
  2. In a food processor or blender, combine dressing ingredients and process until smooth. Chill until ready to use.
  3. Serve chili over a bed of mixed lettuce with crisp tortilla strips and cheese. Top off with chipotle ranch dressing.

*Chili as written will serve 4-5 as a stand alone dish or more as a salad topping. Increase to serve a larger crowd.

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24 Responses to “Southwestern Chili Taco Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing”

  1. #
    1
    Meg @ The Housewife in Training Files — October 31, 2014 at 7:51 am

    Taco salads for life! And great point there with all those fruits disguising as veg’s. Not cool!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:29 am

      Thanks Meg! :)

  2. #
    2
    Melanie+@+Carmel+Moments — October 31, 2014 at 8:47 am

    What a beautiful salad. Chipotle ranch sounds amazing! Definitely trying it the next time I make a salad. Mmm…

    Have a beautiful weekend, Rachel!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:29 am

      Such a nice spicy kick! :)

  3. #
    3
    Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet — October 31, 2014 at 9:02 am

    Love everything about this! The dressing sounds absolutely amazing!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:30 am

      Thanks Anna!

  4. #
    4
    Rachel @ Bakerita — October 31, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    This salad sounds delicious!! Love the southwestern flavors, and that dressing sounds so yummy. Pinned!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:30 am

      Thanks Rachel!

  5. #
    5
    Catalina+@+Shades+of+Pink — October 31, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    That creamy Chipotle Ranch dressing looks so delicious, I would pour it on everything.

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:30 am

      Haha! Thanks so much :)

  6. #
    6
    Jessica | Saucy Pear — October 31, 2014 at 1:32 pm

    I don’t even try on the fruits/veggies thing. All the produce just gets labeled as “good for you” and we move on :) This salad would also happily go under the “good for you” category!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:30 am

      Good method. I’ll try to remember that but the seed part will still taunt me ;)

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    7
    amanda+@+fake+ginger — October 31, 2014 at 2:52 pm

    This is so fun! I’ve never thought to put chili on a salad!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:30 am

      You absolutely must now! :)

  8. #
    8
    Stacey @ Bake.Eat.Repeat. — October 31, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    Never put chili on a salad before, but what a great idea! This salad looks delicious, especially that dressing! Chipotle ranch is definitely the next salad dressing I need to make!

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:31 am

      It’s such a fun change to an ordinary salad :)

  9. #
    9
    Nutmeg+Nanny — October 31, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    This salad looks amazing! I have been waiting for you to post this :)

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 8:31 am

      Aww yay! And thanks… if only I could blink myself back to Aruba to have it by the pool again ha! ;)

  10. #
    10
    Wendy — November 1, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    This sounds amazing!! In the directions it says to mix the flour and stock together. When is it added to the slow cooker?? Thanks for a great recipe.

    • Rachel — November 1st, 2014 @ 7:15 pm

      It’s added along with the other remaining chili ingredients. Enjoy!

  11. #
    11
    Des @ Life's Ambrosia — November 5, 2014 at 1:19 am

    Now this is my kind of salad! I am totally swooning over the chipotle ranch dressing. :)

    • Rachel — November 5th, 2014 @ 7:57 am

      It’s SO good! :)

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    12
    col — November 16, 2016 at 9:45 am

    Is the dill and chives in the dressing fresh or dried?

    • Rachel — November 17th, 2016 @ 7:18 am

      The chives were fresh. The dill was likely dried, but you could use fresh as well.

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