Spicy Barbecue Chicken Salad

Spicy Barbecue Chicken Salad Recipe - bakedbyrachel.com

As I write this, I’m contemplating how I’m going to sneak into my daughters room and play the role of Tooth Fairy tonight. My luck, one or both of the girls will wake up when I go in or my oldest will have moved the tooth. It’s her first tooth to fall out. And let me say, yesterday was full of drama, tears and laughter over the idea of her tooth coming out. All from her. The first is obviously the scariest and I’m glad we’re past it now.

Who even started this tradition? Don’t get me wrong – it’s cute and fun, but couldn’t the tradition be to hang a pouch on the door or something? Why does it have to be tucked under the pillow, making it more difficult for the ‘Tooth Fairy’ to obtain? Do you have any funny tooth or Tooth Fairy stories to share? What have your traditions been when a tooth falls out?

Even stranger than what does the Tooth Fairy give in your house… do you keep or toss the tooth? My dad has, or had, all of his baby teeth last I knew. Maybe he’s tossed them by now. Who knows. But that’s something super strange to see as a child – your parents baby teeth. And since I have three kids, do I really want to save three sets of teeth? I know they’re small but… do I? So tell me, really, what do you do with them?

Spicy Barbecue Chicken Salad Recipe - bakedbyrachel.com

Now to the more important part… the FOOD. Okay so obviously I’m having issues keeping barbecue sauce and bacon separated. It’s like bread and butter or peanut butter and jelly – or in our world Biscoff and jelly since we’re a no peanut household 99% of the time – or even milk and cookies. They’re meant for each other. A perfect pair that should always be eaten together. Okay, not necessarily always because I don’t eat barbecue sauce with my breakfast, but now that has me wondering. We may have to revisit that idea sometime.

I’m honestly not a huge salad fan all of the time but this one was so good I made it again the next day for lunch. Seriously good. It’s super simple and fairly quick too, plus the chicken totally doesn’t have to be hot to eat it. In fact, I preferred it after it had cooled to room temperature or even cooler. I guess it reminded me of eating leftover turkey from the fridge after a big Thanksgiving meal, only this wasn’t turkey or the day after Thanksgiving.

It’s a light and flavorful salad, full of variety and spice. Your favorite barbecue sauce is turned in to a spicy dressing for the final addition to this perfect salad. If you love barbecue sauce, you’ll love this salad.

Spicy Barbecue Chicken Salad Recipe - bakedbyrachel.com

Spicy Barbecue Chicken Salad

An easy chicken and bacon salad, featuring a sweet and spicy barbecue dressing.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Chicken
Servings: 2


  • 1 medium chicken breast trimmed and pounded to 1/2-inch thickness
  • 2-3 slices thick cut bacon
  • lettuce
  • Monterey jack cheese
  • Seasoned tortilla strips
  • 1/3 C Barbecue sauce
  • 2 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder


  • In a medium skillet over medium heat, cook bacon. Drain on a paper towel.
  • Lightly season chicken breast on both sides with salt and pepper. Using the same skillet, cook over medium heat, flipping halfway through or roughly 5 minutes per side. Chicken should no longer be pink in the center when sliced.
  • Chop bacon and slice chicken into strips.
  • Prepare dressing: in a small bowl mix together barbecue sauce, lemon juice, pepper, cayenne and garlic powder.
  • Arrange lettuce. Top off with cheese, bacon, chicken and tortilla strips. Drizzle entire salad with barbecue dressing.
  • Store any remaining dressing in the fridge.


An original recipe from Baked by Rachel

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31 Responses to “Spicy Barbecue Chicken Salad”

  1. #
    Cookin Canuck — March 27, 2013 at 9:01 am

    Ah yes, the tooth fairy. Just wait until the time when you wake up in the morning and you suddenly realize that you forgot to do your tooth fairy duty. Yep, I felt like the worst mother ever! The tooth fairy left a note the next night to apologize and that the previous night had been a crazy busy night for tooth exchanges.

    This salad looks fantastic, one I’d love to serve my family for dinner.

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 10:33 am

      I was honestly thinking about that last night – fear of forgetting, but you offered a great idea for if that ever happens!

  2. #
    Kelly — March 27, 2013 at 9:41 am

    You had me at BBQ chicken, this is complete perfection! :)

  3. #
    Jessica L. — March 27, 2013 at 10:44 am

    We did hang it on the door! My grandma made me a cute little heart pillow with a pocket on the front, and that’s where I would put my teeth for the tooth fairy to find. Much easier on my parents, I’m sure :)

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm

      I wish I’d heard this yesterday. Thankfully I was able to sneak in their room undetected in the middle of the night :)

  4. #
    Marie @ Little Kitchie — March 27, 2013 at 10:47 am

    Looks like an awesome salad! Love that kick of cayenne in the dressing! :)

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm

      The cayenne is a must! It gives a nice kick :)

  5. #
    claire @ the realistic nutritionist — March 27, 2013 at 11:05 am

    I don’t know why that read “spicy barbara” to me and then it became sort of weird. haha. Love this though, healthy and delicious.

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm

      haha! That would be an unusual salad ;)

  6. #
    Tracey — March 27, 2013 at 11:15 am

    I’m not big on salads as a main course either, but if chicken and barbecue sauce are involved, well then sign me up! I’m no help when it comes to tooth fairy stuff, but that is an interesting question about what you do with the teeth. I’ll be curious to see the responses…

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 12:17 pm

      It just never seems filling or super appetizing but this one absolutely hit the spot for me.

  7. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — March 27, 2013 at 11:38 am

    Spicy bbq sauce is always so good on just about anything!

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 12:17 pm

      It really is!

  8. #
    Carla @ Carlas Confections — March 27, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    OMG you just gave me the perfect reason to have BBQ sauce on a salad. Why have I never thought of this before?! I love that it is light too, because I have been eating way too many nachos lately (and pizza… ;) ) and I am in need of a light dinner

    • #
      Rachel — March 27, 2013 at 3:15 pm

      At least I know I’ll always have your approval when I make bbq recipes ;)

  9. #
    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — March 27, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Haha, best of luck with your Tooth Fairy duties tonight! Here’s hoping your daughter doesn’t wake up and catch the fairy in action! Fabulous salad, I love your recipe. Saving it to try soon!

  10. #
    Linda | The Urban Mrs — March 27, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    Oh dear tooth fairy – it’s always fun to see kiddos expression. As for me, spicy BBQ chicken salad, gulp, I wish I can have this for lunch right now. This looks so amazingly good!

  11. #
    Amanda — March 27, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    This looks SO good!!!

  12. #
    Nicole @ Young, Broke and Hungry — March 27, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    My mom used to slip a quarter under my pillow when I was sleeping and in the morning, I would find my tooth in a pink box. I think I still have my baby teeth somewhere but I dont know where. Moving onto this salad, wow! Im gonna make this for dinner tonight. Its exactly what im craving.

  13. #
    Micha — March 27, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    I love BBQ chicken salad and will make this when we go camping, super easy. As for the tooth fairy, she has forgotten (oops) a couple of times, but I toss the teeth. I don’t need more stuff in my house. Congrats to your little girl for losing her first tooth.

  14. #
    Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen — March 27, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    That’s awesome! IAnd I think it is so cute that she took her glitter $$ to school to show her friends :)

    • #
      Rachel — March 28, 2013 at 7:06 am

      Her teacher told her she is rich now lol

  15. #
    Julie @ Table for Two — March 27, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    Haha, my dad still has some of our baby teeth in his office drawers. It’s weird but kind of cute to look back on :) who are you, btw? SALAD? lol jk ;) it’s about time I have some salad in my life…bbq chicken salad is actually one of my favorite varieties of salad so yay, i would definitely eat this in a minute! :)

  16. #
    Jennifer @ Mother Thyme — March 28, 2013 at 12:28 am

    Good luck playing tooth fairy! This salad look so good. No wonder why you made it again the next day. I would too!

  17. #
    Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. — March 28, 2013 at 2:15 am

    I remember once when I was little, my mom forgot to put money under my pillow and I cried the whole next day. So silly!

    This salad looks great! I am really craving them right now!

  18. #
    Erika @ The Hopeless Housewife — March 28, 2013 at 8:57 am

    What a great salad, wonderful flavors!

  19. #
    sally @ sallys baking addiction — March 28, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    suddenly, i’m starving for salad. :) this looks so much better than the boring salad I had for lunch! one time the tooth fairy forgot to come to my house and left me crying the next morning. My mom said she was sick and would be there that night! I got $10!!

    • #
      Rachel — March 28, 2013 at 7:06 pm

      Oh that’s too funny and apparently memorable! She definitely felt bad :)

  20. #
    katie — March 28, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    I can’t imagine the stress parents have sneaking into the room and playing tooth fairy. Stressful job my friend! I’ve had friends forget and they too write the apology letter. One of our friends gives silver dollars as the tooth fairy money. p.s. this salad looks divine :)

    • #
      Rachel — March 29, 2013 at 6:57 am

      I thought about doing silver dollars and maybe I will for the future teeth. It’d be fun but didn’t have time to get one.

  21. #
    Nutmeg Nanny — March 29, 2013 at 10:42 am

    Now this is my kind of salad, it’s calling my name it looks so satisfying :)

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