A yummy chicken, bacon, avocado chopped salad with the most delicious honey mustard dressing. This easy recipe is made from wholesome real food ingredients and comes together quickly. It makes the perfect lunch or dinner and is gluten-free, dairy-free, and Paleo-friendly.
Chicken Bacon Avocado Chopped Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing
Salads do not get the love they deserve, in my personal opinion. I mean, I get it. On the surface, a salad may not seem to be as exciting as a chocolate chip cookie or blueberry pie bars, but do not give up on them just yet. A salad with the right ingredients and a creamy dressing to tie everything together is just as praise-worthy as everyone’s favorite dessert.
This chicken, bacon, avocado chopped salad is one of those magic salads that somehow manages to not only taste great but also won’t leave you feeling hungry an hour after you eat it. It is packed with protein, healthy fats, and fresh veggies, and the creamy honey mustard dressing will keep you coming back for more.
Not only is this salad delicious, it is so easy and comes together in only around thirty minutes, making it the perfect recipe to keep on hand when you need a quick weeknight dinner option. Made from simple real food ingredients, this salad is naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, and Paleo-friendly.
Chopped Salad Ingredients
Romaine Lettuce: Romaine lettuce is the perfect choice of lettuce for this salad. It is hearty yet tender which makes it a great base for the avocado, chicken, and bacon.
Avocado: Make sure you avocado is ripe but not overly ripe. You don’t want it to fall apart and turn into mush when you toss the salad.
Tomatoes: Grape or cherry tomatoes work best in this salad. I love using heirloom cherry tomatoes for even more bright color and flavor.
Green Onion: Green onions have a much milder flavor than white or red onion which make them a great choice to toss in salads.
Bacon: Bacon adds just the right touch of smoky flavor and pairs really well with the honey mustard dressing. When buying bacon, look for a brand that is uncured and nitrate free.
Chicken Breast: Boneless, skinless chicken breast is always my chicken of choice in hearty salads like this one. It packs in the protein and easily takes on the flavor of whatever seasonings you use.
How to Make Chicken, Bacon, Avocado Chopped Salad
This hearty salad is super easy to make and comes together quickly, too!
Step One: First, make the bacon. To do this, use a sharp knife to cut the bacon into strips and then add it to a skillet or cast iron pan. Cook the bacon until crisp and then use a slotted spoon to remove it from the pan. Let it drain on paper towels to remove any excess grease.
Step Two: Next, make the chicken breast. Season each chicken breast liberally with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Add 1 tablespoon of olive or avocado oil to a pan heated over medium heat. Add the chicken breasts to the hot pan and cook for 6-8 minutes on each side until the chicken is browned and fully cooked. Then, remove it from the pan to cool.
Step Three: While the chicken is cooking, prep the veggies. Chop the romaine lettuce, slice the tomatoes, dice the avocado, and slice the green onion. Add everything to a large mixing bowl. You can also use this time to make the honey mustard dressing.
Step Four: Now it is time to finish the salad! Dice the chicken breast into bite-sized pieces and add it to the mixing bowl. Then, add the bacon strips. Next, drizzle a few tablespoons of dressing over the salad. Use a pair of kitchen tongs to toss the salad until well combined and then plate in individual bowls. Feel free to add a little extra salt, pepper, or salad dressing to your salad before you eat and enjoy!
Can You Add More Veggies to the Salad?
Yes! This salad tastes great as is, but you can always add a few different veggies to customize it even more. Adding additional fresh veggies is a great way to make this salad even heartier and boost the nutrient content.
Here are a few specific veggies that I think would work particularly well with the flavors in this salad:
Corn (grilled corn would be particularly delicious)
Marinated artichoke Hearts
Thinly shredded cabbage
Feel free to get creative here and use whatever veggies you love or have on hand and make this salad your own!
How to Make the Creamy Honey Mustard Dressing
Any great salad has a really good dressing and the creamy honey mustard dressing that goes along with this salad is absolutely delicious. The dressing is made from a combination of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, whole grain mustard, and honey. You will likely have a bit of extra dressing when you make this recipe which, trust me, is not a bad thing.
Step One: Add the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, lemon juice, whole grain mustard, minced garlic, salt, and pepper to a blender or bowl of a food processor. For the best results, mince the garlic before adding it to the food processor or blender. Otherwise, you might end up with large chunks of garlic in your dressing.
Step Two: Blend the dressing until smooth and creamy. Give the dressing a taste and adjust the salt or sweetness based on your tastebuds.
Step Three: Store the dressing in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Do You Have to Use Honey for the Dressing?
If you don’t have honey on hand, or just don’t like the flavor of honey, you can use maple syrup to sweeten the dressing instead and it will taste great. You could also try using softened medjool dates to sweeten the dressing if you are doing a Whole30 and need to keep this recipe Whole30 compliant.
If you want to decrease the amount of honey you use in the dressing overall, you can add one to two tablespoons of honey to start and then work your way up from there. Just keep giving the dressing a taste as you are making it and adjust as needed.
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast (about 2 chicken breasts)
salt and pepper
6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 avocado, diced
1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes
1/2 cup sliced green onion
For the Honey Mustard Dressing
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Use a sharp knife to slice the bacon into strips. Add the bacon to a pan heated over medium heat. Cook the bacon until crisp and then use a slotted spoon to remove it from the pan. Let it drain on paper towels to remove any excess grease.
Season each chicken breast liberally with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Add 1 tablespoon of olive or avocado oil to a pan heated over medium heat. Add the chicken breasts to the hot pan and cook for 6-8 minutes on each side until the chicken is browned and fully cooked. Remove the chicken from the pan and let cool.
Chop the romaine lettuce, slice the tomatoes, dice the avocado, and slice the green onion. Add everything to a large mixing bowl.
Make the honey mustard dressing by adding all of the dressing ingredients to a food processor or high-powered blender. Blend until creamy and smooth.
Dice the chicken breast into bite-sized pieces and add it to the mixing bowl. Then, add the bacon strips.
Drizzle a few tablespoons of dressing over the salad and use a pair of kitchen tongs to toss the salad until well combined.
Serve with extra dressing, salt, and pepper on the side and enjoy!