I’m not much of a salad person. And honestly, I’m not much of a salad person because I have had some really bad salads. When it comes to salads, I want something that tastes good and not bland. Salads, especially restaurant salads, are always overwhelming or underwhelming. They usually use butter lettuce, which serves absolutely no purpose. They add too much or too little dressing. Or, they are filled with too many ingredients. A normal restaurant salad includes these ingredients, ham, eggs, bacon bits, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, onion, cheese, ranch dressing, croutons, and some oddball ingredient like olives. Yuck. That is too much. So whenever I make a salad, I aim for something simple and light, like this strawberry pecan chicken salad.
Another reason I don’t like salads is that honestly, I’d rather just eat something else! A sandwich, a quesadilla, or a rice bowl just sounds so much better than a boring salad. But, I woke up this morning craving a salad. I know, I’m not the biggest salad fan in the world. But something told me I needed a salad with pecans, goat cheese, chicken, strawberries, and avocado in my life. This salad has changed my life. Literally.
How to make a strawberry pecan chicken salad:
The first step is to grill up some chicken. I used my indoor grill pan to grill the chicken breast. Normally, I don’t use chicken breast. Chicken breast isn’t as flavorful as chicken thighs, but I’ve been craving chicken breast ever since I had it at a restaurant a few days ago. I saw some chicken breast in Trader Joe’s and decided to buy it for once. Although, I think buying chicken breast out of there is a big waste of money. The bag only contains 3 large chicken breasts in comparison to the cheaper big bag of boneless chicken thighs. But, if you cut the chicken up, you end up with more portions.
I decided to keep the spice blend on the chicken simple. Garlic salt, garlic powder, onion powder, sweet ginger spice, black pepper, turmeric, and Herbs de Provence. I will probably be using this chicken throughout the week to make quesadillas, sandwiches, wraps, and rice bowls. Whenever I meal prep meat, I don’t do too much with the seasoning. This is due to the fact that I may want to use the chicken for another dish. For instance, I wouldn’t dare meal prep some cream cheese chicken and then put it in a rice bowl. That sounds horrendous.
After cooking the chicken, I chose to go for simple fruits and veggies! I used strawberries instead of using tomatoes. Strawberry salads are so underrated. Plus, I bought fresh strawberries for once instead of using frozen! I typically don’t buy fresh fruit, so when I bit into those strawberries yesterday – I felt so refreshed!
Lastly, I loaded the salad up with pecans, goat cheese, and avocado. These ingredients go so well together. And just a squeeze of lime and everything but the bagel seasoning made this strawberry pecan chicken salad perfect.
Want more recipes?
- Carrot Ginger Miso Salad
- General Tso’s Noodles & Shrimp
- Parmesan Cauliflower Broccoli Gnocchi
- Shrimp & Balsamic Arrabbiata Pizza
Strawberry Pecan Chicken Salad
- 4 cups Baby Spinach
- 5 large Strawberries
- 3 tbsp Goat Cheese
- 3 tbsp Pecans
- 1/2 Avocado
- Everything But The Bagel Seasoning (optional)
- 1 juice of a Lime (optional
For The Chicken *optional
- 3 large Chicken Breast
- 5 tbsp Avocado Oil
- Trader Joe’s Spanish Olive Oil Cooking Spray, for spraying
- 3 tsp Garlic Salt
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
- 3 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tsp Onion Powder
- 3 tsp Sweet Ginger Spice
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric
- 2 tsp Herbs de Provence
For the Chicken:
- Start by preheating an indoor grill pan to medium-high heat. Drizzle the entire grill pan with enough avocado oil to coat the pan but do not too much oil.
- In a small bowl, add all of the spices. Stir well and set aside.
- Add the raw chicken breast to a large bowl. Season the raw chicken breast with the seasoning blend and make sure the seasoning is on both sides very well. If some pieces of the chicken are without the spice blend, sprinkle more of the sweet ginger spice. Add 5 tbsp of avocado oil to the bowl.
- Add the chicken to the grill and allow to sear for a few minutes on each side. Approximately 8 minutes on each side depending on how hot your grill gets. After both sides of chicken are seared, remove the chicken from the grill pan and place onto a lined baking sheet. Spray the chicken with Spanish olive oil cooking spray. Bake for 30-35 minutes on 400 degrees F. After 30-35 minutes, remove from oven and spray with more cooking spray. Use a meat thermometer to make sure that the chicken reaches at least 165 degrees F. Set aside and allow to cool before cutting.
For the salad
- To a large bowl, add in four cups of spinach. Set aside.
- Chop up the avocado and strawberries. Slice the lime in half. Add to the bowl with the spinach and then proceed to add the pecans and goat cheese. Once the chicken has cooled, chop it and add to the salad. Drizzle with lime juice and season with everything but the bagel seasoning.
- This salad serves two people.
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