Grilled Chipotle Chicken Caesar Salad

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I’m gonna be honest with you. I’m not the best eater. If I had my way, I’d eat pizza, buffalo wings, cheeseburgers and sushi every day. My cholesterol and blood pressure would be through the roof along with my mercury levels from all the raw fish I’d be consuming on the daily. But biology is something we must bow down to…. but not all the time. 🙂

When I’m feeling the urge to be “healthy,” especially when I’m out at a restaurant, there is one dish I crave — the illustrious Caesar Salad. Holding the croutons makes the dish extremely low carb. And of course the dressing has basically no calories at all… at least that’s what I tell myself as I order extra on the side to ensure every forkful of green is coated in one of my favorite condiments on the planet. It’s dishes like these that I order almost everywhere I go, and because of that, I find myself continually inspired to make it at home.

What I’m sharing with you today is a take on a Caesar that I have never encountered before putting this recipe together. I’m sure this dish is out there somewhere. And if not, it needs to be!

As a hello and thank you for being so patient with me during my time away from my blog, I give you this delicious and decadent Chipotle Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad. The twist here — the main presence of my favorite pepper is in the dressing! The use of chipotle in adobo gives the common Caesar dressing a spicy and smoky kick that makes this version of a Caesar Salad that much more memorable. Paired with grilled chicken and romaine, there is no part of this dish that will leave your tastebuds dormant.

Do yourself a solid and whip this up next time you’re craving a salad! You can thank me later!

 

Grilled Chipotle Chicken Caesar Salad

(recipe serving size: 4)

For the Chipotle Caesar Dressing:

4 anchovies 

2/3 cup mayonnaise

1 tb & 1 tsp dijon mustard

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp cracked black pepper

2 tb white distilled vinegar 

Juice of 1 lemon

2 chipotle chili in adobo

2 tb chopped cilantro, loosely packed

2 large clove of garlic, minced

Blend until smooth and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

For the chicken:

1 1/2 – 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts (6-8 pieces)

1 tb olive oil

1 tsp granulated garlic

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp chipotle chili powder

1 tsp smoked paprika

2 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp cracked black pepper

Cooking spray

Coat the chicken with the olive oil and dress liberally with spices. If you have the time, allow the chicken to marinade in the refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight.

Spray your grill with the cooking spray. Grill the chicken over an open flame for 6-8 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Allow the poultry to rest for 3-5 minutes. Slice into pieces roughly 1 inch in width and cover to keep warm.

(Note: If you’re using an indoor grill pan, adhere to the same cooking times. Heat the pan over medium to medium-high heat and tent the chicken with foil to aid in the cooking process.)

For the lettuce:

4 small heads of romaine lettuce  or 2 large

1 tb olive oil

Cooking spray

Rinse and pat the romaine with a paper towel, getting the lettuce as dry as you can. Spray the grill with the cooking spray. Brush the romaine lightly with the olive oil and grill the lettuce on each side for a few seconds, just until you get a slight char on the outer leaves. You don’t want the romaine to wilt, so keep an eye on it, making sure you don’t take the lettuce too far.

If you are working with larger romaine heads, slice the romaine down the center before brushing with the oil and grilling.

Bringing it all together:

Chipotle chili powder

Chopped cilantro

Place a grilled romaine heart on a plate. Top it with as much chicken as your heart desires. Dress it with the chipotle Caesar dressing. Sprinkle the dish with additional chipotle chili powder, garnish with fresh chopped cilantro and prepare to be blown away!

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