Blackened Chicken Fiesta Salad

Blackened Chicken over a flavorful chickpea fiesta salad with fresh corn, tomatoes, avocado and lime juice. A quick and easy weeknight dish!

Blackened Chicken over a flavorful chickpea salad with fresh corn, tomatoes, avocado and lime juice. A quick and easy weeknight dish!
Blackened Chicken Fiesta Salad

I love blackened seasoning, it’s great over chicken but also wonderful over salmon like this Blackened Salmon with Mango dish and these Blackened Scallops with Horseradish Sauce! I also love these Blackened Fish Tacos with Cabbage Mango Slaw using cod.

Turning this into a salad makes for the perfect light summer lunch or dinner. You can also serve this with rice or quinoa. The chicken is mildly spicy, you can increase the cayenne if you like it really hot. Blackening the chicken works best on a cast iron skillet tot give it that nice char, before putting in the oven to finish cooking. This recipe serves 4 and the portions are very generous. I actually couldn’t finish the entire chicken breast. If you want to pack leftovers for lunch, you can leave the avocado out and add it just before serving. This dish is high in protein, gluten free and ready under 30 minutes.

What does it mean to blacken chicken?

Blackening meat is a cooking technique that requires a combination of the use of spice, typically a Cajun herb blend,  and a well cooked char of the spices to create a crust. This is usually done with chicken, meat or firm types of fish. What is the difference between grilled and blackened chicken? The seasoning blend is the key part to blackening any meat, with out it, it is simply charred or grilled.

How To Make Blackened Chicken

Spice rubbed chicken breasts served with a flavorful chickpea salad with fresh corn and avocados – a quick and easy weeknight dish!

 Blackened Chicken over a flavorful chickpea salad with fresh corn, tomatoes, avocado and lime juice. A quick and easy weeknight dish!

Chickpea Salad in a bowl.

More chicken breast recipes you will love:

 Blackened Chicken over a flavorful chickpea salad with fresh corn, tomatoes, avocado and lime juice. A quick and easy weeknight dish!
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5 from 21 votes
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Blackened Chicken Fiesta Salad

2
8
2
SP
516 Cals 60 Protein 40 Carbs 13.5 Fats
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 25 mins
Yield: 4 Servings
COURSE: Dinner, Salad
CUISINE: American
Blackened Chicken over a flavorful chickpea salad with fresh corn, tomatoes, avocado and lime juice – a quick and easy weeknight dish!

Ingredients

  • For the Fiesta Salad:
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup fresh cooked corn, from 1 large ear
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 4 oz diced avocado, 1 small haas

For the chicken:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • olive oil spray
  • teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • In a large bowl, combine the garlic, lime juice, oil, cumin, crushed red pepper, and salt.
  • Add the chickpeas, corn, tomato, onion and cilantro; mix well.
  • Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat for 5 minutes until it is smoking hot.
  • Mix together the paprika, salt, cayenne, cumin, thyme, and garlic powder. Spray the chicken breasts with cooking spray on both sides, then coat the chicken breasts evenly with the spice mixture.
  • Place the chicken in the hot skillet, and cook for 1 minute. Turn, and cook 1 minute on other side. Transfer to the oven and bake until no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear and a thermometer reads 165F inserted in the center, about 8 to 10 minutes. Slice chicken.
  • When ready to eat, gently mix avocado into the salad, top with chicken and serve right away.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1breast, 3/4 cup salad, Calories: 516kcal, Carbohydrates: 40g, Protein: 60g, Fat: 13.5g, Cholesterol: 166mg, Sodium: 855mg, Fiber: 9g, Sugar: 2g
Blue Smart Points: 2
Green Smart Points: 8
Purple Smart Points: 2
Points +: 7
Keywords: blackened chicken, blackened chicken recipe, blackened chicken salad, how to cook blackened chicken, how to make blackened chicken

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114 comments

  1. What size are your chicken breasts for this calorie count?

  2. We had this for dinner tonight and everyone loved it! It was super easy for a weeknight and a light, but filling summer dish! I will definitely be adding this into our dinner rotation.

  3. Made this tonight, was totally delicious. I used canned corn instead of fresh (not in season yet where we are) and it worked really well.

  4. This was delicious, I would definitely recommend this. 

  5. Is this diabetic friendly?

  6. I made this for my family the chicken was absolutely delicious even my picky 6 year old loved it! The salad is so flavorful and perfect for summer! 

  7. Made this with chicken tenders today!  Delicious.  

  8. Please stop perpetuating the myth of cooking chicken until “no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear”. The ONLY proper test for doneness is with a thermometer. It is quite common for juices in one chicken to run clear well before it has reached safe temperature and for pink to remain long after safe temperature! https://www.cooksillustrated.com/how_tos/10433-cook-until-the-juices-run-clear-fact-or-fiction

  9. I made this for the first time last night. My 2 youngest children are my pickiest and moodiest eaters – and are the only 2 left at home. This was a gamble that paid off big. My picky eater – who I fight constantly to eat fresh, unprocessed foods – loved it! My moody eater didn’t even hesitate to give it a try. Both were very disappointed to discover I had not made enough for leftovers. But…that’s okay, because this was an easy dish to make. I used vine tomatoes in place of grape and it was still delicious. 10 out of 5 stars!

  10. so delicious. I could probably eat this every day!!

  11. Made this for lunch recently. Very delicious and nicely spiced. I sprayed the chickpeas with a little olive oil and seasoned them with some chili lime seasoning from Trader Joe’s and baked them in the oven.

  12. Made this yesterday and it tasted amazing. Although, my chicken seasoning was a bit on the spicy side i still ate it. very yummy

  13. I made this for dinner tonight and it was so easy and very good. My husband and I really enjoyed. The cooking of the chicken was the easiest and for future reference I will continue to cook my chicken that
    way it was so moist. We have leftovers for lunch tomorrow. Yay me! Thank you for the recipe.

  14. Super flavorful and a hit with the whole family. The chicken and salad balanced each other nicely and easy to make substitutions! Loved it!

  15. This looks amazing!! Do you trim the chicken breats or tenderize with mallet? The one I find in our stores are disproportionately thicker on one end than the other. I try to but smallest breasts as possible.

  16. I don’t own cast iron. Does the chicken still taste good if it’s not blackened? I’m afraid to overheat my stainless steel pan. 

  17. This is amazing and I definitely will make it again. The flavors are wonderful. I did bake the chicken for about 20-25 minutes but it didn’t dry them out.

  18. This was absolutely delicious! Followed the recipe as shown for the first try and me and my wife both loved it. Added to the “go to” list. We love many of your recipes. It’s not always easy to find tasty and nutritious but we know that is always the case with you. Thank you for all you do!

  19. What are smart points ? 

  20. This recipe looks delicious! I dislike cilantro though – is there something else I can use in its place?

  21. This recipe is amazing. Have made so many times, never to disappoint. Everybody and their mother loves it.

    One time I did mistake my chili powder for paprika and it was a tad spicy. 🙂

  22. this was our first ever cast iron recipe and it was amazing!  Flavor was great and it was so easy. Will definitely be making this often!

  23. What is the saturated fat?

  24. One of my family faves! I often make the chickpea salad solo as lunch or a small snack! Thank you for this awesome recipe!

  25. This was fabulous. Made with mahi instead of chicken, but seasoning was perfection. 

  26. This was delicious! Thank you for a great recipe!

  27. Simply awesome and super points friendly! I loved it!! 😀

  28. Loved the recipe! Very easy to do with ingredients that I had in the pantry. I did have to bake for 25-30 min.  I will repeat anytime I have avocados!

  29. I seasoned the chick peas with cumin, cayenne, and salt and roasted them before everything. They added a perfect crispy element to the salad. I cant Believe this is a healthy meal, I can’t wait to make it again!

  30. LOVE this meal!
    I change the chickpeas to BLACK BEANS, and I add julienned Lacinto /Tuscan kale…also the corn does not have to be cooked!

  31. This looks so delicious! I don’t know if I like chickpeas (now would be a good time to try though :). Do you have any suggestions for a substitute for them, or I may just try it without them! Thanks for all the delicious recipes! 

  32. Is this very spicy? Would my kids be able to eat it? They usually like a milder flavor.

  33. Anyway I could use this recipe as a prep for a few days of work lunch?

  34. This meals was amazing! Lots of flavor and very filling!

  35. Love this fresh easy weeknight dish! Tons of flavor. Easy to put together. I make it often and it never disappoints.

  36. The recipe calls for fresh cooked corn. How should the corn be cooked? Thanks!

  37. my WW calculator on the app puts this at 10 smart points not 8. How are you calculating the points?

  38. I was not sure of this recipe but tried it anyway. It was so easy and tasted amazing. The only change I made was to add some chopped jalapeno to the vegetable mix. This will be going on my list of go to recipes.

  39. This was delicious and so easy! My husband loved it and said he hopes we have it again.

  40. Making this right now and it looks great! I agree though, I have no idea how your chicken is cooking so fast! Normally it takes about 30-ish mins to bake chicken breasts at 350. Mine have a meat thermometer in but have been in way longer than 10 mins. My husband says his first tastes of the salad were awesome!

    • It’s already partially cooked when you sear it on the hot skillet, but good to know. Not sure why mine cooked faster?

  41. Made this tonight…quick and yummy!!! I made a few small changes. I added fresh ground pepper , half a red and half a yellow bell pepper, chia seeds, radishes and served as fajita style lettuce wrap on ice burg lettuce. LOVED it!!

  42. Delicious!
    It’s really hard to choose what to cook next with all your great recipes!

  43. This recipe was amazing! I modified it to use precooked chicken strips which I seasoned using the spice mix in the recipe. I was so surprised by the combination of flavors and how well they work together. It has a slightly sweet taste which was perfect with the spice. I had this for lunch for a few days in a row and was so sad when it was all gone. Can’t wait to make another batch (and try other recipes from your site). Thanks so much for this one!

  44. I am going to try this on the grill. I am remodeling my kitchen and I don’t have an oven in place right now. Any suggestions?

  45. This recipe is wonderful! So fresh tasting and packed with lean protein – love it! I’m not a huge fan of tomatoes, so I replaced them with roasted red peppers 🙂

    • I love your substitution of roasted red peppers! I just made this but omitted the tomatoes. I am going to make it again with the red peppers because that sounds delicious!

  46. I used boneless skinless thighs and black beans instead of chickpeas and it was delish.

  47. I made this this other night for myself and a friend and were were both blown away at the flavor! I ate leftovers for lunch the following 2 days and couldn’t get enough. This will definitely be in my weekly food-prep rotation. Hot tip: I divided the salad into 2 bowls and added fresh avocado to the second bowl 4 days later and it still tasted great. Thanks Gina!

  48. This was delicious! Made it last night and had leftovers today. Big hit!

  49. Wow Gina!! Just made this last night and we LOVED IT!!! It’s definitely on our favorites list. Thanks for all the fabulous recipes you continue to post. We are definitely a SKINNYTASTE family and I serve your dishes on a regular basis. Can’t wait to get the new cookbook!

  50. Made this tonight. It is delicious. My husband and son had third servings. Gina, you have changed my cooking life!

  51. Hi Gina, 
    Hope you’re reading this. I came across your website while searching for Sazon chicken and after browsing through countless pages of your recipes, I am so glad to have found you! Your tastes, ingredients, and dishes exactly suits my own. Keep up the amazing recipes, photos, and instructions. 
    -Ray 

  52. Delish!!! Used black beans instead of chick peas.  Had to cook chicken for 15 min to get 165.  A fantastic recipe!  Hubby loved it!

  53. Wow! This is the best recipe. The salad is so good. I’m not sure why I didn’t try something like this sooner. For something so healthy and low in calories, it’s delicious!

  54. I have been following  you for years. Your recipes are never a disappoint. This is a another golden star recipe from you. Thanks for always sharing  new ideas 

  55. Really tasty! I think jicama would also make a nice addition, to add some more crunch.

  56. Just to be clear… The salad is served at room temperature? I’m making this tonight…so excited:)

  57. Gina – how many ounces are the chicken breasts? I just pulled some out if my freezer and they are all shapes and sizes. Assuming four would be about a pound (although some chicken breasts weigh well over a pound!)
    Question – when it comes to WW isn’t it better to give most ingredients by weight as that is more accurate? Thank you! 

  58. Go to Penzeys.penzeys.com for the thyme. I have one of their stores near me but
    if you order on line ($30 order) shipping free. All of my seasonings are from them.
    Sign up and you get free magazines about once a month. Their prices are so much
    lower then grocery stores. My favorite is their freshly ground pepper, so get that one.
    After you get hooked on their products you can buy in a bag and just pour into the
    glass jar. It is so nice to open a kitchen cabinet and have it very organize by same
    type of containers also. People are always amazed by my spices.

  59. Made this for lunch today – delicious!  I loved the garbanzo beans with all the Mexican seasonings.  The salad was good on its own, and we also thought it would be good with a blackened fish (like tilapia or halibut).  Since it’s August and I didn’t want to turn on the oven (or make a mess of my stovetop) I simply seasoned the chicken and grilled it…perfect!  Served with a side of Mexican rice and it was yummy!  This is definitely going in my recipe file! 

  60. No I had it but you could grind it for sure!

  61. It was awesome! Thank you!

  62. This was very good but I’m curious about the points. In the recipe builder I get 8 sp….. until I add the chickpeas and then it jumps to 11.  Can anyone provide insight? 

  63. Hi Gina! Recipe looks delicious, like always. Can’t wait to make it!

    I wanted to ask – I noticed with the search bars, you can no longer look up a particular ingredient (i.e. goat cheese) to generate all recipes with that item unless it is featured in the title. Is there a way to adjust that? I can’t find some old favorites because I don’t remember exactly what they were called.

    Can’t wait for the new cookbook!!

    • The new search doesn’t function as well as the old one, I wonder if you do a google search and google: Skinnytaste XX if it will show up?

  64. Hi Gina,
    I made this recipe and absolutely loved it! The flavors are perfect. However, when I entered the nutritional info in Weight Watchers, it came up with 10 SP and you listed it as 8. Any idea why there would be a discrepancy?
    I’ve made tons of your recipes from the website and your cookbook, but this is my new favorite!
    Thanks!

    • Yes, you will never have the right numbers with the nutritional info since veggies are 0 on the new program. You have to use recipe builder to get accurate results.

  65. This was delicious! I made it tonight – the flavors and texture, all so wonderful. My husband loved it! Definitely keeping this one to make again! I do agree with other comments with the time to cook the chicken – I left it in the oven for about 15 min.

  66. I can’t wait to make this. I have many cast iron skillets. I buy them at auctions for just a few bucks. Just bought your skinny taste cookbook with companion meal planner. Can’t wait to start. 

  67. Any way of making this recipe lower in Sodium, we need food that is low in sodium since my husband has an heart issue.

    • In addition to reducing , or omitting, the added salt listed in the recipe, consider using dried beans instead of canned. Also look at the chicken you buy to make sure it hasn’t been injected with a sodium solution.

  68. Can’t wait to try this. I love your Fiesta Bean Salad–I think that’s the name of it–the one with black beans and chick peas and all the other ingredients similar to the one in this recipe. Anyway, I’ve often thought about serving it with chicken, and this blackened chicken seems just right for it. Thanks!

  69. Never spray cooking spray directly on food.  It’s toxic.  I’m referring to Pam or one of those sprays.   I put a little oil in a small spray bottle and spray the food to be guaranteed it’s ok.  Great recipe.  

    • Cooking spray is not toxic – hence the name… Cooking spray.  You spray it on foil and put food directly on it so obviously it’s not toxic.

  70. I love the recipe! Also want to know what kind of dish or where you got the dish in the first picture?

  71. Looking forward to trying this!  Like many others, I use both your cookbook and this site to plan my weekly meals. I don’t know who is happier that I came across your site – me or my husband!!!  Thank you so much!  There are countless happy palates because of you!

  72. Can you use canned or frozen corn(cooked in the microwave) or does it need to be from an ear of corn?

  73. OMG yum! I love blackened anything! Can’t wait to try this!

  74. Fantastic flavors! I used an oven safe grill pan (didn’t have cast iron pan) and needed to bake longer about 18 min for the thick chicken breasts. I only used 2 chicken breasts and forgot to halve the rub~~It was fantastic with even double the amount.  Great recipe and perfect for a hot summer night. Thanks, Gina!

  75. Our family doesn’t care for cilantro. Any suggestions for a substitution?

  76. Delicious!!  My husband and kids loved this. It’s not very often that happens!

  77. Wow 8oz of chicken seems like alot for one serving….

  78. made this for lunch today- yum! had to cook my chicken in the oven for about 15+ minutes though to get it cooked all the way thru.

  79. How many ounces in each chicken breast used to calculate points/calories?  Thanks.

  80. You never mentioned the corn in the instructions!

  81. How many ounces are the chicken breast?

  82. What if you don’t have a cast iron skillet? How do you blacken the chicken in either a non stick skillet or a regular one?

    • You can blacken it on a grill too, or invest in a cast iron skillet because they are amazing and you are missing out!