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healthy grilled chicken BLT salad recipe with pesto ranch dressing
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5 from 1 vote

Grilled Chicken BLT Salad Recipe

Grilled Chicken BLT Salad is an easy summer salad recipe filled with grilled marinated chicken, bacon, tomatoes, cheese and butter lettuce. Topped with a creamy pesto ranch dressing that’s easy and flavorful, this salad is a huge hit!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
resting time5 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 830kcal

Ingredients

Easy Chicken Marinade

  • 3-4 large Chicken Breasts

    Plan on 4-6 oz of chicken breasts per person

  • 1 large Lemon Juice or 2 T Vinegar
  • 3 Tablespoon Avocado Oil or your favorite cooking oil.
  • 1 package Good Seasonings Italian Dressing Spice Mix You can find this in the salad dressing aisle by the ranch packets

Ingredients for Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Salad

  • ½ pound Bacon for Homemade Bacon Bits
  • 8 regular String Cheese Sticks or cubed Cheese- Use your favorite kind
  • 1.5 cups Cherry Tomatoes halved or just a large tomato cut into ½" chunks work great.
  • 1 large Avocado cut into ½" chunks
  • 10-12 cups Chopped Lettuce Butter Lettuce, Romaine, or your favorite lettuce

Creamy Pesto Ranch Dressing

  • 1 cup Mayo
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 packet Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing
  • ½ cup Prepared Pesto (You can usually find this in the deli or specialty cheese section at the supermarket)

Instructions

How to Tenderize Chicken

  • Tenderize your chicken by putting the chicken between two sheets of plastic wrap. Use a rolling pin, mason jar, or the flat side of a meat tenderizer to pound the thickest part of the chicken breast. Pound until it about ¾" thick, similar to the rest of the chicken breast. (This should only take a few good whacks.)

The Best Chicken Marinade

  • Add the cooking oil, lemon juice and Good Seasonings Italian packet into a gallon-sized Ziplock bag. Roll the bag around gently to mix all the ingredients together.
  • Let the chicken marinate in the fridge for 2-24 hours. (If you can let the chicken marinate for up to 24 hours, that's ideal. The marinate will give the chicken so much flavor and it makes the most tender and juicy grilled chicken.)

Grilling the Chicken

  • Preheat the grill and then place the chicken on medium heat for 5-6 minutes on each side. Use a digital thermometer to ensure the chicken breast is done.  When the chicken is done, the internal temp of the chicken should be 165 degrees. Place the chicken on a platter with foil over it for 5 minutes to redistribute the juices and to keep the chicken warm and juicy. After 5 minutes, slice the chicken into bite-sized strips.

Preparing the Salad

  • Wash and cut the lettuce and slice cherry tomatoes in half. Cut the avocado into bite-sized pieces. Cube cheese sticks into bite-sized pieces and wash the lettuce. Cut the lettuce into bite-sized pieces.

How to Make Homemade Bacon Bits

  • To prepare the bacon, cut the bacon strips in to ½" pieces. Sauté in a pan until all the bacon bits are golden brown and just a little crispy. If you are using pre-cooked bacon bits (the ones from Costco are the best) Just put a paper towel on a paper plate and add the bacon bits. Microwave for 1-2 minutes or until the bacon bits are barely crispy.

How to Make Homemade Creamy Pesto Dressing

  • In a blender, combine the mayo, buttermilk, 1 packet of Ranch Dressing Mix, and the prepared pesto. Blend on low until all the ingredients are creamy and well combined.

Making the Salad

  • Wash and peel all vegetables as needed. Assemble the salad by adding the lettuce, tomatoes, string cheese, homemade bacon bits, and avocado. Add the sliced grilled chicken and drizzle with the prepared Creamy Pesto Ranch Dressing. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 830kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 58g | Fat: 64g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 233mg | Sodium: 401mg | Potassium: 823mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1205IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 3mg