Light and creamy, this Mexican Chicken Salad is loaded with veggies is an easy 25-minute dinner or side. Serve this ensalada de pollo chilled with crackers – it’s perfect for summer nights and potlucks!
Why You’ll Love This Ensalada de Pollo Recipe
Once you taste it, you’ll be preparing this Mexican chicken salad year-round. Here’s why:
- Great For the Summer: Prepped ahead and served chilled, this recipe is great for days when the heat outside is begging you not to turn the stove on.
- Easy: There’s no way a 25-minute meal is hard to make and this one isn’t the exception. You just need to cook the veggies and toss everything together! You can even used canned vegetables to make it in minutes.
- Great For Potlucks: This is an easy make ahead dish that is hearty and a crowd favorite. It travels well (just pop it in a cooler) and is perfect served alongside just about anything!
- Convenient: Made with frozen veggies, you don’t even have to worry about going to the grocery store any time soon to throw this recipe together.
What Is Mexican Chicken Salad?
Ensalada de pollo is a creamy chicken and veggie salad that’s just tossed together and served. Usual vegetables for this dish include potatoes, carrots, peas, and sweet corn. Spices aren’t really used because it relies on the mayo’s creaminess, lime juice, and jalapeños for flavor. It can be served warm, at room temperature, or chilled. Aside from crackers, it’s typically paired with corn chips for a light appetizer, lunch, or dinner.
Ensalada de pollo Mexicana is filled with frozen veggies and simple condiments like mayo and sour cream. Check the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact ingredient amounts and full directions.
- Veggies: We’ll be using potatoes, carrots, peas, and sweet corn. Fresh or frozen is fine!
- Shredded Chicken: A rotisserie chicken is great for this, or you can make my favorite easy shredded chicken or instant pot shredded chicken.
- Pickled Jalapeños: Fresh jalapeños work too, but pickled jalapeños give a milder heat.
- Mayonnaise: Feel free to use full-fat or low-fat mayo.
- Sour Cream: You can also use Mexican Crema, but it’s a little thinner than sour cream, so use a little less and add more if needed.
- Lime Juice: You can use lemon juice instead.
- Fresh Cilantro: Totally optional, if you aren’t a cilantro fan don’t include it.
- Crackers: These are optional for serving. We use ritz crackers, but these low carb crackers are great too!
How to Make Mexican Chicken Salad
Cook the veggies and mix them with the chicken, mayo, and sour cream. That’s it! Check the recipe card at the bottom of the post for more detailed instructions.
- Boil the Potatoes: Add the potatoes to a pot and cover them with water. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are just tender. Drain well and rinse. Set them aside.
- Cook the Veggies: Cook the frozen carrots, peas, and corn according to package instructions. Rinse and drain well. Set them aside.
- Mix: Add the potatoes, veggies, chicken, and jalapeños to a large bowl and mix to combine.
- Add the Mayo: Stir in the mayo, sour cream, and lime juice. Fold in the cilantro.
- Serve: Season with salt to taste. Serve it with crackers and enjoy.
Recipe Tips & Variations
You’ll love all the easy ways in which Mexican chicken salad can be simplified:
- Chill It: This salad is great when served straight out of the fridge, making it perfect for hot summer nights when you want something light, cool, and filling.
- Use Turkey: Leftover shredded turkey is a great variation for chicken in this recipe.
- Choose Canned: Canned veggies are the perfect substitute for frozen veggies if you are in a rush. Make sure you rinse and drain them really well, though. Plus, you don’t need to cook them!
- Add Pasta: Cook 1/2 to 1 cup of elbow macaroni according to package instructions. Drain and rinse well. Fold the pasta into the salad for an even heartier meal.
- Reduce the Heat: Use half of the jalapeños, or skip them completely, if you’re not a fan of spicy food.
What to Serve With Mexican Chicken Salad
This ensalada de pollo is perfect with crackers, tortilla chips, or my air fryer tortilla chips. If you deep-fry some corn tortillas you can also make tostadas with this chilled salad. If you make tostadas, don’t forget to add toppings like guacamole and salsa ranchera.
How to Store Leftovers
Mexican chicken salad makes great leftovers and is a great make-ahead recipe. Prepare it up to 3 days in advance that way you still have 2 days to finish any leftovers. You can also separate it into different containers, one for each day of the week, so that your meals are ready to be reheated when you get home.
- Store: Once fully cooled, refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Keep it away from heat and sunlight when on the counter for reheating and serving.
- Reheat: To reheat it, pop it into the microwave for up to a minute or until warm. You can also heat it in a pan over medium heat for 7-8 minutes.
- Freeze: You can also freeze it in a freezer-friendly bag or container for up to 3 months. Thaw it overnight in the fridge before reheating or serving as usual.
More Mexican Dishes to Try
- Rajas (Creamy Roasted Poblanos)
- Salpicon (Mexican Chilled Beef Salad)
- Queso Fundido
- Nopales Asados Tacos
- Instant Pot Cochinita Pibil
- Camarones Empanizados
Ensalada de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Salad)
- Add potatoes to a sauce pan and add enough water until the potatoes are covered. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until just tender, about 10 minutes. Drain well and then rinse with cold water to cool quickly. Set aside.
- Cook frozen carrots and peas and the frozen corn in the microwave according to package directions. Rinse and drain well with cold water. (You can also add the carrots, peas and corn to the pot of potatoes for the last 2 minutes of cooking time.)
- Add the potatoes, vegetables, chicken, and jalapeños to a large bowl and gently toss to combine.
- Add the mayonnaise, sour cream, and the lime juice, and stir to combine. Fold in cilantro.
- Season with salt to taste. Serve immediately with crackers or refrigerate until ready to serve.
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