BBQ Chicken Salad

This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly and easily, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!

BBQ Chicken Salad - This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!

After spending 10 days in Los Angeles with Jason’s family, it’s an understatement to say that we were both very well-fed with homemade Korean food and lots and lots of donuts. But now that the holidays are over and we’re back home, it’s time to shed that holiday weight!

BBQ Chicken Salad - This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!

And what better way to shed some of that excess weight than with some glorious homemade salads, right?

BBQ Chicken Salad - This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!

Now this BBQ chicken salad has been on my bucket list for years. It’s one of my favorite salads to order when eating out but it also gets to be so expensive! After all, who wants to spend $15 on a salad for lunch?

BBQ Chicken Salad - This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!

That’s where this homemade version comes in. It’s so much more inexpensive to make right at home, and you don’t have to skimp on your favorite ingredients!

BBQ Chicken Salad - This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!

Plus, you can use your favorite Ranch and BBQ dressings and pile on those crisp tortilla strips because, well, let’s be honest. That’s the best part about the salad anyway, right?

BBQ Chicken Salad

Prep Time 10 minutes

Cook Time 5 minutes

Total Time 15 minutes

Yield 4 servings

BBQ Chicken Salad

This healthy, flavorful salad comes together so quickly and easily, and it is guaranteed to be a hit with your entire family!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 boneless, skinless thin-sliced chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 Roma tomato, diced
  • 3/4 cup canned corn kernels, drained
  • 3/4 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup Ranch dressing
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce
  • 1/4 cup tortilla strips


  • Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium high heat.
  • Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper, to taste. Add to skillet and cook, flipping once, until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side. Let cool before dicing into bite-size pieces.
  • To assemble the salad, place romaine lettuce in a large bowl; top with chicken, tomato, corn, beans, onion and cheeses. Pour Ranch dressing and BBQ sauce on top of the salad and gently toss to combine.
  • Serve immediately, topped with tortilla strips.


Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats

Why It’s A Smart Choice

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Servings Per Container 4

Amount Per Serving
Calories 401.4 Calories from Fat 178.2
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19.8g 30%
Saturated Fat 6.4g 32%
Trans Fat 0.1g
Cholesterol 75.2mg 25%
Sodium 734.2mg 31%
Total Carbohydrate 28.3g 9%
Dietary Fiber 6.1g 24%
Sugars 7.9g
Protein 29.1g 58%

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

By combining a meat (ex. chicken) with a legume (ex. black beans), your body absorbs more iron than if you ate these two foods separately!

Nutritional information provided by Jessica Penner, RD at Smart Nutrition.


    • James says

      Sweet baby rays is awesome! Famous Dave’s is really good too. I like to try different sauces too!!

  1. Ellen Culver says

    This looks yummy but because of my hubby’s diabetics we stay away from BBQ sauce so what would you recommend to replace it.

    • Chung-Ah says

      Please refer to online resources for diabetic-friendly BBQ sauces. I also recommend making your own BBQ sauce from scratch using sugar-free products.

  2. says

    Favorite salad to order when eating out hands down! Why they charge you $15 for it is crazy, well maybe not, bc they know we’ll till order it bc it’s that good. But now I can make it at home and out all the sweet baby rays BBQ I want on it. Yum! Pinning!

  3. Kristy says

    This was sooo good, even my 4 & 6 year old loved it (with a few exclusions for the 4 year old)! I used leftover rotisserie chicken from the night before and it turned out great and came together quickly! We love salads and I’m always looking for new ones to try! Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  4. Bonita K. Mabus says

    I’m sorry to ask, but can you buy the tortilla strips at the grocery store? I’ve never seen them. This looks so good! Thank you.

  5. Angela says

    I was looking for something new to cook with some leftover chicken and found this salad recipe. Delicious and so easy! Instead of red onion I used green. This is definitely going into my rotation of meals. Now I can make at home instead of ordering while I’m out.

  6. says

    I made this salad for tonight’s dinner, and the whole family absolutely loved it! My husband said he’d like me to make up a few of these for his lunches this week. Great recipe…thanks so much for sharing. Can’t wait to try out more of your recipes!

    • Chung-Ah says

      Unfortunately, as I am not a registered dietician, I am not comfortable sharing nutritional information of my recipes. Please use online resources to obtain such information.

    • Chung-Ah says

      Jean, that really depends on how you decide to serve this – as an appetizer or as a main dish. This dish serves 2 very large main dish servings – you may even be able to stretch this to 3 servings.

  7. says

    I’m going to try this tonight but using pulled pork instead of the chicken. It’s clean out the fridge night for me. I have just enough meat, dressing and BBQ sauce.

  8. Sheree says

    Do you have a favorite BBQ sauce recipe and also a recipe for homemade tortilla strips. I have loved looking at all of your damn delicious recipes and am getting ready to try one of the enchilada recipes tonight for my family for dinner. Can’t wait to try more of them soon too! They all look delicious!!!!!

    • Chung-Ah says

      Sheree, I personally love Trader Joe’s Kansas City Style BBQ Sauce. I also like to stock up on tortilla strips at the grocery store – sometimes, shortcuts are needed! :)

    • Barbara says

      The very best tasting tortilla strips are made by slicing several corn tortillas and quickly frying them in a half-inch of oil until the bubbling stops. Remove them with a skimmer, draining on paper towels. Don’t overcrowd the skillet! Give them plenty of space! They are so good they don’t even need salt, and you may never want to buy commercial chips again! I do this for tortilla soup, too, and we go through about three tortillas each. If I cut them in wedges, we go crazy with homemade salsa, but it is a very healthy snack, low in sodium. Instead of dollars, it only costs pennies to make your own, and the flavor is SO MUCH better than any chip you’ve ever eaten. I would also have to cut the sugar in this salad for the diabetic I feed. I have a recipe for making ranch dressing that’s low sodium, and I’d have to make a sugar-free, low sodium BBQ sauce, too, but it is all do-able and worth it, as we eat salads for lunch almost every day. I will make this one day soon.

  9. Jasmin says

    Hi :) I found this recipe on pinterest some days ago and immediately decided I would have to try it soon. So yesterday I made this salad for my parents and me. It was sooooo good!
    The recipe says it serves 2… I made much more of it and still: we ate all of it! 😀
    When my Mom finished eating she looked at me kind of sad and said: “It’s so sad…. but I’m full! I can’t eat more of it. I want to have this again next week!”
    So, all in all: We enjoyed it a lot! Thanks for this great recipe!

    Greetings from Germany! :)

    • Chung-Ah says

      I’m so glad you had a chance to make this. You just reminded me that I need to make this again soon – it’s one of my favorite salads yet!

  10. Sersa says

    I came across your site thru Pinterest and I made this tonight, it was so yummy. My 5 year old even said ” mommy, next time give me lots & lots of salad, it was so good”, not a sentence I thought my daughter would ever say about a salad. I’m looking forward to trying your Chinese orange chicken this weekend.

  11. Joanna says

    The instructions never mention the chicken in the assembly. I would not forget to add it and I know you all would not as well but just to be clear.

  12. says

    As I’m making this for dinner tonight, I thought I’d pop in and let you know my family LOVES this salad! I pinned the recipe about 3 months ago and it has been one of my go-to meals. The only difference is I quickly poach the chicken. It is delicious and I’ve shared this recipe and your blog with my friends and on my Facebook pages. Thanks!

    Laura Sweet

  13. Nicole Pielle says

    I know this is going to sound odd, but what could one put in this salad instead of ranch that would taste good with BBQ sauce? Looks delicious!

    • Chung-Ah says

      Unfortunately, this is such a difficult question to answer as I have not tried any other salad dressings with the BBQ sauce. The first thought that does come to mind is blue cheese. Hope that helps!

  14. Elora says

    I made this salad last night and it was absolutely delightful! I added Jalapeno and replaced the canned corn with raw – a true sucess! Thank you for the recipe! Very inspiring!

    • Chung-Ah says

      Unfortunately, as I am not a registered dietician, I am not comfortable sharing nutritional information of my recipes. Please use online resources to obtain such information.

  15. Lisa says

    Thanks so much for posting this salad. I made this today for a bunch of girl friends and they were all raving about it. I grilled the chicken with a little homemade taco seasoning on it, but made the salad exactly as you posted otherwise. Sooo delicious! Having leftovers for dinner!

  16. Laura says

    Hi, I’m looking forward to trying this recipe this week. I can’t find tinned black beans in the uk (& don’t want to waste time and money on a huge packet of dried). Can you suggest a good alternative, I don’t want to guess and end up with something slushy/mealy. Thanks!

  17. Michelle says

    This was so good! I craved it from the moment I saw the pictures, which by the way are so beautiful! Both my husband and I really enjoyed it and I will definitely be placing this in our meal rotation. Thanks so much, I thoroughly enjoyed this, and your blog!

  18. Gail says

    Great salad! Added some real bacon bits and diced avocado to it and used a honey bbq sauce….even the hubby who’s a meat and potatoes kind of guy loved it!

    • Chungah says

      Internet Explorer has recently made some updates that are causing print problems. I recommend using a different browser, such as Firefox, Google Chrome, or Safari. But if you can only use Internet Explore, you can highlight the recipe, left-click, and print from there. Easy peasy!

  19. Rachel says

    I pinned this recipe a few months ago and have made it 4 times. It is soooo good! I want to make it again tonight but don’t have black beans. Do you think red kidney beans would work?

  20. Aisha says

    OMG! I just tried out this salad and myyyy godddd! It is absolutely amazinggggg!!!!!! Thank you so much for this delicious recipe! Please upload more salad recipes! Even my hubby who isn’t a big fan of salads loved this! !!!

  21. Sadie says

    I love this salad. It is so flavorful!! I am super lazy so I buy my rotissary chicken to add to this salad. It has BBQ sauce on it so I new it had to be good. :)

  22. Duane says

    This was an awesome recipe. I just bought a smoker and smoked some Chicken Leg Quarters! What an enhancing effect especially with the BBQ sauce. I am a young senior and have just turned to the joy of cooking, vegan style and love most of your recipe’s. Thank you!

  23. Stephanie says

    We’ve made this two weeks in a row and everyone is a fan, although one of my kids prefers it without the BBQ sauce so I just pull some out for her before it goes on. I’ve already told them to expect it weekly until further notice.

  24. mel says

    I like to add julienned jicama for added crunch. and a couple slices of ripe avocado on the top add a nice creaminess. leftover cubed pork tenderloin is a good substitution.

  25. Jo says

    Would love to serve this as a main dish salad to guests this summer. Any ideas what to serve with it to complete the menu?

    • Chungah says

      A lemonade and possibly a refreshing appetizer, such as crostini, would be wonderful additions to your menu.

  26. says

    My hubby and I barbequed yesterday, I made this salad and it was the best salad i ever had!!!! I substitute the tortilla strips with avacados, and I grilled my chicken breast omg!! So good..


    I made this last week for the family. I’ve got five little kids and trying to put “salad” in front of them and getting them ALL to eat it is like pulling teeth. THIS yummy concoction though was a huge success – put veggies and protein into all five of my kids, whom ALL got a second bowl. This recipe was a major hit and all the kiddos agreed that it makes “THE LIST” of must make again recipes. Thank you!

  28. Tiffany says

    This is such a GREAT recipe; I made it last night for dinner, and my husband and I LOVED it; I can’t wait to make it again. Super Delicious!!

  29. Liz J says

    Looks awesome! Only you forgot my favorite part of this salad! The cool crisp crunch of the jicama! So delicious though, gonna make it this week :)

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