Craving a fresh and filling salad? This keto southwest chicken salad is the perfect option. With its tangy lime dressing, crisp lettuce, juicy chicken, and creamy avocado, it’s bursting with Tex-Mex flavors. Even better – it’s low in carbs and high in protein, making it ideal for a keto diet.

Salads can get boring fast, but the spicy southwest dressing and mix of textures in this salad make it anything but dull. The easy homemade dressing brings together olive oil, lime juice, garlic, and spices for a creamy and zesty flavor. Toss it with the lettuce, chicken, cheese, veggies, and avocado for salad perfection.

Whether you’re on the keto diet or just looking for a fresh new salad, this southwest chicken salad needs to be your next meal. The combo of chicken, veggies, and rich avocado will leave you feeling full and satisfied. Dig into this salad bursting with Tex-Mex flair!

Why You’ll Love This Keto Southwest Chicken Salad

This salad has so many things going for it. Here are some of the top benefits of this fresh and flavorful keto salad.

It’s Packed with Protein

Protein is key for both building muscle and keeping you feeling full. This salad delivers plenty of protein from the grilled chicken, cheese, and avocado. The 20-30g of protein will keep you feeling satisfied and energized.

It Has Less Than 10g Net Carbs

On keto, you want to keep net carbs low, under 20-50g per day. The lettuce, tomato, avocado, cilantro and other veggies in this salad add up to less than 10g net carbs total. This leaves room for other low carb foods in your daily meal plan.

It’s Nutrient-Dense

With all those fresh veggies, this salad provides important micronutrients including:

  • Vitamin C from tomatoes and peppers
  • Vitamin K from lettuce and cilantro
  • Fiber from the lettuce and avocado
  • Potassium from avocado
  • Antioxidants from cilantro and tomatoes

It’s So Satisfying

Between the protein, healthy fats, and fiber, this salad keeps you feeling full for hours. You won’t be left hungry an hour after eating it like some sad salads. The mix of flavors and textures also keeps your palate interested.

It Has Tons of Flavor

From the lime, garlic, and spicy southwest dressing to the fresh veggies and seasoning on the chicken, this salad is bursting with delicious Tex-Mex flavor in every bite.

Ingredients That Make Keto Southwest Chicken Salad

The right mix of ingredients is key to making this keto southwest chicken salad really stand out. Here’s a breakdown of what goes into it and why these ingredients are so important.


Chicken breast or thighs provide protein and substance:

  • Grilled or roasted for flavor
  • Diced or shredded for texture
  • Skinless chicken keeps it lean
  • Try seasoning with chili powder, cumin, garlic


Crisp lettuce gives freshness and crunch:

  • Romaine – bold flavor
  • Mixed greens – variety
  • Chopped or shredded for easier eating


Creamy, smooth avocado provides healthy fats:

  • Sliced or diced
  • Look for ripe avocados
  • Toss with lime juice to prevent browning


Juicy tomatoes add sweetness:

  • Cherry or grape tomatoes cut in half
  • Roma tomatoes diced
  • Bright red and ripe for best flavor


Shredded cheese gives creaminess:

  • Monterey Jack, cheddar, or Mexican blend
  • Sprinkle on top to avoid clumping


Fresh cilantro provides herbal flavor:

  • Chopped cilantro leaves
  • Stems removed
  • Garnish with extra cilantro

The right amounts of these ingredients in each bite make this salad extraordinary.

Steps to Make Keto Southwest Chicken Salad

Making this flavorful southwest salad at home is easy to do. Follow these simple steps:

Cook the Chicken

Get your protein ready first. You can either:

  • Grill or bake chicken breasts or thighs
  • Rotisserie chicken works too
  • Cook until fully done and juices run clear

Prep the Veggies

While chicken cooks, prep your veggies:

  • Chop lettuce, dice tomato, slice avocado
  • Shred cheese if not pre-shredded
  • Chop cilantro leaves

Make the Dressing

Whisk up the creamy southwest dressing:

  • Combine olive oil, lime juice, garlic, spices
  • Adjust spices to your taste preferences
  • Let flavors meld for 5-10 minutes

Toss and Serve

Assemble and enjoy:

  • Toss lettuce, chicken, veggies in large bowl with dressing
  • Plate salad and top with extra cheese, cilantro
  • Dig in while flavors are fresh

Easy weeknight dinner or lunch ready in 30 minutes!

Tips for the Best Keto Southwest Chicken Salad

Follow these tips to make a flavorful southwest chicken salad:

Use Fresh Ingredients

  • Pick ripe, in-season tomatoes for sweetness
  • Choose avocados that yield to gentle pressure
  • Select crisp lettuce with no wilting or brown spots
  • Use fresh lime juice rather than bottled

Make the Dressing from Scratch

  • Homemade dressing tastes so much better
  • Adjust spice amounts to your tastes
  • Let sit 5-10 minutes for best flavor blending

Get Creative with Toppings

  • Add some crunch with pumpkin seeds or nuts
  • Extra flavor and spice from jalapeños
  • More protein from black beans or extra chicken

Store Properly

  • Keep undressed salad ingredients separate
  • Store leftover dressing in a sealed container
  • Fill an airtight container to minimize air exposure

Dress Right Before Serving

  • Prevent soggy lettuce by dressing just before eating
  • Give dressing a stir before pouring over salad
  • Toss thoroughly to evenly coat all ingredients

Follow these simple tips for a fresh and delicious salad every time.

What To Serve With Southwest Chicken Salad

  • Crunchy low-carb tortilla chips – Break up some pork rind tortilla chips or almond flour crackers to add more Southwest crunch.
  • Guacamole – Cool, creamy guac is the perfect complement to the salad’s spice. Make it fresh or use store-bought.
  • Queso dip – Warm queso with onions and peppers is a tasty accompaniment. Look for a keto-friendly version.
  • Roasted cauliflower – Oven-roasted cauliflower florets add more vegetable goodness. Toss in cumin, garlic, and red pepper flakes to complement the salad.
  • Jalapeno slices – Fresh sliced jalapenos can be served on the side to add more heat.
  • Side salad – A simple mixed greens salad with a light vinaigrette dressing balances the Tex-Mex flavors.
  • Low-carb muffins – A small corn or almond flour muffin makes a nice accompaniment without spiking carbs.
  • Fresh lime wedges – Wedges of fresh lime allow guests to add more bright citrus flavor to the salad.
  • With flavorful add-ons like guacamole, queso, and roasted veggies, you can create a complete Southwest-inspired keto meal perfect for dinner parties or potlucks. The salad also works well served alone for lighter lunches.


This keto southwest chicken salad is a nutritious and tasty option for any meal. With its lean protein, fresh veggies, and Tex-Mex inspired dressing, it makes sticking to a low carb diet easy and enjoyable.

Simple to throw together yet packed with flavor, this salad will liven up your lunch routine. Meal prepping the ingredients makes it an even quicker weeknight dinner option. For an easy salad that’s satisfying enough for keto, try this southwest chicken recipe.

Next time you’re seeking a flavorful, protein-filled salad, look no further than this keto southwest chicken salad. One bite of its creamy dressing, crisp lettuce, and juicy chicken, and you’ll be hooked!

FAQs about Keto Southwest Chicken Salad

Q: Can I use canned chicken?

A: For best texture and flavor, use fresh cooked chicken instead.

Q: What dressing goes well with this salad?

A: A creamy southwest or cilantro lime dressing pairs perfectly.

Q: Can I make this salad vegetarian?

A: Yes, swap out the chicken for black beans or chickpeas for a vegetarian version.

Q: How long does this salad last?

A: It will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 4 days. Dress it just before eating.

Q: What toppings can I add?

A: Try adding jalapeños, red onion, black olives, bacon bits, or hot sauce.

Myra Henry created the Keto Taco Salad blog to share my favorite delicious low-carb recipes without sacrificing flavor. when i started the keto diet 2 years ago, I discovered a love for making healthy Mexican dishes like keto taco salads. My blog features easy keto taco salad recipes and tips for keto success.

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