Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados

Welcome to Direct Your Dining! This cooking series will introduce you to energy efficient recipes full of tips to keep your meals delicious without using every appliance in the kitchen. Preparing recipes with energy efficiency in mind at least once a week will make cooking a little easier, and may even help reduce your monthly electricity bill. Check in every week for a new recipe full of flavor and creativity that will surely impress your friends and family.

If you love dishes with little-to-no cooking required and chicken salad in general, then today’s recipe is perfect for you! We’ve combined corn, black beans, and fresh ingredients along with rotisserie chicken and a light, flavorful dressing to create a southwestern-inspired treat perfect for stuffing in an avocado.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
Did someone say southwestern flavors and avocado?

I often use a precooked rotisserie chicken purchased at my local grocery store when making chicken salads or meals because it saves energy, time, and money! Seriously, you can find many flavors of rotisserie chicken at the store, you won’t have to cook it at home, and it often costs the same (if not a little less) than a whole raw chicken.

And in keeping with this month’s theme of meals to help with your healthy living New Year’s resolutions, I have lightened the dressing by cutting the amount of mayonnaise in half and using light mayonnaise instead of full fat. You can also substitute in Greek yogurt for the mayonnaise and increase the protein content of this chicken salad! With the fresh squeezed lime juice and spices I add to the mayonnaise, the dressing will provide plenty of flavor.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
A colorful bowl of tasty (and versatile!) chicken salad

Did I mention there is absolutely no cooking required? You can serve this southwestern rotisserie chicken salad in avocado halves as described in this recipe, or you could place it in lettuce leaves for salad boats, in a low carbohydrate tortilla wrap, or on whole wheat toast. There are so many options available.

If you like a little more heat to the southwestern flavors in this dish, add some finely diced jalapenos along with the green chilies, as I have made this recipe very mild to please even the tamest of taste buds! Enjoy!

Dressing Ingredients:

  • ½ c. Low-fat/light mayonnaise (can substitute with the same amount of Greek yogurt)
  • 3 tbsp. Fresh squeezed lime juice
  • ½ tsp. Garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. Cumin
  • ¼ tsp. Coriander
  • ¼ tsp. Sea salt

Chicken Salad Ingredients (Makes 6 servings):

  • 3 c. Pulled rotisserie chicken meat
  • ½ c. Black beans (from can)
  • ½ c. Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 c. Sweet yellow corn
  • ½ c. Red onion, finely diced
  • 3 tbsp. Mild green chilies (from can)
  • 3 tbsp. Fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Queso fresco, crumbled for topping
  • Extra cilantro for garnish
  • 3 Large avocados

Directions:

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
Making your own dressing at home really isn’t that difficult.

1) Prepare dressing by whisking together the mayonnaise and lime juice. Add in the garlic powder, cumin, coriander, sea salt, and black pepper, and whisk again. Set aside to let flavors combine while prepping other ingredients.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
Black beans, green chilis, and yellow corn – What could go wrong?

2) Open the cans of black bean, corn, and green chili, and drain each of them. Pat the beans and corn dry with a paper towel. Measure out correct amounts, and add them to a large mixing bowl.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
Punch up the flavor further with fresh cilantro, tomato, and onion!

3) Dice the red onion, Roma tomatoes, and cilantro as directed in ingredients list, and add them to the mixing bowl with the earlier ingredients.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
Nothing says “energy-saving recipe” like purchasing a precooked rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.

4) Remove the skin from the rotisserie chicken. Pull the breast, thigh, and drumstick meat off the bone and dice the chicken into small chunks. Add 3 cups of the meat to the mixing bowl containing the rest of the ingredients.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
All this chicken salad really needs now is an appropriate vehicle, so …

5) Pour prepared dressing over the ingredients in the mixing bowl and fold everything together.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
… Why not try avocado?!?

6) Cut avocados in half and remove the pits. Scoop out about ½ the avocado meat out and set it to the side.

Direct Your Dining: Southwestern Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocados
This dish might look too good to eat, but that’s never stopped us before!

7) Stuff the avocado halves with the prepared chicken salad and top with a little bit of crumbled queso fresco. Garnish with extra fresh cilantro and lime wedges.

Need some ideas on what to do with the extra ingredients? Use the avocado you scooped for guacamole or spread it on toast with eggs the next morning. Quickly sauté any extra black beans, corn, red onions, and green chilies with a little sea salt, cumin, and black pepper for a perfect side dish you can enjoy with another meal.

These stuffed avocados are guaranteed to become a staple low-carb meal for your family!

Check out more Direct Your Dining recipes the rest of January for other energy saving tips and recipes to prepare that will help you keep any healthy living and weight loss New Year’s resolutions!

Recipe and Images by Stacie Morgan

About 

Stacie is a Texas A&M animal science graduate using her education and passion for food to get creative in the kitchen. She previously worked in business before becoming a mom to a special little boy. She's excited to share recipes her family enjoys at home - and they may even help you save energy in the kitchen.

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