You can make this Chimichurri chicken avocado salad in just 20 minutes. It’s easy, healthy and most importantly IT’S CRAZY DELISH!
Today I’m going to show you how to make an easy Chimichurri chicken and avocado salad that will make your taste buds beg for more.
Honestly, that’s how good it is!
It’s flavorful, healthy, tasty and …. whatever other adjectives you can possibly use to describe a perfect dish.
More healthy salads:
Now, you might wonder what makes it so tasty and healthy?
Well, the secret ingredient that makes it so delish is chimichurri. Also, I marinated the chicken before cooking and this boosted flavor considerably. More on that in the tips and tricks below.
Moreover, it’s low-carb and comes wrapped in tons of veggies so it’s super healthy (and a good way to make your kids eat more veggies).
I know, you’re probably craving now and I’d love to skip to the recipe but first I need to explain what is chimichurri because I’ve seen many foodies asking this question.
If you already know, you can skip to the tips & tricks and start making this easy chimichurri chicken avocado salad recipe.
What is Chimichurri
Chimichurri is a sauce made of chopped parsley, garlic, olive oil, oregano and vinegar. It originates from Argentina and Uruguay and it comes in two versions, one green and another red. (Source: Wikipedia).
The red version of chimichurri sauce also contains tomatoes and red bell pepper, that’s how it gets the color.
The above ingredients are used in the original chimichurri recipe but this has been altered according to different regions, cultures or tastes.
That’s actually what I did today. I deviated slightly from the classic chimichurri recipe by adding basil and mint.
And I gotta say it came out super tasty (don’t mind the bragging) and those two ingredients added tons of flavor to my chimichurri chicken avocado salad. But if you’d like to stick to the original recipe you can do so and it will still be crazy delish.
Or, if you’d like, you can adapt it to your taste and I’ll explain how in the Tips & Tricks.
It’s worth noting here that chimichurri sauce can also be used as a marinade and this is something you really need to try because it’s an absolute game-changer (trust me!).
It will take more time to make it, but it’s totally worth it.
I think now everybody has a clear picture of what chimichurri is so let’s move forward to the tips & tricks.
How To Make Chimichurri Chicken Avocado Salad – Best Tips & Tricks
1. Bring the chicken to room temperature before cooking
I know many people are reluctant to leave raw meat at room temperature and just to be clear, I am not saying you should leave it for hours on the cooking table.
But if you want to make it juicy and perfectly cooked, you need to let sit for 20-30 minutes after taking it out of the fridge.
And this is a good rule of thumb for cooking any meat, especially for thick cuts or whole roasted chicken/turkey.
This method helps to cook the meat evenly and faster, and it’s totally fine as long as you don’t forget the chicken on the cooking table :).
BonApppetit wrote more about the logic behind this so you might want to check them out.
2. How to adapt the chimichurri chicken avocado salad recipe to your taste.
I made it with chicken breast but you can replace that with thighs, turkey, or shrimps.
You can also tweak the chimichurri sauce and try different levels of spicy. If you want it mild use green or red cayenne. For medium-hot, try it with Jalapeno.
And if you are brave enough, use Habanero. This will make it extremely hot so be careful with it, ok? You need to be some hot chili pro taster to try that.
Apart from chilis, you can also change the herbs, or try different combos like parsley and cilantro, or mint and basil.
Furthermore, you can make the salad with your favorite chopped veggies, like bell peppers, corn or green onion.
Now, if you really want to make the best chimichurri chicken avocado salad, you must pay special attention to the following tip.
3. Marinate the chicken in chimichurri sauce.
Most people use chimichurri as a dressing or a dip but have you ever thought of marinating meat in it?
If not, then you must try it!
Trust me, this will take your chimichurri chicken salad to a whole new level of flavorness.
And it’s not just for poultry. You can marinate almost all kinds of meat in this sauce, especially barbecue or grilled.
All you’d have to do is place the chicken in a large Ziploc bag then add about 1/4 cup of chimichurri sauce, and mix well to coat. Then you need to refrigerate for at least 30 minutes but for maximum flavor intensity, it’s best to leave it overnight.
Of course, you could skip this step and it will still be delish, but you really gotta try it once.
4. How to do meal planning with chimichurri chicken salad.
You can keep homemade chimichurri sauce in a lidded jar for up to 7 days. Some store-bought ones may have a longer expiration date but let’s be honest… homemade is always best, isn’t it?
The salad will last up to 3 days in the fridge (in air-tight containers) but you need to pat-dry the veggies before prepping them and make sure that there’s no moisture. Otherwise, they will not hold up nice and fresh that long.
Also, keep in mind that you must store the sauce separately and mix it with salad just before serving.
Now let’s summarize what you need to remember:
- After removing from the fridge, let the chicken sit at room temperature for 20-30 minutes before cooking. This will make it juicy and it will help it cook faster.
- If you want, you can replace the chicken with thighs, turkey, or shrimps.
- You can tweak the sauce and make it hotter by using different chilis.
- You can replace the veggies in the salad with your favorites.
- Marinate the chicken in chimichurri sauce for at least 30 minutes before cooking (overnight if possible).
- Use this chimichurri chicken avocado salad for meal planning but remember to keep the sauce separated from the salad and mix them right before serving.
Great! Now you are ready to make the best chimichurri chicken salad ever. So let’s get right into it, shall we?
Oh, and if you make it snap a photo and post it on Instagram with #blondelish for a chance to be featured.
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Chimichurri Chicken Avocado Salad Recipe
- 1 lb (450g) boneless chicken breasts - pounded to an even thickness
- 3½ oz (100g) mixed salad leaves
- 1 cup (150g) cherry tomatoes - halved
- 1 large avocado - sliced or chopped
- 1 cup (120g) sliced cucumber
- 1-2 jalapenos - sliced
- ½ red onion
- 1 lemon
Chimichurri Sauce Ingredients
- 1/2 cup (120ml) olive oil - extra virgin
- 1/4 cup (60ml) apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup (30g) fresh parsley
- 1/2 cup (35g) fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 cup (45g) fresh mint leaves
- 1-2 garlic cloves
- 1 red chili - deseeded
- sea salt and pepper - to your taste
- Add all Chimichurri ingredients into a food processor. Pulse until finely blended, scraping down the sides several times if needed. Then remove and keep 2-3 tablespoons to use later as a dressing.
- Place the remaining marinade into a large freezer bag together with chicken and mix well to coat. Refrigerate for a minimum of 30 min (overnight is best).
- Heat 1 Tbs olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add in the chicken and cook undisturbed for about 4-5 minutes on each side, or until cooked through and no longer pink on the inside.
- Remove the chicken to a cutting board and let it rest for a couple of minutes, then slice it.
- Add all salad ingredients into a large bowl, drizzle the remaining Chimichurri sauce, squeeze the lemon, and toss everything to combine.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.
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