Recipes 3 months ago by Liz Adams

Lightened Up Taco Salad with Cottage Cheese Dressing

taco salad recipe

This isn’t your traditional taco salad recipe, this is a lightened up version filled with freshness and crunch and packed with protein. I love the flavors in Mexican cuisine but a lot of times you find them packed with calories and oil. You know how much I love creating healthy versions of restaurant favorites and I’m always trying to increase my protein intake. I have been playing around with a ranch dressing made from cottage cheese (I’ll share that soon!) and stumbled upon a slightly spicy version for this salad. We made Mexican meals a lot (check out our favorite enchiladas and mexican folded quesadillas and corn salad) and I always love to recreate my favorite indulgent meals and make them a little healthier. When I cook I love to taste as a I go when it comes to prepping dressings. I always start with less and add more if needed. That’s what I love about cooking, it doesn’t require perfect measurements and you end of landing on a recipe that is yours.

lightened up taco salad recipe
cottage cheese dressing
healthy protein packed taco salad recipe

Lightened Up Taco Salad with Cottage Cheese Dressing

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 hearts of romaine lettuce, finely chopped
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/2 cup white onion, chopped
1/2 cup cilantro, finely chopped
1/2 cup hearts of palm, chopped
1/2 cup corn, rinsed
1/2 cup black beans, rinsed
1 tsp cumin

for the dressing, in a food processor…
1 cup whole milk cottage cheese
juice of 1 lime (add another 1/2 if you need thin out your dressing)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 jalapeno, sliced
handful of cilantro
1 tsp cumin
a big pinch of salt

Preheat your oven to 375F. Put your chicken on a baking sheet and coat with olive oil and season with salt and cumin. Bake for 20 minutes! Meanwhile, prep your veggies and combine everything in a bowl.

For the dressing, blend all ingredients in a food processor. The flavor will be there but if you feel like consistency is too thick, add another half of lime juice or 1/2 tbsp of olive oil. It’s okay if it is on the thicker side because it will get incorporated into the salad evenly and coat it perfectly. I also like to make extra to save and dip my chicken breasts into it for lunch during the week. The perfect boost of protein.

Once the chicken is cooked, chop it up and incorporate it into the salad with your dressing. The heat from the chicken will also thin out the dressing a bit. Serve and enjoy! It’s crunchy, flavorful, refreshing and filling. The perfect lunch or dinner.

lightened up taco salad with cottage cheese dressing

This taco salad recipe is a hit and so easy! Don’t forget to tag me on Instagram @lizadams if you make any of my recipes. It makes me so happy to see them in your home!!