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Yucatan Chicken and Vegetable Salad

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Yucatan Chicken and Vegetable Salad

Yucatan Chicken and Vegetable Salad

Jessica Braider
Like many Scramble recipes, this can be varied according to your taste or what’s in season or in your ‘fridge. Recipe tester Bobbi Woods said, “This salad was amazing!!! The spices were perfect together and they made the chicken so mouthwatering!”
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main Dish, Salad
Cuisine American, Latin American
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs flattened with a mallet if they are thick, or use meatless chicken strips
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 limes juice only, about 1/4 cup
  • 1 tsp. honey or superfine sugar optional
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. salt plus additional for seasoning the chicken
  • 1 cup corn kernels, frozen or fresh, preferably roasted if using frozen
  • 1 pieces head Boston bibb, or other soft leaf lettuce, torn into bite-sized(about 8 cups)
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes halved
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh cilantro chopped, or to taste
  • 2 Tbsp. shelled pumpkin seeds or use sunflower seeds, toasted if desired, pepitas
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese


  • Lay the chicken in a flat dish just large enough to hold it in one layer.
  • In a large measuring cup, whisk together the oil, lime juice, honey or sugar (optional), cumin, and salt.
  • Pour HALF of the mixture over the chicken, and flip the meat to coat it (reserve the other half of the mixture to dress the salad). Let the chicken marinate on the counter for 10 minutes or, if there is time, let it marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 24 hours.
  • When you are ready to cook the chicken, heat the grill or a large heavy skillet, preferably a cast iron skillet, over medium to medium-high heat.
  • When the grill or pan is very hot, add the chicken (let the excess marinade drip off first), making sure not to crowd it, season it with salt, and cook it without moving it for 5 minutes per side. Season the second side with a little salt after flipping it. The chicken should get nicely browned, but if it is smoking or blackening, reduce the heat. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board.
  • While the chicken is cooking, thaw the corn, if necessary.
  • In a large serving bowl, combine the lettuce, tomatoes, corn, cilantro, pumpkin seeds, and cheese.
  • Slice the cooked chicken and add it to the salad, stir or shake the dressing, pour it over the salad and toss it gently but thoroughly (you may not need all the dressing). Serve it immediately.

Slow Cooker Directions

  • There's no need to marinate in advance. Combine the marinade ingredients. Add the chicken to the slow cooker along with HALF the marinade, turning several times to be sure it is well coated, and cook on low for 4 - 5 hours or on high for 2 - 3 hours. Assemble the salad as directed. (Slow cooker cooking times may vary—Get to know your slow cooker and, if necessary, adjust cooking times accordingly.)


Do Ahead or Delegate: Pound and refrigerate the chicken, juice the lime, make the marinade and marinate the chicken in the refrigerator (use only half of the marinade), thaw the corn if using frozen and roast it if desired, tear the lettuce leaves, halve the tomatoes, chop the cilantro, toast the seeds if desired, shred the cheese if necessary and refrigerate.
Scramble Flavor Booster: Add 1/8 tsp. ground black pepper and a pinch of cinnamon to the dressing. Lightly toast the pumpkin or sunflower seeds to bring out their flavor, add a diced avocado to the salad after tossing it, and/or use Pepper Jack cheese instead of milder Monterey Jack.
Tip: The Yucatan, located in Southeastern Mexico on the Yucatan Peninsula, utilizes not only traditional Mexican and Mayan components in its cuisine, but also has European and Caribbean influences. Some of the most common ingredients used in recipes from this region are fresh citrus fruits, red onions, pumpkin seeds, and chili peppers.
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 347, Total Fat: 25g, 38%; Saturated Fat: 7g, 33%; Cholesterol: 80mg, 26.5%; Sodium: 366mg, 15.5%; Total Carbohydrate: 11g, 3.5%; Dietary Fiber: 3g, 10%; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 23g
Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
Keyword Dinner, Fall, Kosher, Low Fat, Low Sodium, Make-Ahead, Nut-Free, Picnic, Potluck/Buffet, Salads, Slow Cooker, Spring, Summer, Vegetarian
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