BBQ Chicken Salad with Cornbread Croutons

Summer BBQ grilling and salads come together in this BBQ chicken salad with grilled corn, tomatoes, red onion, black beans, cheddar cheese, and even BBQ-Ranch and cornbread croutons.

BBQ Chicken Salad with Cornbread Croutons 5


Summer is the time for BBQ and grilling but that doesn’t mean it can’t also be salad season, especially when you combine them. This salad is mixed with tomatoes, red onion, black beans, grilled corn, and cheddar cheese topped with BBQ grilled chicken, BBQ-Ranch dressing and even homemade cornbread croutons.

The composition of this salad was inspired by OXO and their #WhatAGrillWants campaign. They have a slew of tools which are very handy to have during any grilling adventure, such as 16″ inch tongs for turning and flipping meat (and corn on the cob) on the grill.

BBQ Chicken Salad with Cornbread Croutons 1

But of course one of the best parts about BBQ grilling is the sauce, so I slathered that stuff on with a silicone basting brush.

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I also particularly enjoy grilled corn on the cob. I usually soak un-shucked corn in water and grill it, but this time I decided to char the corn by cooking it straight on the grill. Then afterwards I removed those tasty kernels with a corn stripper.

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Before all that grilling, while the chicken marinaded, I mixed up the BBQ-Ranch dressing and made homemade cornbread croutons. Toss all of the components together and you’ve got the makings of one awesome BBQ salad.

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One year ago: Peach Chicken with Balsamic Glaze

Three years ago: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Mini S’mores Pies

BBQ CHICKEN SALAD WITH CORNBREAD CROUTONS

Serves 4

Ingredients:

CHICKEN

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup favorite BBQ sauce, plus more for grilling

DRESSING

1/2 cup prepared Ranch dressing

1/4 cup favorite BBQ sauce

CORNBREAD CROUTONS

2/3 cup yellow corn meal

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

2/3 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup canned corn, drained

1/3 cup onion, chopped

1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream

1/3 cup shredded pepperjack cheese

1 egg, beaten

1 tsp honey

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

SALAD

1 ear of corn, shucked

10 oz. mixed salad greens

1 cup sliced grape tomatoes

1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 small red onion, chopped

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Place chicken breasts in a ziplock bag. Pour in olive oil and BBQ sauce, close the bag and rub mixture into the chicken. Let marinade in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  2. While the chicken marinades, place the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until blended. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes before serving.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×9-inch pan; set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, and baking powder. Add buttermilk, corn, onion, Greek yogurt, cheese, egg and honey and mix until incorporated. Pour mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 50-60 minutes, or until toothpick inserting in the middle comes out with moist crumbs. Allow to cool completely then cut into small cubes.
  5. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and liberally coat with cooking spray. Place cornbread cubes on the prepared sheet in a single layer, spray the tops with more cooking spray and sprinkle with slat. Bake for 12-15 minutes until crispy and golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely.
  6. Heat grill to medium-high, and brush with oil. Place chicken on the grill and discard marinade. Cook for 3-4 minutes a side, brushing grilled side with additional BBQ sauce after flipping once. Also grill the ear of corn, rotating occasionally, until evenly charred. Remove chicken and corn, let cool slightly, then chop chicken and slice corn kernels off cob. Place on a platter and tent with foil while you prepare the salad.
  7. To assemble the salad, place lettuce in a large bowl along with tomatoes, corn, beans, onion and cheese. Pour BBQ-Ranch dressing on top of the salad and gently toss to combine. Serve immediately, topped with chicken and cornbread croutons.

Source: Salad inspired by Iowa Girl Eats. Croutons adapted from Jalapeno Cornbread.

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