Ensalada de Pollo Recipe

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Easy Ensalada de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Salad) made with mayonnaise and sour cream is creamy and delicious. It makes the best tostadas, sandwich, or pasta salad!

What is Ensalada de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Salad)?

If you’re looking for the perfect easy and delicious “clean out your fridge” meal, this it it! Ensalada de Pollo is super adaptable and can easily be made with the veggies you have on hand.

Ensalada de Pollo is a creamy Mexican Chicken Salad. It’s made with lots of vegetables, like potatoes, corn, peas, and carrots, and has a delicious, light, and creamy dressing.

A close up image of ensalada de pollo.

What To Eat It With

It makes such a great and easy meal prep cold salad for lunch. Try serving it over romaine lettuce, on a sandwich, with avocado slices in a wrap, mixed with cold pasta, or with guacamole on a tostada.

This salad is perfect for a potluck, and one of the most popular ways to serve it is with saltine crackers. It’s a quick and easy dish you can bring with you to any get-together that pretty much everyone will love.

It would be the perfect dish to bring to a Cinco de Mayo celebration! I love having it with Mexican street corn and either cilantro lime rice or Spanish rice.

How To Make It

  1. Boil the potato chunks in a small pot of boiling water for about 8 minutes.
  2. Simmer the vegetables for about 3 minutes.
  3. Whisk together the dressing ingredients.
  4. Mix everything together in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Chill the chicken salad for 1 – 2 hours before serving.
The labeled ingredients for Ensalada de Pollo.

Ingredients

Pulled chicken. My favorite is using leftover rotisserie chicken. Instant Pot Shredded Chicken is another great option, and canned chicken works in a pinch. If you have the time, try using grilled chicken! Seriously, it adds so much flavor and is so tasty.

Potatoes, carrots, peas, and corn. The boiled vegetables really set Mexican Chicken Salad apart from other chicken salads, and I definitely wouldn’t skimp on them! If you use fresh carrots, make sure they’re chopped small.

Mayonnaise. Adds so much creaminess that you’d expect in a chicken salad recipe.

Sour Cream. Using half mayonnaise and half sour cream makes the dressing for this salad so much lighter. It also provides a bit of tang and makes this salad a bit healthier than it would be if the dressing was only made with mayo.

Jalapeno Brine. I love using the juice from a jar of pickled jalapenos as an ingredient. It has so much flavor and adds the flavor of spice without adding the heat. If you’d like it to be spicier, use the brine from hot pickled jalapenos.

Lime Juice. Lime juice adds some brightness and a bit of zest to the dressing.

Yellow Mustard. This adds a bit of a vinegary flavor that balances the salad nicely. You can omit if you like though.

Salt. A must in my book – a bit of salt enhances all of the flavors.

The labeled ingredients for the Mexican chicken salad dressing.

Optional Additions and Alterations

Use whatever potatoes you have on hand! I prefer yellow potatoes with this recipe, but when I photographed it, I only had russets, so I used them and it turned out great. I also typically cut the potatoes smaller than they are in the photographs, but it works with larger chunks like in the photographs, too.

Try mixed bagged veggies. I like to use frozen corn, frozen peas, and fresh carrots mostly because then I get the exact ratio of vegetables that I like. Mixed bagged vegetables make this recipe a ton easier though, and I love easy recipes!

Add green beans. This is a popular addition to Ensalada de Pollo. Just cook them at the same time as the rest of the vegetables, drain them, and add them to the salad.

Use grilled corn. This adds so much depth of flavor! You could either roast your own in a cast iron skillet, or keep it super easy by using Trader Joe’s Roasted Corn.

Add red onion. I don’t normally include this, but when I do I chop it very fine, and soak it in cold water for about 20 minutes before adding it to the salad. Soaking the onion in water removes a lot of the pungent flavor.

Dice up pickled jalapenos and add them. If you like extra heat then feel free to add some of the pickled jalapenos! Just be sure to dice them small so you don’t get any majorly spicy bites. I wouldn’t recommend doing this if you’re bringing it to a potluck since people have very different spice tolerances though. Alternatively, you could add in a pinch of cayenne pepper.

Add in chicken taco seasoning. I don’t normally do this because I love the flavor of the dressing as-is, but if you’d like it to have the flavors of chili, cumin, and paprika, it would be a great addition!

Use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream. I definitely prefer sour cream in this recipe, but if you don’t have any on hand, you could use Greek yogurt instead.

Try using flavorful leftover chicken. I made a batch of this with my cilantro lime chicken once, and the flavor was amazing!

Make it low carb be leaving out the potatoes.

Top it off with fresh herbs for brightness and additional flavor.

Use up your leftover Thanksgiving turkey by swapping the chicken for shredded turkey!

Mexican chicken salad in white bowl with a black rim.

How To Store It

This can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Can You Freeze Chicken Salad

I wouldn’t recommend it. Traditional chicken salad recipes don’t freeze well because the mayonnaise separates when it thaws. That’s exacerbated in this recipe because of the dairy in the sour cream. It would have a very gritty texture.

Is It Gluten Free?

Yes, this recipe is naturally gluten free as it’s written.

How Many Calories Are in a Serving?

According to Cronometer, one serving of this chicken salad has approximately 302 calories.

Ensalada de Pollo in a white bowl on a blue napkin.

Mexican Recipes

If you like this recipe, be sure to check out our entire Mexican recipe section! We’ve got tons of recipes that you’re sure to love.

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Yield: 8 servings

Ensalada de Pollo Recipe

An easy creamy ensalada de pollo recipe in a large glass bowl.

Easy Ensalada de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Salad) made with mayonnaise and sour cream is creamy and delicious. It makes the best tostadas, sandwich, or pasta salad!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 medium yellow potatoes (cut into 1/2” cubes)
  • 3/4 cup peeled and diced carrots
  • 3/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 3/4 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (the juice of about 1 lime)
  • 1 Tablespoon jalapeno brine (from pickled jalapenos, optional)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons yellow mustard*
  • 4 cups cooked shredded chicken (about 1 pound)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (plus more to taste)

Instructions

  1. Start by cooking the vegetables. Place the potato cubes in a pot of salted boiling water, and boil until the potatoes are just fork tender (about 8 minutes).
  2. In a separate medium sized pot, simmer the carrots, peas, and corn together until they are just cooked through (about 3 minutes).
  3. In a large bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, sour cream, yellow mustard, lime juice, and jalapeno brine. Add in the chicken, salt, potatoes, and vegetables, and toss to coat. Taste and adjust salt to your preference.
  4. Chill in the refrigerator for 1 - 2 hours before serving.

Notes

*I'd recommend making the dressing without the yellow mustard and tasting it before adding any mustard. Some people prefer the dressing without the vinegar flavor in the yellow mustard.

I prefer yellow potatoes in this dish, but when I photographed it, I only had russet potatoes on hand, so I used 1 medium russet potato. You can use any kind of potato you like!

Be sure to use real mayonnaise and not Miracle Whip (it would taste too sweet in this recipe).

Nutrition Information:

Serving Size:

1/8

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 301Total Fat: 21.5gCarbohydrates: 12.6gNet Carbohydrates: 11.1gFiber: 1.5gSugar: 2.8gProtein: 15.2g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

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A Pinterest pin image with two pictures of Mexican chicken salad with title text in the middle.

Try making this creamy Ensalada de Pollo recipe! It makes the perfect easy lunch recipe.

An easy creamy ensalada de pollo recipe in a large glass bowl.

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