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Top down shot of a bowl of bbq chicken salad with avocado, black beans, red onion, corn and tomatoes.

BBQ Chicken Salad

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  • Author: Erin Jensen
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 32 minutes
  • Yield: 2 salads 1x
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Grill
  • Cuisine: American


BBQ Chicken Salad – a delicious, flavorful ultimate BBQ chicken salad recipe that is the perfect summer dinner idea!



BBQ Chicken:

  • 2 medium boneless, skinless chicken breast 
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup bbq sauce (more for serving)


  • 4 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1/2 cup corn, grilled with kernels cut off*
  • 4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 1/3 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded (or pepper jack cheese)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 1/4 cup red onion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped (more or less, as desired)
  • 1/4 cup tortilla strips
  • 1/4 cup ranch dressing
  • (optional) jalapeno, sliced


  1. Prepare Chicken + Grill: Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Ensure grill grates are clean and heat grill to medium-high heat (approx. 450 degrees F.). 
  2. Grill Chicken: Place chicken on direct heat (direct flame) and cook for 4-5 minutes per side. Move chicken away from the direct heat (direct flame) so that it is cooking on indirect heat (maintaining the same grill temp) and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes (you don’t need to flip at this point because the chicken will cook as if it is in an oven) or until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the chicken reads 160 degrees F. on your meat thermometer.
  3. Sauce + Rest: Brush BBQ sauce on to the chicken and close the grill lid.  Remove from grill when the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F. and let rest at least 5 minutes so the juices can redistribute (the chicken will continue to cook during this time and the internal temp will continue to rise 5 additional degrees). Cut chicken into bite-sized cubes.
  4. Assemble Salad: Divide lettuce between two bowls. Top with chicken, avocado, corn, bacon, cheese, tomatoes, onion, black beans, cilantro and tortilla strips. 
  5. Top Salad: Top salad with additional BBQ sauce, ranch dressing and jalapeno slices. 


  • Chicken: you can use chicken thighs instead of chicken breast if you prefer – we have a tutorial on how to grill chicken thighs HERE.
  • Corn: for best results use grilled corn, but feel free to use frozen or boiled, whatever you prefer/works best.
  • Dairy-Free: feel free to sub in a dairy-free cheese and use a dairy-free ranch dressing
  • Storage: any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.  Just make sure you keep the chicken, dressing, and fresh ingredients in separate containers.  This is also perfect for meal prep!


  • Serving Size: 6oz
  • Calories: 251
  • Sugar: 9 g
  • Sodium: 574 mg
  • Fat: 15 g
  • Carbohydrates: 21.7 g
  • Protein: 9.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 26.4 mg