This Ensalada de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Salad) is a quick meal that is packed with protein and vegetables then mixed with a creamy chicken salad dressing. 

Serve this recipe as a dip with chips, on bread to make a sandwich, or as tostadas. You can even fill your Mexican chicken salad tostadas with some Pico de Gallo or Homemade Guacamole! If you love a flavorful classic chicken salad recipe, then you’ll love my Best Chicken Salad Sandwich recipe! Or try my Avocado Chicken Salad Recipe!

Mexican Chicken Salad tostadas on a white plate.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Quick and easy lunch or dinner recipe. This Mexican chicken salad recipe comes together easily and is ready in no time! It’s great for lunches or as a last-minute dinner idea. 
  • Light and fresh. This ensalada de pollo is chilled, so it’s the perfect refreshing meal for the spring and summer. The lime juice in the sauce provides a refreshing flavor, and the veggies provide added nutrients. 
  • Perfect picnic food. This is one of my favorite picnic date food ideas for you and your spouse or your entire family! It’s super easy to transport in a cooler. Don’t leave it sitting at room temperature for hours on end though. Return it to a cooler with ice packs or to the fridge.  

Ingredient Notes

Ensalada de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Salad) ingredients on a light grey background.
  • Sour Cream: For a lighter and healthier option, I used light sour cream. 
  • Lime Juice: You can use fresh lime juice or store-bought lime juice. It gives a nice fresh flavor to the mixture. 
  • Jalapeño Brine: This is the juice from pickled jalapeños. It adds a nice flavor but not too much spice. If you want a spicier flavor, you can dice some of the pickled jalapeños and add them to the mixture or add them on top. 
  • Gold Potatoes: I used gold potatoes, but you can use whatever potatoes you have on hand. 
  • Frozen Mixed Vegetables: This frozen mixed vegetables package makes things so quick and easy! It’s usually a combination of carrots, peas, corn, and green beans. 
  • Chicken: You can cook and shred chicken, use canned chicken, or use rotisserie chicken. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Cook the potatoes. Add the diced potatoes to a medium pot and fill with water until potatoes are covered. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, simmer and cook for 8 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender. When tender, drain the water and place the potatoes in a large bowl.
  2. Make the creamy sauce. Whisk the mayo, sour cream, lime juice, jalapeño brine and kosher salt until smooth. Set aside. 
  3. Add vegetables and chicken. Add the thawed vegetables, shredded chicken, green onions, and cilantro to a large bowl. Pour the sauce then mix. Cover and store in the fridge until chilled, about 1 hour. Serve on tostadas, with chips, or on bread as a sandwich.   
A four photo collage showing how to make Mexican chicken salad tostadas: diced potatoes in a black pot, mayo mixture in a glass bowl, Mexican chicken salad before storing, and then after stirring.

Recipe Tips

If you’d rather use fresh vegetables, you can! Using the frozen mixed vegetables bag is nice for ease and convenience, but feel free to use whatever you have on hand. 

Some ensalada de pollo Mexicana recipes will also include a bit of mustard. If you want that addition, add a tablespoon. 

If you want to sub out the sour cream or the mayo, the best replacement would be plain yogurt. If swapping out the sour cream, I’d recommend a plain Greek yogurt. 

his recipe has a mellow flavor. For added flavor you can make some homemade Mild Taco Seasoning and add a little to taste. 

Complete the meal by serving alongside some Mexican Rice Pudding (Arroz con Leche).

Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days.

Do not eat if the dish has been left out at room temperature for 2 hours or more. You could get sick as bacteria can start to form. (This is a United States Department of Agriculture guideline.) On hot days, only let it sit unrefrigerated for 1 hour. 

Due to the mayo in the mixture, I don’t recommend freezing the chicken salad. The flavor and texture will be altered when frozen and thawed. 

Recipe FAQs

What substitute can I use for sour cream?

If you want to switch out the sour cream (or even the mayo), a plain yogurt is your best option. For a sour cream substitution, I recommend a plain Greek yogurt for added tang.  

Is ensalada de pollo spicy?

Nope! Even though there is jalapeño brine in the recipe, my kids loved it! I have two young boys and they both ate it really well (and they don’t like spicy food). If you do want some spice, I recommend adding some of the pickled jalapeños to the mixture (or use it as a topping). 

What is ensalada de pollo?

It means chicken salad in Spanish. It’s a chilled chicken salad made with shredded chicken, vegetables, jalapeño brine, cilantro, lime/lemon, mayo and sour cream. It’s typically served at parties and gatherings as a dip for chips or as Mexican chicken salad tostadas.

Ensalada de pollo in a glass bowl on a light grey background with tostadas and limes beside the bowl.

More Mexican Dishes

Did you make this recipe? I’d love to hear about it! Leave a rating and review or scroll below the recipe card and do so there. 

Stay up-to-date by following us on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and Pinterest.

Mexican chicken salad on a tostada with cilantro for garnish.
Print Review
No ratings yet

Mexican Chicken Salad

Mexican chicken salad is an easy meal to throw together. Serve it as a dip with chips, on bread to make a sandwich, or on tostadas.
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients
 

  • 3/4 cup mayo
  • 1/4 cup sour cream - I used light sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon jalapeno brine - (the juice from pickled jalapeños)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups gold potatoes - peeled and diced
  • 16 oz frozen mixed vegetables - thawed (carrots, peas, corn)
  • 4 cups chicken - cooked and shredded
  • 2 green onions - thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro - finely chopped
  • tostadas - bread, or chips, for serving

Instructions
 

  • In a medium pot add the diced potatoes. Fill with water until covering the potatoes. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and cook for 8 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender. When tender, drain the water and place the potatoes in a large bowl.
  • In a small bowl whisk the mayo, sour cream, lime juice, jalapeno brine and kosher salt until smooth. Set aside. 
  • Add the thawed vegetables to the large bowl along with the shredded chicken, green onions, and cilantro. Pour the mayo and sour cream mixture overtop. Mix to combine. Cover and store in the fridge until chilled, about 1 hour. Serve on tostadas, with chips, or on bread as a sandwich. 
  • Store in the fridge, covered, for 3 days. 

Notes

Do not eat if the dish has been left out at room temperature for 2 hours or more. On hot days, only let it sit unrefrigerated for 1 hour. 
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 199kcal (10%)Carbohydrates: 13g (4%)Protein: 6g (12%)Fat: 14g (22%)Saturated Fat: 3g (15%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 7gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 22mg (7%)Sodium: 511mg (21%)Potassium: 296mg (8%)Fiber: 2g (8%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 2007IU (40%)Vitamin C: 13mg (16%)Calcium: 24mg (2%)Iron: 1mg (6%)
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Did you make this recipe?Leave a star rating and review on the blog post letting me know how you liked this recipe! Take a picture and tag @saltandbaker on Instagram and Facebook so I can see what you’re making!