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Recipe for chicken and avocado lettuce boats with buttermilk Dijon dressing


Sometimes, in the bleak mid-winter when absolutely nothing is in season, you absolutely have to have a salad. Here in the northeast United States, certain foods, no matter what the time of year, always come from elsewhere, foods like avocado, lemon and olives. I'm not sure there's a season for rotisserie chicken, either. So, why not take all of these out-of-season ingredients and toss them with a great from-the-pantry dressing? For these chicken and avocado lettuce boats, I used heirloom cherry tomatoes from Trader Joe's. If you can't find decent winter tomatoes, use red bell pepper instead, for color and crunch. Close your eyes, take a bite, and you'll forget all about winter.


Chicken and avocado lettuce boats with buttermilk Dijon dressing

From the pantry, you'll need: plain yogurt, lemon, capers, Dijon mustard, parsley, black pepper, agave nectar, rice vinegar, feta cheese.

Serves 4.


For the dressing:
1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp capers, chopped
1/4 tsp agave nectar
1/2 tsp rice vinegar
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 tsp fresh black pepper, or to taste

For the salad:
2 cups diced cooked chicken breast (I use rotisserie chicken from the grocery store)
1 avocado, peeled and diced
1/2 large green bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup diced cucumber
2-3 plum tomatoes, diced, or 3/4 cup of cherry tomatoes
Handful of black olives, cut in half
Fresh dill weed (2 Tbsp chopped, plus extra for garnish)
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Romaine lettuce leaves


In a small bowl, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients, and set aside.

Meanwhile, add the chicken, avocado, cucumber, green pepper, cucumber, tomatoes and olives to a mixing bowl. Toss in a few tablespoons of chopped dill, and as much of the dressing as you like. Stir everything well, then fold in the feta cheese. Pile salad into the lettuce leaves.

Serve at room temperature, garnished with additional dill fronds.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Turkey salad with grapes and walnuts
Greek pasta salad with sun-dried tomato vinaigrette
Greek turkey burgers with yogurt and feta sauce
Chicken salad with mustard sauce and lovage
Curried chicken salad with bell pepper, peanuts and raisins

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Turkey apple salad melt panini, from Panini Happy
Brown rice salad with leftover turkey, red cabbage, and pecans, from Kalyn's Kitchen
Turkey salad with lemon, capers, mustard and cornichons, from David Lebovitz
Chicken salad with roasted bell peppers and toasted almonds, from Simply Recipes
Waldorf salad with chicken and buttermilk dressing, from Macheesmo

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


Love all of these colors!

I am crazy about this idea, and so SBD friendly too. Yum!!

This looks so delicious. I can't wait to try it. And I'm totally with you about eating Salad in the middle of winter!

I was just thinking the other day that it's been awhile since I had a good salad! I love the use of lettuce as boats!

Kathy, the colors brighten up our dreary New England winter days! (This is me, envying you Southern California folks.)

Kalyn, glad to know this is South Beach friendly. It's a great salad, filling yet light.

Crystal, stews and soups are wonderful, but salads really turn me on. And winter salads are so tough when there's very little in the way of local produce.

Pam, these are more like cruise ships! You can use any size or shape of lettuce leaf.

Gorgeous! I need some spring today. Off to market!

Suzy, that was exactly my thinking when I put this salad together! I am so ready for Spring.


What a fabulous looking salad! The bright colors make me want to reach through my monitor!

Laura, Lea: Thanks! This is a salad I could eat every day, and it will be even better when local tomatoes are available.

It's so fun to put together a great fresh meal like this. We've been enjoying lots of things wrapped in lettuce! This looks delicious, so I'll have to try the combo. :)

YUM! Although I eat salad 5 out 7 days year round I am always hard-up for ingredients/interesting combinations in the winter. This dressing looks divine- I shall get off my lazy butt and actually make this I think!

This recipe looks amazing and so healthy. A healthy diet is key to looking and feeling great!

I am definitely making this dressing!!

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