This refreshing Mexican Chopped Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette is a marvelous summer entree with fresh corn, jicama, avocados, tomatoes, and more! Add some chicken or shrimp for a hearty meal!

This Mexican Salad is full of cool, fresh ingredients and is the perfect side salad when serving enchiladas, tacos, or any Tex-Mex entree.

Mexican Chopped Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette ingredients on a white ceramic tray.

Why You Must Make

  • This is a delightful salad for the sultry days of summer.
  • It’s full of cool, fresh, colorful vegetables, black beans, and Mexican cheese, and dressed in a cilantro, lime vinaigrette with a slight kick!
  • This is one of my go-to dishes to take to friends who need a meal, especially when the weather has been hot and miserably humid.

Recipe Tips

  • If you’re not going to eat this salad in one sitting, just put the dressing on what you plan to eat. The greens will get soggy sitting in the salad dressing so the leftovers will taste better if freshly dressed.
  • If you don’t like cilantro, there are other herbs you can use instead. See the Frequently Asked Questions below for suggestions.
  • Feel free to add, remove or substitute any ingredients. You can use cubes of Monterey Jack or Sharp Cheddar instead of the Queso Fresco or Iceberg lettuce instead of Romaine.
  • PRO-Tip: Mix the salad dressings right in a liquid measuring cup. From there, it’s easy to pour into a container or right onto the salad.
  • When making the dressing, slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking continuously. This will help to emulsify the salad dressing, making it creamy and homogenous and less likely to separate into two layers.
Overhead view of a Mexican Chopped Salad on a white serving plate.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Chopped Salad? 

A chopped salad is a side dish in which all the components are cut into bite-sized pieces. The ingredients often consist of greens, vegetables, and even cheese, fruit, and nuts. It can be served mixed in a bowl or composed (components separated) or on a platter, board or tray.

How Do You Make a Composed Salad into an Entree Salad?

By adding some more protein, you can make this salad into a main dish. There is already cheese, but adding grilled chicken, salmon, shrimp or even leftover beef would make this a dinner-worthy salad.

What Herbs Can You Use Instead of Cilantro?

If you are someone who gets tastes a soapy flavor when eating cilantro, try using another herb instead. Parsley, Thai Basil, Dill, or even Mexican Oregano are good replacements for cilantro. Go light on the oregano if using, taste, then add more if needed.

How Do You Store Leftover Chopped Salad?

You can store your chopped salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. It’s best not to toss all the salad with the dressing as the leftovers will get soggy. Store the salad ingredients and dressing in separate containers. Add a paper towel to the bottom of the salad container to absorb any excess moisture.

What Dressing is Best for a Chopped Salad?

Light dressings like a vinaigrette or Italian dressing seem to be the norm. But if your family loves Ranch dressing, for example, feel free to serve it with Ranch!

Overhead view of Mexican Chopped Salad on a rectangular white tray plus dressing in a canning jar.

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Overhead view of Mexican Chopped Salad on a rectangular white tray plus dressing in a canning jar

Mexican Chopped Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette

Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Yield 6 servings

A marvelous summer salad adapted from Self Magazine



  • 2 ½ cups shredded (or chopped) romaine lettuce
  • 1 can black beans (12.5 ounces), drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes, or grape tomatoes, halved
  • ¾ cup chopped, peeled jicama
  • ¾ cup frozen corn kernels, thawed (or fresh sweet corn taken off the cob)
  • Whole ripe avocado, diced
  • 1 red or yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • ¼-½ cup queso fresco, crumbled


  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons, chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon minced jalapeno
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


  1. Mix all salad ingredients together in a large bowl.
  2. Mix dressing ingredients in a glass jar or measuring cup, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Pour dressing over salad, mix, and serve.


If you don't like cilantro, you can use chopped parsley, Thai basil or half as much oregano.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 310Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 11mgSodium: 379mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 9gSugar: 9gProtein: 9g


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