Chopped avocado southwest salad

This morning, I have  new recipe for you, courtesy of my Uncle E. He has shared quite a few of his mouthwatering recipes with the blog world before, including this black bean soup idea, this lavender-honey salmon, the vegan soba noodle sushi, and his best ever pasta salad (<— It’s still one of my top-viewed posts, years later.)

Last time we hung out, I joked that I needed to have voice memo running on my phone. Within a 5-minute conversation, he’d taught me how to make the perfect chocolate mousse, how to plate a filet of fish, and the seasoning for the best steak. I’m talking to him and I’m like, “Wait, I need to write this down.” Hahah. He has SO much knowledge to share, and I can always count on him to blow my mind with his culinary creations. He just took over as the Executive Chef at Reforma in Tucson if you’re local and want to stop by. PS they freshly make all of their chips and tortillas, from corn,

chopped salad

When we enjoyed an impromptu dinner at their house, and of course, everything was ridiculously delicious. It was kind of silly, really. We chatted and ate dinner, and I fangirled over the best salad I’ve had in a long time.

A nice surprise?

No lettuce.

chopped salad closeup

Also, the toppings are a balanced ratio, so in every bite, you’ll have crisp cabbage, shredded carrots, fresh herbs, a zing of lime, creamy avocado, salted tortilla chips, and a smooth, spicy dressing.

It’s everything you could wish for, really.

chopped avocado southwest salad

I thought I’d share it since we’re celebrating A Salad A Day in May, and it’s a fun way to switch up the ol’ salad rotation. Sometimes with restaurant salads, I end up disappointed because I feel like I could make something SO much better at home. (Also, I hate paying $13 for a bag of lettuce + paltry toppings.) This salad is a prime example of something that crushes the usual restaurant salad fare.

Here’s the recipe if you’d like to give it a try!

chopped southwest salad


Chopped Southwest Salad


  • 8 oz shredded cabbage
  • 23 oz shredded carrots
  • 2 heaping tablespoons each chopped cilantro and mint
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 34 chopped avocadoes
  • 2 cups-ish tortilla strips or crunched tortilla chips
  • your favorite Ranch or Chipotle Ranch dressing


  1. In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, carrots, herbs, lime juice season well with salt and pepper.
  2. If serving immediately, add the avocado, more lime, the tortilla chips and toss with Ranch.
  3. If using for meal prep, keep the avocado, dressing and tortilla chips out of the mixture until ready to serve. The slaw and herbs alone will last a couple of days in the fridge!

Try any unique salad combos lately? 

See ya later on the Family page with my 6-month PDB update.



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  1. Carolyn Hesse on May 10, 2016 at 6:39 am

    How many servings does the recipe make?

  2. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on May 10, 2016 at 7:15 am

    That dressing I have to try! I can’t eat certain vegetables right now like cabbage because they interfere with my thyroid so I may have to resort to lettuce!

  3. Meg on May 10, 2016 at 7:43 am

    ahhhh i totally remember his salmon recipe! i made it the day you posted it! thanks for sharing this, babe! i have a cousin that would LOVE this! Sending it to her now 🙂 xo

  4. Britt@MyOwnBalance on May 10, 2016 at 8:09 am

    Yum! Love this idea! I’ve been on a huge Mexican/Southwest kick right now so I’ll add this to my rotation!

  5. Amy S on May 10, 2016 at 10:04 am

    OMG this looks amazing! I like how different it is…definitely NOT a boring salad, lol. Must make soon!

  6. Erika S. on May 10, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    I’ve been obsessed with vinegar based coleslaw. My fave new recipe is a korean inspired coleslaw. If you can’t find perilla (aka sesame) leaves you can sub chopped kale. So, so good.

    All of the ingredients can be found at your local Korean store (or large asian grocer).

    PS….hooray for your hand…!

  7. Karen on May 10, 2016 at 2:23 pm

    This looks good Gina! Have you tried the Bolthouse yogurt dressings yet? They have a cilantro ranch and a chipotle ranch that are awesome and healthy too!!!

    • Fitnessista on May 11, 2016 at 12:19 pm

      i haven’t! will have to check them out!

  8. Jessica on May 10, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    This looks awesome! Thanks for sharing. This one is a keeper for sure!
    Does he have an yummy skinny margarita recipe too? 🙂

    • Fitnessista on May 11, 2016 at 12:17 pm

      ohh i’ll ask him!

  9. Nadine on May 17, 2016 at 8:28 am

    I just tried this recipe out last night, and I loved it! Such a great way to get greens without feeling like you are eating a plain ole salad!

    • Fitnessista on May 17, 2016 at 2:20 pm

      so happy you liked it!!

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