All the flavors of the Caribbean in a satisfying and tasty salad. A little prep work early in the week makes this super easy to throw together on a busy weeknight and the spicy vinaigrette adds the perfect amount of heat.
I’m not a big salad eater. I would much rather have a burger and fries than a big bowl of lettuce with a few sliced tomatoes and cucumbers. If I’m going to eat a salad….it has to be pretty epic. It has to be bursting with flavor and it, absolutely, has to have a ton of variety….lots of different things to eat. Because, let’s face it, most people’s salads are boring. I do love a great beet and goat cheese salad but I rarely eat them because I get bored. Quickly. Like three bites in and then I need chocolate cake.
I’ve wanted to share this salad with all of you for about a year. I created it last year and, frankly, the vinaigrette was a tad too hot. I used Habanero. Raw Habanero. It was so spicy I think my mouth melted. It was good until the heat got to you, I didn’t even share it with my husband. I needed to tone it down. That’s when I went back to the drawing board and created the Spicy Fire-Roasted Pineapple Vinaigrette and used jalapeños….grilled jalapeños. The heat level is much more tolerable and you can even lessen the heat if you omit one of the jalapeños. Heck, if you don’t like spicy…omit the jalapeños altogether. It’s your salad. I won’t mind.
Now, I know the traditional Cobb Salad has blue cheese and hard-boiled egg. But this is not traditional, this is Caribbean and I can’t remember one time that I visited an island in the Caribbean and ate a hard-boiled egg. I did have blue cheese but that was IN a burger and the owners were from Philadelphia so you can’t really count that. Because it was like being in an Eagles Fan’s bar…with a blue cheese burger, feeding the bun to an iguana.
Back to my salad….I DID add bacon because it’s mandatory. Bacon makes salad better, always…and it’s just a little bit so don’t worry about the calories, fat, sodium…blah, blah, blah. Just put it in there…the salty, crunchy flavor puts this over the top. And the buttery macadamia nuts go with the bacon….like they should be blended together and spread on bread. 🙂 The chicken cooks quickly and no marinade needed…I just sprinkled it liberally with McCormick Jamaican Jerk Seasoning and called it a day. Well, after I grilled the chicken and cut it up and put it on my salad…I called it a day, but I think you were following me.
Caribbean Cobb Salad with Fire-Roasted Pineapple Vinaigrette
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 3 teaspoons Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
- 2 romaine hearts torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 mango, large dice
- 1 avocado, diced
- 4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 5 scallions, white and green parts sliced
- 1/4 cup chopped macadamia nuts
- 1/2 cup Fire-Roasted Pineapple Vinaigrette (see link above)
- Heat grill. Coat the chicken breasts liberally with the jerk seasoning and cook the chicken on both sides until cooked through, approximately 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil. Allow the chicken to rest for 10 minutes while you prepare the rest of the salad.
- In a large bowl, add the torn romaine hearts and top with the bell pepper, mango, avocado, bacon and scallions. Cut the chicken into cubes and add to the salad. Sprinkle the salad with the macadamia nuts and serve with the Fire-Roasted Pineapple Vinaigrette on the side or serve with your favorite dressing.