Grilled Chicken Cobb Salad with Chipotle Buttermilk Dressing

Yields Serves 6-8

Prep Time 1 hr

Cook Time 20 min

Total Time 1 hr 20 mins


    For the Mesa Barbecue Sauce

    • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
    • 1/2 medium red onion, finely diced
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 6 plum tomatoes, coarsely diced
    • 1/4 cup ketchup
    • 3 tablespoons dark molasses
    • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
    • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
    • 1 tablespoon honey
    • 1 teaspoon cayenne
    • 1 tablespoon ancho chile powder (available at Hispanic or specialty markets)
    • 1 tablespoon pasilla chile powder (available at Hispanic or specialty markets)
    • 1 tablespoon paprika
    • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

    For the Balsamic-mustard vinaigrette

    • 6 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    • 2 Tablespoons finely chopped red onion
    • 1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
    • 1/3 cup olive oil (the original recipe called for more but this was plenty )
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

    For the Chipotle Buttermilk Dressing

    • 1/4 cup sour cream (substitute reduced fat or in my case; Greek yogurt)
    • 1 cup buttermilk
    • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    • 2 Tablespoons finely chopped red onion
    • 1 Tablespoon fresh lime juice
    • 2 teaspoons chipotle purée (I used adobo chipotle peppers; and a bit more than what is called for)
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

    For the Salad

    • 4 chicken breasts
    • 1 1/4 cups Mesa bbq sauce
    • 2 large red onions, sliced 1/4 inch thick
    • Olive oil for brushing the onions
    • 8 cups mixed greens, washed and dried
    • 8 plum tomatoes, quartered
    • 8 hard-boiled eggs, quartered
    • 4 avocados, peeled, halved, and thinly sliced
    • 8 ounces creamy blue cheese, crumbled
    • Chipotle Buttermilk Dressing
    • Balsamic-Mustard Vinaigrette
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


      To Make the Sauce:

      1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and sweat the onion and garlic until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and simmer 15 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer 20 minutes.
      2. Puree the mixture in a food processor, pour into a bowl, and let cool at room temperature. May be refrigerated up to 1 week or frozen.

      To Make the Vinaigrette:

      1. Combine the vinegar, mustard, onion, and sugar in a blender or food processor and let it spin.
      2. With the motor running, slowly add the oil. Season with salt and pepper.
      3. Note: I used my mini processor for this. Perfect.

      To Make the Chipotle Buttermilk Dressing:

      1. Use a blender, stick blender or food processor to blend everything together; season with salt and pepper to taste.

      Putting it all together:

      1. Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to medium high.
      2. Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper and brush with mesa barbecue sauce.
      3. Grill, basting continuously with barbecue sauce, until golden brown and cooked through, 6 minutes on each side. Remove from the grill and let rest for 10 minutes.
      4. Brush the onion slices with olive oil and grill until golden brown and slightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes on each side
      5. In a large bowl, lightly toss the greens with the balsamic-mustard Vinaigrette and place on a large platter.
      6. Cut the chicken breasts on the bias into 1/2-inch slices.
      7. Arrange the chicken in the center of the platter, resting on the greens. Arrange the tomatoes, eggs, onion slices, and avocado slices around the chicken. Sprinkle with the crumbled blue cheese and drizzle with the chipotle buttermilk dressing.
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