Chef Charles Wiley's Southwest Chicken Salad

Chef Charles Wiley's Southwest Chicken Salad
Courtesy of Cafe Zuzu/Hotel Valley Ho

Chef Charles Wiley is busy preparing for the upcoming holiday dinners at Cafe Zuzu, but he took a few moments to share an easy appetizer recipe that you can use at your own holiday parties:

Southwest Chicken Salad on Crisp Tortilla Rounds

Yield:  32-48 hors d'oeuvres

What you'll need:

½ cup vegetable oil
24 tortilla rounds (1-1/2" diameter)
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbsp lime juice
1 ½ cups chicken breast, cooked and shredded
1 medium celery rib, chopped fine
¼ small red onion, chopped fine
1 bunch green onions, chopped fine
½ red bell pepper, seeded and chopped fine

(But wait, there's more! Click through to get the rest of Chef Wiley's ingredient list and find out how to put it all together...) 

1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
2 Tbsp sliced pickled jalapenos, chopped fine
2 Tbsp jalapeno pickling juice
To Taste: Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
Cilantro leaves for garnish

What to do:

1. Heat the vegetable oil in a small saucepan until it registers at 350 degrees on a thermometer (or use a small deep fryer). Fry tortilla rounds in small batches until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with a few grains of kosher salt.

2. Combine mayonnaise and lime juice in small bowl; whisk together and set aside.

3. In a separate large mixing bowl, combine the chicken, celery, onion, bell pepper, cilantro, jalapenos and pickling juice.  Add mayonnaise mixture and toss.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

4. Mound some of the chicken salad on top of the tortilla and garnish with a leaf of cilantro

(Tip: If a bite or two isn't enough to satisfy your chicken salad craving, a lunch-sized portion of this tasty appetizer is available at Cafe Zuzu year round.)

Check out parts one and two of our Chef Chat with Charles Wiley for info on his favorite holiday traditions and his stance on the locavore movement.  

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