Chicken Carnitas Salad Bowls with Chipotle Cashew Cream

Chicken Carnitas Salad Bowls with Chipotle Cashew Cream

It’s hard to find time during the busy week to make a delicious and healthy meal from scratch. I don’t know about you, but I always look for ideas to make at least two different meals from one dish. Well, chicken carnitas is a great example. Last night we had chicken carnitas salad bowls with fresh corn, black beans, avocado and cherry tomatoes drizzled with chipotle cashew cream. Light, healthy and delicious! Today I am making chicken quesadillas using the leftovers from chicken carnitas and I am serving it with roasted tomato salsa and spanish rice. One dish, two different meals!

Chicken Carnitas Salad Bowls with Chipotle Cashew Cream

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Chicken Carnitas:


  • 1 pound skinless chicken breasts
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke (optional)

Chipotle cashew cream:


  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup water ( add more if needed )
  • Juice of 1 large lime
  • 1/2 avocado, pitted
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobe sauce ( or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • Salt, pepper to taste

Chicken carnitas salad bowls:


  • 6 cups lettuce
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1 cup fresh corn
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1-2 avocado, pitted and sliced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • Lime wedges for serving

Chicken carnitas:

Mix all ingredients for chicken carnitas except for chicken in a small bowl.

Slow Cooker:

Place chicken in the slow cooker. Pour the citrus mixture all over chicken and set slow cooker to low. Cook about 6-8 hours or until tender.

Pressure Cooker:

Select High Pressure and spray the cooking pot with oil. Add chicken to the pot. Pour the citrus mixture all over chicken. Cook for 45 minutes, use the natural pressure release.

Remove the chicken from the cooking pot and shred with two forks. Mix in 1/4 cup of the juices, spread it out in a single layer on a baking sheet and broil until it starts getting crispy, about 5 minutes. You can also pan-fry shredded meat with a little bit of olive oil until browning occurs, adding a little bit of juices as needed.

Chipotle Cashew Cream:
While chicken is cooking, prepare the chipotle cashew cream. Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend it until smooth.

Chicken Carnitas Salad Bowls:
Assemble chicken carntitas salad bowls as desired. Drizzle chipotle cashew cream and extra lime juice if desired. Enjoy!

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  • Reply
    June 24, 2014 at 1:06 pm

    This sounds delicious, great recipe!

  • Reply
    June 24, 2014 at 11:36 pm

    Wow Olga!! This sounds soooo good! And that chipotle cashew cream?! Oh my! Yes please!

    • Reply
      June 25, 2014 at 8:17 am

      Thanks Lori! The chipotle cashew cream was really tasty and healthy as well:)

  • Reply
    June 25, 2014 at 1:50 pm

    I have only made carnitas from pork but your chicken looks delicious. I love the flavoring of the cashew cream with chipotle and will make this for sure! What a great recipe 🙂

    • Reply
      June 25, 2014 at 4:51 pm

      Thanks! Normally carnitas are made from pork but I tried using chicken and beef as well. It depends on what I am in the mood for:) thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2014 at 5:42 am

    Brilliant! Looks so fresh and delicious!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2014 at 8:18 pm

    This looks AMAZING!

  • Reply
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