Shrimp and Avocado Salad with Cilantro Dressing

by Jessica Randhawa


You guys, Happy Weekend! The sun is shining, the weather is forecasted to stay below 100 degrees and I have lots planned for the next two days. Per my child's request, he will be spending the night at his Nana's house (she has all the cool toys like a real lawnmower and blower), but first we will be having a playdate with a good friend and her little who is just a little older than Octavian. The rest of the time I will be cleaning, running, going to a yoga class, binge watching something (any recommendations? I've watched almost everything) and NOT cook.

Wait, you think, not cook??

Yep, your ears heard correctly. Aside from clean the kitchen, I will be taking the next two days off from cooking. I LOVE to cook, it's one of my favorite things to do, but sometimes I need to take a little break from the kitchen. Especially after weeks like this one where I created, prepared and photographed at least 10 new recipes (I lost count). We have enough leftovers for the next two nights and the husband will be on dish duty.

Unless he wants to cook, then he can knock himself out. But me? I'll be sitting on my butt sorting through and editing photos and watching the most mindless television I can find (and probably doing some laundry in there too).

If someone would have told me 5 years ago that this kind of weekend would have felt like a vacation I would have laughed and then rolled my eyes and thought, yeah right. Well, that person would have been right and I'm totally cool with that. I will be 30 next month and I feel like I did enough fun, wild, and crazy in my 20's to last me a lifetime (not that there won't be more of that at some points in my remaining (hopefully many) years). But, for now, give me a good run outdoors, some television and a house to clean at my leisure, and I am one happy mama.

Anyway, shrimp and avocado. Ooh, you know, just the best combo EVER. And considering the fact that I just posted another shrimp and avocado salad recipe earlier in the week, it's safe to say I'm slightly obsessed. 

Unlike this Chopped Shrimp Salad with Thai Garlic Lime Dressing or this Shrimp and Avocado Salad with Miso Dressing, this salad has a bit more of a southwestern flair.

Lots of crunchy cabbage and lettuce topped with juicy tomatoes, black beans and, of course, marinated shrimp and avocado. Oh yes, and let's not forget the dressing. If you love lime and cilantro, you'll love this dressing. Tons of flavor, but light and healthy. Toss it all together, throw it in a bowl, and you, my friends, have yourself a meal! If shrimp isn't your thing, don't worry, this salad would be fantastic with chicken or steak, too.

Shrimp and Avocado Salad with Cilantro Lime Dressing

Prep Time: 15 minutes / Cook Time: 10 minutes / Total Time: 25 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

Dressing + Marinade:
1 large bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
3/4 cup fresh lime juice
Zest from 1 lime
1/4 cups fresh orange juice
1 small shallot, roughly chopped
2 small red peppers
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
3 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup oil
salt, to taste

For the Salad:
1 lb. shrimp
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
5 oz. spring lettuce mix
5 oz. romaine lettuce, chopped
1/4 cup green onion, chopped
1/2 cup purple cabbage, chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 avocado, pitted and cubed
Lime, for serving

Instructions

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients for the dressing and marinade and process until completely smooth. Place shrimp in a large ziplock bag with 1/4 cup of the marinade and place in the refrigerator while you prepare the ingredients for the rest of the salad (do not leave the shrimp in the marinade for more than 15 minutes or so). Meanwhile, pour the remaining dressing in a separate bowl and set aside.

  2. Prepare your salad bowls- chop vegetables and arrange in one large salad bowl or evenly between 4 smaller bowls (up to you!)

  3. After the salad is prepared and shrimp has marinated, heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Drizzle with olive oil or non-stick cooking spray and, without overcrowding the pan, saute shrimp for approximately 2 minutes per side. You may need to cook shrimp in two batches. Set shrimp aside and discard any remaining marinade.

  4. Divide shrimp between the prepared bowls and garnish with additional cilantro and fresh lime juice.

Enjoy!