chicken fajita caesar salad in a bowl

This past weekend I washed our walls with the grime-killing combo of warm water and distilled white vinegar and now I can’t be stopped. No wall left behind!!!

Ahem. That is to say, my inner clean freak is, well, freaking out. You guys, warm water + white vinegar = magic wall cleaning potion. In the past I’ve used a Magic Eraser to clean scuffs and fingerprints from our walls, but it has a tendency to magically remove the paint, too. After walking past a smudge-filled wall (hello two small and sticky children) illuminated in mid-day sunshine this past Sunday, I was determined to find a better solution. Google told me 1/4 cup white vinegar mixed with 4 cups warm water would do the trick and boy did it!

“Babe, what are you doing?”

“Washing the walls! Would you look at this?! It’s getting EVERYTHING off!”

“You’re washing…what?”

“The walls.”



Moral of the story – the walls in my home have never been cleaner, we’re the proud new owners of 6 quarts of distilled white vinegar, and I officially need a life. Now, if the solution can clean the spray of red wine off my kitchen ceiling I’ll really be impressed! #dontask

Anyway, another magic combo happening in my kitchen is the marriage of fajita chicken and vegetables with a crisp caesar salad. Yes! This is a dish I ordered from a restaurant in Steamboat, CO a couple weeks ago and by the second forkful I knew I’d be recreating it for ya. It is so, so good.

fork taking a bite of sizzling chicken fajita salad

Crunchy romaine lettuce is tossed with caesar dressing and grated parmesan cheese then topped with sizzling chicken and vegetables that have been cooked fajita style – aka seared in a super hot skillet until crisp tender. I would have never, ever paired fajita-style veggies and chicken with the decadent flavors of caesar salad on my own, which is why I’m glad Winona’s in Steamboat, where we went for lunch one day of our vacation, did. This salad is such a treat!

Now, a few notes:

  • Many fajita recipes will call for a chili powder-heavy marinade or seasoning. That’s not how I like my fajitas. My version calls for fresh vegetables seasoned with 4-ingredient homemade seasoned salt and a little bit of lemon juice. TRY IT.
  • Winona’s uses shallots in their fajita vegetable mix instead of onion and it’s a game changer. Fried shallots are one of my all time favorite foods and the seared version in this salad really stands out. Shallots are usually sold near the garlic but if you can’t find them, swap in a large sweet onion instead.
  • This is an easy recipe to make vegetarian – just leave the chicken out! The mix of peppers, shallots, and mushrooms served over romaine lettuce tossed with caesar dressing is extremely satisfying on its own.

Who’s ready to eat?

chicken fajita caesar salad in a bowl

Start with the vegetables – you’ll need 2 bell peppers of any color, 8oz mushrooms, and 2 jumbo shallots – all sliced thin. Heat 1 Tablespoon high heat cooking oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet (preferably cast iron – here’s my ride or die!) over heat that’s just a touch below high then, when it begins to smoke, add 1/3 of the vegetables. Season with homemade seasoned salt and a tiny drizzle of lemon juice then when the vegetables have seared on the bottom, stir and cook until crisp-tender, 3-4 minutes. Remove the vegetables to a plate then cook the rest in two batches in the same manner – 1 Tablespoon oil, season with seasoned salt and lemon juice, then cook until crisp tender.

wok with sizzling fajita vegetables

Heat 1 last Tablespoon oil in the skillet then add 2 chicken breasts (about 14oz) that have been sliced thin, season with seasoned salt, lemon juice, and a pinch of cumin, then saute until cooked through. Remove to the plate with the vegetables.

Ok, sizzling fajita chicken and vegetables = done! Last step is to toss a 10oz bag chopped romaine lettuce with 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese (I used the small side of my box grater,) and the caesar salad dressing of your choice. I found this Primal Kitchen Caesar Dressing at HyVee and it’s preeetty much rocking my world.

Divvy the caesar-dressed greens between bowls then top with the warm chicken and vegetables, and dig in. I hope you LOVE this unique and delicious dinnertime combo – I know I can’t wait to have it again! Enjoy!

close up of a bowl of fajita caesar salad

Fajita Caesar Salad


Fajita Caesar Salad combines sizzling fajita chicken and vegetables with a classic, crisp caesar salad. A match made in dinner heaven!


serves 4

  • 2 chicken breasts (14oz), sliced into thin strips
  • 2 small bell peppers, any color, thinly sliced
  • 2 jumbo shallots, thinly sliced
  • 8oz mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 4 Tablespoons high-heat cooking oil, divided
  • 1/2 lemon
  • gluten-free seasoned salt (see notes for recipe)
  • pinch cumin
  • 10oz bag chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 - 1 cup gluten-free caesar dressing


  1. Heat 1 Tablespoon oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over heat that’s just a touch below high. When the oil begins to smoke add 1/3 of the vegetables then season with seasoned salt and a drizzle of fresh lemon juice (not too much - you just want a hint of lemon flavor.) Let vegetables sit undisturbed until seared on the bottom then continue to saute, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are crisp-tender, 3-4 minutes, turning heat down if they begin to burn. Remove vegetables to a plate. Repeat searing vegetables in two more batches, each in 1 Tablespoon oil, seasoning with seasoned salt and lemon juice.
  2. Heat remaining Tablespoon oil in skillet then add chicken, season with seasoned salt, a pinch of cumin, and lemon juice, then saute until cooked through, 2-3 minutes. Remove to plate with vegetables.
  3. Divide lettuce and parmesan cheese evenly between 4 bowls then drizzle with caesar dressing and toss to coat. Top with fajita chicken and vegetables then serve.


This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats,

photo collage of chicken fajita sizzling salad