Southwestern Shrimp Salad

My go-to shrimp accompaniment is pasta.  But I’m trying to be healthy on weeknights (ugh, kill me) and I’d already had pasta the night before so I felt I’d hit my quota and needed to slow my roll.  Instead, I made a salad, but I jacked it up with lots of Southwestern flava so I wouldn’t feel so healthy and boring.

First, marinate your shrimp in olive oilgarlic, cayenne, chili powder, and paprika while you prep the rest of the salad.

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While the shrimp soaks up those Southwestern juices, top a bed of lettuce with black beans (from a can, drained and rinsed), corn (I like the frozen fire roasted kind from Trader Joes), chopped bell pepper, and crumbled goat cheese.  I know what you’re thinking: a Southwestern salad is a place for pepper jack, not goat cheese.  But trust me when I say it works.  You’ve got plenty of spice on the shrimp so it’s nice to have something cool and tangy.

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Before the shrimp…

Speaking of shrimp, since the rest of the salad is now ready to go, sauté those babies for 2-3 minutes on each side.  Top with an avocado yogurt dressing.  Feel free to make your own or use this store-bought one, like I did.

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…with the shrimp

The finished product is a full meal in a salad.  And we’re talking a 10-15 minute meal, here.  It’s a salad, but it’s packed with protein and flavor.  Usually when I say something like that, it’s terrible for you (case in point: the Quesadilla Explosion Salad from Chili’s, which I shamefully love); but this is actually pretty freakin healthy.  Go me.

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