This ranch chicken salad cheddar melt is infused with southwestern flavors. Piled high on pumpernickel bread with lots of melted cheese, it’s a mouthwatering lunch.

We were not a ranch household growing up.

My mom was the wheat bread, honey mustard is the most exciting condiment you’re gonna get kind of parent. Mayo, ranch dressings (or any bottled dressing for that matter) and processed delicious frozen foods (um hello, tater tots) were things only found at friends’ houses.

Southwest ranch chicken salad cheddar melt
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Lucky for me, my best friend’s mom was as opposite of mine as one could be in the food department.

Chicken nuggets dipped in mayo with a baked potato was a completely normal meal in their household and I loved them for it in all my fun food deprived 6 year old glory.

Ranch chicken salad cheddar melt

I feel almost anti-American with this statement, (but now you know why) I just never really grew a taste for ranch anything. Whether it was the dressing all the way to the flavored potato chips, ranch was always an “ehh whatever” kind of thing for me.

So when I visited the Sabra Greek yogurt factory back in April and they revealed their brand new (yet to be released) flavor, Farmer’s Ranch, I honestly didn’t expect to be all gaga over it like everyone else was.

Um, I was wrong.

This ranch deprived girl was in pure Greek yogurt dip heaven. I literally could not stop dipping pepper slices in it at the sampling (and pretty much ruined my lunch appetite doing so) and it even gave my beloved diced onion flavor (which I used in these Indian yogurt steak kabobs) a run for its money.

If you loved (or dare I say still love?) those horrible ranch packets you mix with sour cream to make a dip, I beg you to try this instead. 1. you can actually pronounce all the ingredients in Sabra’s Greek yogurt dips. 2. It’s packed with real vegetables, not dehydrated ones. 3. It’s got a heck of a lot fewer calories and fat.

Southwestern ranch chicken salad cheddar melt

While dipping baby carrots and crackers in it is my usual obsession of choice (I can pretty much house a container in two sittings), I decided it’s also the perfect binder for making chicken salad.

I pretty much always make my lunch salads with Greek yogurt instead of mayo but using the Farmer’s Ranch takes the flavor profile up like 10 notches.

Not to mention, spicing your own chicken with a southwestern vibe puts watery canned chicken to shame. Pile it high on some bread covered with melted cheddar and you’ve got a ranch chicken salad cheddar melt that makes for one heck of a lunch.

Check out these Mediterranean eggplant chips using the Mediterranean herb Greek yogurt dip too!

Love this ranch chicken salad cheddar melt?

Try these other chicken salad recipes too: 
Turmeric Chicken Salad
Garlic Yogurt Chicken Salad Sandwich with Sun Dried Tomato Spread
Honey Chicken Salad with Apples and Sage
Sweet Corn, Peach and Honey Mustard Chicken Salad

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Southwest Ranch Chicken Salad Cheddar Melt

Servings: 2 servings
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
This ranch chicken salad cheddar melt is infused with southwestern flavors. Piled high on pumpernickel bread with lots of melted cheese, it’s a mouthwatering lunch.

Ingredients 

  • 3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs (or breasts)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 5 ounces Sabra Farmer’s Ranch Greek yogurt dip
  • 4 slices pumpernickel bread
  • 4 ounces sharp yellow cheddar cheese, sliced
  • tomato slices
  • green lettuce

Instructions 

  • Combine all the spices in a small bowl.
  • Rub chicken with spice mixture and set aside.
  • Grease a skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat.
  • Place chicken on skillet and cook for about 5 minutes per side (depending on thickness of chicken) until fully cooked.
  • Remove from skillet and shred with two forks once cooled.
  • Add the shredded chicken to a medium bowl with the Farmer’s Ranch Greek yogurt dip and mix together.
  • Place the cheddar cheese on each slice of bread and melt in a toaster oven.
  • Pile the chicken salad mixture on top of the bread, garnish with tomato and lettuce, top with remaining slice of bread and serve.

Nutrition

Serving: 1SERVINGCalories: 970kcalCarbohydrates: 35gProtein: 61gFat: 66gSaturated Fat: 20gPolyunsaturated Fat: 42gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 283mgSodium: 2673mgFiber: 5gSugar: 8g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Dishes
Cuisine: American
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*This post is sponsored by Sabra as part of my work with them as a Sabra Tastemaker. All content and opinions are my own.

Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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16 Comments

  1. Delicious! I made it for breakfast and it was awesome. I also did my own experimentation by added some chopped celery and capsicum. The flavor was great. My kids liked it. I’m gonna make this again over the weekend :) Highly recommended!

  2. Oh wow! Honestly, this has to be the best looking Melt I’ve ever seen! I definitely want to sink my teeth into that sandwich.

  3. I am not a Ranch kind of girl either, but after seeing this sandwich, I think I may have to reconsider! This is a realy belly pleaser!

  4. Oh my mom wasn’t the most adventurous cook while we were going up, but ranch was definitely in our house. The only way she got me to eat my salad. You know dressing with a bit of salad?
    I would much rather take this glorious sandwich instead!