Fresh is the move and the mood this time of year, and I have a recipe for you to match: Strawberry Chicken with Avocado Salsa. It’s a shining example of the simple, delicious pleasure that occurs when familiar, individual ingredients unite to create something new and more delightful than they could ever be apart.

Cilantro Lime Strawberry Chicken with Avocado. A healthy, fresh summer meal! Juicy grilled chicken in a cilantro lime marinade, topped with fresh strawberry salsa and avocado.

The idea of experiencing something familiar in a new way has been on my mind often the past few days.

Over the weekend, Ben and I headed back to Notre Dame for our 10-year college reunion. This is going to sound so (there is no other way to put this) OLD for me to say, but the campus has changed so much since we were there, I didn’t recognize it at times. Was this the same school?

Then, a few minutes later, I’d spot one of my favorite reading benches, or walk a sidewalk I’d pounded a thousand times on my way to class, or best of all, hug an old friend who was as integral to my experience as the classes, late-night food runs, and football games, that I was back to feeling home again.

Much like the campus, in the last 10 years my friends and I have changed. We work new jobs, enter new life phases (so many babies!), and our lives have taken us places we never imagined.

We also haven’t changed. The values, good humor, and respect that made us so close in the first place are as present now as ever. It’s a joy, comfort, and blessing to spend time with someone you’ve haven’t spoken to in years and have it feel like hardly a minute has passed.

Elegant Strawberry Chicken with Avocado Strawberry Salsa. A perfect healthy grilled chicken dinner for summer!

About this Strawberry Chicken Recipe

Today’s Strawberry Chicken with Avocado has the fresh-but-familiar feeling of an old friend who can still surprise you. It’s the summer berries and juicy grilled chicken you’ve long loved, presented in an unexpected way.

This strawberry chicken begins with a lively cilantro lime chicken marinade. You could grill the chicken and stop there. It’s tender and flavorful on its own and would be a quick, tasty way to top a salad or fill a tortilla.

What makes this recipe special, however, is the strawberry avocado salsa on top. I first discovered the beautiful pairing of strawberries and avocados when I made this easy grilled naan pizza, and I’ve been looking for a way to reunite them since.

This elegant strawberry chicken recipe turned out to be my answer.

The strawberry topping is a chunky mix of vibrant ingredients that enhance one another: sweet summer berries, creamy avocados, crunchy jalapeño, and edgy red onion. Cilantro and lime juice are on scene for freshness. A bit of honey keeps flavors in balance.

Spoon the strawberry salsa generously over the grilled chicken, and you have a marvel of a summer meal.

Healthy grilled chicken topped with fresh strawberry avocado salsa.

In addition to being a strawberry sauce for chicken, the topping is also yummy dipped with chips. You could toss it with greens, the grilled chicken, and a simple vinaigrette to make a strawberry chicken salad. For a dressing recipe, try replacing the balsamic vinegar with lime juice in the dressing used for this Balsamic Chicken Salad with Blackberry or this Peach Salad (omit the Dijon).

Recipe Adaptations

  • To Make Paleo and Whole30. For those with dietary considerations, this is a Paleo and Whole30 chicken recipe (you can omit the honey). 
  • To Make Vegetarian. While it is not vegetarian, you could still make the strawberry salsa, then serve it over grilled tofu or grilled halloumi cheese.
  • If you need a vegetarian and Whole30 recipe, try my Whole30 Vegetarian Power Bowls.

Recommended Tools to Make Strawberry Chicken

Strawberry chicken on a white plate with limes

Strawberry Chicken with Avocado

5 from 12 votes
Cilantro Lime Strawberry Chicken with Avocado. A healthy, fresh meal! Juicy grilled chicken in a cilantro lime marinade, topped with fresh strawberry salsa and avocado. Whole30, Paleo, and gluten free.

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Total: 1 hr 35 mins

Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients
  

For the Chicken:

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs, trimmed of excess fat
  • 1 tablespoon lime zest from about 2 limes
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice from the same 2 limes
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus additional for oiling the grill
  • 2 cloves garlic minced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons honey omit to make the recipe Whole30 or Paleo
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems

For the Strawberry Avocado Topping:

  • 1/2 small red onion diced (about ¼ cup)
  • 1 cup diced strawberries roughly 2/3 dry pint of whole strawberries
  • 1 medium jalapeno cored seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice from about 1 small/medium lime
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey omit to make the recipe Whole30 or Paleo
  • ¼ to 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 medium avocado diced

Instructions
 

  • Place the chicken breasts on a cutting board with some space between and cover with a large piece of plastic wrap. With a mallet, lightly pound the meat to an even thickness so that each piece cooks evenly. Place in a large ziptop bag.
  • In a small bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the lime zest, lime juice, olive oil, garlic, honey, salt, pepper and cilantro. Pour over the chicken, seal the bag, then "squish" to coat the chicken evenly. Refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 1 day, rotating the bag once or twice if time (and memory) allow.
  • When ready to grill, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for at least 10 minutes. Preheat an outdoor grill or indoor grill pan to medium high (about 425 to 450 degrees F).
  • While the grill preheats, prepare the strawberry salsa: Place the red onion in a small bowl and cover with very hot tap water (this takes off some of the red onion's bite while preserving its flavor. You can skip if you like raw red onion just as it is). Set aside. In a mixing bowl, gently stir together the strawberries, jalapeno, cilantro, lime juice, honey, and ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Stir in the avocado. Taste and add a bit more salt if you feel it tastes a little too flat or additional honey if it is too spicy. Drain the red onion and it to the salsa. The longer it sits, the more mild its taste, so you can wait to drain and add it just before serving if you like.
  • Lightly oil the grill. Grill the chicken until completely cooked through and the temperature on an instant read thermometer reads 160 to 165 degrees, about 8 to 12 minutes total, flipping the chicken once or twice throughout. The amount of time you need will vary based on the size and thickness of each breast. Remove to a plate, cover, and let rest 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to serving plates and top each with a few generous spoonfuls of the strawberry salsa. Enjoy immediately.

Notes

  • TO STORE: Store leftover salsa in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Leftover chicken can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.
  • Nutrition information is meant to be an estimate and has been calculated with half the amount of marinade, as some is discarded. If you'd like to calculate it differently, you can do so for free at myfitnesspal.com.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 4)Calories: 378kcalCarbohydrates: 13gProtein: 45gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 110mgFiber: 4gSugar: 6g

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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36 Comments

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  1. OMG that strawberry avocado salsa sounds just amazing! I love the flavors in this recipe. I honestly never would have though of pairing strawberries and chicken together, but this sounds delish! Sounds like the reunion was great fun!5 stars

    1. Danielle, it was novel to me too until last summer and now I am in love! I hope you enjoy it too!

  2. I am seriously making this as soon as I go grocery shopping. Love the idea of serving this over a salad too! Can’t get over those beautiful pictures and how delicious this looks! :)

  3. Erin I made it today. Amazing.  We had pre grilled chicken left over from the weekend BBQ.  I poked holes in the chicken let it marinade all day then heated up on the pan.   Oh the other cheat I used was the bottle of real lime juice because limes were still too expensive up here.    Boyfriend went back for seconds and asked for it to be put in the rotation.  Rave reviews all around. 5 stars

    1. Ellen, I am so thrilled to hear how much you both enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing your tips and taking time to leave this wonderful review!

  4. What a treat! We made this on our indoor grill today due to hot Iowa weather. It’s the best lime grilled chicken recipe we’ve found. The strawberry avocado combo speaks to my soul. A true keeper. Hey, everyone, make it soon!5 stars

    1. Shawn, YAY!!! So so happy to hear it. Thanks for taking time to leave this fabulous review! It means a lot.

  5. I didn’t make the chicken, but turned the “salsa” in this recipe into a delicious salad, with larger pieces of strawberries and avocado, plus additional dressing. The tip about soaking red onion in hot tap water is one I will use again. Thank you.5 stars

    1. Mary, I am so so glad you enjoyed the salsa! That red onion trick has been a game changer for me too. Thanks so much for taking time to leave this lovely review!

  6. Made this tonight and my husband and I loved it! This is going into our summer rotation. Our kids (2, 4, and 6) loved the chicken too; I didn’t give them the salsa because they’re in an “everything has to be separate” phase. The soaking tip works really well. The last bag of onions I bought was strong so I tried soaking because I thought the kids might want to ttry the salsa when they saw our plates. It left this faint hint of red onion, but with no bite. We won’t do it next time because we like red onions and I think it will be a while before the kids will try the salsa anyway, but it’s a great trick when you’re cooking for those sensitive to onions.

    We served over brown rice and black beans because that’s what I had on hand and it was great, but we definitely want to try it as a salad over field greens next time. I think it will want a little crunch and I’m trying to decide what to add. I was thinking about jicama sticks. Any other ideas? Tortilla strips? Pepitas? Would love to hear how others have/would fixed as a salad. 

    I also think the first half of this would freeze really well. I’m going to make an extra batch of the chicken and marinade next time and stick it in the freezer. It would be so nice to be able to just pull out of the freezer a day or two before grilling and have your meat all ready to go. Then, all you have to do the day of is make the salsa.

    Thanks for another winner!5 stars

    1. Rebekah, HOORAYYYY! So happy to hear this was a hit. Thank you for letting me know how it came out! Jicama sticks sound DELICIOUS (I want to try that!) I think radishes would be great too!

  7. This recipe is so delicious! I made without the salsa, but will add that back in for another night. I omitted the garlic and onion from the recipe because my body does not tolerate it well. The recipe was still fantastic. Will use the thighs to top over a light kale salad. Thanks for sharing this delightful recipe!5 stars

  8. Quick question – the marinade for the chicken includes lime and the instructions say to marinade the chicken for at least an hour or up to a day.  I thought marinades with lime can’t be on that long b/c the acid starts to cook the chicken.  Or is that okay in this case? 

    1. Hi Janine! You’re right that the acid does start to break down the chicken, which is great for tenderizing. I wouldn’t leave it in the marinade longer than the recipe says, but I think the chicken can stand up to it for 1 day (unlike something more delicate, like fish). I hope that helps!

  9. I usually really love your recipes but, this one, I just could Not Get Into….Sorry. Glad other’s liked it.

    1. Hi Deborah, I’m sorry to hear the recipe wasn’t to your taste. I know it’s disappointing to try something new and not enjoy it, so I truly wish you would have loved it!

  10. Fantastic easy summer dish!  Even my 7 year old loved the salsa!  This one is on the meal plan all summer now!5 stars

  11. Dumb question, but would a lot of flavor be lost if I cooked the chicken in a skillet on the stove? I travel in a motorhome and don’t have room to carry a grill or heavy indoor griddle. Thanks! I’m anxious to try this!

    1. Hi Rhonda! Not a dumb question at all. I think this recipe would still have tons of flavor cooked in a skillet. I hope you enjoy it if you try it!

      1. Great to hear! Thanks so much. If my grocery store has any strawberries in stock, I’ll try it tonight! You are a beacon of light in this tough time! Please stay safe!

  12. This is an annual favorite for our family beach vacation. My mother in law picks up fresh strawberries from the farm stand, and we have this on girls night while the men go on their fishing trip. It is so fresh and flavorful. Pair with your favorite cocktails and you have a party! 5 stars

    1. I’m so pleased that this recipe has become a part of your traditions, Elizabeth! Thank you for sharing this kind review!

  13. I do not normally come back to write a review after I have made a recipe … but y’all!  I HAD to for this one!  OMG amazing!  So fresh, macro friendly, and a perfect summer meal! This is being added to my go to dinner list for sure! 5 stars

  14. This was an incredible dish! I sliced the chicken before I marinated it and then cooked it up in a skillet. The strawberry avocado topping paired so well! I served it all over some spinach to complete the meal!5 stars

    1. Hi Melissa! I think this dish would be delicious with rice or a vegetable (like this Roasted Asparagus or Roasted Broccoli). I hope it’s a hit!

  15. This is absolutely delicious!! So easy, too. I did it with breasts and thighs(I prefer the thighs) and served it on baby arugula and baby spinach with the lime vinaigrette. The only thing I changed was adding red chile flakes to the marinade. So fresh and flavorful!5 stars

  16. We made this recipe as written and it was delicious. A keeper for hot summer nights for sure. Thanks for the new recipe!5 stars