You may not be in the islands at this very moment, but you can certainly pretend to be while eating this tropical-inspired pasta salad—featuring grilled chicken, creamy avocadoes and sweet mango, tossed with lime-cilantro dressing.
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
4 ounces dried whole-wheat rotini pasta
¼ cup lime juice
¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Nonstick cooking spray
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1½ cups grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup finely chopped red onion (1 large)
1 medium mango, seeded, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
1 medium avocado, seeded, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
¾ cup chopped yellow sweet pepper (1 medium)
¾ cup chopped red sweet pepper (1 medium)
1 fresh jalapeño chile pepper, seeded and finely chopped (see Tip)
Lime wedges (optional)
Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.
Meanwhile, for dressing, in a blender, combine lime juice, cilantro, oil, sugar, salt, garlic powder, cumin and cayenne pepper. Cover and blend about 30 seconds or until well mixed. Set aside.
Lightly coat the rack of an indoor electric grill with cooking spray. Preheat grill. Sprinkle chicken with salt and black pepper. Place chicken on grill rack. If using a grill with a cover, close lid. Grill until chicken is no longer pink (170°F). (For a covered grill, allow about 6 minutes. For an uncovered grill, allow 12 to 15 minutes, turning once halfway through grilling.) Cut chicken into bite-size pieces.
In a large bowl, combine pasta, chicken, tomatoes, red onion, mango, avocado, sweet peppers and jalapeno pepper. Pour dressing over pasta mixture; toss gently to coat. If desired, serve with lime wedges.
Tip: Because chile peppers contain volatile oils that can burn your skin and eyes, avoid direct contact with them as much as possible. When working with chile peppers, wear plastic or rubber gloves. If your bare hands do touch the peppers, wash your hands and nails well with soap and warm water.