Chopped Salad with Fish (Rubio’s Copycat) is incredibly easy to make and so delicious. Truly the best fish salad you will try. It will amaze everyone. The homemade chipotle dressing, Cajun fish, shredded cheese, coupled with the crisp greens makes an extraordinary salad.
You usually don’t think of an amazing salad when you think of fish, but this salad is different. It’s what you would find on a fish taco but made into a scrumptious salad. The best part is that its super easy to make. I always order the chopped salad with fish when I order from Rubio’s. Their tacos are good as well, but the salad is my favorite. This recipe is inspired by their chopped salad. Now, let’s talk about the components of this salad.
What fish to use for the salad?
Let’s discuss what fish to purchase for this salad. I highly recommend the frozen tilapia from Costco. You may say “Frozen Tilapia?”, I know! its frozen, but the way they package it, helps it maintain it fresh. It’s not fishy at all. If you find very fresh tilapia you can use that as well. But it’s hard to find fresh fish at the grocery stores. And if it’s not fresh, its fishy, and no one likes fishy fish. Fishy fish on a salad does not work. Trust me on this one. So, if you have a Costco nearby purchase it there.
Greens you need for Chopped Salad with Fish
The greens you will need for Chopped Salad with Fish is thinly sliced romaine heart and thinly sliced cabbage. When preparing this salad, start by thinly slicing the romaine heart and cabbage. I personally like to purchase the very thinly sliced cabbage prepackaged. I buy it at Wholefoods, but I am sure other stores carry the very thinly sliced cabbage as well.
It’s not the coleslaw mix.
Because typically the coleslaw mix has other veggies other than cabbage, such as carrots. If you find a bag that is just cabbage you can use that. If you want to slice your own cabbage, you can, just make sure it’s very thinly sliced. You want it super thin.
What type of dressing should I use?
For this salad the perfect dressing is homemade chipotle sauce. Its easy to make and its super delicious. All you need is mayonnaise, labne kefir cheese, half & half, salt, and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. The base of this sauce is a white sauce that I love. That sauce was inspired by the white sauce from Rubio’s. I will post the recipe for that white sauce on a different post. If you cannot find the labne kefir cheese you can use full-fat Greek yogurt, but the labne kefir cheese yields the best results.
The salsa for the salad
I make a super easy salsa for this recipe. The salsa is delicious and so versatile. You can put it on top of salads, tacos, burritos, or eat it with chips. All you need is canned tomatoes, white onion, cilantro, jalapeno, and salt.
What type of tortilla chips to use?
For the tortilla chips you can use regular tortilla chips and crumble with your hand. Or purchase the tortilla chips found where the salad toppings are at the grocery store. By the way “Don Julio” brand are my favorite tortilla chips. They are light, crunchy, and delicious. If you haven’t tried them, you need to.
Here is another delicious recipe to try: Grilled Flank Steak with Chimichurri Sauce
Chopped Salad with Fish (Rubio’s Copycat)
- 1 romaine lettuce romaine heart – thinly sliced crosswise
- 12 oz cabbage finely shredded
- ½ cup mozzarella cheese or more if desired
- 1/2 cup chipotle sauce ingredients below
- 1 cup tomatoes fresh – small diced
- Salsa ingredients below
- tortilla strips
- ¼ cup mayo
- ½ labne kefir cheese see notes for link
- ¼ cup half and half see notes
- ½ teaspoons chipotle peppers in adobo sauce canned – add more if you want it spicier
- Salt to taste
- 14.5 oz canned tomatoes whole peeled
- ¼ onion normal size white onion
- ¼ cup cilantro
- ½ jalapeno
- Salt to taste
- 2 pieces tilapia fillet
- 2 tablespoons oil I use avocado oil
- 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
- Salt and pepper to taste
Thinly slice the lettuce crosswise and place it in a large bowl (large enough to fit the salad).
- Combine mayo, labne kefir cheese, half & half, chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, salt, and whisk until well combined. Cover and refrigerate while you prepare the rest of the salad.
- To make the salsa drain most of the liquid from the canned whole peeled tomatoes and place the tomatoes in a blender/food processor. Then add the onion, cilantro, jalapeno, and salt. Pulse a few times until the salsa is blended, but still chunky.
- To prepare the fish, start by seasoning the fish with Cajun seasoning.
- In a frying pan over medium-high heat, place 2 tablespoons of oil. When the oil starts to sizzle, place the fish and cook until its browned (about 2-3 minutes). Flip to the other side and cook until its browned (about 2-3 minutes). The minute it becomes opaque the fish is done. Once both sides are brown, remove from the pan and place on a plate.
- To the large bowl where you placed the thinly sliced romaine, add the shredded cabbage, cheese, tortilla strips, and chipotle sauce. Toss until well combined.
- Place the tilapia on top, garnish with tomatoes, and salsa. And Voila!
I buy the thinly shredded cabbage bags from wholefoods.
Half and half: use more half and half if the sauce is too thick.
Labne kefir cheese: if you can’t find labne-kefir-cheese, you can use full-fat greek yogurt.
Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce: you can add more if you like it spicier.
Tortilla Chips: you can purchade tortilla chips topping for salads, or crumble regular tortilla chips.
For the tortilla chips you can use regular tortilla chips and crumble with your hand. Or purchase the tortilla chips found where the salad toppings are at the grocery store.