Avocado Mango Salad Recipe

“Everyone has seen me wear the bacon is meat candy T-shirt on my TV show…but it is more than just a T-shirt slogan to me…it’s a way of life. Whenever I am stuck on what to do in a particular recipe, I always think.  WWBD?”

— Chef Rick Bayless

Ingredients (SERVES 4)

4 slices bacon
½ cup hulled, untoasted pumpkinseeds
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup vegetable or olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled
Fresh hot green chile to taste
(I like 1 large serrano or small jalapeño), stemmed (optional)
1 tablespoon honey
1 large head Boston/butter head lettuce
(or an equivalent amount of bibb lettuce), leaves separated
2 large ripe avocados
2 ripe mangos
A generous ½ cup coarsely crumbled Mexican queso fresco
or mild blue cheese (Gorgonzola is great)


Arrange the bacon slices between a double layer of paper towels on a microwavable plate. Microwave on high for 2 ½ to 3 ½ minutes, until crispy. Pour the pumpkinseeds into a small skillet and set over medium heat. When the first one pops, stir constantly until all have popped from flat to round, about 5 minutes. Scoop about 1/3 of them into a blender jar and add the lime juice. Pour the remainder into a small dish.

Return the skillet to medium heat and measure in the oil. Add the garlic and optional chile. Cook, stirring regularly, until the garlic is soft and lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Scrape the oil and garlic into the blender or food processor. Add the honey and ½ teaspoon salt. Process until smooth. Taste and season with more salt if you think necessary. (Remember: it should be highly seasoned.)

Divide the lettuce between 4 dinner plates. Pit and peel the avocado, then cut it into slices. Peel the mango, then cut the flesh from the pit. Slice to match the avocado pieces. Arrange the avocado and mango in the center of the lettuce. Drizzle everything with the dressing, then sprinkle with the cheese and toasted pumpkinseeds.

Crumble the bacon and strew it over the top, and the salad is ready.

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