Jalapeno Kettle Chips and Fiesta Chicken Salad

There are kettle chips and then, there are Kettle Brand Chips. I don’t even care about potato chips, and I like these. They have character and quality, not to mention serious crunch. And now I can find them in a bunch of different flavors that are all awesome and addictive.

For over thirty years, Kettle Brand Chips have been the premier kettle cooked potato chip. I love their story, it’s totally real, DIY, American, and artisanal. They used to sell out of a van in Oregon! These chips have substance, grounded in the good earth of the Willamette Valley, absolutely idyllic and picturesque countryside, where lovely things grow in small batches.

Since 1978, before GMO was a mainstream concern or media buzzword, Kettle Brand has used natural, non-GMO ingredients in all of their products. This is something that matters more and more to me. And it’s what I mean about substance. No trans fats, no MSG, no preservatives. I feel confident that these are the healthiest, gluten-free option for my family.

Summer is approaching, and all we want to do is play outside. Going inside to cook and clean up seems like such a waste of these gorgeous evenings. I want to maximize this season. So we decided to go down to the marina park and have a family picnic at magic hour. I packed us up a healthy, tasty supper that of course includes Kettle Brand Chips.

I wanted to use the Jalapeno flavor, because I love the slow heat and round, fresh flavor. So I made a fiesta chicken salad, which pairs perfectly with Jalapeno Kettle Brand Chips because it is real, clean, and comforting, with bright flavor and delicious nutrients. The dressing is a cool avocado ranch made with creamy Greek yogurt, such a great complement for the sneaky piquant heat of this crunchy potato chip.

Now, all you need is a cute picnic basket, a colorful vintage sheet or tapestry to relax on, and a thermos full of sweet/tart lemonade. Here’s how to put together our Fiesta Chicken Salad. Serve the Jalapeno Kettle Brand chips on the side or crunch them up like croutons for extra texture right in the dish!

Fiesta Chicken Salad
Serves 4 [sc:ziplist]


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into chunks
  • Dash chili powder
  • Dash cumin
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups mixed greens
  • 2 ears sweet, fresh corn, cut off the cob
  • 1 cup purple cabbage, shredded
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 6 radishes, very thinly sliced
  • 10 grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 red or yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 1 avocado
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Step 1. To cook the chicken: Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Step 2. Season chicken with chili, cumin, salt and pepper, and cook through.

Step 3. To make the dressing: In a blender or food processor, combine avocado, Greek yogurt, milk, lime juice, olive oil until light green and a thinnish consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Step 4. To compose the salad: Arrange veggies on a plate with chicken pieces on top. Serve dressing on the side and don’t forget the Kettle Brand Jalapeño Chips!

Malcolm Bedell is co-author of the critically acclaimed "Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road," as well as the junk food blog "Spork & Barrel," and "Brocavore," a blog about food trucks and street food culture. His contributions include Serious Eats, Down East, Eat Rockland, L.A. Weekly, The Guardian, and The Huffington Post and his food truck, "'Wich, Please," was named "Hottest Restaurant in Maine" for 2015 by Eater. Finally, he finds it very silly to be trying to write this in the third person.


  1. Fine silver and linen, lots of small bites type things for variety, a good thermos with something hot in winter, and good drinks/wine in warm weather.

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  2. Home-made Arnold Palmer (Mariage frere Marco Polo is the tea of choice) in a Thermos to keep it cool, cloth napkins, pressed sandwiches, strawberries, nectarines, and potato salad

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  3. Lots of potato salad, brats, buns, fried chicken, baked beans, chips and salsa, guacomole, cold beer, chocolate cake, sliders (deviled eggs), polish pickles, salads.

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  4. Turkey sandwiches, chips of course, fresh fruit, and brownies for dessert. Thanks!

    Your salad is so colorful and delicious-looking! I think it has all the colors of the rainbow (except maybe blue??)

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  5. We love curried chicken salad for a summer picnic but will definitely try the recipe you have posted here! Spicy Thai Kettle Brand chips are another favorite. Lots of ice cold water or lemonade. Lots of fresh fruit (for me!) and a big hand size cookie for the hub. But then we also love a hunk of really good cheese from Miccucci’s along with a fresh baguette!

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  6. My son is a fruit-a-holic, so fresh fruit is a must in addition to hummus, whole grain pita chips, cheese, nuts, and some turkey.
    ashaldridge at gmail dot com

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  7. What a gorgeous recipe. I love it. I always pack turkey or ham with cheese wraps in my basket, along with Kettle chips, fruit and iced tea. Can’t wait to have some outdoor fun with my kids. 🙂 We all love Kettle Chips.

    amy [at] utry [dot] it

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  8. I always make hummus for our picnics. It tastes great and it good for you too. I make a basic recipe then add jalapenos and roasted pasilla and bell peppers. Yum!

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  9. One of my family’s favorite foods inside my picnic basket is Chicken and Slaw wraps! They are so easy to make epecially if you use rotisserie chickens. Mix the chicken with some coleslaw, ranch dressing and sweet pickle relish, place on a wrap and roll it. your family will love it!

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