Cactus Salad

A traditional Mexican dish that uses cactus paddles as a base for salad.

  • Author: Jessica Pinney
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Cuisine: Mexican


4 Nopales, cleaned, cut into bite sized pieces (or 30 ounce jar nopales, drained and rinsed)

¼ Red Onion, sliced very thin

2 Roma Tomatoes, diced

¼ cup Pickled Jalapeños, diced

¼ cup + 1 Tablespoon Cilantro, chopped, divided

¼ teaspoon Cumin

¼ teaspoon Mexican Oregano

1 Lime, juiced

½ teaspoon Salt

½ teaspoon Pepper

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

¼ cup Queso Fresco, crumbled


If you are using fresh nopales, place them in a saucepan and cover with water and boil for about 5 minutes just till they change to a darker green color.  Drain and rinse with cool water.

If using canned, drain and rinse. If they are slimy, you can grill in a pan for a few minutes on each side.

In a large serving bowl, combine the nopales, onions, tomatoes, jalapeños and 1/4 cup cilantro.  Toss to combine.

Add all the herbs and lime juice and drizzle with olive oil.  Stir gently.

Sprinkle with the tablespoon of cilantro and queso fresco.

Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.


Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 76
  • Sugar: 1.5g
  • Sodium: 180mg
  • Fat: 5g
  • Carbohydrates: 4.7g
  • Fiber: 2.2g
  • Protein: 3.3g