25 Of The Most AMAZING Nopalitos Recipes

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Nopalitos are an edible type of numerous cacti from the genus Opuntia, otherwise known as the prickly pear.

They are often used as a vegetable and therefore can be used in a number of amazing dishes to enhance your flavor palette. 

25 Of The Most AMAZING Nopalitos Recipes

You can also prepare nopalitos in a number of ways, such as sauteing them, roasting them, or even eating them raw.

Here are 25 amazingly delicious recipes that you can make with nopalitos! 

Nopalitos With Tomatoes And Onions

This first recipe sees nopalitos sauteed with onions and tomatoes, with garlic and jalapenos mixed in for a burst of flavor and spice.

This is a lovely healthy dish that can be made in just 20 minutes, and it’s bound to be a fan favorite on a hot summer’s evening. 

Mexican Cactus Salad (Nopalitos)

Salad is a great and easy healthy meal that you can make for the whole family.

The addition of nopalitos will create a fun twist though, and the kids will love to know that they’re eating cacti!

This salad includes lime juice, avocado, tomato, onion, and lots of other delicious ingredients. 

Nopalitos Con Papas Recipe

Nopalitos con papas is an authentic Mexican dish made up of potatoes and cactus.

This recipe also calls for tomato and onion, and one small jalapeno pepper if you’re craving a spicier dish!

This dish is simple yet comforting for anyone who doesn’t have the energy to cook something fancy. 

Nopalitos Salsa

Salsa is an amazing dip to make for any occasion and serve to your friends and family.

The addition of nopalitos gives it another crunch and pairs with the sweet tomatoes perfectly.

Nopalitos are a great alternative to peppers in salsa, so if you’re not a fan of traditional salsa – try this! 

Fresh Nopalitos Recipe

Nopalitos taste just like green beans, and this fresh recipe will show you the basics of making your own nopalitos to use as a side dish.

Once you have prepared your nopalitos using this recipe, they can be eaten on their own as a snack, or as a side to a larger meal. 

Cactus Salsa Or Mexican Nopalitos

Another salsa recipe, this incorporates tomatoes, onion, jalapeno peppers, herbs and spices, and lime.

The main star of the show, though, is the nopalitos. A cactus salsa is much more appealing than a regular alternative, simply because it is made from cacti!

It tastes delicious, too. 

Nopales A La Mexicana

A la Mexican often refers to a dish being cooked with the three main ingredients of tomato, pepper, and onion.

This dish is no different, with the nopalitos being cooked with these components, as well as garlic, cilantro, and oil.

The end result is a nutritious salad that is bound to be a new staple in your household. 

Nopalitos Tacos (Tacos De Nopalitos)

Who doesn’t love a good vegetarian taco? Nopalitos in this recipe make up the main filling of the soft taco shells, along with tomato, onion, potato, and pepper.

You can add as many spicy ingredients as you want, or none at all if you’re not a fan of spice! 


Another simple recipe, this one calls for the cacti paddles to be made into a salad with onion, tomato, cilantro, chile serrano, and lime juice for an added kick.

This salad also uses crumbled queso fresco cheese for added flavor. 

Stewed Nopales (Cactus Paddles) Recipe

These stewed nopalitos present bold and daring flavors while still being healthy and delicious.

You’ll use onion, garlic, arbol chile, and tomato with the nopalitos to further flavor them and improve any dish that you plan on adding them to. 

Nopalitos, A Pantry Special

Cactus salad is an incredibly popular dish, and once you have tried it for yourself you will understand why!

This salad uses onion, romaine lettuce, tomatoes, and avocado along with the nopalitos.

Herbs are also used for additional flavor such as oregano and cilantro. Cheese is added over top for another bold flavor.

This is a great nopalitos dish if you don’t like spicy foods.

Nopalitos Con Huevos 

Nopalitos con Huevos is a traditional Mexican dish made from nopalitos, aka cactus paddles, and eggs that have been scrambled together.

The nopalitos offer amazing health benefits to the eater, and the eggs are full of protein – win win! Your family is sure to love this breakfast. 


Add nopalitos to any salad to enhance the flavor and take it to the next level.

This salad recipe calls for yellow onion, chili, dried shrimp, garlic, and more.

The dried shrimp pairs amazingly well with the nopalitos – two ingredients that you’ll be trying to pair together all the time after trying this dish!

Grilled Nopales En Chile Rojo Recipe

Chile rojo is a red sauce made from tomatoes and chile peppers. It is as spicy as you want to make it, and not to mention extremely tasty.

With so many spices exploding in your mouth, the nopalitos will be a welcomed cooling addition to your meal! 

Chile Con Queso With Nopalitos

Chili con queso is a dish consisting of melted cheese and chili pepper, giving it a lovely smooth consistency with a kick of spice to it.

If you enjoy queso as it is, make sure to give it a go with nopalitos too! They’ll offer a calming flavor to all of the spice, and pair amazingly with the cheesy flavors. 

Classic Cactus Salad Recipe

Simple yet classic, this nopalitos salad will leave you wanting more every time.

The freshness of the onion and tomato accentuate the taste of the nopalitos, and the sprinkled cheese on top is the perfect addition to this fresh, mildly spicy salad.

You’ll be making this all summer!

Warm Nopalitos With Sauteed Corn And Guajillo

Sometimes the easiest dishes are the best, and that is true for this one.

What could be easier than sauteing your nopalitos with fresh corn and guajillo?

While the cooking time is a little longer at 45 minutes, preparation will take no time at all! Simply through everything into a pan and saute before serving. 

Cactus Salad Mexican Style Recipe

This salad recipe perfectly encapsulates the traditional Mexican dish of cactus salad.

While these two words wouldn’t normally pair together, just one bite of this dish will transform you into a cacti salad lover. 

Ensalada De Nopalitos Recipe

Another Mexican inspired salad, this recipe incorporates the usual tomato, onion, and lime juice with the cacti paddles.

There are also oils and vinegars added to this recipe to make a delicious salad dressing, which is light and refreshing – perfect for a warm night. 

Recipe: Southern Pickled Nopalitos

Pickling your leftover nopalitos can be an excellent way to preserve them to make sure that nothing goes to waste.

Pickling them in apple cider vinegar with salt, peppers, and garlic for taste is an amazing way to try nopalitos like never before.

If you love pickles, you’re going to love this recipe. 

Nopalitos Con Arroz Y Pollo

This baked dinner dish is perfect for any chicken lovers out there.

The rice is baked in a salsa verde sauce with nopalitos, lime juice, and chicken for added flavor.

This is an excellent dish if you still want something refreshing, but with more substance than a salad. 

Baked Tostadas With Roasted Nopalitos Recipe

Another extremely simple recipe, this one calls for you to roast your nopalitos with the rest of the ingredients and serve on top of tostadas.

The other ingredients include cheese and tomato, with lemon juice for added flavor and green chile for a spicy kick. 

Cactus Relish (Salsa De Nopalitos)

It’s always a good idea to have multiple salsa recipes under your belt to ensure that you have one to pick depending on what you fancy that day.

This recipe used nopalitos, jicama, tomatoes, chiles, scallions, lime juice, and sugar for a burst of flavor with every bite. 

Creamy Rice With Nopalitos And Turkey

Another dish with a little more substance than a salad, this is a great recipe to bring out whenever you’re having a family or friends gathering.

The turkey, rice, and vegetable dish is sure to appeal to most. You can also swap out the turkey for a vegetarian-friendly version if you’d prefer a no-meat alternative. 

Nopalitos, Cactus With Red Chile

Our last recipe is a chile, which is an excellent dinner option for anyone who enjoys a spicy dish. Serve over rice for a main meal, or on its own as a delicious dip for chips.

If you’re looking for a Mexican-inspired dish, then look no further than this one. The fact that it tastes amazing is an added bonus. 


We hope that you have found one (or 25!) recipe to try within this article, and we’re excited for you to try it!

Any of the recipes above are firm favorites with nopalitos lovers, so expect to want to try all of them once you’ve had one!

Nopalitos come with a range of health benefits to your body, so the fact that they taste so good is just one of the great things about them. Enjoy!