Are you looking for a side dish to go with your tacos and enchiladas? I have several evenings with Mexican cuisine. This salad is the first side salad we’ve ever truly enjoyed. Colorful vegetables, cilantro lime salad dressing, and tortilla strips give this Mexican salad its Latin American flair. This versatile dish can be served as a side or dressed up to make a nutritious main course salad. There are three different dressings to pick from: the simplest, the easiest, and a vegan one.


Our goal in creating this Mexican salad was to create a quick and easy Mexican-inspired side dish. Yet it may be dressed up or down depending on your mood or the event! Adding adders (recipe below) transforms it into a salad fit for a main course. The foundation of this Mexican chopped salad consist of :

  • Crunchy romaine lettuce is the best greens. Baby greens of various colors can be added for variety.
  • Miniature tomatoes
  • Red onions, sliced
  • Radishes
  • Pepitas (roasted and salted pumpkin seeds) corn
  • Three distinct lime-cilantro dressings.

Simple additions to dress it up!

This Mexican salad can be made fancier by the addition of more vegetables, beans, or cheese. We propose these additional vegetables, but feel free to use your imagination!

  1. Highly suggested are crunchy tortilla strips, which complement the dish with a satisfying crunch and a savory Mexican corn flavor. It’s okay to skip if you’re pressed for time.
  2. Cotija or feta cheese, crumbled
  3. Frozen guacamole
  4. Beans that have been drained and rinsed (and seasoned to taste with salt before eating).
  5. Cucumbers, chopped
  6. Jalapeos, pickled

Pick 3! Different Mexican salad dressings

This salad comes with not one, not two, but three different Mexican-inspired dressings to choose from. Here’s a rundown of our favorites and why we appreciate them:

  • Cilantro Cream Dressing is a fan favorite. You will want to drizzle the cilantro, lime, and Greek yogurt dressing over everything.
  • Lime Cilantro Dressing: The vinaigrette version presented here is a vegan, plant-based alternative to the traditional pairing of cilantro and lime.
  • Dressing, Chipotle Ranch Easy solution! Only 5 minutes for this one. Just what you need if you’re in a hurry.

Use it as a salad garnish.

We designed this Mexican salad as a complement to a Latin American or Mexican meal. You can put it on anything Mexican: tacos, enchiladas, fajitas, nachos. Some of our favorite accompaniments are:

  • Bean and Corn Enchiladas These enchiladas are bursting with flavor and are a hit with the whole family. (Bonus: some of the salad components can be repurposed as garnish).
  • Incredible Veggie Fajitas The fajita vegetables in this Tex-Mex dish are vibrant in color and packed with flavor.
  • Tacos with your choice of filling (Shrimp, Jackfruit, Cauliflower, or 5 Minutes) The best taco recipes, from vegan to fish tacos. (As an added bonus, you can use the creamy cilantro dressing on the shrimp or cauliflower tacos if you make a double batch.)
  • Quesadilla with vegetables or Chipotle vegetables If you’re having quesadillas for dinner, this Mexican salad is a great accompaniment.

Make a Mexican salad the main course!

This Mexican salad can also be served as a side dish. The addition of some protein would make this salad suitable for main course duty.

  • Shrimp. You can add a lot of protein and still keep the calories down by using Garlic Shrimp (use lime) or Cilantro Lime Shrimp.
  • Beans, black, and avocado, mmm. Black beans and avocado turn a salad into a filling vegan main course.
  • Carrots with honey. The roasted sweet potatoes contribute fiber and satiety.
  • A cheese like feta or cotija. Crumbled cheese adds protein and helps full you up.



  • To make 8 cups of chopped romaine, you’ll need 3 romaine heart
  • 2 cups of baby greens, such as kale, are also an alternative.
  • 14 cup of red onions, sliced (or 14 cup of pickled red onions)
  • 1/2 a cup of tomato cherries
  • Four little radishes
  • Corn kernels, 1 cup thawed from freezer
  • Pumpkin seeds, roasted and salted, about a handful’s worth.
  • Cilantro Lime Dressing, Creamy Cilantro Dressing, Chipotle Ranch Dressing, or Taco Salad Dressing (quickest)
  • Add-ons: Crumbled feta or cotija cheese, chopped avocado, black beans, or diced cucumber Crispy tortilla strips


  1. Prepare the Crispy Tortilla Strips if you’d like. You may even prepare them the day before and keep them in the fridge or a sealed container in the pantry.
  2. Prepare the topping: Taco Salad Dressing (quickest!) Cilantro Lime Dressing (shown), Creamy Cilantro Dressing (pictured), Chipotle Ranch Dressing
  3. Veggies need to be chopped: Romaine lettuce should be chopped. Follow the guidance given at 1:30 in this video to thinly slice the red onion. The tomatoes should be halved. Cut the radishes into thin slices. Let the corn thaw. Get ready the additional vegetables as needed. The tomatoes, radishes, and corn would benefit from a small sprinkling of salt.
  4. Serve: Arrange the greens at the bottom of the serving dish, then top with the vegetables (and tortilla strips, if using). Add the dressing right before serving. The components can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator; the dressing should be served at room temperature.


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