Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Food & Recipes

Font Size

Vegetable of the Month: Edible Cactus!

Preparation continued...

Edible cactus can be eaten raw or cooked. To cook, steam over boiling water for just a few minutes (if cooked too long they will lose their crunchy texture). Then slice and eat! Cactus can also be cut and sautéed in butter or oil for a few minutes.

Steamed cactus can be added to scrambled eggs and omelets, or diced fresh and added to tortillas. They can also be substituted for any cooked green in most dishes.

The pads can be served as a side dish or cooled and used in salads. They taste especially good with Mexican recipes that include tomatoes, hot peppers and fresh corn.

Make Edible Cactus Part of Your 5 A Day Plan

  • Cut up and add to salads.
  • Dice and add to your favorite salsa recipe or any store
  • bought salsa.
  • Cut up and add to any corn side dish.
  • Dice edible cactus and add to couscous along with diced tomatoes.
  • Add to your favorite burrito along with lettuce and tomatoes.

Recipes

Scrambled Eggs with Edible Cactus

Makes 4 servings
Each serving equals one 5 A Day serving

Ingredients

2 Tbsp pine nuts
1/4 lb edible cactus (nopales), de-prickered,
rinsed, and cut into ¼ inch squares
2 Tbsp peeled and diced medium-hot chili-pepper
or low sodium diced tomatoes
1 3/4 up egg substitute
salt and pepper
cooking spray

Toast nuts in a skillet over low heat until lightly browned, stirring often; reserve.

Spray nonstick pan with cooking spray. Stir in cactus; toss gently over moderate heat until crisp-tender (about 4-5 minutes). Stir in chilipepper.

Blend eggs, adding salt to taste. Add eggs to cactus and chilies. Stir often until set. Sprinkle with pepper and pine nuts and serve hot.

Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 52, Protein 10g, Fat 0g, Calories From Fat 5%, Cholesterol 0mg, Carbohydrates 2g, Fiber 0g, Sodium 264mg.

Sautéed Nopales, Peppers and Corn

Makes 4 servings
Each serving equals four 5 A Day servings

Ingredients

1 large red bell pepper
1 large green bell pepper
1 large onion
1 Tbsp trans-fat free butter
4 small ears of small summer corn
1/2 lb fresh, firm edible cactus, deprickered, cut in 1/4- to 1/2-inch dice
finely minced cilantro or parsley

Halve peppers, then remove seeds and stems. Cut into 1/4-1/2 inch squares. Cut onions the same size. Cook both vegetables in butter in a heavy pan over moderate heat until just softened.

Shuck corn, than cut from cob. Add edible cactus and corn to peppers and onion; stir over high heat until vegetables are cooked through, but firm-tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with herbs and serve hot.

Nutritional analysis per serving: Calories 184, Protein 6g, Fat 4g, Calories From Fat 20%, Cholesterol 8mg, Carbohydrates 32g, Fiber 4g, Sodium 29mg.

WebMD Public Information from the CDC

Today on WebMD

Four spoons with mustards
What condiments are made of and how much to use.
salmon and spinach
How to get what you need.
 
grilled veggies
Easy ideas for dinner tonight.
Greek Salad
Health benefits, what you can eat and more.
 

WebMD Recipe Finder

Browse our collection of healthy, delicious recipes, from WebMD and Eating Well magazine.



bread
Recipes
soup
Recipes
 
roasted chicken
Recipes
grilled steak
Video
 
vegetarian sandwich
Recipes
fresh vegetables
Recipes
 
smoothie
fitArticle
Foods To Boost Mens Heath Slideshow
Slideshow