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Everyday Mexican Salad

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This delicious Everyday Mexican Salad recipe is quick and easy to make, totally customizable with your favorite ingredients, and it can work perfectly as a side salad or main dish!

Everyday Mexican Salad

Today officially kicks off side salad week here on Gimme Some Oven!

Because here’s the thing — ever since I shared my favorite, multi-purpose, goes-with-pretty-much-everything Everyday Salad recipe with you, tons of you have made and loved it too. But over time, I’ve been getting more and more questions about how to mix things up to make slightly different variations for different types of cuisines. So this week, I have five (brand new!) everyday salad recipes that you can add to your collection, beginning with one of my personal faves.

This easy Everyday Mexican Salad recipe. ♡

I don’t know about you all, but most of my favorite Mexican entrees (here’s lookin’ at you, enchiladas, tacos and tamales!) usually include a hefty dose of carbs. So it’s always nice to have a fresh green salad on the side to balance things out a bit. And this salad in particular is my go-to favorite.

It’s made with a bright and zesty cumin-lime vinaigrette that’s easy to whip up in a minute or two. It’s totally customizable with whatever greens, veggies, nuts, and (optional) cheese that sound good to you. It can also easily double as a main dish, which you are welcome to amp with some cooked protein (such as chicken, steak, carnitas, shrimp, tofu), beans and/or extra veggies. But best of all, this Mexican salad is quick and easy to make and muy, muy delicioso.

We make some version of this salad pretty much every single time we cook Mexican food, and it’s always a winner. I already know you’re going to love it!

Cumin Lime Dressing Recipe | Everyday Mexican Salad

Everyday Mexican Salad Ingredients:

To make this easy Mexican salad recipe, you will need:

  • Greens: I typically use a bag of mixed spring greens for this salad, but any favorite greens will do.
  • Veggies: I kept things simple with creamy avocado and crispy red onion here. But feel free to add in extra salad veggies that you have on hand!
  • Tomatoes: Any kind of chopped fresh tomatoes would be great here. Or you’re welcome to sub in sun-dried tomatoes too.
  • Cilantro: A generous handful of chopped fresh cilantro will really brighten this salad up! If you’re not into cilantro, though, feel free to leave it out.
  • Nuts: Pepitas are always my go-to. But feel free to toss in almonds, walnuts, or any other nuts that you have on hand instead.
  • (Optional) Cheese: If you don’t mind adding dairy to your salad, some crumbled cotija or queso fresco would be delicious here. Or see other cheese ideas below too.
  • Cumin-Lime Dressing: Just whisk up some oil, fresh lime juice, cumin, garlic, salt and pepper for this zesty dressing.

Mexican Side Salad Recipe

How To Make This Salad:

To make this Mexican salad recipe, simply…

  1. Make your dressing. Whisk all of the ingredients together in a small bowl until combined. Or — my preferred method — just add them to a mason jar and shake-shake-shake until the dressing is ready to go.
  2. Mix the salad. Then combine all of your salad ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Drizzle evenly with the dressing and toss until combined.
  3. Serve! And serve it up right away while it’s nice and fresh!

Easy Mexican Salad

Possible Variations:

There are about a million ways that you can customize this salad. So feel free to get creative and use what ingredients you love most (or need to use up in your kitchen!) and make this one your own. For example, feel free to:

  • Add a protein: Cooked chicken, steak (or barbacoa), pork (or carnitas), shrimp, salmon, tofu (or sofritas) would all be great in this salad.
  • Add extra fresh veggies: Such as bell pepper, cucumber, jicama, radishes or corn.
  • Add extra jarred veggies: Such as sun-dried tomato, roasted red peppers, or artichoke hearts.
  • Add fruit: Such as diced fresh mango, pineapple, orange or grapefruit.
  • Add beans: A handful of black or pinto beans would also be delicious in this salad.
  • Add tortilla chips: I love also crumbling a handful of corn tortilla chips into this salad!

Everyday Mexican Side Salad Recipe

Favorite Mexican Recipes:

Looking for some winning entrees to serve with this salad? Here are a few of my faves.

More Side Salad Recipes:

If you’re looking for more side salad inspiration, here are some of my faves!

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Everyday Mexican Salad

Everyday Mexican Salad

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 24 reviews
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


This delicious Everyday Mexican Salad recipe is quick and easy to make, totally customizable with your favorite ingredients, and it can work perfectly as a side salad or main dish!  See notes above for possible ingredient variations.



Mexican Salad Ingredients:

  • 5 ounces mixed spring greens  (or whatever greens you prefer)
  • 1 ripe avocado (peeled pitted and sliced)
  • half a small red onion (peeled and thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup roughly-chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/3 cup pepitas
  • optional: 1/2 cup crumbled queso fresco or cotija cheese

Cumin-Lime Dressing Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice  (or red wine vinegar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon  ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 1 small clove garlic (pressed or minced (or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder))


  1. To Make The Dressing: Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl (or shake together in a mason jar) until combined.  Use immediately or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days.
  2. To Make The Salad: Combine all ingredients in a large salad bowl, drizzle evenly with the salad dressing, and toss until evenly combined.  Serve immediately and enjoy!

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Everyday Mexican Salad Recipe

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32 comments on “Everyday Mexican Salad”

  1. Every time I make enchiladas I say I want salad to go with it but end up with some lettuce and tomatoes on the side…I needed a good starting point for the dressing, thanks now I have a base to start!

  2. This looks delicious! I’m thinking of adding just a wee bit of honey ( the hubs prefers his dressings a touch sweet.) Definitely going on the Cinco de Mayo menu………OLE!

  3. Love this!! I always feel like I need a salad to balance out heavier Mexican food dishes and this one was great!

  4. I needed to bring a “Mexican salad” to a potluck and found this one online. Yum! I substituted toasted sunflower seeds for the pipits and chopped green onions for the red (my husband can’t eat ed onions. I left out the cilantro (which tastes like soap to me) and added chopped cucumber, some cooked pinto beans and shredded cheddar. It was delicious! I especially liked the dressing (which I did not alter at all) – fresh and different from my other dressings.

  5. This is now our go to salad. It has something for everyone. Delicious. We include the cheese when we have it on hand – great addition.

  6. Outstanding salad dressing. Definitely will be a staple in my house.

  7. I just made this tonight to go with white chili (Mexican style) and it was the perfect complement – I especially like the addition of cumin.

  8. I made a few tweaks to this recipe.
    I added canned black bean, canned corn and tortilla strips to this salad.
    I was most impressed with the flavor from the salad dressing!
    It was mm mm good.

  9. I found it a bit heavy on the cumin for my taste. It can be quite a strong flavour. I would cut the amount in half.
    After tasting the dressing as shown in the recipe, I made some adjustments to better reflect my personal tastes, so I added a teaspoon each of honey and Dijon mustard. FYI, Dijon is an excellent emulsifier for vinaigrette’s.

    • I made a huge dinner size salad with this dressing and also found it a bit heavy on the cumin. The dressing is good and light but I would cut it back for sure next time. It was fine for a side salad but I had a hard time finishing a larger salad because the cumin was so strong. I also thought about maybe adding in some oregano for some of the cumin. It is definitely worth tinkering with and all the other suggestions were great as far as a Mexican salad.

  10. Great recipe! Made this as a side salad along with your Instant Pot Pork Carnitas. Didn’t have any seeds including pepitas so I excluded those. I included some crumbled queso fresco (which I wouldn’t consider optional haha!). So easy to put together and so delicious.

  11. Love, love, LOVE this salad dressing! The only thing I did different was squeeze the juice of 1 lemon over the salad mixing and let sit for 10 min or so before adding the dressing. Fantastic.!

  12. Wow! This salad was incredible! I made it exactly as written, using queso fresco, lime juice, and crushed garlic. I’d give it 10 stars if I could! Thank you for a great recipe!

  13. Love this! I add Queso Fresco- could eat it everyday for sure!

  14. I made this salad yesterday and my husband thoroughly enjoyed it!! Thank you so muck for sharing?

  15. I made this salad with the chicken enchiladas and the dinner was a hit – esp. the salad. Even the pickiest eaters loved the dressing and there wasn’t anything leftover. I didn’t have queso fresco at the time I made it but I’m sure it would be a delicious addition.

  16. Delicious!! Whipped this up as a side today and my husband and I gobbled it up! The dressing is fantastic and so easy! Will become a new summer staple. Thanks for such a great recipe!

  17. Absolutely delicious!

  18. Served this at a Mexican themed party yesterday. Made a double recipe. Cut cumin to 1/4 tsp based on others’ comments. I added papaya and mango as well as tortilla strips. To assemble, I started with base ingredients, then added dressing, then topped with tortilla strips to prevent sogginess. It was mui poular!

  19. Your salads are delicious…every single one of them! I served this one with some homemade enchiladas, and it was the star of the meal! The cilantro added such freshness. I never thought about adding it to a tossed salad. Both versions of dressing were good. I went with the avocado/lime juice combination. This one will be on repeat in my home.

  20. Best salad dressing ever! I use avocado oil.

  21. This salad is fantastic! I make it all the time because it goes with everything and I almost always have all the ingredients on hand. I like the cilantro but if you don’t care for it the salad is still delicious without it.

  22. Made this to go with my Mexican Lasagne, it was a huge hit, the dressing is the best. I did add some feta cheese and some salted sunflower seeds …… delish !!

  23. I make my Mexican salad with a different type of dressing. I mix salsa with sour cream and mix all veggies along with either ground beef or chicken. It’s pretty good!

  24. Found this recipe to compliment AllRecipes Easy Mexican Chicken. It seems to be an excellent base recipe, but something seemed missing. I thought about adding oregano, but didn’t want to ruin any authenticity of the recipe. Next time, I will take Ms Ehrlich’s advice and add some in. Ms Laakso had a great idea to add honey and Dijon. Does that take the Mexican flare off the dressing? Also, as Mr. Robinson suggests, mango sounds like a delightful add-in! I think with these slight tweaks, my palate will find this a 5-star recipe. I did add some black beans and corn to the salad as I didn’t have avocado. Thank you so much for sharing! This recipe will be a go-to for sure!

  25. Omg, so delicious! I had this with ground turkey tacos and it was sooooo good.

  26. Good salad dressing. I always add maple syrup to all my dressings, otherwise I find them a little too acidic. I do find that it is a lot of cumin, next time I will use a little less.

  27. Thank you for sharing! This is a perfect salad for a hot day.
    Expanded option: add the black beans and corn for more color:)
    Happy summer days!

  28. I love this salad! So tasty, made for a birthday dinner and was a great hit!

  29. So simple and delicious! I didn’t even use the avocado and cheese, because I was serving the salad with rich enchiladas, and it was the perfect complement!

  30. Way too much salt (and pepper) in this dressing recipe. Tasted like salt water! Had to remake and add the salt to taste.

  31. This salad is so incredibly flavorful! The crunch from the pepitas is a wonderful touch. We added some taco meat for protien and my husband and I really enjoyed it.