Recipe: Sautéed Nopales with Bell Peppers and Corn from Sigona's

Recipe: Sautéed Nopales with Bell Peppers and Corn

Nopales are cactus leaves! They’re the fleshy oval leaves of the prickly pear cactus. Their texture is similar to okra and their flavor is similar to a combination of green pepper, green beans and asparagus with a lemon-y twist. We sell them with their prickles removed, so have no fear! This simple and quick side dish is unusual, but likeable! The sorrel-sour taste of the crisp cactus is complimented by the sweetness of the corn. Adapted from Uncommon Fruits & Vegetables. Makes 4 servings.


  • 2 large red bell peppers
  • 1 medium-large onion
  • 2 TBL butter
  • 3-4 ears of small ears of corn
  • 1/2 lb. fresh, firm nopales, cut in 1/2 inch pieces
  • Finely minced cilantro

Directions: Halve peppers, remove seeds and stems. Cut into 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, then slice kernels off cob (should be about 1 1/2 cups kernels).

Add nopales and corn to peppers and onion; stir over high heat until vegetables are cooked through, but firm-tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve immediately.

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