Healthy Recipes Free of Gluten, Dairy, and Soy for Serious Eaters

Roasted Nopales Soup

Roasted Nopales Soup

This turned out to be one of the most delicious and outrageous soups I’ve made. Outrageous because it’s cactus!!!!! I was in Borrego and happened to have had a hot bowl at Keslye’s Restaurant. I knew I had to figure this one out. It was so delicious and just hit the spot on the cold fall nights in Borrego.

I happened to be in town when the community garden was open to the public. They grew everything from cactus to kale. I received a kind welcome and invited to slice off a few paddles fresh from the plant.

At home in preparation, I used a knife to scrape off the nettles and partial skin. Lutz fired up the grill and we roasted them two to three minutes on each side, topped them with goat cheese (optional), salt and pepper. AMAZING!

I grilled the rest and began my cooking creation. Simple and easy. Just simmer all the ingredients together for an hour on low with a lid then use your blender or immersion blender and whip it up until creamy. I topped it off with a bit of cilantro, diced red bell peppers, jalapenos and a splash of fresh lime to give it a cheery holiday flare. Follow along below and jazz up your seasonal soup menu this year. It was my first experience eating these tender paddles and I was not disappointed.

Roasted Napolis Soup

January 16, 2020
: 4 cups
: 20 min
: 1 hr
: 1 hr 20 min
: medium


  • 2 large cactus paddles
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 1/2 jalapeño
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 small tomatillos or 3 oz green chili verde sauce
  • 1 can 14.5 oz chicken broth
  • 1 small can 5.4 coconut CREAM
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • Salt to taste
  • Step 1 You can buy the cactus already cleaned and cooked. If you’re in a hurry this will save you time having to roast the paddles first. Use two 8 oz jars/cans.
  • Step 2 If you have fresh paddles, clean all paddles with a serrated knife making sure to remove all thorns. Rub with olive oil and place on medium-high heated grill for two minutes each side.
  • Step 3 When the skin blisters and a fork can enter them with easy, remove and cool.
  • Step 4 Slice into 2X2 inch pieces.
  • Step 5 Place the cactus and the remaining ingredients in a large saucepan and simmer on low for 1 hour.
  • Step 6 Use your immersion blender or standing mixer and blend until smooth and creamy
  • Step 7 Garnish with cilantro, diced red peppers, diced jalapenos and a splash of lime juice.


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