I purchased a nopal drink at my local buyer’s club and fell in love, the simple ingredients were nopal, pineapple, and celery.

However, my love for nopal goes way back to my childhood days of growing the cactus. We called it ‘tuna fruit’ in Jamaica and we mostly used it as a conditioner for our hair. 

If you know me in person, I have really thick hair and growing up it was much longer and thicker, I had a routine of using tuna or nopal and homemade castor oil on my hair.

I decided to share my yummy version of nopal cactus smoothie with you. It is a great smoothie to include in your weight loss routine. Below is a photo of my nopal cactus that I’m growing.

Nopal Cactus growing in a barrel

What is Nopal?

Nopal, commonly known as prickly pear, belongs to the cactus family and goes by other names such as tuna, sabra, or paddle cactus. Native to Mexico, this plant is a staple in Mexican cuisine.

The green nopal pad, adorned with fixed thorns or spines, requires removal of these spines before cooking. You can eat the pad raw or cook it as a vegetable. It features in salads, soups, marmalades, and has medicinal uses.

Supermarkets also sell the edible, colorful fruit of the nopal, known as prickly pear, as a fruit.

What Does Nopal Taste Like?

Nopal has a slightly tart taste, with a crisp texture and mucilaginous feel. 

Where Can I Purchase Nopales?

Nopal pads are sold fresh in most Latino supermarkets and some Caribbean grocers.Most major supermarkets and health food stores sell canned or bottled nopales.

Nopal Cactus Benefits

 Offers numerous health benefits and is highly valued in traditional medicine. It is rich in antioxidants, vitamins A, B, and C, minerals, and fiber.

Nopal aids in speeding up metabolism, detoxifying the liver, and cleansing the colon. For centuries, it has been used to treat ailments such as ulcers, diabetes, and glaucoma. Additionally, it is low in calories, with just 14 calories per cup, making it beneficial for weight loss.. Read more about nopales health benefits.

Nopales Cactus Smoothie on a plate with cactus, pineapple, apple juice, celery and ginger

Nopal Cactus Smoothie Ingredients

  • Nopal
  • Apple Juice
  • Pineapple Chunks
  • Celery
  • Ginger

How To Make Nopal Cactus Smoothie

  • Clean cactus pad and remove spines, wearing gloves or place fingers on the cactus pad holding it firmly with one hand. Hold a knife with the other hand and gently slip the tip of the knife under each thorn to peel it off. 
  • Repeat this process all over the pad and on the sides until all thorns are removed. Roughly chop nopal.
  • Store in freezer bags or container with tight fitting lid.
  • Place chopped nopal in a high-speed blender, add apple juice, pineapple chunks, celery, and ginger. Process until smooth and creamy and serve immediately.

This is Day 10 of my daily smoothies drink, here are days 1-9

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Best Nopal Cactus Smoothie on a green plate with cactus

Nopal Cactus Smoothie

This delicious nopal cactus smoothie is so easy to prepare, a quick and easy breakfast recipe that is nourishing for the body. Nopal, apple, pineapple, celery, and ginger makes this amazing smoothie divine.
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast, Drinks
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Keyword: nopal cactus smoothie
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 136kcal


  • 1 cup nopal spines removed and chopped
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks fresh or frozen
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 1 teaspoon ginger


  • Place chopped nopal pad, apple juice, pineapple chunks, celery and ginger in a high-speed blender.
  • Process until smooth and served chilled


Calories: 136kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.3g | Saturated Fat: 0.04g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Sodium: 17mg | Potassium: 392mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 29g | Vitamin A: 266IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 1mg