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.
What is Nopal?
Nopal, commonly called prickly pear is a genus in the cactus family. It is also called tuna, sabra, or paddle cactus. It is a plant native to Mexico is commonly used in Mexican cuisine.
Nopal pad is green with fixed thorns or spines that are removed before cooking. The pad can be eaten raw or cooked as a vegetable. it is an ingredient in salads, soups, marmalades and it is used medicinally.
The edible colorful fruit is called prickly pear is also sold as a fruit in supermarkets.
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. The canned or bottled nopales are sold in most major supermarkets and health food stores.
Nopal is also enjoyed for its many health benefits. Nopal cactus is high in antioxidants, Vitamins A, B. C, minerals, and fiber. It helps speed up metabolism, detoxifies the liver and cleanses the colon. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to treat disease such as ulcer, diabetes, glaucoma.
It is low in calorie, one cup contains only 14 calories so nopal cactus benefits weight loss. Read more about nopales health benefits.
Nopal Cactus Smoothie Ingredients
- Apple Juice
- Pineapple Chunks
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
- Day 1 Green Smoothie Detox
- Day 2 Orange Creamsicle Smoothie
- Day 3 Apple Pie Smoothie
- Day 4 Peach Mango Smoothie
- Day 5 Pina Colada Smoothie
- Day 6 Blueberry Banana Smoothie
- Day 7 Peanut Butter And Jelly Smoothie
- Day 8 Maca Peanut Butter Smoothie
- Day 9 Pear Ginger Smoothie
If you make this Nopal Cactus Smoothie, snap a photo and hashtag #healthiersteps — we love to see your recipes on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter!
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- Categories: Gluten-Free, Vegan
- Course: Beverage
- Cuisine: American
- Energy: 109 kcal / 456 kJ
- Fat: 0 g
- Protein: 1 g
- Carbs: 27 g
- Preparation: 5 min
- Ready in: 5 min
- For: 2 Servings
- 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
Question: The smoothie recipe called How To Make Nopal Cactus Smoothie.It calls for chopped nopal pad. Can I use powder and if so how much?
Hello Barbara, I’m sure you can use the nopal powder. Follow the instructions on the container for serving sizes.
Nice delicate flavor combination, thanks
raw nopal? it is SO SLIMEY. i will try a bit [grows in my backyard–prep alwayts involves deslimeing with salt and blanching].
Tim, it is that one, in the smoothie it was fine. It reminds me of okra though, you either love it or not. Thanks for sharing how you deslime it using salt and blanching. Hope you enjoy it in the smoothie.
After cleaning and cubbing the fresh nopal i freeze 1 cup portions in zip lock baggies. This way you never see the slime. Then i make my smoothie adding the pineapple apple celery or cucumber and ginger. The frozen nopal makes it frothy. .
Thank you for sharing Rita.
As a child, I also used it for washing and conditioning my hair
Aww yes Verna, I hope you try it in the smoothie. Its definitely worth it.