Crunchy Lettuce Taco Salad with Shrimp

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 30 min
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
For a satisfying Tex-Mex inspired salad that is ready in less than 30 minutes, toss together romaine hearts, pickled jalapenos, pepitas and shrimp with a creamy cotija dressing. Top with crispy tortilla strips for a crunchy finish!



  1. Toast the pepitas in a medium dry skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl; set aside.
  2. Heat 1/4 inch of vegetable oil in the skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the tortilla strips and fry, turning as needed, until golden, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel¿lined plate; season with salt and pepper. Let cool, then break each strip in half.
  3. Make the dressing: Combine the crema, Cotija cheese, 1/4 cup cilantro, 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, the lime juice and garlic in a food processor; pulse until smooth, adding 1 to 2 tablespoons water if needed to loosen. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Transfer the dressing to a large bowl; add the romaine, pickled jalapenos, pepitas, shrimp, the remaining 1/4 cup cilantro and half of the tortilla strips. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Top each serving of salad with the remaining tortilla strips and more cheese.