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Mexican Summer Salad

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 13 min
  • Prep: 10 min
  • Cook: 3 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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2 teaspoons whole cumin seeds

2 teaspoons whole coriander seeds

1 chile de arbol (with seeds) torn into very small pieces or 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes* see Cook's Note

1/4 cup pine nuts

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


3/4 cup pitted and halved black kalamata olives

3/4 cup pitted and halved green olives

3/4 cup halved assorted colored cherry or grape tomatoes

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves

8 ounces Mexican Cotija or feta cheese, cubed


  1. In a small, dry skillet, toast the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, chile, and pine nuts over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer the dressing to a serving bowl and whisk in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  2. Add the olives, tomatoes, cilantro and cheese. Toss gently to combine and serve.
  3. *Cooks Note: The dried chile can also be cut into small rings using scissors.
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