El Torito's Southwestern Caesar Salad | Peri's Place For Recipes

El Torito's Southwestern Caesar Salad
Prep Time
10 minutes
6 - 8


Cilantro Pepita Dressing

  • 2 medium Anaheim chiles, roasted, peeled & seeded
  • 1/3 cup roasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 12 oz neutral oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 5 Tbsp grated cotija cheese
  • 2 small bunches cilantro, stemmed
  • 1 1/4 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup water

Salad Ingredients

  • 1 large head romaine lettuce, rinsed and spun dry
  • 1/2 cup finely grated cotija cheese
  • red pepper strips (roasted, peeled) cut into julienne strips
  • 1/2 cup pepitas (roasted pumpkin seeds)
  • 2 - 3 corn tortillas (stale, or dried on counter a few hours)
  • neutral oil for frying
  • Cilantro Pepita dressing (see above)


  1. Cut corn tortillas into matchstick sized strips. Heat oil in sauté pan; fry chips until crisp. Remove with slotted spoon, drain tortilla strips on paper towel. Set aside.
  2. Tear romaine into bite size pieces. Plate greens on salad plates and ladle approximately two ounces of cilantro pepita dressing on each salad. Sprinkle each dish with cotija cheese and tortilla strips. Arrange four red pepper strips like spokes on the top of each salad and garnish with whole pepitas. 

Good to Know

Cotija cheese is available at some grocery strores and all Mexican markets.