A healthy idea: Jicama-Chayote Slaw

Reconsider the heavy mayonnaise-dressed ensalada de papa in favor of something lighter and more refreshing this summer: jicama-chayote slaw.

Jicama – a bulbous, brown-skinned root, not unlike a radish – is a crunchy tuber native to Mexico’s interior, where indigenous Indians cultivated the juicy vegetable. While Spaniards eventually introduced this diet staple to the sweet, crisp veggie to other parts of Latin America and the Philippines, jicama is tastes best when paired with traditional Mexican flavors like fresh, bright lime and fragrant cilantro.

And chayote? Well, despite its bumpy, green, leathery exterior, the fruit (you read that correctly!), is entirely edible and whether eaten raw or cooked, is rich in Vitamin C and amino acids. It’s also native to Mexico and with its fresh, nutty flavor is a natural pairing for the ultimate, Latin-spun salad. With the brightness of citrus, sweet red onion and peppery notes, this jicama-chayote slaw is perfect on its own for a light meal and ideal alongside barbequed meats. It’s also open for interpretation – with the official arrival of mango season, why not add chunks of juicy, honey-sweet fruit? Ripe pineapple would also work well here. So go ahead and experiment: because any way you slice it, it’s the perfect summer salad.

Jicama-Chayote Slaw

Serves 4

1 jicama, peeled and sliced into matchsticks

1 chayote, sliced into matchsticks

1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced

2 large oranges, segmented

2 limes, juiced (about ¼ cup of juice)

4 T olive oil

fresh cilantro, to taste and finely chopped

1 fresh jalapeño chile, finely chopped (optional)

salt & black pepper

1.Combine jicama, chayote, onion and orange segments in a large bowl. If desired, add jalapeño.

2. Add lime juice, olive oil and cilantro. Toss and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve well-chilled.


  1. […] is combined with an herb dressing for the perfect Latino alternative to heavier, mayo-laden salads. Check out the recipe here. A mango papaya batida (Photo/Betty […]

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