This simple tomato, cucumber, and avocado salad gets a spicy Mexican-flavor kick from jalapeños and a fresh lime and chile dressing that makes it a terrific side dish for any meal.
I’m not a chef. I’m a home cook. But many of my recipes are inspired by dishes I’ve enjoyed that were created by real life chefs. It’s one of my favorite reasons for eating out, to get new inspiration for le bloggity blog.
I had a rendition of this simple tomato salad at a restaurant called Monkeypod Kitchen while vacationing in Maui. A friend of mine who lived in Maui for a time messaged me while we were there that we MUST make it a point to eat at Monkeypod, it was one of her favorites.
Friend recommendations are always the best.
The menu was full of delicious, fresh fare, and being the tomato caprese salad lover that I am, once I spied this salad with a flavorful twist on their menu, I was immediately intrigued.
While it was created and served in the Maui tropics, this salad has a decidedly Mexican feel. Cilantro serves as it’s base where arugula or basil might star in the Italian version. If you’re not a cilantro fan, feel free to leave it out altogether, or substitute with chopped flat leaf Italian parsley.
Chopped jalapeños give it a spicy bite. If you’re looking for a milder taste, be sure to remove the seeds and ribs that contain most of the heat.
Cucumbers and sweet Maui onions give it a crunch that plays well with the creamy avocado I love so much. I used English cucumbers and seeded the pulpy middle out. English cucumbers have a peel that’s more tender than traditional salad cucumbers, so there’s no need to remove them.
One of my husband’s favorite snacks is Pepinos con limon, or sliced cucumbers with a squeeze of lemon, salt and chile powder. In the summer time, he eats plates of them like candy. The same ingredients with a pinch of sugar go into this salad’s lime and chile vinaigrette, brightening the already healthy salad with a puckery punch.
I use cocktail or Campari tomatoes on a daily basis. They’re sweeter than regular tomatoes I find in the store, so naturally, they’re my go-to. Next time I’ll try this salad with little cherry tomatoes as well, to give the salad a little more dimension, and once summer hits, you can bet I’ll be playing with tomatoes of every heirloom color for this dish.
The whole thing comes together in just about 10 minutes, making this salad a favorite for all the eaters, restaurant chefs, and home cooks alike.
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment below or take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
Tomato Avocado Cucumber and Maui Onion Salad
- 1 hot house English cucumber seeded and sliced into ¼-inch slices
- 2 avocados peeled, pitted and sliced into ½-inch chunks
- 8-10 Campari or cocktail size tomatoes halved and then quartered
- ¼ Maui onion thinly sliced
- 1 jalapeno sliced
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- Juice of 2 limes about ¼ cup
- ¼ teaspoon chile powder
- Generous pinch of sugar
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- In a large bowl, add the cucumber, avocados, tomatoes, onion, jalapeño and cilantro leaves. In a small bowl, mix the canola oil with the lime juice, chile powder, sugar and season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Pour over the salad ingredients and lightly toss to coat. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
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I added baked chicken to this and it makes for a great meal of itself.
Ashley @ Foodie Crush
Great idea, Tammy!
I made this tonight, minus the onions (I know it would be delicious, but I just can’t eat them). It was fabulous, even without the onions. Will definitely make this again. My husband raved about it.
I’m the same with raw onions but my stomach can handle raw shallots, so I often substitute with those. That mild onion flavor does add such a nice touch.
I was wondering how well the avocados hold up in this recipe? Is it best to eat immediately, or does it hold well for a packed lunch?
You are correct that the avocados will not hold up. However, prep everything but the avocados, and if you have the ability at work to prep the avocados there, just add them in at lunch time. Put this salad with tuna, salmon or baked chicken and you will have an awesome healthy lunch.
I discovered that you can actually prep avocados in advance of serving if you do one important thing: Squeeze an ample amount of lime juice all over the surface (lemon works if you don’t have lime). It really works! They even last for a day or two, believe it or not. I learned this from the salad bar at a nearby grocery store.
I also cover the surface tightly with plastic wrap just for an extra measure of protection, but that’s optional.
Yep, that’s a great tip Marsh.
Chota Bheem app
This looks delicious and healthy.
Taylor | On The Gas
Amazing! I am not a vegetarian but I also love to try this recipe. The vibrant colors of the salad make it so appealing and I am currently salivating. Haha, I just can’t help it. I just need to buy avocados and will invite friends to do this with me. I am sure this could be fun.
Laura | Tutti Dolci
This salad will be on repeat all summer long – seriously love!
All That's Left Are The Crumbs
I love both Monkeypod and Merriman’s – their food is outstanding. Your salad this so vibrant and fresh, and I am looking forward to trying it. Actually, your salads always look amazing and your photos make me want to reach out and grab the plate.
OMG… this looks amazing. So fresh and vibrant for warmer weather. I am definitely trying this!