Mexican Fruit Salad

Mexican Fruit Salad

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Mexican Fruit Salad: a simple but delicious salad with cubed melon, mango, papaya, pineapple, lime juice, and a hint of spice. Truly an unexpected and unique take on the traditional fruit salad recipe. This Mexican salad is great for hot summer days, an outdoor bbq, for holidays like Cinco de Mayo, or really any time of year!

Fruit salad is one of my favorite healthy recipes to enjoy in the spring and summer months. Typically, I just throw whatever fruit I have on hand into a bowl and dress it with a bit of lemon juice or honey.

This simple Mexican fruit salad is a fun take on your usual vegan fruit salad. Without any honey and with the addition of lime juice and chili powder, this salad brings together mango, papaya, melon, pineapple, and watermelon for a sweet and spicy side dish.

If you like fruit with Tajin – a Mexican chili seasoning blend with lime – you are going to love this recipe. It will quickly become your new favorite fruit salad – it’s completely swoon-worthy! And the best part is, it’s ready in just 10 minutes!

👩🏽‍🍳 Why You’ll Love This Mexican Fruit Salad Recipe

  • Easy to Make & Quick: You can whip up this Mexican fruit bowl in no time and with minimal cooking skills. Just cut the fruit, toss it with the chili powder, and you are good to go!
  • Customizable: Don’t have or can’t find all of the fruits that I used for this salad? No issue — this delicious Mexican fruit salad can be made with almost any combination of fresh fruit. See my list below for inspiration!
  • Family-Friendly: Everyone’s faces will light up when you place a bowl of this sweet fruit salad on the table. Do your kids not like spice? Just reduce the spice in the salad or leave out an unseasoned portion for them.
  • Versatile: Serve Mexican fruit cups for an afternoon snack, with toast and yogurt for breakfast, or as a side dish to almost any of your favorite Mexican meals. It’s hard to go wrong with it!
  • Nutritious: With a selection of tasty fresh fruit, this is a good-for-you salad that you will love to eat! It’s high in fiber, low in calories, and abundant in many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

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🥘 Ingredients

The ingredients for these Mexican fruit bowls are easy to find at your local grocery store, especially since you can customize it with what is in season! Here’s what you need:

  • Fruit: I used a combination of watermelon, cantaloupe, green melon, mango, papaya, and pineapple to make this spicy Mexican fruit salad recipe.
  • Lime Juice: Use fresh juice for the best flavor. Lime juice brightens up the flavors of the fruit, adds a light tang, and highlights the spice in the chili powder, creating a similar flavor experience to what you would with Tajin fruit salad!
  • Chile-Lime Salt: Chili lime seasoning is the star ingredient in this recipe! The spice blend adds a moderate amount of heat while allowing the sweetness of the fruit to still shine through.
  • Garnishes: Fresh cilantro, sea salt and pepper all enhance the sweetness of the fruit. The black pepper adds another level of kick to this Mexican mango salad too!

🍲 Substitutions

  • Sweet Fruits: Almost any in-season fruit can be used in this recipe. Kiwi, dragon fruit, strawberries, grapes, apples, pears, oranges, or summer fruits like peaches, plums, and nectarines would all be delicious in this recipe.
  • Lime Juice: Bottled lime juice can work in place of the fresh, though if you can find fresh it will provide superior flavor.
  • Cilantro: If you’re not a fan of cilantro (or don’t have it on hand), top the chili powder fruit salad with fresh torn mint leaves instead. The mint will provide a cool finish and will balance out the heat in the recipe.
  • Chili Powder: If you have Tajin, you can make this recipe for Mexican fruit salad with Tajin instead of the chili lime seasoning. If using it, you’ll want to add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of it instead of the chili lime seasoning, and then you’ll also want to reduce the lime juice to taste. You can also use plain chili powder mixed with dehydrated lime juice or an extra squeeze of lime juice if you can’t find Tajin or chili lime seasoning!

🔪 How To Make Mexican Fruit Salad

This Mexican fruit dish is so easy to make! You can find the detailed instructions, complete list of ingredients, and nutritional information in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Prep: Cube all of the ripe fruit into 1-inch size pieces.

Melon, watermelon and cantaloupe tossed in a mixing bowl.

Mix: Transfer the fruit to a large bowl. Pour fresh lime juice, cilantro (if using), and chili lime seasoning over the top of the fruit. Using a spatula or clean hands, gently stir or toss the fruit together until covered evenly in the lime juice.

Chili lime fruit salad tossed with fresh cilantro, salt, and pepper in a bowl.

Season & Serve: Season the fruit with salt, pepper, and chili lime seasoning as needed. Gently stir or toss together until combined. Garnish this chili lime fruit salad with cilantro, separate into individual bowls and serve!

Mexican fruit cup recipe in a white bowl, garnished with cilantro and lime wedges.

💭 Expert Tips

  • Fruit prep is so important! Make sure to cut all of your fruit into similarly sized small cubes.
  • Serve immediately for best results. While this fruit salad Mexican recipe will keep in the fridge for a few days, it will taste the freshest on the day it’s made!
  • Adjust the spice level as needed. Use more or less chili powder for the fruit depending on how spicy you like the fruit salad. If you have kids, you may want to separate out their portions before seasoning the salad.

🍽 Serving Suggestions

This Mexican salad with fruit and chili powder serves perfectly almost anywhere a traditional fruit salad does. It’s a great addition with breakfast, for an afternoon snack, and is also an exceptional potluck fruit salad. It’s also one of the best fruit side dishes with any of the following Mexican entrées:

📖 Recipe Variations

  • Agave: Drizzle the salad with 1-2 teaspoons of agave syrup for an enjoyable extra natural sweetness to the Mexican fruit dessert.
  • Bionico Fruit Salad: Turn this into a classic Bionico recipe by adding some raisins, granola, coconut flakes, and a drizzle of sweetened condensed milk and yogurt on top!
  • Jicama Fruit Salad: Add in 1 cup of jicama along with the rest of the ingredients! Jicama has a great neutral, crunchy, clean flavor that pairs well with the fruit.
  • Mexican Fruit Salad With Cream: Make a creamy fruit salad by adding a dollop of whipped cream, Mexican crema, or sour cream to this dish before serving it! You can also make a sweet cream sauce by mixing in some condensed milk or coconut condensed milk with the fruit!
  • Mexican Spicy Fruit Salad: In the mood for a bit of extra heat? Stir a large pinch of cayenne pepper into the Mexican fruit salad recipe!
  • Smokiness: For a sweet and smoky experience, stir a large pinch of ancho chili powder and maybe even a little smoked paprika in with the fruit.

🫙 Storage Directions

  • Making Ahead of Time: This Mexican fruit cup recipe can be made up to 1 day ahead of time. Store, in an airtight container in the refrigerator until serving. You can also store it in a bowl covered with plastic wrap.
  • Refrigeration: Leftovers keep covered in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. This fresh fruit salad does not freeze well. 

❓Recipe FAQs

What fruit goes with chili powder?

If you haven’t already had it, fruit with chili powder is a surprisingly delicious combination! Tropical fruits taste delicious with chili powder, because their natural sweetness balances out the spice nicely. Fruits such as watermelon, honeydew melon, cantaloupe, pineapple, and mango all pair well with a hint of chili.

What do they put on fruit in Mexico?

Typically, Tajin is the Mexican spice that is sprinkled on fruits like mango, pineapple, and watermelon. Tajin seasoning is a combination of chili peppers, lime juice, and salt.

What is the difference between chili powder and Tajin?

Chili powder is a combination of paprika, garlic, cayenne, cumin, dried oregano, and other seasonings, whereas Tajin is made from chili powder, salt, and lime. Chili powder is a more generally used seasoning, whereas Tajin is mainly used to season fruit, vegetables, and sometimes corn.

Mexican fruit salad with chili lime seasoning, cilantro and fresh lime served in a bowl with a fork.

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📋 Recipe Card

Mexican Fruit Salad

Mexican Fruit Salad: a simple but delicious salad with cubed melon, mango, papaya, pineapple, lime juice, and a hint of spice. Truly an unexpected and unique take on the traditional fruit salad recipe. This Mexican salad is great for a summer picnic, an outdoor bbq, for holidays like Cinco de Mayo, or really any time of year!

Prep Time10 minutes

Cook Time0 minutes

Total Time10 minutes

Course: Salad, Side Dish, Snack

Cuisine: American, Mexican, Vegan

Diet: Gluten Free, Low Calorie, Low Fat, Vegan, Vegetarian

Servings: 8

Calories: 76kcal

  1. Storage: Leftovers store covered in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. They do not freeze well. 
  2. Adjusting the Spice: Use more or less chili lime powder depending on how spicy you like your fruit salad. If you have kids you may want to hold off on adding the spices until you have separated out their portion.  If you would like an extra kick – add a pinch of cayenne to this dish!
  3. Fruit Substitutions: Almost any in-season fruit can be used in this recipe. Apples, strawberries, dragon fruit, kiwi, grapes, peaches, pears, and oranges would all be delicious in this recipe.
  4. Serve the fruit salad chilled for the best flavor.
  5. Dice all of the fruit to an even size, approx 1 inch cubes to make it easier to mix.

Calories: 76kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.4g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 12mg | Potassium: 261mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 16g

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