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We all love a good classic tofu scramble recipe but this one has an amazing special ingredient which makes this scramble one of a kind. If you’ve never tried nopales before then this might be the best recipe to introduce them into your life. It’s super tasty and full of protein and fiber, which means this nopalitos tofu scramble might just be the best plant-based savory breakfast recipe ever!

What Are Nopales o Nopalitos?

Nopales are basically the pads of a plant known as Opuntia Cacti (or in English, prickly pears). These oval-shaped green pads are widely used in Mexican cuisine, in dishes such as salads, stews, soups (even marmalades!). You can find them at the store in a jar or a can but, sometimes fresh. In this recipe, we used the jarred ones.

An orange plate filled with nopalitas tofu scramble.

What do Nopalitos Taste Like?

Ok, when you think of a cactus you don’t necessarily think of a yummy dish but we can vouch for how delicious these nopales are. They have a slightly tart flavor and a crisp but texture, a bit like the taste of green beans. They can be a bit slimy if they aren’t cooked, so make sure that you fry them up good. The most common way of cooking them is with eggs, that’s why adding them to this tofu scramble is such a great idea. We encourage you to go ahead and give them a try!

From Scramble to Wrap

This easy-to-prepare dish can be easily turned into a lunch wrap or in a more indulgent breakfast (or brunch!) by using it as tortilla filling and by adding some sliced avocado. Needless to say, you can add any veggies you have on hand (especially those you’ve been thinking about throwing away).

So, are you motivated to try this amazing nopalitos tofu scramble? Let us know how you like it!

Recommended equipment:

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Nopalitos Tofu Scramble

5 from 18 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Move over tofu scramble! We have a super special version of this beloved dish with a secret ingredient. Try this nopalitos tofu scramble!


  • 1 Tablespoon of vegetable oil (or ¼ cup of water)
  • 1/2 of a large yellow or red onion, diced
  • 4-5 button or white or shitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 cup of sliced nopalitos (cactus - from a jar)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of ground cumin
  • Pinch of smoked paprika (optional)
  • 14 ounces of extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
  • Salt, to taste


  • In a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Add the onion, mushrooms, nopalitos, and garlic, and saute for 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Sprinkle in the cumin and smoked paprika.
  • Using your fingers, crumble the tofu into the pan and saute for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tofu is golden.


Make sure you cook your cactus thoroughly so it doesn't feel slimy.


Calories: 207kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 16gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gSodium: 136mgPotassium: 531mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 118IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 126mgIron: 4mg

Disclaimer: Although attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Toni Okamoto
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Mexican
Method: Stovetop
Diet: Vegan
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂

Nopalitos Tofu Scramble | Plant-Based on a Budget | #scramble #tofu #nopalitos #mexican #breakfast #vegan #plantbasedonabudget


Toni Okamoto

“They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
‘Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways…
we got to start taking better care of ourselves ” – Dead Prez

More about Toni Okamoto

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