This quick vibrant green cilantro-pepita dressing is bursting with flavor and made with only a few ingredients. Plus, it’s naturally oil-free

If you have cilantro in your refrigerator or garden that needs to be used, this recipe is for you. The cilantro stems have as much flavor as the leaves, so use them too.

How to Make Cilantro-Pepita Dressing

Process these simple ingredients in a blender until smooth:

  • ½ bunch fresh cilantro, including stems
  • ½ cup shelled pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ – ½ Anaheim or jalapeño chile pepper, stemmed and seeded, to taste
  • Scant ½ teaspoon salt

Taste and adjust the seasoning. Does it need more chile pepper? More lime? More cilantro? Or is it just right?

How to Serve Cilantro-Pepita Dressing

burrito bowl made with chili and cilantro-pepita dressing

Serve on:

  • green salads
  • cabbage slaw
  • tacos
  • fajitas
  • burrito bowls made with Instant Pot Vegan Chili
  • black bean burgers
  • and with other Mexican-inspired meals

Variations For Cilantro-Pepita Dressing

  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Garlic: Add 1 small peeled garlic clove.
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Green Onions: Add 2 green onions.
  • Cilantro-Cashew Dressing: Substitute ½ cup raw cashews for the pepitas. Soak the cashews in boiling water and rinse before blending.
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Lemon: Substitute lemon juice for the lime juice.
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Roasted Chiles: Roast the chile pepper before adding. Or use canned green chiles, to taste.
  • Spinach-Pepita Dressing: Substitute one large handful of fresh spinach or baby greens for the cilantro.
cilantro pepita dressing
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Cilantro-Pepita Dressing

This quick vibrant green dressing is bursting with flavor and made with only a few ingredients. Plus, it’s naturally oil-free.
Prep Time5 mins
Course: Salad Dressing
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: condiment, sauce, gluten-free, oil-free, plant-based, raw, soy-free, vegan, vegetarian, WFPB
Servings: 8
Calories: 45kcal
Author: Heather Reseck

Ingredients

  • ½ bunch fresh cilantro including stems
  • ½ cup shelled pepitas pumpkin seeds
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ - ½ Anaheim or jalapeño chile pepper stemmed and seeded, to taste
  • Scant ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Process cilantro, pumpkin seeds, lime juice, water, chile pepper, and salt in a blender until smooth.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • Refrigerate in a covered container for up to 1 week. Makes about 1 cup.
  • Serve on green salads, cabbage slaw, tacos, fajitas, burrito bowls, and with other Mexican-inspired meals.

Notes

Variations:
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Garlic: Add 1 small peeled garlic clove.
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Green Onions: Add 2 green onions.
  • Cilantro-Cashew Dressing: Substitute ½ cup raw cashews for the pepitas. Soak the cashews in boiling water and rinse before blending.
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Lemon: Substitute lemon juice for the lime juice.
  • Cilantro-Pepita Dressing with Roasted Chiles: Roast the chile pepper before adding. Or use canned green chiles, to taste.
  • Spinach-Pepita Dressing: Substitute one large handful of fresh spinach or baby greens for the cilantro.
Tips:
  • You can use sprouted, raw, or toasted pepitas. If the toasted ones have salt added, reduce the salt.
  • This is a good way to use cilantro before it goes bad. The stems have as much flavor as the leaves so use them too.

Nutrition

Serving: 2tablespoons | Calories: 45kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 153mg | Potassium: 77mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 135IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg