Mexican Cucumber Spirals: Fun Twist on an Easy Snack
Mexican cucumber spirals inspired by pepinos con chile! It’s an easy 4-ingredient snack that’s fun to eat, sour, salty, and a little spicy!
What are Mexican Cucumber Spirals?
Cucumbers with chili, or pepinos con chile in Spanish, are a popular Mexican snack.
It is typically made with cucumbers, chili, and lime.
The method of cutting cucumbers into spirals is from Chinese cuisine. Specifically from a dish called suo yi huang gua (蓑衣黄瓜).
The recipe I’m sharing here takes inspiration from both cultures.
It combines the Chinese style of preparing cucumbers with Mexican style seasoning.
The result is a fun and delicious fusion!
Ingredients for Mexican Cucumber Spirals
Before we start, you will need to gather the following ingredients:
- Mini Cucumbers: My favorite to use for this recipe are mini seedless cucumbers – specifically the Sunset Grown cucumbers from Costco. Persian cucumbers are a good substitute.
- Lime: Limes are a green citrus fruit that’s sour, zesty, and slightly bitter. A good substitute would be lemons which are yellow citrus fruits that are also sour but slightly sweeter.
- Tajín: This seasoning is made with mild chili peppers, lime, and sea salt. It’s great on veggies and fruit for an added kick. I recommend Tajín Clásico.
- Salt: Add salt to taste. A staple ingredient that enhances the flavors of other ingredients. It makes this snack even more satisfying.
Different Types of Cucumbers
There are many different types of cucumbers. I am going to outline 3 popular varieties and share the best one for this recipe.
Mini cucumbers are the perfect snack size. It has a light and mild taste.
These cucumbers also have lower water content so it is nice and crunchy.
I like the One Sweet variety from Sunset Grown.
Persian cucumbers are sometimes also referred to as “mini cucumbers”
However, these are slightly bigger than the mini cucumber variety I mentioned above.
The skin is thin, it is also mild in taste, and very crisp.
They are a good substitute in this recipe.
American Slicing Cucumbers
Larger cucumber varieties like American slicing cucumbers are what we see the most in grocery stores here in the US.
These larger cucumbers are more typical of what are used for pepinos con chile.
They have more water content, tend to be less crunchy, but more refreshing.
Best Cucumber for Mexican Cucumber Spirals
Overall, for this recipe I think the bite-sized nature of mini cucumbers make it the most fun to eat.
The smaller size also makes it more manageable when they are cut into spirals.
Plus I love how crisp they stay even after adding lime juice and seasonings.
How to Make Mexican Cucumber Spirals
Mexican cucumber spirals are such a quick and easy snack to make.
It only take 5-minutes to throw together.
Let’s walk through it step-by-step so you can recreate this perfectly at home!
As always a recipe card is included at the end that you can print out, pin to Pinterest, or save for later.
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Step 1: How to Cut Cucumbers Into a Spiral Shape
Prior to cutting, wash all of the cucumbers with water.
In order to cut the cucumbers into the accordion spiral shape, you’ll need a pair of chopsticks, knife, and cutting board.
I recommend using chopsticks that have flat edges so they don’t roll around as you cut.
The chopsticks are there to stop you from cutting all the way down through the cucumber.
Place each cucumber one at a time in between the pair of chopsticks. The cucumber should be resting on top of the cutting board not the chopstick.
Next, hold down the cucumber and chopstick simultaneously and make even diagonal slices at a 45° angle across the cucumber.
Then flip over the cucumber to expose the uncut side. Make straight slices on this side at a 90° angle evenly across the cucumber.
Repeat this for all the cucumbers to create those pretty spirals.
These cuts are simple to make but the results are super cool!
It transforms a basic cucumber into an accordion or slinky. It’s like making edible arts and crafts.
Not only is it fun to play with but this shape gives cucumbers even more texture and crunch.
The spirals also create a lot of little crevices and surface area that hold on to the seasonings perfectly!
Step 2: Season the Cucumbers
Once all of the cucumbers are cut into the spiral shape, it’s time to add some flavor!
This snack is the type of recipe that doesn’t even need a recipe.
To make these Mexican cucumber spirals, simply add lime juice, Tajín, and salt to a mixing bowl with the spiral cucumbers.
I recommend using 1 lime, 1 tablespoon of Tajín, and a pinch of salt for 10 mini cucumbers.
Mix it well but carefully so you don’t break any of the spirals.
Step 3: Taste Test & Adjust
Above all, always taste test and adjust each ingredient to your liking.
If it is not sour enough, then add more lime.
You can also add more Tajín to make it more sour. However, this will also make it more spicy and salty at the same time.
If you only want to make it saltier, add only salt instead of Tajín.
Since this recipe uses so few ingredients, it is harder to take away if there is too much of one flavor.
Therefore, I recommend adding just a little at a time and continously taste test until it is just right for you.
These Mexican cucumber spirals are great just on its own as a snack.
It has strong flavors that really hits the tastebuds which make it so satisfying.
You can also serve this as a side.
The flavors pair well with any Mexican-inspired dishes like grilled meats, carne asada nachos, tacos, or whatever your heart desires.
Leftovers & Storage
Mexican cucumber spirals are best enjoyed immediately after it is prepared.
Fresh cucumbers will be the most crunchy which is one of my favorite aspects about eating cucumbers.
However, if you do have any leftovers, you can place them into a sealed container and store it in the fridge.
The cucumbers will soak up the seasonings even more as it sits.
It won’t just be coated in the seasonings but you’ll also be able to taste the flavor coming from inside of the cucumbers as well.
Although the cucumbers will be more flavorful, it will lose its crunch the longer it sits.
It will still have a bite to it, similar to pickles, but not as crisp as fresh cucumbers.
I enjoy it either way!
Save This Mexican Cucumber Spirals Recipe!
I hope you try to recreate these fun Mexican cucumber spirals at home!
They are so easy that I don’t think you really even need a recipe.
It’s such a quick snack to make that only requires 4 simple ingredients and 5 minutes of your time.
Be sure to save this so you remember to make it later and share this fun recipe with your family and friends!
Please leave a rating and comment below if you try it. I’d love to know what you think!
Did you make this recipe? I would love to see! Tag me on IG @feedmi_ or TikTok @feedmi
Mexican Cucumber Spirals
- 10 mini cucumbers
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 tbs Tajín
- salt to taste
- Place a cucumber in between a pair of chopsticks to keep the cuts from going all the way through. Make diagonal cuts on one side of the cucumber, then flip, and make straight cuts on the other side. Repeat until all the cucumbers are cut into spirals.
- In a bowl, add the spiral cucumbers, lime juice, Tajín, and salt. Mix well and gently so the spirals don't break. Make sure the seasonings get into all the crevices.
- Taste test, adjust to your liking, and enjoy!