Mexican-Style Steak and Arugula Salad with Avocado and Mango combines lean flank steak with peppery arugula, sweet mango, creamy avocado, and crunchy pepitas with a savory guajillo vinaigrette in a quick, healthy, low carb main dish salad!
Is summer heating up in your “neck of the woods?” Here in south Texas, we’ve had a pretty mild spring, with daytime highs in the eighties. IDEAL weather for grilling. We’re ramping up our grill repertoire with this Mexican-Style Steak and Arugula Salad with Avocado and Mango.
AND… It’s time for Progressive Eats, our monthly virtual progressive dinner party! Yay! This month’s theme is “Spring Has Sprung- Dishes that highlight ingredients and flavors associated with spring.” My awesome blogger friend Laura Kumin at Mother Would know is our delightful hostess! Be sure to scroll to the very end of this post to peruse our list of fabulous spring recipes!
Admittedly we don’t have a real “spring” in McAllen, Texas. We have a range of hot to very hot and humid, with a few cool and pleasant days sprinkled here and there throughout the year. In May, we’re definitely using our grill regularly. If you live in the frozen north, be sure to pin this Mexican-Style Steak and Arugula Salad for summer!
Spring Fruits and Vegetables
I have a confession to make: I had to check this post before deciding what direction I wanted to head for my #ProgressiveEats recipe this month. I will chalk it up to the lack of seasons and year ’round availability of quality produce in south Texas. LOL.
I always want to give credit where credit is due. I have probably mentioned before, Rick Bayless provides so much inspiration to this Latin focused home cook! In fact, my Mexican-Style Steak and Arugula Salad evolved from his Grilled Skirt Steak Salad with Mango and Arugula.
The combination of sweet mango, creamy avocado, peppery arugula, succulent (medium-rare) flank steak, spiced candied pepitas, and a roasted garlic and red chile vinaigrette makes for one healthy, gluten free, quick and easy dish with flavors that will dance on your tongue (and not heat up the kitchen)!
Making Mexican-Style Steak and Arugula Salad
While the marinade-vinaigrette takes a few minutes to prepare, it serves as both the 1. Marinade and 2. Vinaigrette. While the flank steak marinates, spend 5 minutes making these Easy Spiced Candied Pepitas.
This steak and arugula salad is SO EASY to make. Trust me! The main ingredients include your choice of dried red chiles. On photo day, I used 1 ancho, 1 guajillo, and 1 chipotle. I almost always have dried red chiles in my well-stocked pantry!
In addition to the chiles, we have (clockwise from left) olive oil, pepper, Hawaiian red salt, sherry vinegar, and roasted garlic.
In addition to these flavorful ingredients, you’ll need agave nectar, and optional anchovy paste.
The “active” time with this recipe is the marinade that doubles as the salad dressing (vinaigrette). Honestly, it doesn’t take that much time. It is important to press the puréed ingredients through a strainer to remove the tough bits of skin from the chiles.
Step 1 Toast/soften the red chiles in the olive oil.
Step 2 Purée the chiles and the chile oil with the remaining vinaigrette/marinade ingredients. Push through a strainer. 1/2 of this mixture serves as a marinade, and 1/2 as the vinaigrette.
Step 3 place the flank steak in a zip bag with 1/2 of the marinade for 1 to 2 hours.
Step 4 Once the flank steak is grilled, the salad is ready to be assembled. Toss the arugula, mango, and avocado with the remaining 1/2 of the vinaigrette. Lay the sliced flank steak over top, and garnish with Easy Spiced Candied Pepitas!Welcome to Progressive Eats, our virtual version of a Progressive Dinner Party. This month’s theme is Spring Has Sprung- Dishes that highlight ingredients and flavors associated with spring, and our host is Laura who blogs at Mother Would KnowIf you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a progressive dinner involves going from house to house, enjoying a different course at each location. With Progressive Eats it’s a virtual party. A theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out. Come along and see all of the delicious spring inspired dishes!
Spring Has Sprung- Dishes that highlight ingredients and flavors associated with springBeverages
- Fresh Strawberry Thyme Bellini – Mother Would Know
- Vegetable Tray with Herby Yogurt Dip – Healthy Delicious
- Baked Brie with Fresh Berries and Toasted Walnuts – Creative Culinary
- Creamy Asparagus Soup (Gluten Free & Dairy Free) – The Heritage Cook
- Artichoke Foccacia – From a Chef’s Kitchen
- Spring Onion Fiddlehead Risotto – Sarah’s Cucina Bella
- Grilled Mexican Steak and Arugula Salad – Beyond Mere Sustenance
- Strawberry Spinach Salad – OMG Yummy
- Shrimp and Pork Belly Fried Rice with Peas – Karen’s Kitchen Stories
Red Chile and Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette-Marinade
- 2 to 3 dried red chiles (see notes)
- 2/3 cup olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic (see notes)
- 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
- 1/3 cup sherry vinegar (see notes)
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar
- sea salt (start with about 1/2 teaspoon and taste)
- fresh ground pepper
Grilled Mexican Steak and Arugula Salad
- 1 pound lean flank steak
- 2 mangoes (any variety but I prefer ataulfo aka honey) peeled and diced
- 1 large or 2 small avocados, diced
- 5 ounces arugula
- 1/2 cup Easy Spiced Candied Pepitas
- Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles, and cut into several pieces.
- Add the red chiles, oil, garlic, and anchovy paste to a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Toast until the chiles start to darken and garlic (if using raw) are golden (1-2 minutes).
- Remove from the heat and allow it to cool before adding to the bowl of a food processor with the remaining ingredients - sherry vinegar, agave nectar, salt, and pepper.
- Pulse until smooth. If you're having a hard time getting it smooth, you can press it through a sieve.
- Add half of the vinaigrette/marinade to a zip bag with the flank steak. Marinate 1-2 hours.
- Add the other half of the vinaigrette/marinade to a mason jar or other container with a lid and shake just prior to plating. Don't forget to taste it for seasoning!
- Remove the flank steak from the marinade. Salt both sides. Place on a hot grill over medium-high heat.
- Grill the flank steak to desired doneness. We like medium-rare, and our 1 pound flank steak takes about 3 minutes per side.
- When the steak is to your liking, rest it for a few minutes before slicing. Toss with half of the remaining vinaigrette.
- Add the mangoes, avocados, and arugula to a salad bowl. Toss with the remaining vinaigrette.
- Plate the salad with sliced steak over top, and garnish with the spiced candied pepitas. Enjoy!
On photo day I used 1 dried ancho, 1 dried guajillo, and 1 dried chipotle. You can use New Mexico dried red chile or others as well. Know the heat of your chiles. If you want the smoky heat of chipotle and only have canned, add the chipotle in to the processor (no need to cook it).
If I have recently roasted garlic, I just toss 3 cloves into the processor, and don't add them to the sauté pan.
I always have sherry vinegar, and its smooth, aged flavor is perfect. You can use another good quality vinegar (champagne, white or red wine vinegar).
If you use a different sweetener like brown sugar or honey, you'll need to add an extra teaspoon probably. Taste it first!
Macronutrients are an approximation only from MyFitnessPal.com and based on half the vinaigrette-marinade (it doesn't all end up on your salad), 1 large avocado, 2 medium mangoes, and doesn't include the spiced candied pepitas as they're a garnish. They run about 97 calories for 2 tablespoons.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 642 Total Fat: 46g Carbohydrates: 47g Protein: 36g