Everything You Need to Know About The Prickly Pear

28th November 2017

By MACROS | Published on November 28, 2017

The prickly pear is popular in Mexico and southwestern USA. And while it has a tough skin speckled with thorns, you shouldn’t let that scary exterior deter you from the healthy interior.


What do they look like?

As the fruit of a cactus plant, prickly pears are oval shaped, about 2-4 inches long and red to orange in colour, with thorns speckling the outside. The ones you find in stores will have the thorns removed but gloves are still recommended for peeling.


Heart health

The prickly pear, sometimes known as the cactus pear, contains 35% of your daily requirement of vitamin C in just one fruit. This is essential for keeping cholesterol low and preventing digestive disorders caused by the gall bladder. Low cholesterol promotes a healthy heart to keep you pumping through every workout.


Keep on going

Magnesium is an essential mineral found abundantly in prickly pears. This mineral directly affects your energy production during aerobic activity. It acts on your ATPases enzymes to activate the production of energy required to keep running when you need to.


– RELATED: 3 Reasons To Eat More Kiwi Fruit


Burn some fat

Prickly pears are flush with a B-vitamin called riboflavin, which prepares fatty acids to be used as fuel by the cells. Without this process, fatty acids are not converted to usable fuel for the body. So if your goal is to burn some body fat, the prickly pear contains the nutrients to make sure you can use that fat to create new personal bests.


Serve it the tasty way

Make sure to peel the prickly pear properly before trying this tasty recipe for prickly pear fruit salad. First cut off each end of the fruit. With a sharp knife, cut a seam lengthwise down the thick skin. Separate the two sides and peel the skin away from the prickly pear, leaving only the brightly coloured flesh for this recipe:

Prickly pear fruit salad

You’ll Need (serves two)

  • 1 cup chopped prickly pear fruit
  • 8 ripe strawberries
  • 10 fresh green grapes
  • 1 orange
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1⁄4 tsp cinnamon


Step 1: Wash and clean all the fruit. Peel the prickly pear. Chop strawberries and prickly pear into bite-sized pieces. Leave grapes whole. Peel the orange and segment, leaving the pith behind.

Step: 2: Place all fruit in bowl. If any flesh is left from the orange, squeeze the juice over the fruit.

Step 3: Drizzle honey and sprinkle the cinnamon over the fruit. Serve immediately.