Chicken Tamales with Cactus & Kale

Total Time: 1 hour
Serves: 10
Chicken Tamales with Cactus & Kale
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  • 10 dried corn husks
  • 1½ lbs. of corn masa
  • ½ cup of grapeseed oil
  • 1½ teaspoons of sea salt
  • 1½ teaspoons of baking powder
  • ½ cup of water
  • 1½ cups of Cactus and Kale Sauce
  • ¾ lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1½ cup of mixed, diced vegetables of your choice – can be grilled or lightly sautéed (we suggest: zucchini, cactus and red bell pepper)

Cactus and Kale Sauce

  • 1 cup of cooked & chopped cactus leaves (can be grilled or boiled)
  • 1½ cup of kale cut into thick strips
  • ½ bunch of cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon chopped Serrano peppers (optional)
  • ½ cup of wáter.
  • Mix all the ingredients in a blender until liquefied.


  1. Soak the corn husks in warm water.
  2. Cook the chicken breast on the grill and then chop into small pieces or boil in water and shred.
  3. Cook the vegetables you chose to add to the filling (grill or sauté).
  4. In a large bowl, combine the corn masa, the Cactus and Kale Sauce, oil, salt, baking powder and water.  You can use a mixer or mix by hand.
  5. Take a corn husk and spread 2 tablespoons of the masa across the wide end of the husk stopping about ½ an inch from the edges.
  6. Place 1 tablespoon of chicken and 1 tablespoon of vegetables in a line down the center of the masa.
  7. Roll the husk folding each side towards the center, using an extra husk if needed.  Fold the bottom part of the tamale under.
  8. Place the tamales in a tamale steamer, standing them upright on their folded ends.  Be careful not to pack them too tightly.
  9. Cover the steamer and cook 30 to 40 minutes until the masa is cooked and separates easily from the husk.

Nutrition Information:

  • Portion size: 1 tamale.  Calories 281, Total Fat 13 g, Saturated Fat 1.5 g, Monounsaturated Fat 2.5, Polyunsaturated Fat 8 g, Cholesterol 24 mg, Sodium 504 mg, Carbohydrates 29 g, Fiber 2.5 g, Protein 12 g
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