grilled romain salad

queso frescoanchopiloncillo

Grilled Romaine and Red Bell Peppers with Ancho Chile Vinaigrette and Cheese

Grilled Romaine and Red Bell Peppers with Ancho Chile Vinaigrette and Cheese

Ensalada de Lechuga y Pimientos Asados con Vinagreta de Chile Ancho y Queso

Recipe Yield

6 servings

Cooking time

8 hours 22 minutes

Rate this recipe

4.41 from 5 votes


For the vinaigrette:

  • 6 to 8 (about 3 ounces) ancho chiles rinsed, stemmed and seeded
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped white onion
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher or coarse sea salt or to taste
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar or grated piloncillo or to taste

For the salad:

  • 3 red bell peppers
  • 3 heads romaine lettuce
  • olive oil to drizzle
  • 1/2 cup queso fresco mild feta or farmers’ cheese, crumbled

To Prepare

To make the vinaigrette:

  • Using kitchen scissors or a sharp knife, cut the stemmed and seeded chiles lengthwise into thin strips and place them in a mixing bowl. Add the onion, garlic, vinegars, oil, salt and sugar to the bowl and toss to mix well. Transfer everything to a container with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate for at least 8 hours before using.

To make the salad:

  • Place the red bell peppers either on a tray under the broiler, on a heated grill, or on a heated comal on the stovetop, and char on all sides, flipping as each side chars, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat. Once cool enough to handle, remove the stems and cut into slices (without removing the skin or discarding the juices).
  • Slice the romaine lettuces in half lengthwise. Drizzle each half with a small amount of olive oil and sprinkle on a pinch of salt and pepper. Place them on a heated grill or comal and quickly char, about 1 minute per side.
  • Serve lettuces on a platter along with the red bell pepper strips, ladle the ancho chile vinaigrette on top and sprinkle with the cheese.


32comments inGrilled Romaine and Red Bell Peppers with Ancho Chile Vinaigrette and Cheese

  1. Gloria Limanni

    Jun 23

    My husband and I are huge fans of Pati, her show and her recipes. We made this salad last night for our son’s 30th birthday dinner. It was delicious and enjoyed by the entire family. We made steak and lobster on the grill (our son’s favs) and grilled corn to round out the meal.
    We have made at least 8 recipes in Pati’s catalog thus far, and each was easy to follow and delish! Thank you Pati and team. <3 BTW- the homemade Chili Relleno was the best we have ever had and so FUN to make!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 03

      OMG thanks so much Gloria, so glad you have been enjoying my recipes, yay! Happy Birthday to your son 😉

  2. Whitney

    Feb 14

    Pati! I loved the “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” episode! I’d like to recreate this whole meal but can’t find the drink name or recipe you made with your beautiful sister. Can you please help me out? 🙂

    1. Pati Jinich

      Feb 15

      Hey Whitney, so glad you liked that episode! The drink is called Spinning Top Cocktail (or Trompo Zacatecano in Spanish) and here is the recipe for you, enjoy!

  3. SisterElizabeth

    Sep 11

    Hey friend U think Chile Ancho pickled relish vinaigrette would taste good with guajillos or any other chilles instead of the anchos ? (Though the Ancho version’s fabulous )

    Amazing recipes comin’ out of ur head ! !
    Keep m coming plz

    1. Pati Jinich

      Oct 01

      ​Oh, no the guajillos won’t work for this one. Their skin is much tougher… but you can try this salsa with the Guajillos: Enjoy, Sister Elizabeth!

  4. Marisa

    Jul 08

    Your recipe is the bomb!
    I used left over for my ribs.
    I gave decided I want to have dinner at your house. Lol
    Thank you

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 09

      Thank you, Marisa!

  5. Lily

    Feb 07

    Hi Pati, love your show. I tape your 9:30 show (Vancouver time) every morning and enjoy watching it after dinner every evening. Just one question about this recipe, can I just tear up the romaine lettuce and toss with the ancho chile vinaigrette without grilling it first?

    1. Pati

      Feb 07

      Absolutely! It will have a different texture and flavor…but still be delicious!

  6. Claudia DeLucia

    Jul 26

    Hey Pati. Had a few ancho chiles sitting in the cabinet forever. Finally… something easy to do with them. Just put them in the fridge. I have to wait all day for them? UGH! Can’t wait! So far it appears to be a keeper. When they’re done, I suspect I can put them in a blender and make a smooth dressing out of them, yes? Over steak or chicken? YUMMO!

    1. Pati

      Jul 28

      Yes! You can make a dressing out of them, you may need to add a bit more oil to help emulsify. You will be able to use them in so many ways!

  7. Mike

    Oct 25

    Hi Pati, I just watched your show for the first time this morning and loved what I saw. I BBQ quite often and I’m always looking for new recipes. I can hardly wait to try your Honey Chipotle Ribs. I have a question though on what exactly is “sauce from chipotles in adobe sauce”. Is this something I can buy at the store? Thanks. Mike

    1. Pati

      Oct 27

      Hola Mike, Thank you so much for watching! It’s the sauce the chipotle chiles come marinated in when you buy a can of chipotle chiles in adobo sauce — you just scoop it right out of the can. Look for them in the international section of your local grocery store. I hope you try the ribs!!

  8. Hi Pati,

    Aug 31

    Hi Pati,

    I love your show. I look forward to watching it on Sat. mornings.

    I was wondering if the ancho chills be substituted with any other dry chills?


    1. Pati

      Aug 31

      Thanks Mary! For this vinaigrette, the only other ones that I think would work are the “mulatos”. More info here:

  9. Marj

    Jun 12

    Hi Pati,
    Thank you so much for your reply. Im definitely going to make this recipe. I have never tried grilling my salad. This is definitely a must try recipe. Im also excited to make your orange flan recipe. Love love love your show!!!!

    Many many thanks,

  10. Marj

    Jun 05

    Hi Pati, i always enjoy watching your show. However i missed the first part of your ancho chile vinegrette. Did u use dried chile or fresh chile. Thanks!


    1. Pati

      Jun 11

      Hola Marj, Thank you for watching! Dried ancho chile — you can see how to make the vinaigrette within this recipe: Hope you try it.

  11. Sioux Christie

    May 28

    We made the Grilled Romain and Red Pepper Ancho Chile Vinaigrette Salad this last Memorial Day Weekend. It turned out GREAT! We put it on the barbecue and it turned out Really Good! We are going to make it again this coming weekend. The Vinaigrette is Wonderful.

    1. Pati

      May 28

      So happy to hear! Thank you for making it!!

  12. A.L. Allen

    May 25

    Loved this recipe. My first time of trying any of your recipes. You called it a relish on the T.V. Had a hard time finding it. This is a keeper. I’m making my second batch now. Because I was thinking relish, I made it sweeter, loved it even more.

    Now I have been wanting to try your tre leche cake. Looks more difficult. I’am a taco eater since childhood. Love all of them. Can’t have sandwiches (too much bread) tacos are a better substitute. Especially corn tortillas.

    You make your cooking fun and personal. Thank you.

    1. Pati

      May 26

      Thank you for trying the recipes and for watching the show ; )

  13. Paty

    May 24

    ¡Recetas fantásticas!La voy a intentar para la fiesta del fin de semana. ¡Eres mi nueva heroína culinaria!Te estoy promocionando con todas mis amistades.

    1. Pati

      May 26

      Muchas gracias, Paty!

  14. Maria Dangel

    May 17

    I just made the ancho chili vinaigrette and from what I remember it looking like on the show and what I know about vinegrettes (1 part acid to 3 parts oil), is it possible that there should be more than 1/2 cup oil?

    1. Pati

      May 18

      This is really not a traditional vinaigrette at all, it is more like an escabeche or pickle, used as a vinaigrette. Give it a try as is Maria! You can adjust with a bit more oil if you feel it needs more…

  15. maluE

    May 10

    i gathered from watching the show that the vinaigrette keeps very well in the fridge .. forever? .. do i just keep “feeding” it with more vinegars and oil? .. and more solids too, over time?

    1. Pati

      May 11

      Haha, yes. Just add a bit more oil and vinegar, and give it a stir. Taste for salt as you do as well…

  16. Sue

    May 05

    Hi Pati, I love watching to see what recipes you show us how to make. Is the queso fresco cheese available in US? I am looking forward to trying these dishes from this episode!

  17. Sevda Baran

    May 04

    I just watched your show and i loved it.

    1. Pati

      May 04


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