El Torito Recipes

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El Torito recipes - the easy way to prepare the best dishes from the El Torito menu. These are copycat recipes, not necessarily made the same way as they are prepared at El Torito, but closely modeled on the flavors and textures of El Torito popular food, so you can bring the exotic tastes of one of the best chain restaurants in the US to your own table for a fraction of the cost.

Located primarily in California, El Torito is a chain of fast casual Mexican restaurants founded in 1954 and often credited with popularizing the margarita in the US. El Torito restaurants can also be found in Arizona and Oregon with a handful of overseas locations.

From Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits to Buffalo Wild Wings hot sauce, chain and franchise restaurants are popular destinations around the world. Eating out too frequently can be costly, not to mention that it's hard to control portion size, ingredients, or the style of cooking to suit your preferences.

Making El Torito recipes on your own allows you to save money while enjoying your favorite menu items from the casual dining spot. This list collections the best copycat El Torito recipes from around the Web.
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  1. 1
    + 28
    - 5

    Sweet Corn Cake

    Sweet Corn Cake is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    1/4 cup butter, unsalted
    2 tablespoons shortening
    1/2 cup masa harina
    3 tablespoons cold water
    10 ounces frozen corn kernels (can be substituted with canned cream corn)
    3 tablespoons cornmeal
    1/4 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons whipping cream
    1/4 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt

    - Whip butter and shortening in mixing bowl until fluffy and creamy.
    - Add masa harina and mix; add water while mixing.
    - Blend corn kernels and stir into masa mixture.

    - Mix cornmeal, sugar, whipping cream, baking powder and salt.
    - Add butter-masa mixture until blended.
    - Pour mixture to baking pan and cover with foil. Bake for 40-50 miunutes.
    - Wait to sit for 15 minutes before cutting to squares or serve using ice cream scoop. Makes 8 servings.
  2. 2
    + 17
    - 3

    Mexican Caesar Salad

    Mexican Caesar Salad is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    * for Cilantro Pepita Dressing
    2 medium Anaheim chiles, roasted, peeled and seeded
    1/3 cup roasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
    2 cloves garlic, peeled
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1 teaspoon salt
    12 ounces salad oil
    1/4 cup red wine vinegar
    5 tablespoons grated Cotija cheese
    2 small bunches cilantro, stemmed
    1 1/2 cup mayonnaise
    1/4 cup water

    * for Salad
    2 corn tortillas
    vegetable oil
    1 large head romaine lettuce, rinsed and spun dry
    1/3 cup finely grated Cotija cheese
    roasted red bell pepper, peeled and cut into julienne strips
    1/2 cup pepitas (roasted pumpkin seeds)

    - Combine chicken broth, onion, carrots, celery, bell pepper, potatoes, tomato paste, bay leaf, garlic, and oregano; bring to boil and simmer in a large pot for 25 minutes. Season to taste.
    - Add zuccini, tomatoes and chicken breasts; bring to boil and simmer to 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
    - Cut tortillas to matchstick strips.
    - Saute tortillas in hot oil until crisp. Set aside to drain on paper towels.
    - Place tortilla strips in individual bowls. Cover with grated cheese and ladle in soup.
    - Top soup with slice of avocado and cilantro sprig. Makes 8-10 servings.
  3. 3
    + 14
    - 2

    El Torito's Deep-Fried Ice Cream

    El Torito's Deep-Fried Ice Cre... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    20 ounces chocolate chip ice cream
    2 cups 4-grain flake cereal, crushed
    1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
    3 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    2 eggs
    1 teaspoon water
    4 (8-inch) flour tortillas
    Oil for deep-frying
    Cinnamon-Sugar
    Whipped cream
    4 maraschino cherries

    - Form 4 ice cream balls and place in baking pan. Freeze solid for 2 hours.
    - Mix cereal, sugar and cinnamon. Divide equally in 2 pie plates; beat eggs with water.
    - Roll ice cream ball in cereal mixture and press coating into ice cream. Dip coated ball in egg wash, then roll in second pie plate of mixture; press coating onto ice cream. Freeze ice cream balls for 4-6 hours.
    - Hourglass-shaped tortilla: Cut off curved silce from 2 opposite sides of each end. One end will serve as base for ice cream. Other end will be a decorative fan.
    - Heat oil in pan. Place tortilla between 2 ladles or large spoons of different sizes, with the smaller one on top. Place tortilla with base end cupped in larger ladle to form basket.
    - Deep fry until crisp. Drain and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar.
    - Deep fry frozen coated ice cream balls for a minute. Place each tortilla in large-stemmed glass, fan part standing vertically above glass.
    - Set ice cream in tortilla base; top with whipped cream and cherry. Makes 4 servings.
  4. 4
    + 10
    - 1

    El Torito's Salsa

    El Torito's Salsa is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    1 cup crushed tomatoes with added puree (such as Progresso)
    2 cups tomatoes, diced 1/4 inch, including juice
    1/4 cup yellow onion, diced 1/4 inch
    2 green onions, finely chopped
    1 tablespoon canned jalapenos, seeded and finely chopped
    2 fresh serrano chiles, seeded and minced
    2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
    1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
    1/4 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, crumbled
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped

    - Blend crushed tomatoes with added puree for 30 seconds in a blender. Mixture should come out chunky.
    - Add crushed tomatoes to the rest of the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
  5. 5
    + 8
    - 1

    Sizzling Beef Fajitas

    Sizzling Beef Fajitas is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    3 pounds tri-tip or bottom sirloin of beef
    1/3 cup margarine
    2 medium Spanish onions, cut into 1/4-inch julienne slices
    4 medium green peppers, cut into 1/4-inch julienne slices
    1 teaspoon seasoning salt
    1 pound tomatoes, cut into wedges
    Lemon wedges
    * for Marinade
    2 1/2 cups soy sauce
    1 1/4 cups water
    1 1/4 cups white vinegar
    1 teaspoon minced garlic
    1 teaspoon white pepper

    - Marinade: Combine soy sauce, water, vinegar, garlic and pepper in large container. Whip with wire whisk until well mixed.
    - Place meat in shallow pan and pour marinade. Refrigerate for 3 hours.
    - Remove meat from marinade and cut into 1/2x3-inch strips.
    - Melt margarine in large skillet. Add onions, green peppers and seasoning salt. Saute until vegetables are tender.
    - Place meat in large cast-iron skillet and sear over medium heat.
    - Remove meat from skillet when browned. Place another skillet upside down over high flame. Heat almost to point of smoking for about 90 seconds.
    - Remove hot serving skillet from burner and pile with meat strips and vegetables.
    - Place tomato wedges over meat and vegetables. Garnish with lemon wedges. Makes 6 servings.
  6. 6
    + 10
    - 3

    El Torito's Tableside Guacamole

    El Torito's Tableside Guacamol... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    3 Avocado halves
    1/2 lime
    1 small chile pepper - diced
    salt and pepper to taste
    1/2 cup pico de gallo
    1 tbsp garlic powder

    - Scoop avocado out of skin.
    - Add chili pepper and lime juice
    - Mash with fork
    - Add remaining ingredients and fold together
    - Season with salt and pepper to taste
  7. 7
    + 12
    - 7

    Chicken Enchiladas

    Chicken Enchiladas is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    3/4 pound shredded cooked chicken
    1 medium onion, chopped
    28 ounces El Torito fire roasted green chili sauce
    1 1/2 cup sour cream, optional
    12 corn tortillas, 6-inch size
    1 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
    1 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, optional
    vegetable oil for softening tortillas

    - Preheat oven to 350 degress F.
    - Combine chicken and onion in a bowl.
    - In another bowl, combine enchilada sauce and sour cream if desired. - Add 3/4 cup of sauce to chicken mixture.
    - Softening tortillas: place a small amount of oil in skillet. Heat oil until hot, then dip each tortilla in oil 5 seconds per side to soften. Drain on paper towel.
    - Spread a small amount of enchilada sauce over bottom of baking dish.
    - Divide chicken mixture evenly on each tortilla and roll them up. Place them seam-side down onto baking dish.
    - Pour enchilada sauce over tortillas and sprinkle with cheese, then bake for 20-30 minutes. Makes 8 servings.
  8. 8
    + 4
    - 1

    Grill Fire-Roasted Tomato Soup

    Grill Fire-Roasted Tomato Soup is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list El Torito Recipes
    Photo: user uploaded image
    3 lb. tomatoes
    1 oz. chicken chorizo
    1 chile poblano, seeded and diced
    1/2 med. onion, diced
    1/4 tea. oregano
    1 lrg. clove garlic, diced
    1 1/2 C. chicken broth or stock
    1 C. whipped cream
    Salt
    White pepper
    Cayenne pepper
    1/2 C. roasted corn kernels
    Cilantro sprigs

    Crema Fresca
    2/3 C. sour cream
    1/3 C. half-and-half

    Avocado Sauce
    1 lrg. Haas avocado, peeled and diced
    1 Tbsp. pickled jalapeno juice
    1 Tbsp. minced cilantro
    1 green onion, chopped
    1 Serrano chile, chopped
    1 clove garlic, diced
    Salt
    1/4 C. water, about


    - Scorch tomatoes over charcoal grill; cool lightly.
    - Cook chorizo in large saucepan.
    - Add chile, onion, oregano, garlic and saute until onion is transparent.
    - Add unpeeled tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to boil and simmer 10-15 minutes.
    - Add cream, salt, white pepper and cayenne.
    - Puree soup in batches in blender until smooth. Return to pot.
    - Add corn and stir to heat, ladle into heated bowls.
    - Crema Fresca: In bowl, mix sour cream and half-and-half thoroughly. Pour into squeeze bottles.
    - Avocado Sauce: Place avocado, jalapeno juice, cilantro, onion, Serrano chile, garlic, salt and water in blender container and blend until thick liquid that can be squeezed from bottle is formed. Add more water, if necessary.
    - Drizzle Crema Fresca and Avocado sauce using separate squeeze bottles. Garnish with cilantro sprigs if desired. Makes 8-10 servings.
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