Desert Salad is a consumable item in Fallout: New Vegas.


Desert Salad provides a very high amount of health over a short period of time, healing 210 Hit Points with a Survival skill of 55, which is necessary to craft it. It is also one of a minority of food items that provide significant restoration to both the Dehydration and Starvation levels while in Hardcore mode.

Though it is not the most filling item in the game, its weight to health ratio makes it one of the most efficient foods available. Accordingly, it is also one of the more difficult items to make, due to the rarity of pinyon nuts.

Survival skill effect

SkillEffectHardcore effect
10+8 Hit Point for 15s-48 Dehydration , -96 Starvation 
20+9 Hit Point for 15s-56 Dehydration , -112 Starvation 
30+11 Hit Point for 15s-64 Dehydration , -128 Starvation 
40+12 Hit Point for 15s-72 Dehydration , -144 Starvation 
50+14 Hit Point for 15s-80 Dehydration , -160 Starvation 
60+15 Hit Point for 15s-88 Dehydration , -176 Starvation 
70+16 Hit Point for 15s-96 Dehydration , -192 Starvation 
80+18 Hit Point for 15s-104 Dehydration , -208 Starvation 
90+19 Hit Point for 15s-112 Dehydration , -224 Starvation 
100+21 Hit Point for 15s-120 Dehydration , -240 Starvation 


This item must be crafted by the Courier. It is not sold by merchants or found anywhere in the wasteland.

Creation requirements

Desert Salad (1)


  • Prior to patch, this item required two barrel cactus fruit and two pinyon nuts in order to be crafted.
  • Based on the in-game item, it seems the Desert Salad also contains common salad greens and tomatoes, even though none of the said items are available.
  • Despite the fact one of the ingredients is brahmin steak, which contains radiation, the salad does not increase the player character's radiation level, making it a way of turning irradiated food into a more "healthy" alternative.

Behind the scenes

Desert Salad is a direct reference to the real-world recipe featured in the Fallout game manual, alongside the Mushroom Cloud recipe. Strangely, even though pinto beans are both part of the original recipe and found in-game, it is not part of the recipe. The instruction manual recipe for desert salad, described below in the expandable:


(Increase or reduce ingredient portions to taste)

  • 1 lb. extra lean ground beef (turkey may be substituted)
  • 6 oz. tortilla chips
  • 1 firm tomato
  • 1/2 head of iceberg lettuce, cut
  • 1 16oz. bottle of Catalina
  • 3 oz. pinto beans
  • 6 oz. sliced olives
  • 1 avocado (optional)
  • 4 oz. cheddar cheese
  • dressing

Brown the meat, drain.

In large bowl, mix lettuce, beans, and olives. Crush chips and add. Cut tomato into small chunks and add to bowl. Shred cheese and add. Slice avocado and add. Add meat. Toss with dressing. Serve.

Makes 4-6 portions.

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