5 from 1 vote
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Easy Black Bean And Corn Mexican Salad Recipe

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This simple Black Bean and Corn Salad is a vibrant and nutritious addition to any meal. Packed with fresh vegetables and zesty flavors, this black bean corn salad is perfect for a quick lunch or a crowd-pleasing side dish. Best of all, this easy salad is incredibly easy to make and a perfect summer salad.

A white bowl of black bean corn salad sitting on a plate with chips surrounding it.

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Enjoy the delightful combination of ingredients that creates a refreshing and satisfying simple salad. The crisp corn kernels and creamy black beans are beautifully complemented by the zest of lime and the kick of fresh cilantro. Whether served on its own or as a perfect side dish, this black bean salad recipe is sure to impress.

If you are on the hunt for more healthy recipes, I have a few more you might want to try out. You might enjoy an easy deviled egg pasta salad for a light lunch option. Or for something different, grab some heirloom tomatoes and make a tomato salad with balsamic and feta cheese.

Still in the mood for more Mexican corn? Try this elote corn salad with Cotija cheese!

Why This Recipe Works

  1. Quick and Easy to Prepare: This salad comes together in just minutes, making it a fantastic option for busy weeknights or last-minute gatherings.
  2. Nutritious and Healthy: Packed with fiber-rich black beans, fresh produce, and a tangy lime dressing, it’s a nutritious choice that doesn’t compromise on flavor.
  3. Versatile Dish: Whether served as a main course, a side dish, or even a topping for tacos, this salad is incredibly versatile and fits into various meal plans.
  4. Bursting with Flavor: The combination of crisp corn, creamy black beans, zesty lime, and fresh cilantro creates a vibrant, mouthwatering taste that’s sure to satisfy.

What’s in This Black Bean And Corn Salad Recipe? 

Ingredients for black bean and corn salad sitting on a marble countertop.
  • Black Beans: These protein-packed legumes add heartiness to the salad, providing a creamy texture and a slightly earthy flavor that complements the other ingredients perfectly.
  • Frozen Corn Kernels: Using frozen corn ensures convenience without sacrificing taste. The corn kernels retain their crispness and sweet flavor, adding a delightful crunch to every bite.
  • Green Bell Pepper: Adds a refreshing, slightly bitter crunch to the salad, balancing the sweetness of the corn and the creaminess of the black beans.
  • Red Bell Pepper: Not only does red pepper bring vibrant color to the dish, but it also offers a sweet and slightly fruity taste, enhancing the overall flavor profile of the salad.
  • Italian Dressing: This dressing serves as the base flavor, infusing the salad with savory herbs and spices and ensuring that each bite is deliciously seasoned.
  • Lime Juice: Freshly squeezed lime juice adds a zingy brightness to the salad, intensifying the flavors of all the other ingredients while adding a tangy twist.
  • Garlic Salt: Combines the robust flavor of garlic with the simplicity of salt, providing a perfect seasoning that ties all the ingredients together.
  • Ground Cumin Powder: Adds a warm, earthy undertone that gives the salad a subtle complexity, reminiscent of traditional Mexican cuisine.
  • Fresh Cilantro: Finely chopped good quality cilantro leaves bring an aromatic freshness and a slight citrusy note that lifts the flavors of the salad, making it more vibrant and lively.

The complete list of ingredients, quantities, and instructions can be found in the printable recipe card below.

A wooden spoon with black bean salsa.

Substitutions and Additions 

  • Black Beans: If you don’t have canned black beans on hand, feel free to substitute them with kidney beans or chickpeas. Both alternatives will provide a similar texture and flavor.
  • Frozen Corn Kernels: Fresh or canned corn can be substituted. If using canned corn, make sure to drain and rinse it thoroughly.
  • Italian Dressing: For a different flavor profile, try using a vinaigrette or a homemade dressing made with olive oil, vinegar, and your choice of herbs and spices.
  • Green and Red Bell Peppers: If you prefer a different type of pepper, you can use orange or yellow bell peppers or even poblano peppers for a bit more heat.
  • Garlic Salt: If garlic salt isn’t available, you can use regular salt with a dash of garlic powder.
  • Avocado: Diced avocado adds creamy richness and additional healthy fats to the salad. Toss it in just before serving to prevent browning.
  • Red Onion: Finely chopped red onion adds a sharp bite and extra crunch, balancing the sweetness of the corn.
  • Jalapeños: For those who enjoy a bit of heat, diced jalapeños or a splash of hot sauce or cayenne pepper can intensify the dish’s flavor.
  • Cheese: Crumbled Cotija or Feta cheese can add a tangy, salty dimension to the salad, making it even more satisfying.
  • Spices: A pinch of smoked paprika or chili powder can deepen the salad’s flavor, adding complexity and a touch of smokiness.

How to Make Mexican Corn Black Bean Salad (step-by-step directions)

Collage of creating black bean corn salsa.
  1. Mix the corn, black beans, and peppers in a large bowl. (Photo 1)
  2. In a small bowl, add the Italian dressing and lime juice. Once combined, add the garlic salt and cumin, and mix again. (Photo 2)
  3. Pour the dressing over the corn salad ingredients and stir to combine. Add cilantro, toss to combine and serve. (Photos 3 & 4)
Two stacks of bowls with black bean and corn salsa.

Recipe Tips

  • Use Fresh Ingredients: For the best flavor, use fresh lime juice and freshly chopped cilantro.
  • Chill Before Serving: Allow the salad to chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving. This enhances the flavors and gives a refreshing crunch.
  • Toss Just Before Serving: To redistribute the dressing and ensure every bite is well-coated, give the salad a quick toss right before serving.
  • Adjust Seasoning to Taste: You can adjust the seasoning by adding more lime juice, garlic salt, or cumin, according to your preference.
  • Prep Ahead of Time: You can prep the ingredients ahead of time and store them separately. Mix everything together and add the dressing just before serving for maximum freshness.

Storing Tips 

Leftovers or a big batch of this salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days. If you anticipate storing it, keep the salad components and the dressing separate for the best freshness. Combine and toss the salad right before serving to maintain its crisp texture and vibrant flavors.

Freezing this flavorful black bean and corn salad is not recommended, as the vegetables will lose their crispness, and the texture will become mushy once thawed. 

A white low bowl of black beans and corn salad.

Serving Suggestions 

This Black Bean and Corn Salad is incredibly versatile and pairs well with a variety of dishes. Here are some serving suggestions to complement your salad:

  • Grilled Meats: Serve alongside grilled chicken, steak, or shrimp for a balanced meal that’s both hearty and nutritious. The lightness of the salad pairs excellently with the savory flavors of grilled meats.
  • Tacos and Burritos: Use the salad as a fresh topping for rolled tacos and burritos. It adds a burst of flavor and crunch that elevates the overall dish.
  • Rice Dishes: Serve it as a side to a bowl of Mexican rice or cilantro lime rice. The combination creates a satisfying and flavorful meal.
  • Nachos: Sprinkle the salad on top of a plate of nachos, along with some melted cheese and your favorite toppings. It adds a fresh and vibrant element to the crunchy nachos.
  • Avocado Toast: Use this salad as a topping for avocado toast. The black beans and corn add protein and texture, transforming a simple snack into a more filling meal.
  • Fish: Pair it with grilled or baked fish such as salmon, tilapia, or snapper. The zesty, fresh flavors of the salad complement the delicate taste of the fish.
  • Flatbreads and Quesadillas: Add the salad as a filling or topping for flatbread and chicken quesadillas. It adds a nice contrast to the cheesy, savory fillings.
  • Chips and Dips: Serve it as a dip with tortilla chips for a quick and easy appetizer. The combination is always a crowd-pleaser.

Recipe FAQs

Can I make this salad ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the ingredients ahead of time and store them separately in the refrigerator. Combine the corn, black beans, and peppers, and keep the dressing in a separate container. Mix everything together and add the dressing just before serving to ensure the salad remains crisp and fresh.

What can I use instead of Italian dressing?

If you prefer a different dressing, you can use a simple vinaigrette made of olive oil, vinegar (such as red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar), and your choice of herbs and spices. Alternatively, try a lime-cilantro dressing for a zestier flavor profile.

How spicy is this salad?

The salad is mildly spicy due to the addition of cumin in the dressing. If you prefer a spicier dish, add jalapeños, spicier chili, or a splash of hot sauce. For a milder version, simply omit the jalapeños and chili powder.

Can I add other vegetables to the salad?

Absolutely! This salad is very versatile. Additional vegetables such as diced tomatoes, cucumbers, or even roasted zucchini can be incorporated to enhance the flavor and nutritional value. Feel free to get creative with the veggies you have on hand.

Is this salad vegan and gluten-free?

Yes, this Black Bean and Corn Salad is both vegan and gluten-free. The ingredients are all plant-based, and there are no gluten-containing ingredients. Just be sure to check the labels on store-bought dressings and spices to ensure they comply with your dietary preferences.

Need More Mexican Recipes? Try These:

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A bowl of black bean and corn salsa surrounded with chips.
5 from 1 vote

Easy Black Bean and Corn Mexican Salad Recipe


Author: Kim Schob
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Yields 6 portions
This simple Black Bean and Corn Salad is a vibrant and nutritious addition to any meal. Packed with fresh vegetables and zesty flavors, this black bean corn salad is perfect for a quick lunch or a crowd-pleasing side dish. 

Ingredients 

  • 2 15 ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • cups (410 g) frozen corn kernels 1-12 ounce bag
  • 1 cup (149 g) diced green bell pepper
  • 1 cup (149 g) diced red bell pepper
  • cup (157 ¾ ml) prepared Italian dressing
  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin powder
  • ½ cup (8 g) chopped fresh cilantro

Instructions

  • Mix the corn, black beans, and peppers in a large bowl.
    2 15 ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed,2½ cups frozen corn kernels,1 cup diced green bell pepper,1 cup diced red bell pepper
  • In a small bowl, add the Italian dressing and lime juice. Once combined, add the garlic salt and cumin, and mix again.
    ⅔ cup prepared Italian dressing,1 Tablespoon lime juice,1 teaspoon garlic salt,½ teaspoon ground cumin powder
  • Pour the dressing over the corn salad ingredients and stir to combine. Add cilantro, toss to combine and serve.
    ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Notes

  • Use Fresh Ingredients: For the best flavor, use fresh lime juice and freshly chopped cilantro.
  • Chill Before Serving: Allow the salad to chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving. This enhances the flavors and gives a refreshing crunch.
  • Toss Just Before Serving: To redistribute the dressing and ensure every bite is well-coated, give the salad a quick toss right before serving.
  • Adjust Seasoning to Taste: You can adjust the seasoning by adding more lime juice, garlic salt, or cumin, according to your preference.
  • Prep Ahead of Time: You can prep the ingredients ahead of time and store them separately. Mix everything together and add the dressing just before serving for maximum freshness.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 122kcal (6%) Carbohydrates: 25g (8%) Protein: 2g (4%) Fat: 1g (2%) Saturated Fat: 0.2g (1%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g Monounsaturated Fat: 0.3g Sodium: 3.286mg Potassium: 200mg (6%) Fiber: 2g (8%) Sugar: 5g (6%) Vitamin A: 994IU (20%) Vitamin C: 54mg (65%) Calcium: 9mg (1%) Iron: 1mg (6%)

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5 from 1 vote

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