Whip up a delicious and satisfying side dish with mostly pantry and freezer staples! This easy black bean and corn salad recipe is a staple for make-ahead lunches, a quick side for taco night, or an easy picnic or bbq salad.
I will never turn down a good salad recipe. I jokingly tell everyone that we eat just dessert and vegetables in our house to maintain a balance. It’s not entirely true, but we do go through a lot of produce. That doesn’t mean just lettuce on a plate! Take, for example, this easy black bean and corn salad with avocado. With fiber from the beans and some healthy fats from the avocado, it’s one serious salad! It’s the kind of recipe I think of as living in that strange space between a salad and a vegetable side. Like the kind of dish you’d expect to choose at a meat-and-three restaurant that has a Southwestern or Tex-Mex menu vibe going. And the best part is, you can whip up this salad using mostly convenience ingredients!
What do I mean by convenience ingredients? I used canned beans and frozen corn for the recipe in the photos. It just makes the most sense most of the time. When I make my black beans from scratch, they’re always the Cuban black beans. I’m not throwing away that delicious soup broth! When I want just cooked beans, I’ll grab the can or two I keep stashed for situations like making this salad.
The corn varies. If I’m making this salad any time of year that sweet corn isn’t readily available, I’ll use frozen sweet corn. But in the summer, when fresh sweet corn is at its best and plentiful, I’ll use that. Not only does it taste amazing, but it’s also EASIER than the frozen corn. I have to thaw frozen corn. For summer sweet corn, you just wash well, cut off the cob, and it’s salad ready!
I suggest using frozen corn instead of canned. The texture is better, the flavor is more similar to fresh corn, and thawing is very easy.
Avocado I’ll add or omit depending on season and whether one is ready at home or not. It’s a really nice addition, but the salad will still taste great without it. When making this recipe as part of a weekday lunch meal prep, I haven’t had an issue with the avocado browning for a few days. The lime juice helps to keep it looking fresh for about 3 days.
Serve it on its own as a side, or place on a bed of lettuce and top with your favorite grilled protein for an easy, patio-worthy meal!
I hope you love this easy recipe, darlings!
- 1 1/2 cups sweet corn kernels (about 2 fresh ears, or use thawed frozen)
- 1 14-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed (or 1 1/2 cups cooked black beans)
- 1 Haas avocado, diced
- 1 fresh sweet bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 cup minced onion (about half an onion)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- Place all the salad ingredients in a large bowl.
- In a smaller bowl or mason jar, whisk together the dressing ingredients.
- Pour the dressing ingredients over the salad ingredients and gently toss to coat.
- Let stand at least 20 minutes before adjusting seasonings, if needed. Refrigerate until ready to serve. May be made a few hours in advance. If you'd like to make earlier, don't add the avocado until ready to serve.
- Leftover salad will keep refrigerated for 3 days.
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