Black & White Bean Salsa with Corn, Peppers, & Onions

If you’re headed to a market around the Triangle area tomorrow, corn is going to be plentiful! This is a super recipe to make in the hot weather. I’m pretty sure the original recipe came from Cooking Light more than 20 years ago. I’ve written all over it, spilled on it, changed the ingredients over time and figured out how to make it pretty inexpensively with dry beans. This is great for summer parties because you can serve it chilled and about the time it’s finished it is room temperature and still tastes great. But the best part is that it’s just beautiful. You want to eat this and it’s good for you!

One caution on this. Cook the black beans separate from the white. They will color the white and the difference in color is important to the look of the finished dish. Other than that, it’s easy to make this any time of the year if you take some of the great sweet corn that’s coming in again this week and roast it and then freeze it off of the cob in about 1 1/2 cup increments. This comes together in no time at all and you can make it a day in advance of any meal. Add some hot peppers that’s your thing. The version I have here is pretty tame and easily feeds 6.


Black & White Bean Salsa with Roasted Corn, Peppers & Onions


  • 2-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup cooked black beans ( about a 15 ounce can)
  • 1 cup cooked cannellini or other white bean (about a 15 ounce can )
  • 1 1/2 cups of roasted corn kernels
  • 1 cup chopped sweet red bell pepper
  • 1/3- 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper (or substitute orange or yellow)
  • 1 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 2-3 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1  1/2- 2  teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Aleppo crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Guajillo ground chile powder
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano (1 teaspoon dried)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped cilantro (skip it if you can’t use fresh)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped avocado (optional)
  • 1 jalapeno chili, seeded and chopped (optional)


  • Rinse and drain canned beans. Drain cooked beans. Combine the two.
  • If you are using frozen corn that hasn’t been cooked, saute it 3 minutes on med/high  in about 2 tablespoons of olive oil with salt & pepper.
  • Transfer the corn to the bean mixture.
  • Add another 2 tablespoons to the same pan and saute the bell peppers, onions and garlic for about 3 minutes and add the cumin and chiles (and dry oregano). Cook for another 2 minutes and add to the beans and corn.
  • Add the oregano, cilantro, lime juice, (and jalapeno) to the vegetables.
  • Adjust the seasons.
  • Serve as a side salad or with tortilla chips as a “dip”


7/13/12 -If you want to save a couple of dollars, cook up dried beans. The trick to making good beans is the overnight soak. After soaking, rinse your beans and start with fresh filtered water, bringing them to a simmer. Follow the package directions for the correct amount of time, but remember not to add any salt until the last 5 minutes of cooking or the outside skin of the bean will not soften during cooking. For added flavor, add fresh celery leaves, onions and even some Mesquite & Apple Wood Smoked Peppercorns.  During the last 5 minutes you can add additional flavors to the beans by selecting any number of different salts.

This entry was posted in Appetizer, Dairy-Free, Diabetic Friendly, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Recipes, Salads, Second Harvest, Sides, Summer, Vegetarian and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *