Friday, July 04, 2014

Black Bean and Pepper Salad with Cilantro and Lime (Gluten-Free, Vegan)

I love this salad with lots of red and yellow peppers, red onion, and cilantro and just a few black beans!

Black Bean and Pepper Salad with Cilantro and Lime found on

(For Phase One Fridays I feature Phase One Recipes from the past that have been my personal favorites, and this Black Bean and Pepper Salad with Cilantro and Lime is something I could eat every day all summer long.  There's a generous amount of chopped red and yellow peppers, red onion, and cilantro and only one can of beans, making this a great Phase One choice.  Today's the 4th of July celebration in the U.S., and this would be easy to throw together for a holiday pot-luck.)

Black beans are such a great pantry ingredient, and this simple salad with black beans, red and yellow bell pepper, red onion, lime, and cilantro has all the flavors that make me happy. I love the colors in this salad too. For best flavor, mix the dressing and let the beans marinate for a while (or at least while you chop the other ingredients) but even if you're in a rush like I was and forget to marinate the beans, it will still taste pretty great!

Drain the black beans into a colander placed in the sink, then rinse with cold water until no more foam appears and let beans drain.

If you have a fresh lime, some lime zest added to the dressing really brightens the flavor.

After you mix all the dressing ingredients, marinate the drained beans in part of the dressing mixture if you have time.

Chop peppers the same size as the beans, and mix the marinated beans and peppers together.

I used Rick Bayless' cilantro chopping method where you keep the bunch of cilantro together and thinly slice the leaves up to where the stems start.

Mix the red onion and chopped cilantro into the bean and pepper mixture, then add the rest of the dressing, season with salt and fresh ground black pepper and serve.

Black Bean and Pepper Salad with Cilantro and Lime found on KalynsKitchen.comBlack Bean and Pepper Salad with Cilantro and Lime
(4 servings, recipe created by Kalyn with inspiration from a blog that no longer exists)

1 can black beans, rinsed well and drained
1 red pepper, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
(could use any combination of colors for the pepper, or use 2 red peppers)
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped

Dressing Ingredients:
2 T lime juice (fresh lime juice recommended)
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. ground Chipotle pepper (I use Penzeys)
(you could use green Tabasco in place of the Chipotle pepper)
1/2 tsp. mild chile powder (New Mexico chile powder is best)
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. onion powder
zest of one lime (optional, but recommended)
Vege-sal or salt to taste
fresh ground pepper to taste

Put black beans in a colander placed in the sink and rinse with cold water until no more foam appears. Let beans drain, preferably 30 minutes or so, until beans are no longer wet. (If you're rushed for time, you could blot them dry with paper towels.)

Mix dressing ingredients. Put beans and dressing into a plastic bowl with a snap-on lid, put lid on, and turn bowl over a few times until the beans are well coated with the dressing. Let the beans marinate in the dressing for an hour or so if you have time, or at least while you chop the other ingredients.

Chop peppers and onion into pieces about 1/2 inch square. (I was aiming for the beans, peppers, and onions to be approximately the same size.) Wash cilantro and dry well (I used a salad spinner) then chop coarsely.

In large bowl, gently combine beans, peppers, and onion. (If mixture seems dry you can add a tiny bit more olive oil and lime juice at this point.) Season to taste with Vege-sal or salt and fresh ground pepper. Stir in cilantro and serve.

This will keep for a day or two in the refrigerator, although it's best when the cilantro is still crisp. However, I taste-tested it on my friend Robin when it had been in the refrigerator overnight and she gave it a very enthusiastic thumbs up.

South Beach Suggestions:
Everything in this salad is a perfect low-glycemic ingredient, making this a great recipe for any phase of the South Beach Diet. (Remember that dried beans are limited to 1/3 to 1/2 cup serving for phase one.)

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight using The Glycemic Index partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.
More Delicious Salads with Black Beans
(Recipes from other blogs may not always be South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)

Chicken, Black Bean, Avocado, and Radish Salad with Lime and Cilantro ~ Kalyn's Kitchen

Black Bean Salad with Avocado, Tomatoes, Red Onion, and Cilantro ~ For the Love of Cooking

Black Bean Salad with Jicama, Tomatoes, Cilantro, and Lime ~ Kalyn's Kitchen

Black Bean, Quinoa, and Red Pepper Salad ~ The Perfect Pantry

Shrimp and Black Bean Salad with Cilantro, Cumin, and Lime ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)

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Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and this blog earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!

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  1. I just posted about a black bean salad, too--another example of blog synchronicity. No cilantro in mine though--even though I love it, my boyfriend thinks it tastes like wet cardboard.

  2. Count me among the cilantro lovers, especially with black beans, lime, and cumin. This salad looks perfect for our barbecue this weekend; thanks, Kalyn!

  3. I love black bean salad, and black beans in general--and I think they are a perfect match with cilantro. Great recipe.

  4. As if you could not cook anything healthy!:)
    Your salad update sounds like just the ticket for my bean-loving husband. I just bought several bunches of cilantro and will use some of it in this dish.
    Thanks Kalyn!

  5. Kalyn,
    I went to your recipe for pork chops that you suggested would be a good main dish for the black bean salad and I didn't see a way to save it to "delicious". Do your older recipes not have a link?
    I just copied the recipe and pasted it into a word doc, but saving to delicious would be so much easier. Just thought I'd let you know in case there should be a link.

  6. I too, loved this salad. It's fantastic with the additon of some orange pieces or diced mango. I serve it over grilled fish as a relish too!

  7. That looks super - and certainly has all the flavors I love.

  8. Lucette, your version looks good too. Sorry about the lack of cilantro!

    Jennifer, I hope you like it.

    Sher - thanks. I agree, black beans are amazing in lots of recipes.

    Christine, thanks for that comment (I think) because I realized from it that I have set up wrong. I'm assuming you've been clicking to the permalink each time when you save the recipes, but I wanted it set up so that it automatically did that. Another thing to try to figure out. I'm not sure they even had when I did that pork chop recipe. I LOVE my cookbook!!

    If I can get it figured out, I'll go back and add to the archive posts. (When I get to it on the to-do list.)

    Anonymous, thanks.

    Tanna, me too!

  9. Looks like a great salad Kalyn!

  10. Kalyn, the salad once again looks very tasty and you've captured the beautiful individual colours of them.

    I've sent you an email re tips for taking some photos outside in the garden.

  11. Thanks Joe. How's the new house?

    Thanks Mae. I'd be thrilled to get photo tips any time from you! Don't be afraid to tell me anything, because right now I know NOTHING. If I get a good photo, it's just luck.

  12. I have a black bean salad it's time to revive...very similar to yours.

    Great photo too. Thanks for sharing.

  13. You are on a roll with these colorful dishes! Your photos just pop right out off off the page - unfortunately, not into my kitchen.

  14. I LOVE black bean salad!! I make a much simpler version that I have for lunch most every day. I cut up a cucumber, a red bell pepper, half a large onion, and an avocado. Then I mix all that with a rinsed and drained can of black beans. This makes four servings, topped with lite balsamic vinaigrette.

  15. This is my kind of salad Kalyn!! Love!!

  16. Yum Kalyn, this looks great. A lovely fresh salad :)

  17. Like your addition of cumin powder in the dressing :)

  18. So glad people are enjoying the new incarnation of this salad recipe. (I really should leave the old photo as well so you can see how much I've improved!)

  19. I have been making a similar salad, but without the cilantro (pleh), love everything else:). I add green pepper, jalapeno, and chickpeas... I love the addition of lime to your dressing and am definitely going to modify next time I make it! It's also a great keeper which is wonderful for us singles.

  20. Black beans go with almost anything...they are great

  21. That is the prettiest salad I have ever seen, really.

  22. This one's getting on the menu this weekend! It's gorgeous.

  23. Made this and love it!! I changed it just a little. Peppers are EXTREMELY expensive right now, so I just added an orange pepper, a little diced red onion, omitted the onion powder and added a little diced jalapeno. It was delicious!! Thanks for sharing.

  24. I would add avocadoes to this dish! high in fiber and nutrients! essential for Health Nutrition and proper diet!

  25. Beans are marinating right now! Starting SBD tomorrow for the first time and your recipes give me hope that I won't hate it. :)

  26. This is such a beautifully colorful dish. I want to dive right in - perfect for spring!

  27. I could just stand in front of the refrigerator and eat this with a spoon!!

  28. Glad people are liking this. (I think I could eat this standing in front of the fridge too!)

  29. I made this as a lunch instead of side dish and scooped it up with salty tortilla chips. Fabulous!

  30. This is such a wonderful recipe! I've been wanting to make this and finally did! I didn't have chipotle or green tabasco, so I used regular tobasco. Delicous!!

  31. Veronica and Jessica, thanks for letting me know you liked it! (One of my favorites too.)

  32. I meant to comment on this salad long ago; it is one of my favourites. And while fresh cilantro might be best, two days later we fought over the last of the leftovers :)

  33. So glad you enjoyed it that much!

  34. That looks delicious! Looks like a great summer side dish. :)

  35. The colors really make this irresistible! I'd eat this for a main dish at lunch or dinner.

  36. Thanks Lydia! This is one of my few very old photos that I still like quite a lot.

  37. I made this for a family get together on the 4th. Everyone loved it. My husband is allergic to cilantro, so I substituted flat leaf parsley. Really loved this. I think I will make some eggs this morning, and use this as a topping. Really yummy!

  38. So glad you enjoyed it! And good to know that it is good with flat leaf parsley too.


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