Looking for something different to bring to a barbeque or picnic this weekend? Or, maybe you just want something to make to gobble up yourself? Here it is folks! I made this one afternoon for a BBQ we were going to later in the evening. I couldn’t stop “tasting” it. Then, when my husband came in he couldn’t either. Once we got to the BBQ, we were anxious to open it so we could dive in. This recipe makes a lot, almost 3 pounds worth of food, and it was pretty much eaten by four adults! We forced ourselves to eat the rest of the food, but we could have just had the bean salsa and been good.

It’s a hardy appetizer, but the Italian dressing gives it a nice, light taste. Really, with all of the beans and vegetables, it’s good for you! My husband has deemed this his favorite recipe and told me to make it often!

I used roma tomatoes since they have less seeds and are better for salsas. You could also probably get away with using a can of diced tomatoes if you like. I julienned, and then chopped the bell peppers, so that they were very fine. I didn’t want the salsa to have a strong bell pepper taste, but I liked the nice crunch it gave the salsa.

Cowboy Caviar


  • 15 oz. can black beans, drained
  • 15 oz. can black-eyed peas, drained
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, pulp removed and diced
  • 2 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/4 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup pickled jalapeno peppers, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup Italian salad dressing, recipe below
  • 3/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 lime, juiced (about 3 Tbsp)

Mix everything together. Cool in the refrigerator for at least 20  minutes. Serve with tortilla chips.

Italian Dressing

  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp white sugar
  • 2 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2/3 cup olive oil

Whisk ingredients together and refrigerate.

Source: Adapted from Soupbelly, originally from allrecipes.com

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