Make black bean and corn salad in 5 minutes with this genius hack, no chopping required! A quick way to get fresh food on the table.

Black bean and corn salad

Guess what? We’ve discovered a hack to make a kickin’ fresh black bean and corn salad…in just 5 minutes, no chopping required. Sure, it’s a bit of a shortcut. But if this shortcut gets you to eat more vegetables and plant-forward meals: how could it be bad? We’ll admit: we’re wary of recipes that claim to be the easiest, best thing you’ve ever tried. But this one…let’s just say we’ve been eating it on repeat ever since!

Black bean and corn salad…in 5 minutes!

With all the chopping involved, many black bean and corn salads take upwards of 20 minutes to make. Your knife and cutting board are dirtied, and you end up with tomato seeds all over your counter. Of course, we’re not averse to this on the regular! But we designed this black bean and corn salad to be a quick lunch time hack, or a lightening fast appetizer for dipping with chips. Here are the secrets:

  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 cup fresh pico de gallo, aka fresh salsa (purchased)

It’s a true dump and stir recipe! Add a little salt and olive oil, and if you like garnish with cilantro. That’s it! No chopping. Mind blown.

Black bean and corn salad

The lifesaver: purchased fresh pico de gallo (aka fresh salsa)

This black bean and corn salad is only possible because of one thing: it’s easy to find fresh pico de gallo in modern grocery stores. (This is true in American stores, at least!) You may also see it labeled as “fresh salsa” or “salsa fresca.” Pico de gallo translates to “beak of the rooster” in Spanish. It’s a type of salsa made with fresh tomatoes. The ingredients in pico de gallo include:

  • Tomatoes
  • Onion
  • Jalapeno pepper
  • Cumin
  • Garlic (optional)
  • Cilantro
  • Fresh lime juice

The nice thing about using purchased pico is that you can find it in the fresh food section, already chopped up and ready to mix into your salad! The pico de gallo also helps to make a natural dressing for the salad with the acidity of the lime juice. Mix that with a drizzle of olive oil, and you’ve got a dressing!

Or, make homemade pico!

Don’t have access to fresh store-bought pico de gallo or fresh salsa? Depending on your location, you might not be able to pick up a container of this magical mixer. That’s ok: just make your own pico! The salad will take a little longer to make, of course. But it’s worth it for the flavor! Just make a half recipe of our Best Pico de Gallo recipe.

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Add it to a shrimp rice bowl for a tasty dinner

Ways to serve this quick black bean and corn salad

What we love about this black bean and corn salad, other than being quick? It’s endlessly versatile! You can serve it for so many different occasions. This might just seem like a simple recipe: but we think it decreases the barriers between you and fresh, plant-forward eating. And for that, we think it’s a genius combination! You can make it into a lunch, dip, or healthy dinner idea like:

Black bean and corn salad

More black bean recipes

What can you do with a can of black beans? Let us count the ways. Here are some of our favorite black bean recipes:

This black bean and corn salad recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.

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Black bean and corn salad

5-Minute Black Bean and Corn Salad

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


Make black bean and corn salad in 5 minutes with this genius hack, no chopping required! A quick way to get fresh food on the table.


  • 15-ounce can black beans*
  • 15-ounce can corn
  • 1 cup fresh pico de gallo, aka fresh salsa (purchased)**
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil 
  • Fresh cilantro, if desired (for garnish)


  1. Drain and rinse the black beans. Drain the corn. In a bowl, mix them with the pico de gallo, salt, and olive oil.
  2. If desired, add torn cilantro. Serve immediately with a slotted spoon as a side salad, in a rice bowl, in tacos, or as a dip with tortilla chips.


*For a party size, double the ingredients. 

**You’ll find this packaged in the refrigerated section at your local grocery: it may be labeled pico de gallo or fresh salsa. If you can’t find it, make homemade Pico de Gallo.

  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Fresh
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Black bean and corn salad

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you'll want to make again and again.

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  1. Hi! I made this and it’s delicious! I was wondering how long it stays good in the refrigerator, thanks for sharing it!