Cheap Eats: Cumin Black Bean Salad

Here at The Billfold, we love cheap and easy recipes, and a few of you have been emailing me your favorites (please continue to do so!). Here’s a cheap and easy recipe for a black bean salad by reader Catherine Range.

This is a recipe from the “save-money-and-lose-the-freshman-15″ time of my life and holds a dear place in my kitchen/heart: Cumin black bean salad. It’s super healthy, makes a ton, keeps in the fridge forever, doubles as a salsa or dip if you smash it up with a fork, and doesn’t need to be refrigerated if you take it for lunch. You can also add leftover chicken to it for an extra special lunch. I ate this all the time, paid down my credit card debt, and lost the freshman 15. Thanks, black beans!

What you need:

• 1 can of black beans
• 1 can of diced tomatoes
• 1-2 cups frozen corn or edamame (basically, whatever corn-like vegetable is on sale), thawed
• 2 tbs or more of cumin (to taste–I like more!)
• 4-6 tbs olive oil (to taste)
• Optional: 1/2 cup chopped red onion or diced green onion
• Optional: 3 cloves minced garlic
• Salt and pepper to taste

Pour black beans, tomatoes, corn in a colander. Rinse, and drain. Put in bowl. Mix together with olive oil, cumin, onion, garlic. Squeeze a lime on top. Eat.


Photo: Flickr/GudlyF


10 Comments / Post A Comment

Fig. 1 (#632)

Welp, I know what I’m going to be eating this summer!

Variations on this is what I ate all through my volunteer year and grad school! Tasty and cheap.

1. Make sure you get decent quality canned diced tomatoes, otherwise there can be too much juice.
3. You can toss some quinoa in there or substitute lentils for the black beans.
2. There are no black beans in that picture!

Or add some feta, a dash of balsamic, and some cilantro to get my absolute favorite bean dip/salad/salsa/whathaveyou.

NoReally (#45)

You left out the vinegar…

Trilby (#191)

Right! Make it wine vinegar. Also a couple Tbs. lime juice makes a nice addition. Also a bit of sugar and red pepper flakes. I make a salad like this all the time, that’s how I know.

This is similar to SW veggie bake:

20 oz of frozen corn, 1 can golden hominey, 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 can black beans, 1 can diced green chiles and black pepper. Drain everything but the tomatoes (and rinse off the black beans). Mix it all up, dump it in a casserole dish and bake it, covered at 350 for 25 minutes. Take the cover off, sprinkle it with cheddar, and bake for another 10. Yum!

e (#734)

I do tri bean salad with black cannelli and pinto or kidney, plus bell pepper, green onion, cumin, olive oil, splash of balsamic and then put feta on top. Feta last so it doesn’t get grunged up by the balsamic bean goo.

You can also just use half a jar of your favorite salsa instead of the tomatoes/garlic/onion combo. (Or in addition!) This plus rice is a staple dinner at my household, since rice + beans = complete protein. And in summer it goes from okay to AMAZING when you use fresh corn.

RocketSurgeon (#747)

Fun with black beans!

Here’s my variation: add pineapple, swap the tomato for diced red pepper, skip the garlic but add a minced jalapeno, and use sliced green onions. I don’t use cumin, but usually just garnish with a lot of lime juice for a dressing. This is an awesome summer salad. Great on its own, or as a side for fish.

Laura Rebecca (#934)

Just made this for dinner — it’s excellent! I decreased the amount of olive oil, and added lime juice. Thanks for a very tasty and low-cost recipe.

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