Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad Recipe | We are not Martha
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Quinoa Black Corn Bean Salad

This healthy Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad is packed with veggies and will keep you full and satisfied whether you enjoy it as lunch, dinner, or as a side dish!

(This recipe for Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad was originally posted in January 201o, but was updated with new photos in 2018).

Close-up of quinoa black bean corn salad on a colorful towel with a fork in the background and "Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad" text at top

Quinoa is one of those foods I would eat every day if I could. I mean, there’s SO much you can do with it. Remember when I made it for breakfast? It’s protein packed and filling and satisfying no matter what time of day you eat it. Those of you who also work from home can probably relate to the serious snacking problem. If I don’t have actual meal food around, I will literally just snack from breakfast to bedtime. But if I have real food already prepared in my fridge, I’m much more likely to have a healthy day. Quinoa to the rescue!

I figured some sort of quinoa salad would be perfect for my lunches, and one big batch of it would last a week in my fridge. And after eating a lunch packed with quinoa, I imagined I’d stay away from chips. And cookies. And Cheez-Its. And candy. OK, I’ll stop now. There are SO many quinoa salad recipes out there, but I decided to riff off of this one for Quinoa and Black Bean Salad.

My favorite thing about this recipe is that there’s nothing complicated about it. The ingredients are all incredibly simple and you can probably imagine exactly how this will taste before you even make it! In the summertime, I recommend using fresh corn for the quinoa salad… I actually take it right off the cob and add it in raw sometimes (though you can certainly cook it, too). But if it’s wintertime or not during corn season, you can certainly use frozen corn.

From above view of quinoa black bean corn salad on a colorful towel with fork, jalapeño, and large bowl of salad in the background

I used the original recipe as my base for this salad, but I switched things up a lot in terms of ratios and ingredients used. I used fresh jalapeño peppers instead of pickled and parsley instead of coriander (cilantro). I added a healthy amount of jalapeño, but I promise they add more flavor than they do spiciness. Especially if you remove the seeds.

Landscape photo showing quinoa black bean and corn salad up close on purple towel with jalapeño, parsley, and large bowl of salad in the background


This is the kind of satisfying lunch I need in my life. And the kind of lunch that will help me power through the rest of the day without making me head to the snack cabinet an hour later. It’s like a quinoa miracle! Also, this quinoa salad only got better the longer it stayed in the fridge. No lie! The flavors all melded together.

Though it makes a great lunch or dinner entree, it also makes a fantastic side dish, especially if you’re headed to a BBQ or cookout and need to bring something along. I guarantee you’ll convince a few skeptics that quinoa is actually delightful and get them onboard the quinoa train!

In case you’re sitting there wondering what’s so good about quinoa (Keen-Wa), let me tell you a few facts. First of all, it’s often considered a grain, though it’s actually related to leafy green vegetables like spinach. It’s a “complete protein,” meaning it contains all 9 essential amino acids. It also contains lots of fiber and is filling, but easy to digest. And it’s delicious, too! What more could you ask for? You’re totally greedy if you think that’s not enough.

Close-up of quinoa black bean corn salad on a colorful towel with a fork in the background

I’ve already eaten the whole batch of this salad and am already craving more. Do you guys have any favorite quinoa recipes? I’d love to try some new ones and I want your help! I’m thinking I need to make a new quinoa salad/recipe every week! It’s a great way to curb the snacking AND get other veggies in as well. Maybe I’ll even start my own quinoa fan club because clearly, I am obsessed. I swear, you will be too if you’re not already.

What’s your favorite quinoa recipe?

If you’re looking for more fun ways to use quinoa, check out my Jalapeño Parmesan Quinoa Tater Tots or my Peanut Butter Quinoa Chia Granola.

Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
40 mins

This healthy Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad is packed with veggies and will keep you full and satisfied whether you enjoy it as lunch, dinner, or as a side dish!

Course: Entree, lunch, Side
Cuisine: American
Keyword: quinoa, salad, Summer
Servings: 10 servings
Author: Sues
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked (or uncooked) corn (I used corn from 2 large ears)
  • 3/4 cup green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp diced jalapeño pepper (for less heat, remove seeds)
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 4 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  1. In a medium saucepan, bring quinoa and water to a boil. Lower heat, cover saucepan and let simmer until all water is absorbed, about 15-20 minutes. Fluff quinoa with a fork. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool.

  2. Put black beans in a small bowl and toss with red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.

  3. Once quinoa is cooled, add black beans, corn, chopped green pepper, jalapeño, and parsley to bowl and toss to mix. Pour dressing over salad and toss to coat.

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, salt, and cumin. Slowly add olive oil to bowl, whisking the entire time.

Recipe Notes
  • Salad can be made ahead of time and kept in fridge. I actually think it's more delicious on the 2nd day!
  • Salad is best if brought to room temperature before serving.
  • This should serve about 10-12 as a side dish or 4-6 as an entree.
Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad -- This healthy quinoa salad is packed with veggies and will keep you full and satisfied whether you enjoy it as lunch, dinner, or as a side dish | wearenotmartha.com #quinoa #salad #corn #blackbeans #sidedish

19 Responses to "Quinoa Black Corn Bean Salad"

  1. Maria says:

    Love this salad. Quinoa is so good!

  2. Jessica says:

    I will definitely make this! I love quinoa, and despite the box that has been in my pantry for over a year, I have yet to make it. A gourmet food shop that I frequent makes a quinoa salad with with bits of mandarin orange, dried cherries, green onion, and I think some kind of nut. Soy nut, peanut? I can’t remember. Anyway, I think that has a citrus dressing too and it is delicious! Would love it if you came up with a recipe similar to that…….. 🙂

  3. Madeleine @ Notes On A Page says:

    I’m with you on quinoa. It’s hard to imagine those tiny little grains could be so tasty and filling. I made this Spanish-style quinoa dish once and of course now I can’t find the recipe. It had tomato sauce with green olives and pigeons peas… so good.

  4. Anne @The Fit Bridesmaid says:

    I was just thinking about trying quinoa and couldn’t think of what to do with it. This sounds SUPER yummy!

  5. Julie @savvyeats says:

    I JUST did a post on the wonders of quinoa, including some breakfast quinoa recipes and my quinoa balls. I love quinoa… my favorite ‘grain’!

  6. Sarah says:

    I’m not usually one for grain/seed salads, but this one looks pretty good. I love that it has a bit of a Southwest flare to it with the cumin, lime juice, black beans, and pepper (and it’s vegetarian!). I wonder if a sprinkling of chili pepper would also go well with it.

  7. Tootie says:

    This recipe came at the perfect time! I just bought my first-ever box of quinoa this weekend, and I was at a loss for recipes. I can’t wait to try this!

  8. Jackie says:

    There’s a great quinoa, butternut squash and sage pie by Martha Stewart….I made it a number of years ago, but it’s wicked good! Here’s the link:

  9. Susan says:

    Next weekend I am going to make so much of this so that it lasts me a whole week. It looks so good and healthy!

  10. Katie says:

    this would be great to make and take to work for lunch – i’m sure it’s much tastier than my usual sandwiches 🙂

  11. Lyndsey says:


    I share your obsession – try this one! it’s the best. Zingy!

  12. Sarah @ Semi-Sweet says:

    I am a quinoa freak, too – lots of recipes on my site and I’m constantly fooling around w/it (love it for breakfast, too!). This one looks so tasty – and can you imagine how awesome it’d be w/fresh sweet corn in the summertime? It’s bookmarked!

  13. Lyndsey says:


    I share your obsession – try this one! it’s the best. Zingy!

  14. joan says:

    This site has some great recipes for Quinoa. Some of the recipes make huge batches but you can cut the recipe down.
    Whte Quinoa Black Bean and Roasted Corn Enchiladas sound amazing. The White Quinoa Bars with Apricots, Golden Raisins and Figs sound yummy too.

  15. Laurie Chevrette says:

    I love Quinoa and found a fast and easy breakfast idea. I mix 1/2 cup cooked Quinoa with about a cup of yogurt; it’s great and has the consistency of tapioca.

  16. Rachel says:

    This is my favorite quinoa recipe! I brought it to a party once and converted a bunch of non-believers into quinoa-lovers. I recently made quinoa with kale and sweet potatoes, that came out great!

  17. Sandy says:

    The salad looks great. I’ve never come across a Southwest recipe for quinoa. I like it more than the typical rice side dishes. I have just tried my first tepary beans and wheat berry recipe, the tepary beans have very low -glycemic value, I think I’ll try them in the salad.

  18. chester says:

    This salad is AMAZING! perfect zing, depth of flavor. Thanks so much!

  19. Kelly says:

    I have made a large batch of this every Sunday for the past 3 weeks. I’ve been bringing it for lunches at work and it’s PERFECT! I just can’t get over the flavor!

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