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Kalyn's Kitchen

Black Bean and Pepper Salad

This Black Bean and Pepper Salad has cilantro and lime to bump up the flavor, and you’ll love this tasty salad that’s vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free!

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Black Bean and Pepper Salad finished salad in bowl

Black Bean and Pepper Salad 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 low-glycemic diet choice, and even if you skip the cilantro (or replace it with thinly-sliced green onion) this will still be amazing. 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 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!

Black Bean and Pepper Salad process shots collage

How to Make Black Bean and Pepper Salad:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. 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.
  2. If you have a fresh lime, some lime zest added to the dressing really brightens the flavor.
  3. After you mix all the dressing ingredients, marinate the drained beans in part of the dressing mixture if you have time. 
  4. 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. Also chop some red onion.
  5. Chop peppers the same size as the beans, and mix the marinated beans and peppers together.
  6. 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.

More Delicious Salads with Black Beans:

Chicken, Black Bean, Avocado, and Radish Salad ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Black Bean, Quinoa, and Red Pepper Salad ~ The Perfect Pantry
Black Bean Salad with Jicama ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Black Bean and Pepper Salad

Black Bean and Pepper Salad

Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Black Bean and Pepper Salad (with cilantro and lime) is a colorful salad that's perfect for a meatless side dish.



  • one 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed well and drained
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped (see notes)
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 2 T fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. ground Chipotle pepper (see notes)
  • 1/2 tsp. mild chili powder
  • 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


  1. Put black beans in a colander placed in the sink and rinse with cold water until no more foam appears.
  2. Let beans drain until beans are no longer wet. (If you’re rushed for time, you could blot them dry with paper towels.)
  3. Mix dressing ingredients.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.)
  7. Wash cilantro and dry well, then chop coarsely. I used a salad spinner (affiliate link).
  8. 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.)
  9. Season to taste with Vege-sal or salt and fresh ground pepper.
  10.  Stir in cilantro and serve.
  11. 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.


Use any combination of colored peppers for this salad. You could use a small amount of hot sauce to replace the ground Chipotle pepper.

This recipe created by Kalyn with inspiration from a blog that no longer exists.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 196Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 570mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 9gSugar: 3gProtein: 8g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Everything in this Black Bean and Pepper Salad is a perfect low-glycemic ingredient, making this a great recipe for any phase of the original South Beach Diet. (Remember that dried beans are limited to 1/3 to 1/2 cup serving for phase one.) If you want a salad that’s lower in carbs, use less beans and more other ingredients, but salads with beans are probably not suitable for most low-carb eating plans.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Salads to find more recipes like this one. Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Pinterest image of Black Bean and Pepper Salad

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    42 Comments on “Black Bean and Pepper Salad”

  1. I have made something similar to this but with shell pasta and corn. Everyone loves it. So I was staring at a can of black beans on my counter yesterday, missing my favorite recipe because I'm on Phase 1, and decided to come over here to see what you might have. When I came across this recipe, I knew I had to make it. WOWSERS! I adore that dressing! We have an ever bearing lime tree in the back yard, and boy are they tasty. Hubby came home from work early and had some for lunch, and he loved it, too. In fact he sneaked another bowl late last night. I am considering trying some other veggies in it, like chopped zucchini, or tomato. Thanks for the recipe, as always, and thanks for post South Beach diet recipes.