Southwest Quinoa Salad

This southwest quinoa salad is one of my go to recipes for quick and easy meals. It’s great as an appetizer but can also be served as a main dish. If you’re going to a picnic or potluck this summer, this will be a good dish to take with you. You can easily make it the day of the event. It travels well and it’s delicious and satisfying. As a bonus, it can be served cold or at room temperature, so you won’t have to worry about heating it up or keeping it cold before it’s served.

This quinoa salad features ingredients typical of southwestern United States cuisine, including black beans and corn. You can treat this recipe as a base and include other typical southwestern ingredients like avocados and jalapenos; if you don’t want the salad to be too spicy, you can deseed the jalapenos before adding them to the salad.  You can also swap the canned corn for roasted corn, if you’d like. The recipe for this southwest quinoa salad, including the salad dressing, is on the printable recipe card below. Enjoy! Let me know how it goes.

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Southwest Quinoa Salad

This southwest inspired quinoa salad is delicious and quick and easy to make. This salad is perfect for picnics, potlucks, and weeknight dinners.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Latin American
Keyword: quinoa, quinoa salad, southwest salad, vegetarian
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 296kcal
Author: Mavis K.


For the salad dressing

  • 3 limes (juice)
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • salt (to taste)
  • ground black pepper (to taste)

For the quinoa salad

  • 225 g quinoa
  • 540 ml canned black beans
  • 341 ml canned corn
  • 1 large green bell pepper (chopped)
  • 283 g cherry tomatoes (chopped into quarters)
  • 80 g red onions (diced)
  • 8 stalks cilantro (chopped)


  • Cook the quinoa according to package directions and let the quinoa cool to room temperature.
  • Pour the canned corn in a strainer and rinse and drain the beans with running water over the sink.
  • Repeat step 2 with the canned beans.
  • In a salad bowl, add the cooked quinoa and the rest of the ingredients for the salad.
  • Pour the salad dressing on top of the salad and mix everything together with salad servers.
  • Cover the salad bowl and put the salad in the fridge. Serve once the salad is cold.
  • You can skip placing the salad in the fridge and serve it at room temperature.


  • You can add avocados to the salad. However, wait until you’re serving the salad to add the avocados as they will turn brown if you add them then let the salad sit for awhile before serving.
  • You can also add a jalapeno to the salad; seed the jalapeno if you don’t want the salad to be spicy.


Calories: 296kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 320mg | Potassium: 669mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 449IU | Vitamin C: 46mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 4mg

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