Bean Salad

Is there anything more American than cooking out on the 4th of July?  Cooking out is such a great summer tradition and even more so a great 4th of July tradition.  It doesn't really feel like the 4th without a cook out, preferably on a lake.  Well, it would be a great tradition for us except our grill got stolen.  I mean, really.  Who steals?  And who steals a grill??  And who sees someone strolling down the street with a grill and doesn't stop them???  But I guess that's neither here nor there.   Thank goodness we have friends and family with grills so we still get to partake in this great tradish.  And, of course, no cookout is complete without a good bean salad.  So voila, a real foods bean salad for all your cooking out needs.  And just in time for your 4th of July cookouts.  If you were tapped to bring a side dish, this recipe is perfect.  For that matter, even if you're the one providing the meat, you can throw this bean salad together and have an extra side.  It's that easy.  And it's worth it because it's that good.  Happy grilling.  And happy Independence Day!


1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained (or dried beans soaked overnight)
1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained (or dried beans soaked overnight)
1 (15 ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (or dried beans soaked overnight)
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 (10 ounce) package frozen corn kernels (or fresh corn if you can get your hands on some)
1 red onion, chopped
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon salt
1 clove crushed garlic
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon black pepper
1 dash hot sauce (optional)
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
  • Directions

In a large bowl, combine beans, bell peppers, corn, and red onion.

True confession #1: I didn't have a red bell pepper, so I left it out.

In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, red wine vinegar, lime juice, lemon juice, sugar, salt, garlic, cilantro, cumin, and black pepper. Season to taste with hot sauce and chili powder, if desired.

True confession #2: I didn't have enough red wine vinegar so I used half red wine vinegar and half balsamic vinegar.  While this worked in a pinch, I've made it both ways and think it's better with all red wine vinegar.

Pour dressing over vegetables, and mix well. Chill thoroughly, and serve cold.

(Recipe slightly adapted from this one on