Once you see how easy this corn salsa is to make, you will consider it a staple ingredient to keep in your fridge.
Sure, you’ll slather it on top of your nacho platter. But think beyond the chip.
You’ll agree, once you taste it, that this corn salsa packs a fantastic punch of flavor to many different dishes.
Why corn salsa?
I started making this salsa because we have someone in our household who refuses to eat tomatoes.
So I began searching for another topping in lieu of tomato salsa. My family tried corn salsa at a Mexican food chain, and we fell in love with the flavor.
After much experimentation at home, I’m ready to share this recipe.
Plus, this topping is a low-calorie, healthy way to add flavor to almost anything you cook.
Health benefits of adding corn to your menu
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) considers corn both a vegetable and a grain.
They note that if you harvest the ears when they are edible off the cob, they are a veggie.
However, if you harvest them only after they are dry, they are a grain. This is the product shipped off to mills to make corn flour and other grain products.
You will find corn in some surprising places
If you check food labels carefully, you will find corn listed as an ingredient in many different products:
- Breakfast cereal
- Cooking oil
- High-fructose corn syrup in candy and soda
- Crunchy snack foods
- Grits or polenta
- Whole-grain snacks
- Corn flour
In a 2019 article, Tufts University noted that Americans eat roughly 160 pounds of corn annually, per capita. Of that, they consume 60 pounds of this in the form of high-fructose corn syrup (the unhealthiest form!).
Given that we include such a large amount in our diets, we should take time to learn the health benefits of eating corn.
When you compare it to other vegetable sources, corn is admittedly relatively low in nutritional benefits.
However, when you choose corn on the cob and not canned or frozen varieties, it is not unhealthy to eat in reasonable amounts.
Also, some argue that because corn on the cob is an affordable alternative to processed or packaged food, you should not hesitate to add it to your menu.
Do you eat a gluten-free diet? Well, you are in luck! This veggie is naturally free of glutens. That means you can eat it fresh or use the grain for baking without triggering your celiac disease.
Although it only contains 3 grams of protein, that is a greater amount than you’ll find in many vegetables.
Research published in Nutrition Journal explains that protein-rich snacks can help control the appetite and reduce the volume of food needed to feel full.
This suggests that corn salsa can help you feel fuller. Snack away!
Corn contains less fiber than many other vegetables. Nevertheless, it does contain a small amount that can help you maintain good digestive health.
According to the Mayo Clinic, some benefits of dietary fiber include the following:
- Regulates bowel movements by providing “bulk” to the digestive tract
- Improves digestive health
- Aids in weight control by making you feel fuller
- Decreases the risk of developing hemorrhoids
- Assists in controlling blood sugar levels
The same Mayo Clinic article also notes how much fiber you need daily, as follows:
- Men, 50 and younger – 38 grams per day
- Men, 51 and older – 30 grams per day
- Women, 50 and younger – 25 grams per day
- Women, 51 and older – 21 grams per day
Last, corn contains antioxidants called carotenoids.
The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health explains.
Antioxidants are substances that fight free radicals, which enter the body via environmental pollution.
Once in your body, free radicals can cause premature aging and damage your cellular structure. Plus, they might cause certain types of cancer.
Fortunately, some foods contain natural antioxidants, which appear to protect you from the ravages of free radicals.
Researchers are still trying to find the precise relationship between antioxidants and free radicals. But they do note that people who eat an antioxidant-rich diet have less cellular damage.
A few notes about keeping corn healthier
Here are a few things that you should know to keep corn on the healthy-ish side.
Go easy on the toppings.
If you make corn, go easy on the toppings. Fortunately, this vegetable is a naturally fat-free food.
But many people load it up with butter, salt, parmesan cheese, or other yummy things that make it unhealthy.
Choose fresh and organic – not canned.
Like all vegetables, you should look for fresh, organic options over canned or frozen.
The process of canning, in particular, creates a breakdown in the nutritional value. If you can’t find fresh in the off-season, make frozen your backup plan.
Also, food production facilities usually add salt to the items they package. This additional seasoning adds flavor. Flavor sells more product. Their goal is to increase sales volume, not your health.
Why choose organic vegetables?
Organic corn (or any food for that matter) always benefits your body. The USDA sets stringent guidelines on what foods may be labeled organic.
Here are the main requirements to receive that designation:
- Farmers must plant organic seeds or plants when possible.
- They may not use GMO, genetic engineering that promotes growth.
- Farms may not use ionizing radiation or sewage sludge to fertilize crops.
- Farmers must follow strict weed- and pest-control management to limit the use of chemicals.
- The land must be “clean,” with no application of prohibited chemicals for at least three years.
- Farmers must keep the land fertile by rotating crops, planting cover crops in the off-season, and natural cultivation.
Organic vegetables are always your healthiest option. The wellness benefits you receive outweigh the extra cost at the grocery store–consider them an investment in your wellness.
About black beans
While the corn in this salsa might not be the healthiest ingredient, you boost this recipe’s healthfulness significantly by adding black beans.
Black beans deliver vitamins and minerals.
First up, let’s look at the nutritional you receive from black beans:
According to Medical News Today, a serving of black beans provides the following:
- Calcium, which increases bone strength
- Iron, to help make hemoglobin and promote blood circulation
- Phosphorous, a mineral that works in tandem with calcium for healthy bones
- Potassium, to help control blood pressure
- Magnesium, which promotes brain health
- Manganese, to increase metabolism and circulatory system health
- Zinc, an immune-booster
High in fiber
Black beans are also high in fiber.
As mentioned earlier, a diet rich in fiber promotes better digestive health and help you maintain a healthy weight.
Black beans pack a powerful protein punch. This helps you control an appetite, makes you feel fuller, and satisfies food cravings.
Putting black beans on the plate can help you reach your weight loss goals or help you maintain a healthy size.
The healthy protein boost makes black beans popular for vegan diets. Vegans use this legume to make almost everything:
- Black bean hummus
- Black bean burgers
- Bean dips
- Meat-free “loaf.”
- Bean soups
- Savory black bean chilis
- Black beans and rice
Black beans are naturally fat-free. As mentioned about corn, the fat comes from the things you add to these legumes to serve them.
Go easy on the toppings, and you’ll enjoy a tasty, healthful addition to your menu.
Serving Corn Salsa With Black Beans
Now that we looked at the nutritional benefits let’s get back to making that Corn Salsa with Black Beans.
Besides serving corn salsa over chips, here are some other ways that you can enjoy it:
- Add it to the Instant Pot on top of chicken breasts.
- Place it on top of a Tex-Mex burger or black bean burger.
- Toss it into your omelet, eggs, or breakfast casserole for a southwestern flavor
- Top your salmon with corn salsa with jalapenos for a nice, spicy kick
- Top rice with corn salsa
- Stir a few tablespoons into your favorite soups, stews, chowder, or chili recipes
- Add corn salsa with jalapenos to all your favorite Mexican cuisine:
- Tortilla or pita chip topping
- Mexican salad or in a taco salad
- Fill your taco with this salsa for a vegan option.
- Top your favorite quesadilla
Let’s say this. You will find dozens of uses for this recipe. You can transform any basic recipe into a delicious and savory dish.
As mentioned earlier, you’ll want to keep some on hand at all times.
Canning corn salsa with black beans
Corn and black beans are both low-acidity vegetables. This particular recipe does not contain tomatoes to add any acid.
Thus, you should pressure can this recipe for safety. A boiling water canning method will not suffice.
When you can acidic foods, the pH balance (or acidity) helps to destroy harmful bacteria. However, non-acidic foods offer no such protection.
Whether you have a stovetop pressure canner or an electric model, check the canning instructions for corn or beans and follow them closely.
Only a couple of electric pressure cookers tout themselves as safe for canning–read carefully before you proceed.
For exact instructions, called your local agricultural extension office for recommended pressure and canning times for your geographic location.
Factors such as altitude impact the pressure canning process.
If you don’t want to can the salsa, it keeps fresh in the fridge. Cover it up tightly, and you can store it in the fridge for a few days.
You may also cut the batch in half if you don’t want to can. Better yet, make the full batch and share it with a friend.
Corn Salsa with Black Beans Recipe
Now that you know all the ins and outs of why this corn salsa recipe with black beans is such a fan-favorite dish, let’s look at the recipe.
This easy corn salsa recipe with black beans packs a nutritional punch, delivers bold flavor, and is easy on your waistline. It tastes savory, but not overly spicy.
- 4 ears of cooked corn on the cob
- 1 can of black beans
- 1 small red bell pepper, finely diced
- 1 jalapeno, diced (and seeds and ribs removed)
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/4 red onion, finely minced
- Open the can of beans. Rinse them. Soak in cold water for 15 minutes. You'll see foam and bubbles releasing -- your tummy will be grateful for this step later.
- Cut the corn off of the cob. Break up into kernels, so you don't have large corn "strips" in the salsa—place in a large mixing bowl.
- While the beans continue to soak, cut the red bell pepper, jalapeno, and red onion. Put these items into the mixing bowl.
- Add the cumin.
- Drain the beans completely to make sure you are not adding any water to the salsa. Gently stir them into the corn salsa mixture.
- If you'd like a little bit of extra heat, feel free to add ground red pepper or a dash of hot sauce to the recipe.
Let this basic, easy corn salsa recipe with black beans serve as a canvas. You can make it less savory by removing the jalapeno or turn up the heat by adding a hotter pepper.
Note that most canned beans contain sodium. If you are on a low-sodium diet, feel free to grab no-salt-added beans instead. You can add a dash of salt-free seasoning to bring the flavor to life.
Own the creative process, and have fun making this recipe.
The Bottom Line: Easy Corn Salsa with Black Beans Will Become a Household Go-to
Consider this easy corn salsa with black beans recipe to be a staple to keep on hand. E.g., it can even be the foundation for southwestern black bean soup, by just adding Mexican seasoning and broth.
You can serve it with almost anything to add extra flavor and sneak in healthy veggies to any dish. It’s so good; even the pickiest eaters will love it!
Check out the quick scan summary of uses for black bean and corn salsa.
What to Eat With Corn Salsa
- Chicken breasts with corn salsa
- Corn salsa for tacos
- Salmon with corn salsa
- Tex-Mex burger topping
- Egg bake and breakfast casseroles
- Topping for rice
- Topping for fried eggs
- Omelette filling
- Mexican cuisine – all the usual:
- Chips –
- Mexican Salad
In other words… this black bean corn salsa is good for pretty much any savory dish!
Please let us know how this recipe works out for you — we’d love to hear!