Black Eyed Pea Salsa Recipe or Cowboy Caviar is a delicious appetizer made with black eyed peas, black beans and sweet corn. Just add your favorite tortilla chips for a healthy chip dip!
This easy black eyed pea salsa recipe is super easy and versatile. You can serve it as a side salad, appetizer dip or even as a topping for tacos.
This dip is perfect year round. We love it in summer, but I like to serve it on New Year's Day for luck since it's the only way my picky eaters will eat black eyed peas!
What makes this appetizer so easy is you can use canned goods for the base. Then, you add as much fresh produce as you want. When I make cowboy caviar in the summer, I'll throw in fresh tomatoes, avocados and jalapeño peppers. If I'm lucky, I can get tomatoes and jalapenos straight from the garden.
Some folks call this dip Cowboy Caviar or Texas Caviar or black-eyed pea dip. If you're looking for healthy chip dip, you're going to love this one!
This southern caviar recipe is made with a variety of fresh veggies and typical salsa ingredients. What you don't have at home should be easy to find online or at your local grocery store.
- Can black beans
- Can black-eyed peas
- Can sweet corn or shoepeg corn
- Jalapeño pepper -- seeded and diced
- Red bell pepper or green bell pepper -- seeded and diced
- Roma tomatoes
- Red onion
- Cilantro -- chopped
- Avocados (optional)
- Olive oil or vegetable oil
- Juice of 2 limes
- Sea salt
- Ground cumin
- Garlic powder
- Ground black pepper
- Smoked paprika
How to Make Black Eyed Pea Salsa
Start out by draining and rinsing the canned black beans, black eyed peas and corn. Then add them to a large bowl.
Next, chop up your fresh produce, and add that to the bowl, as well. You'll want to save the avocados for last.
Whisk all of the dressing ingredients together in a small mixing bowl. To save time, you can use a cup or so of Italian salad dressing or your favorite vinaigrette.
Add the avocados last, if you are using them, and pour the dressing over everything. Mix everything together, and you're good to go.
Pop it in the fridge for about an hour or so before serving. The flavor gets better the longer it sits!
What do You Serve with Cowboy Caviar?
We sometimes add black eyed pea salsa to pulled pork sandwiches -- especially for New Year's Day! It's perfect for game days and parties and other holidays too!
How to Store
Store leftover cowboy caviar in an airtight container in the refrigerator, where it'll last for 2 to 3 days.
Personally, I think the cowboy caviar is even better the next day, since the flavors have even more time to blend together!
If you want to make Texas caviar in advance, mix all the ingredients together like you would normally, but do not add the avocados. Wait to add avocados until the day of serving, so that they don't get mushy.
There are a couple ways to customize this easy black-eyed pea salsa to your tastes.
If you want to keep things as easy as possible, use a can of diced tomatoes or Ro-tel instead of fresh tomatoes.
You can leave out the avocados, especially if you want to make caviar in advance.
This recipe is super versatile, so you can add or leave out whatever ingredients you want, really. Sometimes I like to add green onions, fresh garlic, or an extra fresh jalapeño for more kick.
Black Eyed Pea Salsa (cowboy caviar)
- 1 15-oz can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 15-oz can black-eyed peas drained and rinsed
- 1 15-oz can sweet corn or shoepeg corn drained and rinsed
- 1 jalapeno pepper seeded and diced
- 1 red bell pepper seeded and diced
- 2 Roma tomatoes diced
- ½ cup red onion diced
- ½ cup chopped cilantro
- 2 small avocados diced (optional)
- ¼ cup olive oil or vegetable oil
- Juice of 2 limes
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- Drain and rinse the black beans, corn and black-eyed peas, and add to serving bowl
- Add the diced jalapeno pepper, bell pepper, tomatoes and onion
- Add the cilantro and avocados, and pour dressing over everything. Stir well, cover and refrigerate for about an hour before serving
- In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice and vinegar. Whisk in remaining ingredients.
Nutrition information is estimated. Please do your own calculation to fit special diets.
This black-eyed pea salsa is chock full of vibrant flavor and makes a perfect appetizer, side dish, or delicious dip. Enjoy it on New Year's Day for good luck, or during any time of the year!
For more family favorite appetizers, easy recipe ideas, and delicious recipes, subscribe to the newsletter and follow me on social media!
Recipe was originally published in 2016 and updated in 2022