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Easy Bean Salads for Summer


Try these quick bean salads for summer parties and family gatherings

If you're planning a Fourth of July gathering or simply want to put together a quick vegetable salad, these are a couple of quick and easy recipes that can be served cold or warm.

The nice thing about vegetables is that they're not only healthy, but most people love them. (And those who don't can "pick" out the offending items.)

The nicest thing about vegetable salads is that they are simple to adjust - add whatever's available in the pantry and you're good to go.

Keep food safety in mind when preparing and serving any dish - especially in summer. Keep on ice; serve on ice (if possible), and return to ice within two hours - one hour if the temperature is over 85 degrees.

Bean, Tomato, and Corn Salad
(6 side servings)

3 Roma tomatoes (peel and dice)
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 cup corn kernels
1 can beans, drained (black, kidney, white)

2 Tablespoons olive oil (split use)
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon cayenne (optional)

Allow tomatoes to drain thoroughly. Sauté onion just until translucent (add stock if needed). Add beans, corn, black pepper, cumin, oregano, and cayenne. Stir over low heat for about 5-10 minutes. Remove and let cool. Add tomatoes and olive oil; blend well. Serve warm or refrigerate.

Easiest Bean Salad
(8 side servings)

1 can black beans
1 can yellow corn
1 can chopped green chilies with liquid reserved
1 bell pepper (red or yellow for color and sweetness)
1 small red onion (for best taste)
3 Tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Rinse and drain beans and corn. Combine all ingredients and toss thoroughly. Refrigerate to marinate overnight. Can serve warmed, cold, or at room temperature.

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