Texas shaped pasta make this easy summer side dish delicious and fun but any small pasta can be used.
❤️ Why you'll love it
- Fresh Tex-Mex flavors.
- Quick and easy.
- Unique pasta salad that everyone goes crazy over.
Fresh cilantro, cherry tomatoes, fire roasted corn, and black beans are mixed with a creamy chipotle and lime dressing that will wake up your tastebuds with a pop of flavor.
Cover tightly with plastic wrap or place in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
This southwestern pasta salad recipe does not freeze well.
- Turn this Tex Mex pasta into a hearty main dish by adding grilled chicken or steak.
- You can use any kind of small pasta you like - farfalle (bow tie pasta), shells, or rotini work well, too.
- Black olives are delicious in this easy side dish.
- I love to add red onions to this!
- Top the finished salad with green onions for a little more color.
💭 Things to know
Expert Tip: The salad will taste even better if you chill it for and at least an hour (overnight is even better) to allow the flavors to blend.
- Cook your pasta according to package directions - a little past the al dente stage.
- Don't rinse the pasta, just drain it.
- Drizzle with a little olive oil if it starts sticking together.
- Don't be afraid to use more chipotle if you like your foods to have a little more kick.
- Salt the pasta water!
- Let the pasta cool completely before mixing with the rest of the ingredients.
Black beans, cannellini beans, pinto beans, or kidney beans are all good in southwest pasta salad.
Sure! Leave out the bacon and cheese and use a vegan mayonnaise for a delicious vegan version of this salad.
📚 Related recipes
- This Italian pasta salad is great for summer because there's no mayonnaise so you don't have to worry as much about it going bad in the heat.
- Macaroni salad is a classic for summer!
- BBQ Macaroni salad may not be a classic but it is delicious!
🍽️ Serve with...
This black bean pasta salad recipe is delicious as a main dish or serve with:
- BBQ chicken breast wrapped in bacon or these juicy burgers!
- Soft garlicky breadsticks are always yummy!
- A creamy, no bake pineapple pie is the perfect dessert.
📞 The last word
This is a great recipe for summer!
If you click on the number of servings in the recipe card you can adjust the measurements up or down for the exact number of servings you need. Don't forget that you can click on "add to collection" to save it to your own, private recipe box!
If you love this recipe please give it 5 stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Tex Mex Pasta SaladPrint Save Go to Collections
- 12 ounces pasta, cooked and drained - don't rinse
- 8 slices bacon, cooked until crispy and crumbled. Fat reserved
- 2 cups Fire Roasted Corn, drained if canned
- 1 ½ cups black beans, about 1 can - drained
- ⅓ cup cilantro, chopped
- 1 poblano pepper, diced (fire roasted optional)
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in quarters
- 3 ounces queso fresco, crumbled
Creamy Tex Mex Dressing
- 2 tablesoons chipotle in adobo
- 1 teasoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ cup lime juice
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- lime zest, from one lime
- Salt and pepper
- Gently toss all pasta salad ingredients in a large bowl, reserving 1 ounce or so of the queso fresco.
- Spoon the dressing over and mix gently.
- Add reserved queso fresco to the top of the salad.
- Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
Creamy Tex Mex Dressing
- Add all the dressing ingredients to a blender.
- Blend until smooth.
- Taste and adjust seasoning.
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First published July 31 2017. Last updated May 24, 2022 for readability.