If you’ve ever had caviar you know it’s expensive, meet the rootin’, tootin’, inexpensive version; Cowboy Caviar. Now this recipe does not require any fish eggs, only some veggies, beans, herbs, and spices. It’s called cowboy caviar because of the round beans and black-eyed peas in it. The name is fitting because this is a snack that is both healthy and hearty enough, the kind of snack that would get you ready for a day on the ranch.

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A white bowl of cowboy caviar surrounded by tortilla chips
Table of Contents
  1. Why you’ll love this recipe
  2. Ingredients Needed
  3. How to Make Cowboy Caviar
  4. Expert Tips
  5. Here Are Some Other Dips you will enjoy
  6. Cowboy Caviar Recipe

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Cowboy caviar is a perfect year-round recipe. Use it as a side dish with dinner and lunches, or as a nice appetizer.
  • Cowboy caviar is easy to take with you! Pack it up in your lunch for a great healthy and delicious option.
  • Easy-peasy to make, most of the ingredients come from a can and require minimal chopping, these ingredients surely won’t break the bank.

Ingredients Needed

  • Black beans- Rinse and drain your black beans before using them.
  • Black-eyed peas- These also need to be rinsed and drained before use.
  • Tomatoes- You can use canned diced tomatoes, be sure to drain them. 
  • Red onion- Use a small onion and dice it up finely.
  • Jalapeno pepper- This gives the cowboy caviar a little bit of zing, chop the jalapeno finely.
  • Garlic salt– To taste
  • Salad dressing– A vinaigrette-based salad dressing is best such as Italian dressing. 
  • Chopped cilantro– This is used for a garnish and a bit of extra herbal flavor.
A Clear bowl of cowboy caviar with a big spoon in it

How to Make Cowboy Caviar

  1. Chop up ingredients: Chop up your red onion, jalapeno, and tomatoes if you aren’t using diced canned tomatoes.
  2. Mix ingredients: Mix all the main components of the cowboy caviar in a large bowl including the beans, black-eyed peas, tomatoes, onion, and jalapeno.
  3. Add toppings: Mix in garlic salt and dressing for taste. Before serving sprinkle some cilantro on top.
  4. Serving: Refrigerate before serving so it’s slightly chilled, enjoy!

Expert Tips

Dice up your ingredients finely so the different flavors are distributed evenly throughout the cowboy caviar. 

Feel free to experiment with different dressings, I like to use Italian but if you want to keep it simple a little bit of lemon juice and red wine vinegar could go a long way!

A white bowl of cowboy caviar surrounded by tortilla chips

Here Are Some Other Dips you will enjoy

a collage of A white bowl of cowboy caviar surrounded by tortilla chips

Cowboy Caviar

5 from 4 votes
This Cowboy Caviar combines a lot of very flavorful ingredients to create a hearty and yummy dip!!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Yield 8 servings
Serving Size 1 serving


  • Ingredients:
  • 15.5 ounce can black beans rinsed and drained
  • 15.5 ounce can black-eyed beans rinsed and drained
  • 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes drained
  • 1 small red onion diced
  • ½ medium red bell pepper chopped
  • 2 cups frozen corn thawed
  • 1 jalapeno pepper chopped
  • ½ teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 cup salad dressing we used Italian
  • Chopped cilantro for garnish


  • Instructions:
  • Except for garlic salt, salad dressing and cilantro, Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Mix in garlic salt. Add dressing and mix completely. Sprinkle Cilantro on top.
  • Refrigerate for an hour before serving. Enjoy!

Recipe Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 241kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Sodium: 727mg | Potassium: 605mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 335IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 3mg
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword 20 minute meal, appetizer dip, hearty side dish

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Made Cowboy caviar for dinner again. It is sooooo good!!!!! A great meal on a warm night.