Southwest Sweet Potato, Black Bean, Wild Rice Salad is a colorful and flavorful salad full of sweet potatoes, black beans, wild rice, corn, cilantro and a wonderful chili lime dressing. Serve it as a side or main dish.
This recipe and photos have been updated since their original post on 3/20/2017
One of my favorite types of grains to use in a salad is wild rice. I love the chewy texture and the bit of nutty flavor that it adds.
I think a lot of people use wild rice as more of a side dish that you eat on it’s own, or something you add to soup, like this chicken and wild rice soup. But it’s actually a great way to bulk up a salad and turn it into a main dish.
This Southwest Sweet Potato Black Bean Wild Rice Salad is a salad so loaded with texture and flavor that you’ll forget that it’s a salad at all. While it can absolutely be served as a side dish, it’s balanced enough to work as a vegetarian or vegan main dish salad.
Ingredients For Southwest Sweet Potato Black Bean Wild Rice Salad
- wild rice blend
- roasted sweet potato
- black beans
- red bell pepper
- green onions
- pumpkin seeds
- honey or maple syrup
- chili powder and ground cumin
How to Make Southwest Sweet Potato Black Bean Wild Rice Salad
To make this salad, start by cooking the wild rice. The rice will take about 45 minutes to cook so be sure to plan ahead. I actually prefer to cook the wild rice the day before to save time.
While the rice is cooking roast the sweet potato. Season the diced sweet potato with olive oil salt and pepper and spread it out onto a baking sheet. Depending on how large or small you dice the potato it will take about 17-20 minutes.
Before combining all the ingredients for the salad you’ll want to let the wild rice and sweet potato cool. Again, doing this a day or two in advance will save you a lot of time on the day you plan to serve the salad.
Once the rice and sweet potato are cool, add them to a large bowl along with the green onions, pepper, corn, cilantro and toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds). Combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a jar with a lid and shake until it’s well combined. Pour it over the salad, toss everything together and taste for seasoning before serving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. Try using brown rice, white rice, or even a different type of whole grain such as farro. Farro has the same chewy texture as a wild rice blend. However, if you want this salad to be gluten-free, farro is not a gluten-free grain.
This salad holds up well in the refrigerator for up to four days.
The wild rice will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week. You can also freeze it for up to 6 months.
A wild rice blend, which is what I used in this salad, often includes other types of rice such as brown, red and black rice. Wild rice technically isn’t rice at all. It’s actually the grain of four different species of grass. When cooking either wild rice or a wild rice blend be sure to rinse it under cold water for a minute before adding it to your pot.
More Wild Rice Salads
- 2 cups cooked wild rice blend
- 1 cup diced roasted sweet potato
- 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn
- 2 green onions, sliced thin
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
- Zest of a lime
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Combine all of the ingredients for the vinaigrette in a jar with a lid and shake together until well combined.
- In a large bowl combine all of the salad ingredients. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and toss to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 315Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 273mgCarbohydrates: 57gFiber: 9gSugar: 10gProtein: 9g
Nutritional information is an estimate. Please consult a registered dietician for the most accurate nutritional information.