I can’t think of a more delicious and summer appetizer than Cowboy Caviar! This simple chip dip is always a party favorite and besides being so easy to make, I especially love how fresh and healthy it is.

Cowboy caviar (or cowboy salsa as we called it growing up) is one of my family’s favorite appetizer and side dishes. It’s so easy to throw together for a party or potluck.  If you are looking for more easy potluck dishes, you may like this 5-Minute Homemade Salsa, tomato cucumber salad, or cheesy bean dip!

Cowboy Caviar served in a big glass bowl with chips, cilantro and a halved lime on the sides.

Cowboy Caviar

My family always called this recipe Cowboy Salsa, but I’ve since learned that most people recognize it as Cowboy Caviar!  No matter what you call it, I think we can all agree that it’s DELICIOUS, and just about the easiest recipe to throw together. It’s also inexpensive and feeds a crowd, so I consider it a win all around!

What is Cowboy Caviar?

Cowboy caviar is a popular chips dip that originated out of Texas.  It’s also sometimes called Texas caviar and it’s made with simple healthy ingredients including beans, corn, bell pepper, avocado, and tomato.

Can you make Cowboy Caviar ahead of time?

You can make cowboy caviar ahead of time and I’ve found that it’s best to prepare all of the ingredients and store them separately (leaving the avocado unpeeled). Then, when you are ready to serve the cowboy caviar, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and add the fresh avocado.

How to make Cowboy Caviar:

  • Combine: beans, corn, tomatoes, and onion in a bowl.
  • Fold in: avocado and cilantro.  Add lime juice and a pinch of salt and stir to combine.
  • Serve with your favorite chips.
  • Cowboy caviar will last in the fridge for 2-3 days.

The ingredients needed to make cowboy caviar including a bowl with black beans, corn, pinto beans, and tomatoes, avocados, onion, lime and cilantro placed around the bowl.

Additional variations to Cowboy Caviar:

This is a very forgiving recipe.  Feel free to add some of your favorite ingredients including:

  • crumble cheese (like feta or gorgonzola)
  • different types of beans
  • celery
  • shredded carrot
  • Italian dressing

Black beans, pinto beans, corn, diced tomato, avocado, cilantro and onion mixed and served in a bowl with chips on the side.

Consider trying these popular party side dishes:


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Cowboy Caviar served in a big glass bowl with chips, cilantro and a halved lime on the sides.
Prep 10 mins
Total 10 mins
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  • 15 ounce can black beans , drained and rinsed
  • 1 can pinto beans , (or 2 cans if you want more bean), drained and rinsed
  • 15 ounce can corn , drained
  • 6-8 Roma tomatoes , diced
  • 1/2 large sweet onion , diced
  • 2 avocados , peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro , finely chopped
  • juice of 3 limes
  • sea salt , to taste


  • In a large bowl combine beans, corn, tomatoes, and onion. 
  • Fold in avocados and cilantro. 
  • Squeeze lime juice into the bowl and add a pinch of sea salt.
  •  Stir to combine. Add more sea salt, to taste.


Calories: 108kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 3gFat: 4gSodium: 3mgPotassium: 307mgFiber: 4gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 325IUVitamin C: 7.6mgCalcium: 11mgIron: 0.7mg

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I originally shared this recipe August 2014. Updated June 2019.


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About The Author

Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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