Southwest pasta salad is filled with corn, black beans, and tons of veggies. It’s a delicious, easy pasta salad recipe that’s perfect for BBQs and potlucks.

A bowl of southwest pasta salad with corn, tomatoes, black beans & cilantro

Today I’m sharing this super easy southwest pasta salad recipe. I absolutely love southwest and Mexican food – so it’s the perfect way to include all your favorite southwest flavors into the perfect potluck salad.

It has a super delicious chili lime vinaigrette dressing. Then it’s filled with black beans, corn, bell peppers, red onion & tons of cilantro.

Now I absolutely love BBQ and potluck food. So I’m always looking for easy salads & side dishes. What I love about this pasta salad is that it’s a little different, full of flavor, doesn’t include mayonnaise (I’m so NOT a fan), and it’s super customizable.

Southwest Pasta Salad Recipe

A big bowl of mexican pasta salad with chili lime vinaigrette.

This recipe could seriously not be any easier. First, boil up the pasta according to the package instructions. I used fusilli pasta, but feel free to use whatever bite-sized noodles you prefer. You can use bow ties, macaroni, penne – it’s totally up to you. I like to cook it el-dente for pasta salad.

Then chop of the veggies. I used red pepper, green pepper, cherry tomatoes and red onion. Roma tomatoes work well too, and you can also throw in 1 chopped avocado.  We’re also using black beans, corn (fresh or canned), and lots of cilantro.

The chili lime vinaigrette is made with fresh lime juice, oil, vinegar, and spices. I used 2 teaspoons of chilli powder, but if you prefer it a little milder use 1 teaspoon instead. If you’re wanting to save time – you could even skip making the vinaigrette dressing and use southwest vinaigrette or southwest ranch salad dressing.

Tomatoes, black beans, corn, peppers, red onion & cilantro for making southwest pasta salad.

Everything gets tossed together, and then you’re ready to serve. This salad is perfect for making the morning of your potluck or BBQ because I find that the flavors actually get better as the day goes on. But I definitely recommend making it the same day that you plan to serve it so that the veggies stay crispy.

If you love southwest and Mexican flavors this pasta salad is just the recipe for you. Easy, customizable, and perfect for potlucks – it’s always a crowd pleaser

Southwest pasta salad has tomatoes, black beans, corn, peppers & cilantro in every spoonful.

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Southwest Pasta Salad

Southwest Pasta Salad

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Servings: 12
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes


Southwest pasta salad is filled with corn, black beans, and tons of veggies. It's a delicious, easy pasta salad recipe that's perfect for BBQs and potlucks.


Southwest Pasta Salad

  • 12 Ounce Pasta, bite-sized
  • 1 1/2 Cups Bell Peppers, chopped, I used 1/2 red & 1/2 green
  • 1 Cup Black Beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 1/2 Cup Corn Kernels
  • 2 Cups Cherry Tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 Cup Red Onion, chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Cilantro, chopped
  • Cotija Cheese, optional

Chilli Lime Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Lime Juice, fresh
  • 3 Tablespoons White Wine Vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Chilli Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Pepper


  • Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain and cool for 5 minutes.
    12 Ounce Pasta
  • Meanwhile, make the salad dressing by whisking together all the ingredients in a small bowl.
    1/4 Cup Olive Oil, 1/4 Cup Lime Juice, 3 Tablespoons White Wine Vinegar, 2 teaspoons Chilli Powder, 1 teaspoon Cumin, 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder, 1/2 teaspoon Onion Powder, 1/2 teaspoon Salt, 1/4 teaspoon Pepper
  • Add the cooled, cooked pasta to a very large salad bowl.
  • Add in the peppers, black beans, corn, tomatoes, red onion & cilantro.
    1 1/2 Cups Bell Peppers, 1 Cup Black Beans, 1 1/2 Cup Corn Kernels, 2 Cups Cherry Tomatoes, 1/2 Cup Red Onion, 1/2 Cup Cilantro
  • Toss everything together with the chilli lime vinaigrette.
    Cotija Cheese
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve.


Store in the refrigerator, in a covered container for up to 5 days.


Serving: 1gCalories: 197kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 6gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 147mgPotassium: 264mgFiber: 3gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 858IUVitamin C: 32mgCalcium: 18mgIron: 1mg
Author: Fiona
Course: 15 of the Best Pasta Salad Recipes on the Internet

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