This vegan Mexican pasta salad is a nice twist on a traditional pasta salad. This is lighter without a creamy mayo-based sauce; instead, it has oil and Mexican seasoning for a delicious summer salad.
It's BBQ season, so it's time to bust out all your tasty side dishes for those summer potlucks.
I love this Mexican pasta salad because it's not your typical potato or pasta salad.
Don't get me wrong, I LOVE those as well, but sometimes you want to spice it up.
I'm a big fan of pasta salad in any form.
I love how colorful this pasta salad is. It would look beautiful on a spread for a potluck or party.
The other thing I love about bringing this dish to a potluck is that it's not mayonnaise-based. This means its outdoor life is a little longer than most party dishes.
Not that I am condoning leaving it out in the sun, but it's nice to have something not quite as pesky.
This Mexican macaroni salad isn't only tasty; it's hardy.
It has three different beans: black beans, kidney beans, and garbanzo beans.
If that's not your favorite combination, you could trade out beans, but it is tasty!
I use a macaroni noodle, but you could use any noodle.
Like with any pasta salad, the flavors build. This is best the next day or even two days later.
We have still eaten it on the same day, but the flavor isn't infused into the beans as much as I would like it if eaten the same day.
This recipe is super easy to throw together with no weird ingredients.
My 8-year-old loves this recipe, and like usual, my 5-year-old wouldn't even look at it. You know… because if you look at food, you don't like, it might jump in your mouth?? I am not real sure, kids….
Vegan Mexican Pasta Salad Recipe Q&A-
This recipe tastes best with grilled corn. You can buy grilled frozen corn at some grocery stores.
How do you grill corn on the stove?
To grill corn on the stove, get a pan, add your favorite oil, add the corn, and then grill on high heat until it starts to brown, stirring as needed, so it doesn't burn.
You can also do this on the grill;
- Heat the grill to high heat.
- Place the corn with the husk removed on the grill, grease it if you need to with either cooking spray or vegan butter.
- Let it grill and flip it every few minutes to grill all the sides of the corn.
Can I use different beans?
Yes, if you prefer to use all black beans or trade out the chickpeas, feel free to use whatever combination you personally like.
Can I use a different pasta shape?
Yes, some people like to stick to macaroni noodles; others like bow tie pasta.
I wouldn't use penne or something that needs sauce to get into the pasta. This isn't creamy pasta, and it won't soak in the center.
Can you make this a gluten-free pasta salad?
You can if you use gluten-free noodles.
How do you make this Mexican-inspired pasta salad?
See the recipe card at the bottom of the post for the full recipe.
- black beans, rinsed and drained
- kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
- sweet corn (fresh or canned)
- olive oil
- red-wine vinegar
- lemon juice
- chili powder
- cumin, ground
- oregano, dried
- green onion or red onion
- fresh cilantro, chopped
- green it red peppers
- elbow macaroni noodles, dry
How do you make this vegan Mexican pasta salad recipe?
Take a medium pot, fill it with water, add your pasta.
Cook your 1 cup of dry macaroni noodles on the stove according to the package directions for al dente (mine took 7 minutes), strain, and rinse with cold water set aside.
Get a big bowl, add your oil, red-wine vinegar, lemon juice, salt, garlic, cilantro, chili, cumin, oregano, green onions, and pepper if using, stir.
Then add the rinsed and strained three bean mixture and your now cooked pasta.
Stir until combined well and put in the fridge for 1-2 hours for the flavors to blend. Overnight is best for flavors, but it's still good the same day.
How do you serve this great side dish?
This is best served at room temperature, so take it out of the fridge about 30 minutes before serving, stir it and then serve.
It's also best if it's made ahead of time; it really needs time for the flavors to blend, it may taste a bit bland if it's served too quickly after being made.
You can add additional toppings like; cherry tomatoes, creamy avocados, crunchy red bell peppers, a squeeze of fresh lime juice, whatever sounds like a good addition to this delicious dish.
If you feel like it needs more flavor, feel free to add additional seasonings.
How do you store leftover Mexican pasta salad?
This is best stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Can you freeze pasta salad?
No, it's best that you don't. The flavors and textures won't taste good after being frozen. Luckily this is a simple recipe that can be made pretty quickly.
Want some other vegan summer side dishes?
Vegan Mexican 3 Bean Pasta Salad
- 1 15 oz can black beans rinsed and drained
- 1 15 oz can kindey beans rinsed and drained
- 1 15 oz can garbonzo beans rinsed and drained
- 1 15 oz can corn drained
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup red-wine vinegar
- 3 TB lemon juice
- 1.5 teaspoon salt
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 TB chili powder
- 1 TB cumin ground
- 1 teaspoon oregano dried
- ¼ cup green onion
- ¼ cup cilantro chopped
- ¼ cup green pepper chopped *optional
- 1 cup macaroni noodles dry
- Cook your 1 cup of dry macaroni noodles on the stove according to the package directions (mine took 7 minutes), strain, and set aside.
- Get a large bowl, add your oil, red-wine vinegar, lemon juice, salt, garlic, cilantro, chili, cumin, oregano, green onions, and pepper; if using, stir. Then add the rinsed and strained three-bean mixture and your now cooked noodles. Stir until combined well and put in the fridge for 1-2 hours for the flavors to blend. Overnight is best for flavors, but it's still good the same day.
If you loved this recipe then give it a 5 star rating and leave a comment! I love to chat with you all. Please feel free to share on social media and tag #courtneyshomestead. I would love to see you over on Instagram or Facebook.