Calling all the avocado lovers. *whole world raises hand*
Today’s southwestern salad is so super simple and classic – just spicy golden roasted sweet potatoes tossed with sweet corn, black beans, chopped romaine lettuce, and a cool n’ creamy avocado dressing that is packed with cilantro, lime, and other good things.
I mean, what can I say? It’s not the world’s most cray-z-awesome creative combination – it’s just what my mouth wants to eat every day all day in the summatime.
Let’s get right down to it. I adore this salad for many reasons, one of them being that you can actually just omit the lettuce (umm I didn’t just say that 🙅) and toss the roasted sweet potatoes, corn, black beans, and avocado dressing together for more of a Southwestern Salad meets *Chips and Dip for Lunch* situation.
Judging by how closely our food tastes align most of the time in this internet food blog space, I’m going to guess that you’ll be as obsessed as I have been for the last five hundred lunches.
Insider Tip: if you are going the chip route, and if you can find chips with a spicy hit to them, you will be in spicy-cool Southwestern-flavored heaven.
**UPDATE: per reader request, here is the link to the (spicy!) chips that I will now go on to rave about. This is an affiliate link to buy them on Amazon. You might be able to find them in store as well – I got mine at Byerly’s.**
Kinda like how I bought these sweet potato chipotle tortilla chips the other day, and like how I found out as I broke into the bag on the way home from the store that they were WAYYYY too spicy to eat on their own, and like how those spicy chipotle chips then became the perfect scooping mechanism for this southwestern salad because the coolness of the salad + the heat of the chips were a match just made for each other. The kick of the chipotle with the crunch of the chip texture with the luscious, cooling avocado…
And then there’s that moment you realize that your post about a nice, real food, flavorful, healthy and whole southwestern salad has turned into a love letter to PACKAGED CHIPS.
🎶 I see your truuuue colors shining through 🎶
This southwestern salad takes about 30 minutes to prep, start to finish.
Get the sweet potatoes going, and while those bbs are doing their yummy thing with the cumin and chili in the oven, make the dressing and chop up the lettuce and drain and rinse your corn and beans.
If you want to be extra deliciously awesome, I highly recommend using fresh sweet corn and grilling or roasting it. I did that one other time when I made this southwestern salad combo happen and it was D to the Licious!
On the other hand, if you’re just getting home from work and you’re hungry for dinner and you have about 2 seconds before you have to start Round 2 of more work in the evening (hiiii this is my life right now for exciting reasons that will soon be made known), then just using canned corn and beans will be right up your alley.
Literally right at this second I just had a vision of tossing some sizzling tequila-lime-esque shrimp in with the corn and beans and sweet potatoes, and covering it in the avocado cilantro dressing, and gobbling it all down in a moment of ultimate southwestern salad bliss.
Will someone please do that for me?
This healthy Spicy Southwestern Salad recipe has roasted sweet potatoes, black beans, corn, lettuce, and creamy avocado dressing!
For the Salad
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 heaping teaspoon each cumin and chili powder (plus a sprinkle of cayenne if you like it hot)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 14-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 14-ounce can sweet corn, rinsed and drained
- 1 romaine heart, chopped
For the Cilantro Dressing:
- half an avocado
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup cilantro leaves and stems
- 1 small clove of garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- a squeeze of lime juice
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Peel the sweet potatoes and chop into bite-sized pieces. Mix the olive oil, cumin, and chili powder together in a small bowl. Brush mixture on sweet potatoes. Roast for 10 minutes. Stir or shake the pan. Turn heat up to 425, and roast for another 10-15 minutes. Check, stir, and bake until the sweet potatoes are just barely roasty-brown on the outside. Season with salt and pepper.
- Meanwhile, pulse all the dressing ingredients in a food processor until mostly smooth.
- Toss the beans, corn, lettuce, and sweet potatoes with the dressing. Serve with chips and/or the other half of the avocado for extra yum!
This recipe can be made vegan by swapping the Greek yogurt with a non-dairy yogurt alternative – even just a little hunk of tofu would work, or maybe the whole avocado instead of half. But don’t use oil – the oil and avocado don’t really blend together well (I speak from experience).
HERE ARE THE SPICY CHIPS. They are really spicy and really good. This is an affiliate link to order a box of them on Amazon.
PS. Totally need to say thank you for your responses on yesterday’s post. I couldn’t sleep last night – my mind was too busy being completely overwhelmed by your kind, encouraging, real-people-real-life words. ♡