Jump to RecipeJump to VideoLeave a ReviewPin Recipe

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Serve this Texas Caviar for a satisfying salad or scoop it up with tortilla chips for a healthy, flavorful dip. It’s a crowd pleasing side dish recipe that comes together in just minutes!

Copper tray of Texas Caviar and chips

Y’all, I’ll take a big bowl of this Texas Caviar recipe over fresh salsa any day! I just love the combination of textures and flavors from the black eyed peas, corn, onion and bell pepper in a sweet and sour dressing.

Whether you snack on it with chips or vegetables, use it to top a taco or grilled chicken breast, or serve it as a side salad with your next easy dinner, this is a versatile and nourishing dish that your family will adore!

Overhead shot of Texas Caviar dip surrounded by tortilla chips and fresh vegetables

What is Texas Caviar?

Also called, “Cowboy Caviar,” this is a salad of black eyed peas that have been lightly pickled in a vinaigrette dressing. The recipe was originally created in Texas in 1940 by a woman named Helen Corbitt, who first served it on New Year’s Eve at the Houston Country Club (source).

How to Make Texas Caviar:

First, prepare the vinaigrette. You’ll need the following ingredients:

  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Olive oil
  • Sugar
  • Salt and pepper
3 ingredients for texas caviar vinaigrette

Place all of the dressing ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, whisking occasionally. Remove from the heat and cool completely (this will take at least 30 minutes).

Texas caviar dressing in a saucepan with whisk

Next up: the salad ingredients! You’ll need:

  • Black eyed peas
  • Corn
  • Bell peppers
  • Onion
Ingredients for Texas Caviar

Combine the salad ingredients in a large bowl:

Texas caviar ingredients in a large glass mixing bowl

Add the cool dressing and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (or overnight). This gives the salad a chance to “marinate” in the delicious dressing!

Overhead shot of texas caviar stirred together with a wooden spoon in a glass mixing bowl

I like to drain off any extra liquid or dressing just before serving. Then garnish with chopped fresh cilantro, parsley, green onions or a squeeze of lime juice.

A copper appetizer tray full of chips and Texas Caviar dip

Is Texas Caviar healthy?

Yes! This salad is full of protein and fiber from the beans, along with plenty of nutrients from all of the fresh vegetables. The olive oil vinaigrette adds healthy fat, while the sugar can be increased or decreased according to personal preference. This recipe for Texas Caviar has just 74 calories per ¼ cup.

Is Texas Caviar gluten-free?

Yes, this recipe is naturally gluten free.

Close overhead shot of Texas Caviar and chips

How long does Texas Caviar last?

The Texas Caviar will keep in the refrigerator for at least 2 days. You can store it in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days, but the vegetables start to break down and become soft as they sit in the dressing.

Can Texas Caviar be frozen?

Yes, you can freeze this recipe. The vegetables will be softer when thawed, but it will still taste good! Give it a stir and drain any excess liquid before serving.

What to serve with Texas Caviar:

Wondering what goes with Texas Caviar? Here are a few options to serve with your Texas Caviar:

  • As a dip appetizer with tortillas chips or pita chips
  • Alongside sliced bell pepper strips, celery sticks or cucumber for a healthy snack
  • As a side salad with grilled chicken or fish
  • As a salsa garnish with tacos, fajitas, or quesadillas
  • As a topping on nachos
  • As a topping on a baked potato
Overhead image of a tray of Texas Caviar with tortilla chips and pita chips

Cook’s Tips and Recipe Variations:

  • This Texas Caviar recipe uses apple cider vinegar, but you can substitute with regular white vinegar in a pinch.
  • The Cowboy Caviar dressing is made with vinegar and sugar. You can increase or decrease the amount of sugar in your dressing, to taste. As written, this is just a slightly sweet dressing – it’s not overpowering.
  • Make Texas Caviar with Black Beans: you can substitute black beans for the black eyed peas in this recipe. If you like, try a combination of both black beans and black eyed peas by using 1 can of each!
  • Prepare Cowboy Caviar with Avocado by adding diced avocado to the salad just before serving.
  • Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro, sliced green onion, fresh parsley, or a squeeze of fresh lime juice.
Tortilla chip scooping up Texas Caviar from a white bowl

Other easy dip recipes that you might enjoy:

Copper tray of Texas Caviar and chips

Texas Caviar

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 3 minutes
Cooling Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Total: 13 minutes
Servings 24 (1/4-cup servings)
Calories 74 kcal
Serve this Texas Caviar for a satisfying salad or scoop it up with tortilla chips for a healthy, flavorful dip. It’s a crowd pleasing side dish recipe that comes together in just minutes!

Ingredients
  

  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (11 ounce) can corn, drained
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 small green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • ¼ cup sweet onion, diced
  • Optional garnish: fresh cilantro, fresh parsley, squeeze of fresh lime juice
  • For serving: pita chips or tortilla chips

Instructions

  • In a saucepan, whisk together vinegar, oil, sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, whisking occasionally. Remove from heat and cool completely (at least 30 minutes).
  • In a large bowl, combine black-eyed peas, corn, bell peppers and onion. Add cool dressing and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours (or overnight).
  • Drain off any excess dressing just before serving.
  • Garnish with fresh herbs or lime juice, if desired, and serve with pita chips or tortilla chips.

Notes

  • This Texas Caviar recipe uses apple cider vinegar, but you can substitute with regular white vinegar in a pinch.
  • The Cowboy Caviar dressing is made with vinegar and sugar. You can increase or decrease the amount of sugar in your dressing, to taste. As written, this is just a slightly sweet dressing – it’s not overpowering.
  • Make Texas Caviar with Black Beans: you can substitute black beans for the black eyed peas in this recipe. If you like, try a combination of both black beans and black eyed peas by using 1 can of each!
  • Prepare Cowboy Caviar with Avocado by adding diced avocado to the salad just before serving.
  • Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro, sliced green onion, fresh parsley, or a squeeze of fresh lime juice.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.25cupCalories: 74kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 2gFat: 2gSodium: 98mgPotassium: 117mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 205IUVitamin C: 11.1mgCalcium: 7mgIron: 0.7mg
Keyword: Cowboy Caviar, Texas Caviar, Texas Caviar Recipe
Course: Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

Square overhead shot of hands serving a chicken pot pie recipe with biscuits
Overhead image of a bowl of chili mac on a dinner table with cornbread
Hands serving a platter of sheet pan sausage and potatoes

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Comments

  1. We usually make this for New Years Eve but it’s such a great salad/side/snack to make year round. Thanks for the reminder! For the dressing I’ve used just olive oil and lime or lemon juice , I will try with your dressing recipe next time.