This recipe for Mexican Bean Salad in Lettuce Cups is a really fun way to increase the amount of beans in your diet. It makes a vibrant and tasty snack or lunch. The Mexican flavor does not come from a pre-mixed Mexican taco package, but from combining just the right amounts of lime juice, cumin powder, salt and jalapeno peppers.
This bean salad can be scooped into baby gem lettuce cups for a neat presentation. Alternatively, you can serve it ‘family-style’ mixed with shredded iceberg lettuce in a salad bowl.
MEXICAN BEAN SALAD IN LETTUCE CUPS
(serves 4-6 as a side salad)
1 tin of red kidney beans in water (400g / 240g drained)
4 oz/125g tomatoes, deseeded and cut into the same size as the beans (should come to roughly 1 cup)
1/2 large cucumber, deseeded and cut into the same size as the beans (should come to roughly 1 cup)
1 Tbsp red onion or shallot, finely diced
1 garlic clove, grated or finely diced
3 Tbsp fresh cilantro / coriander leaves, chopped
1 avocado, cut into the same size as the beans
3 Tbsp pickled jalapeno peppers (roughly chopped) OR 1 fresh jalapeno pepper (deseeded and finely chopped) OR 1/4 tsp hot red chilli powder
3 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp (level) cumin powder
1/2 – 1 tsp salt (to taste)
Sour cream, to dollop on top of the salad
Grated cheese, to scatter on top of the salad
3 baby gem lettuces (or half a head of iceberg lettuce)
- Rinse and drain your tin of red kidney beans and place them in a mixing bowl.
- Prepare the tomatoes, cucumber, shallot (or red onion), garlic clove, jalapeno peppers (or red chilli powder) and cilantro (coriander leaves). Add them to the mixing bowl.
- If you plan to serve the salad within an hour, cut the avocado into roughly the same size as the beans and add them to the mixing bowl. If you are not serving within an hour, save the avocado and cut it just prior to serving.
- Add the fresh lime juice, extra virgin olive oil, cumin powder and salt to the mixing bowl.
- Fold all ingredients together, taking care not to mash them up.
- Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Lettuce Cups: If you are serving the bean salad in lettuce cups, separate the baby gem lettuce leaves and wash them carefully, making sure you do not tear them. Allow the lettuce leaves to dry well. Then toss the bean salad and spoon it into the lettuce leaves and arrange on a platter. Drop a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of grated cheese on top of each serving. Serve immediately.
- Family-Style: If you are serving the bean salad ‘family-style’, wash the iceberg lettuce and shred it finely. Add it to the bean salad in the mixing bowl, and toss carefully. Place a bowl of sour cream and a bowl of grated cheese next to the salad to allow people to add them to the top of their salad. Serve immediately.