Gluten-free, Dairy-Free Cowboy Caviar (Vegan optional)

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Where to even begin? The past month-and-a-half have been a blur. A marvelous, fantastical, amazing blur of a ride, but a blur nonetheless. Yesterday was our 10th plane in the past 3 weeks.

When things are busy, and you’re traveling, or just not somewhere you can stick to your meal plan—where others tend to skip meals, I get extra snacky. And it doesn’t matter what it is. What I have learnt over the years is that there is good snacking and bad snacking.

Bad snacking being grab-and-go, convenience store snacks like chips, candy bars, a block of cheese. :) Good snacking being little pick me up like a handful of almonds, apple slices, or a few taco chips worth of delicious dip.

Guacamole is our go-to but this dip is a close second. Now it goes by many names. I heard Mixed Bean Dip, Texas Caviar, Cowboy Caviar, etc. Whatever you want to go with, it’s still going to be delicious and crowd-pleasing.

It’s protein-packed, flavorful + hearty, and paired with taco chips…Mmm! It’s crunchy and munchy. :)

This recipe make a TON! So it’s perfect to make on meal prep day and enjoy throughout the week or as a simple potluck appetizer to share.

Or Father’s Day is tomorrow (Sunday, June 17) so mix up some for tomorrow and hang with your dad enjoying a beer, some relaxation, and some Cowboy Caviar!

Note: This is one of those recipes where it gets better the longer you allow it to sit and flavors to blend. I always find it’s more delicious the second day.

As always I’d love to hear your stories and see your creations! Make sure to tag #heystudioist so I don’t miss them. Thanks!

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Gluten-free, Dairy-Free Texas Caviar (Vegan optional)

Ingredients

  • 6 strips bacon, turkey bacon, or bacon of choice (optional, exclude or use vegan alternative like Smart Bacon for vegan version)
  • 1 (16 oz) can black beans, drained
  • 1 (16 oz) can black-eyed peas, drained
  • 1 (11 oz) can Mexican corn kernels, drained
  • 10 black olives, pitted and sliced
  • 1 (14 oz) can salsa-style tomatoes
  • 1 large green capsicum, seeds removed and chopped
  • 3/4 large onion, chopped, additional to preference
  • 2 jalapeños, seeds removed and chopped, additional to preference
  • 3/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Italian salad dressing of choice (check ingredients for vegan option—my fave brands include Tessamae’s, Annie’s + Follow your Heart)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. If applicable, cook bacon strips according to package directions and preference. Blot with napkin, allow to cool then break into pieces.
  2. In a large bowl, combine bacon pieces, black beans, black-eyed peas, corn, olives, tomatoes, capsicum, onion, jalapeños and cilantro.
  3. Add salad dressing 1 tbsp at a time, adjusting amount to preference.
  4. Salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Cover and allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  6. Serve with tortilla chips or crackers/chips of choice.