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Black eyed pea salad in a glass bowl with wooden spoon

Black eyed pea salad, aka Texas Caviar (or Harlem Caviar, as it’s called in my cookbook), is the perfect protein rich bean salad. It’s full of flavor and texture, nutritious, easy to make, and perfect for meal prep––it gets tastier day by day. Enjoy this salad as a clean side dish, on toast, as a dip, with a leafy salad, or on its own. It’s also great for potlucks, picnics, and cookouts. Don’t just reserve this salad for the summer months, enjoy it all year. Even on new years day! You’re going to love this black-eyed pea salad recipe!

close up image of raw black eyed peas

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

There aren’t many ingredients in this black eyed pea salad, but each one has its place and gives this salad so much flavor. 

  • Delicious and full of crunchy fresh textures
  • Easy to make
  • Simple ingredients
  • No cooking necessary
  • Kid-friendly
  • Perfect for meal prep––gets better day by day
  • Healthy & filling
black eyed pea salad ingredients on a white countertop

The Star ingredients

BLACK-EYED PEAS, aka Cowpeas. If you know me, you know that black-eyed peas are my favorite beans. They have the best savory nutty flavor. They are my favorite bean to use for salads because of their firm texture. Black-eyed peas are rich in protein, fiber, zinc, copper, folate, and many other vitamins and minerals. Use canned black-eyed peas, or peas that you’ve cooked and cooled completely. Want more black-eyed pea recipes? Try these: Black-Eyed Pea Sweet Potato Curry and Good Luck Black-Eyed Peas. Even more in my cookbook.

ROASTED RED PEPPER Use roasted red pepper instead of raw bell peppers for a smoky flavor and softer texture. You can roast bell peppers on your own or buy them in a jar.

To roast them at home: place whole red bell peppers in the broiler for 30 minutes, turning every 10 minutes. The skin will char (turn black), while the flesh softens. Remove from the oven, and allow the peppers to cool until safe to touch––they will collapse on themselves as they cool. When safe, use your hands to gently remove the charred skin, stem and seeds. Chop and use in the salad.

FRESH PARSLEY You can never have too many fresh herbs. I like using parsley in this recipe, but you can also use cilantro and/or dill. Even basil would be delicious. Dry parsley is not a suitable replacement.

close up image of a black eyed pea salad with bits of celery, red pepper, and parsley seen with the beans.

How to Make Black Eyed Pea Salad

STEP ONE Add the cooked black-eyed peas to a large mixing bowl along with all of the other salad ingredients.

STEP TWO In a separate small bowl, or jar with lid, combine the mustard, apple cider vinegar, hot sauce (optional), maple syrup, sea salt, oregano, thyme, and extra virgin olive oil. Whisk the dressing ingredients until smooth. Pour the dressing over the beans in the large bowl.

STEP THREE Add chopped parsley, and toss the ingredients. Season to taste with more salt and black pepper. Serve and enjoy!

Ingredient Swaps

  • Don’t have black-eyed peas? You can make this salad with any firm bean: chickpeas, black beans, canellini beans, kidney beans, etc. You could even use a mix of beans.
  • Want to make it more authentic? Add 1/2 cup of corn.
  • No red onion? Use white onion, sweet onion, green onions/scallions, or shallots. If you don’t have any onions at all, consider adding 1 clove of garlic for a similar sharp bite.

How to Keep it Fresh

This black eyed pea salad is tastier after it marinates overnight. Even better the second day, so it’s extra perfect for meal prep. Keep it fresh in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Store it in a glass airtight container for best results.

This bean salad should not be frozen.

You’ll also Love these Hearty Salad Recipes

Marinated White Bean Salad

Peach White Bean Salad

Chickpea Tuna Salad

Carrot Chickpea Salad

4.63 from 8 votes

Black Eyed Pea Salad

This cold black eyed pea salad can ideal for warm-weather meals and meal prep, and can be enjoyed as a side dish or main.
Servings: 4


  • 3 cups cooked black-eyed peas, or 2 15-oz cans of black-eyed peas. Equivalent to approximately 1 cup of uncooked beans
  • 1/2 cup minced celery
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion
  • 1 medium roasted red bell pepper, chopped, or use raw red bell pepper
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 tsp hot sauce depending on your spice tolerance
  • 1 tsp pure maple syrup or agave
  • 1 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley


  • In a large bowl, toss together the black eyed peas, celery, onion, and roasted red bell pepper.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard, vinegar, hot sauce, maple syrup, salt, oregano, and thyme. Drizzle in the oil while whisking vigorously until the mixture is well blended and creamy. Pour the dressing over the black eyed peas and stir well to combine. Add the parsley, and stir more.
  • Let this salad marinate for a few hours before serving, or overnight. It gets tastier as it marinates.
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

About Jenne

I’m a Georgia Peach living in Los Angeles (by way of NYC), with an insatiable love of sweet potatoes, travel, animals, and cooking. On Sweet Potato Soul you’ll discover hundreds of delicious and easy-to-make vegan recipes.

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  1. I had Marsh Hen Mill Carolina Conch Peas and a shallot to use up. Otherwise, I followed the recipe. This is a keeper! The dressing is what really makes it special. Thank you so much. Can’t await to try it with Black Eyed Peas!!

  2. This recipe is the bomb! These are all ingredients that keep on hand, so I can whip this up without having to go shopping (just need to cook my dried beans!). This has paired really nicely with all the sides I had on hand this week, including potato salad, roasted okra, and “roasted corn” (frozen sweet corn sauteed in olive oil). It’s crazy how much flavor this has without garlic, but I’m all for it because sometimes I’m just really not in the mood to peel and chop garlic! Well done!

  3. Wow! 10++++++for this recipe! I was looking for something different to make this week for my work lunches and came across this recipe. So flavorful and easy to throw together. I included a piece of high protein/fiber flatbread to go along with this. Thank you for the great recipe! It is awesome!