Tex Mex Black Bean Pasta Salad

Sorry I have been MIA! I started my new job in the big apple a few weeks ago and adjusting to my new way of life. I absolutely loveeee my job and all of the people I work with it couldn’t have been a better fit. The only thing is the days are hella long. I’m up at 5:00 am, catching the train at 7:30 am and don’t get home from work until 7:30 pm.  I stuff my face the second I get home and run to the gym for an hour because I would go crazy if I didn’t work out. I can’t complain though because the benefits outweigh any and all costs I just have to fall into a routine. It’s been my dream to work in Manhattan since I was a little girl so finally, this dream has come true so there will be no bitching here!

So back to the point here… I haven’t been able to cook dinner because I get home so late and need to go to the gym asap so I can go to bed by an appropriate hour (it’s all about the hustle so I can move into a place of my own closer to work one day!). Thank god my family has dinner ready for me when I walk in the door otherwise I don’t know what I’d do! If you’re reading this, I appreciate you!

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I save my cooking for the weekends and am all about Sunday Meal Prep. I try to bring lunch from home as often as I can to not only save money, because everything in the city is so expensive but to watch what I eat. Eating out has so many hidden ingredients and potentially added calories (that’s why it tastes so damn good). While their are tons of places that are healthy I try to grab lunch out only a couple times a week.Processed with VSCO with c1 preset

Which is where this recipe comes into play. I live for meal prepping my lunches so I don’t have to make a new lunch every night. This pasta salad is packed with veggies and protein plus it’s accidentally gluten-free. It’s always a plus when you make something that tastes amazing and is healthy too! Trader Joe’s black bean rotini served as the perfect base for this pasta salad, it added protein and eliminated some of the carbs that are in the typical pasta salad. Not only are these noodles great for extra protein and fewer carbs but they go beautifully with the Mexican flavors in this dish.


Tex Mex Black Bean Pasta Salad

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 mins
Serves: 4-5
A mix between Mexican Street Corn & Black Bean Salsa. These flavors pack a protein filled punch that will be sure to fill you up at lunch and leave you feeling satisfied for the rest of your workday.


For the Pasta

  • 1 bag of Trader Joes Black Bean Rotini
  • 3 stalks of Green Onion thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Fresh Cilantro coarsely chopped
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes quartered
  •  1/2 bag of Trader Joes (frozen) roasted corn
  • 1 can of black olives halved
  • 1 avocado diced
  • 1/2 jalapeno finely diced
  • 1/2 cup of cotija cheese crumbled

For the Dressing

  • 1/2 Cup Light Mayo (can sub for plain greek yogurt)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Chipotle Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Chile Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
  • Salt & Fresh Cracked Pepper
  • Zest of 1 Lime
  • Lime Juice (1 lime)
  1. Cook Rotini to package instructions. While pasta is cooking combine green onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and black olives in a bowl.
  2. Mix together mayo, spices, sriracha, lime juice and zest in a bowl until smooth. Set aside.
  3. Once pasta is cooked, rinse and toss with olive oil to prevent from sticking and let cool. Cook corn to package instructions and cool.
  4. When pasta and corn are at room temperature, add to bowl with other ingredients.
  5. Add sauce, crumble cheese and avocado to bowl and lightly mix until further combined. Be careful not to mush the avocado.
  6. I added blackened shrimp seasoned with ground chile pepper, chipotle pepper, garlic powder, smoked paprika and salt & pepper to mine. You can add any protein your heart desires and feel free to use vegan mayo if you want to keep this dish vegan (also subtract the cheese).

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This dish is amazing. It’s smoky, has a mild heat, super fresh and full of protein. Just the pasta has 14 g of protein per serving! My mom and I couldn’t stop sneaking bites before we packed it in Tupperware to bring for lunch. I’m excited to go to work tomorrow so I can eat it for lunch.  This makes roughly 5 servings and should last you the whole week, or you can be nice and share with your loved ones. Please note: If you’re going to add shrimp, I recommend making it fresh each night before you eat it for lunch because the shrimp might not last as long as the pasta salad will alone! You don’t need to just have this for lunch. Make this pasta salad for your next pot luck, picnic or family party and have all your guests fawning over this unconventional, low carb spin on the traditional picnic pasta salad.

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I hope you love this recipe as much as I do! If you decide to make it comment below or tag @doseofdana or #doseofdana on Instagram, I’d love to see how it comes out :). Let me know if you enjoyed this recipe and subscribe to get your daily Dose of Dana!



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