Southwest Salad with Jalapeno Avocado Lime Dressing

It’s time to kick off summer.  It’s time to put your hair in a ponytail, pull out the beach towels, and get out in the sun.  It’s time for watermelon slices, corn on the cob, and picnics.  I think this also means it’s time for picnic foods… easy dishes that you can share with friends and family and quick go-to meals that you can pack for yourself regardless of where you are headed.  No matter what you are up to this summer, this salad fits the bill.

We start with a hearty bed of fresh greens and top it with corn, ripe tomatoes, black beans, bell peppers, and a spicy-sweet jalapeno avocado lime dressing.  Flax seed crackers are completely optional, but they add a fun crunch and are perfect for easy and healthy snacks (goodbye tortilla chips!).  What are you waiting for?  Make this salad and get out there!

This dressing is super simple: water, agave nectar, avocado, lime juice, jalapeno, garlic and salt. Ingredients get combined in a blender and in less than one minute you have an incredibly tasty dressing that is free of added oils!

This salad is gluten-free and can be made completely raw by substituting the cooked black beans for sprouted beans or lentils. Feel free to top it with other goodies like fresh salsa, pico de gallo, or avocado slices.

Southwest Salad
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4
  • 6 cups fresh salad greens
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 2½ cups cooked black beans
  • 1 cup corn kernels (raw or cooked)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
  1. Divide ingredients among four plates. Drizzle salad with dressing and serve with flax chips, if desired.

Jalapeno Avocado Lime Dressing
Prep time
Total time
Recipe type: Dressing
  • 1 avocado, pitted and skinned
  • 1 cup water
  • juice from ½ lime
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, de-seeded
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • 1 pinch salt
  1. Add ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.
Makes 1¼ cups

Flax Chips
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Snack
  • 1½ cups flaxseed
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup water
  • juice from ½ lime
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • small pinch chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds to the water. Add more water if needed to achieve an oatmeal-like consistency.
  2. Add the lime juice, cumin, paprika, chile powder and salt and thoroughly mix by hand.
  3. Spread flax mixture flat onto a dehydrator tray lined with a Teflex/ParraFlex sheet. (It will take 3 - 4 trays total). Dehydrate at 115 degrees F for about 8 - 12 hours, until crispy. Crackers are done with they are crispy and easy to break apart into pieces. Store in a well-sealed container and they will last for several weeks, if not longer.
Adapted from Raw Food by Erica Palmcrantz. Makes 20 - 30 chips.


(Note: some readers have asked about the dehydrator I use. I have a 9-tray Excalibur dehydrator that I bought three years ago and absolutely love. It’s the perfect size for making several batches of raw goodies at once.)

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  1. says

    You’re right, this IS simple. My gosh, I have all the ingredients, too. I think I’ll make it for lunch today. Thanks Sonnet! You make me want to drive the 6 hours to a lake, hang out in my bathing suit and bask in the sun :)

  2. says

    I made it for lunch today and it was very good! I made the dressing just a bit thicker and used it as a wonderful dip with corn chips.
    I am new to your site, but I am loving it.

  3. Sarah says

    I love this dressing…so easy and so yummy! I think I will leave the seeds (or at least some of them) in the jalapenos next time because I like the heat. Thanks for your blog!

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