This easy Black Bean Salsa with Olives makes a great dip, nacho topping or taco filling! It’s colorful and filled with fresh ingredients.

A Bowl of Black Bean Salsa Next to Some Tortilla Chips


Homemade Black Bean Salsa with Olives

I love this Black Bean Salsa with Olives any time of year. But in the middle of January, when there are no sweet summer tomatoes to be had…well, that’s usually when you’ll see me mixing up a big bowl of this colorful salsa.

It’s full of fresh sweet bell peppers, onion, and garlic, which provide that from-the-garden tasty goodness. A can of diced tomatoes bestows summer in preserved form. And black beans bring fiber, protein, and another layer of texture and flavor. But the really cool ingredients in this bowl? Chopped black olives and green olives. Those briny beauties give it a unique kind of saltiness, which completely makes this salsa. And the recipe calls for “handfuls” of olives – I love that!

My friend Ann shared this interesting salsa recipe with me many years ago, a favorite dish from her friend “Annie P”. And the recipe has such a great story behind it…

When Ann’s son Graham was very young, he set out on a mission to increase the number of monarch butterflies in this world. It was the ultimate summer job for a boy in his youth. Graham raised and released over 26 monarchs that summer, naming each one as he went through the alphabet…A is for Albert, B is for Bill, C is for Cathy, etc.

Raising small stripy caterpillars into big gorgeous black and orange butterflies was a huge part of their summer. So it was only fitting that Ann and Graham turned Annie P’s Salsa into “Caterpillar Salsa”, a name they still reference to this day. They got creative with color in their kitchen mixing bowl, using no red ingredients, and incorporating only yellow tomatoes that I shared with them from my own garden, yellow bell peppers, white onions, and the blackness of beans and olives. If you know what a monarch caterpillar looks like, with its yellow, black, and white stripes, you can imagine their Caterpillar Salsa in all its boyhood glory. 

Serving utensils rest in a big bowl of black bean salsa.

Black Bean Salsa with Olives

Yield: 12
prep time: 15 minutes
total time: 15 minutes
Scoop up this easy Black Bean Salsa with tortilla chips, dollop a spoonful on top of nachos, or use it as a taco filling! Versatile, colorful, and full of fresh vegetables like bell peppers and garlic, plus olives.
5 Stars (1 Review)


  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes (do not drain)
  • ½ cup roughly chopped ripe black olives
  • ½ cup roughly chopped green olives stuffed with pimentos
  • cups diced bell peppers (I like to use a combination of red and yellow bell peppers, but any colors will work.)
  • ½ cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced jalapeno pepper (add more or less, to taste)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • cup red wine vinegar


  • Place all ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and fold together. Enjoy right away – or better yet, place in the fridge to let the flavors mingle for an hour or two before serving.
  • Serve with tortilla chips – ones shaped like scoops work especially well.


Adapted from the recipe box of my friend Ann Hauer. Originally from Ann’s friend Anne Perkins.
This recipe makes 3 pints of salsa.
Can be made 1 day prior to serving. 

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1 Calories: 64kcal Carbohydrates: 10g Protein: 3g Fat: 2g Saturated Fat: 0.3g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g Monounsaturated Fat: 1g Sodium: 362mg Potassium: 238mg Fiber: 4g Sugar: 2g Vitamin A: 727IU Vitamin C: 30mg Calcium: 34mg Iron: 1mg
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Spoonacular. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.
Did you make this recipe?Please leave a comment below. And share a photo on Instagram with the hashtag #afarmgirlsdabbles or tag @farmgirlsdabble!
A Tortilla Chip Filled with Annie P's Black Bean Salsa

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