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Black Bean & Corn Salsa

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We love going up to Shipshewana, IN and browsing around all the quaint Amish shops the town has to offer. A few years ago, we visited a little shop with homemade jellies, jams, and salsas. They had samples of almost everything they offered and we sampled several. Surprisingly, the best tasting thing they offered was black bean and corn salsa.

Black bean and corn salsa in a bowl with chips.

I honestly never thought it was something I would enjoy. The combination just sounds… off to me. But it was so, so good. We bought a pint jar of it and a few other things and brought them home.

Less than two days after we came home with this stuff, we were out. Gone, all gone. No more chimichangas topped with it’s deliciousness, no more chips and salsa with a movie, no more…

Sorry, was that too much?

I went to every grocery in our tri-county area and picked up jar after jar of black bean and corn salsa. Brought it home, dipped a chip in it and … yuck. Just like I originally thought black bean and corn salsa would taste. Totally lackluster, bland, nastiness.

It was sad.

I started looking online for recipes to make my own. Lots of recipes to add black beans and corn to pre-made salsa at serving time. But, I wanted something I could can up and keep for the winter. Sure, throwing some together last minute is okay, but I wanted to use some of that delicious fresh garden produce we had. 

I found a few recipes that were close, but none of them were thee recipe. I finally found one that seemed close and tweaked it to match the ingredients listed on the jar of Amish made salsa. I got it. It’s perfect. Delicious. I actually look forward to canning it every year.

And I’m completely sad when we run out of all of the jars I canned a month later.

Black bean and corn salsa in a photo collage.

Be forewarned, you have to pressure can this. It has beans and corn in it and those, regardless of what anyone anywhere tells you, cannot be safely canning any other way.

I know, I know. Pressure canners are scary contraptions. But, if I can do it, you’ve totally got this and it’s completely worth the peace of mind. Water bath canning and low acid foods just don’t mix and this salsa isn’t acidic enough to water bath can. Besides, a pressure canner is an amazing addition not only to your kitchen tools, but to your knowledge base! It’s fun!

Note that you can eat this black bean and corn salsa fresh. You may want to cut the recipe in half, though. As it makes a lot and it will not keep very long at all fresh. A few days at best.

How to Make Black Bean & Corn Salsa

Let’s start with a few tips.

  • You must pressure can this. I know, they’re super scary. But, I’m telling you, if I can do this, you’ve got this. Water bath canning low acid foods is a huge no-no. No one needs to die over this. Plus, it’s fun.
  • You can eat this salsa fresh. You may want to halve the recipe, though. It makes a lot and it will not keep fresh very long. A few days at best. You will want to use pre cooked beans if you choose to eat it fresh as the beans won’t cook down without the canning process.
  • This salsa is not spicy, it’s very mild. If you want more spice, you can add more peppers or leave the seeds in from the peppers.
  • Once the jar is opened, eat it quickly. It doesn’t last long in our house, but it shouldn’t be sitting in your fridge for 6 months. Use your best judgement on this one.
  • You cannot use a pressure cooker to can this. One is not synonymous with the other.

Things you may need:

Black Bean & Corn Salsa
Yield: 10 pints

Black Bean & Corn Salsa

Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 35 minutes

A delicious, mild salsa blend with tomatoes, peppers, corn, and black beans perfect for chips or to any Mexican fare you desire. 

Ingredients

  • 8 Cups Tomatoes, peeled, chopped, drained
  • 2 1/2 Cups Onions, chopped
  • 1 1/2 Cups Bell Peppers, chopped
  • 1 Cup Jalapeno Pepper, chopped & seeded
  • 1 Chile Pepper, chopped & seeded
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Black pepper
  • 1/8 Cup Salt
  • 1/3 Cup White Vinegar
  • 8 Oz Bag Dried Black Beans
  • 15 Oz Tomato Sauce
  • 12 Oz Tomato Paste
  • 4 Cups Frozen Corn, thawed
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar

Instructions

  1. Soak beans overnight, rinse well, and drain. Add to a 5 quart pot.
  2. Start by preparing your tomatoes.
  3. Put a large pot of water on to boil.
  4. Score your tomatoes with a paring knife.
  5. Place the tomatoes into the pot of boiling water in groups.
  6. Allow to boil about 30 seconds or until the skin starts to peel away.
  7. Remove and place into a bowl of cold water.
  8. Peel the skin off of the tomatoes.
  9. Remove cores.
  10. Slice into small pieces and add to your 5 quart pot.
  11. Next, dice up your bell peppers and onion. Add to pot.
  12. Now, put on some gloves and cover your cutting board with some parchment paper. Dice up your peppers and remove the seeds. If you want your salsa to be hot, leave more seeds in. Add to pot.
  13. Add remaining ingredients to the pot. Put the salsa on the stove and heat to simmer. Continue simmering for about 15 minutes. The longer you simmer, the chunkier your salsa will be.

While you are heating the salsa, prepare your jars, lids and canner.

  1. Place rack in the pressure canner.
  2. Add 3 inches of water to the canner.
  3. Fill jars about halfway with water.
  4. Bring water to a simmer over medium heat and continue simmering until you're ready to use the jars.
  5. When ready, remove jar from canner and dispose of hot liquid. Place jar on a toweled counter.
  6. Ladle hot salsa into prepared jars. Leaving a generous 1" of headspace.
  7. Remove any air bubbles by sliding a plastic spatula (don't use anything metallic) between food and the inside of the jar several times. Check headspace and adjust if necessary.
  8. Wipe rim and threads to remove any food. Center lid on jar. Tighten band finger tight and return to pressure canner.
  9. Once you have filled all of the jars, adjust water level in pressure canner to 3 inches and lock on lid. Leave weight off of lid.
  10. Over medium-high heat bring water to a boil. You'll know when the water is boiling because steam will come out of the vent in a steady stream. Vent canner for 10 minutes.
  11. Place weight on vent. If using a weighted-gauge pressure canner at or below 1,000 feet above sea level. Bring the canner to 10 pounds. 1,001 and higher, 15 pounds. After your gauge indicates it is at the appropriate pressure, begin counting the processing time. Regulate heat slowly and continuously without any drastic changes in heat.
  12. Process pints for 1 hour 15 minutes.
  13. Once processing time is complete, allow canner to naturally come down to 0 pressure. Once pressure reaches 0, remove weight and wait 2 minutes longer before removing the lid.
  14. Remove lid, and allow jars to sit in open canner for 10 minutes to regulate to the cooler room temperature. Carefully remove jars and place them on a towel lined counter. Leave them undisturbed for 12 hours before checking seals. Once good seals are found, label and store in a cool, dark place.

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Do you have a favorite salsa recipe? 

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Robyn

Sunday 3rd of October 2021

Was so excited to make this salsa! I’m fairly new to canning, so made sure that I followed all directions, pressure canned for 75 minutes - and it looks awful... it’s like tomato paste with vegetables in it. All liquid is gone... definitely not like a salsa and I’m not even sure it could be revived to be a salsa consistency!

Any thoughts on what I could’ve done wrong? It seems like every time I pressure can, all the liquid disappears (even though I can for the requested time and weight).

Danielle McCoy

Monday 4th of October 2021

It's difficult to know without knowing your exact process, but generally it is either 1) you're releasing the pressure too quickly, the pressure is fluctuating too much during processing, the cool down procedure was rushed (removing the weight after the gauge returns to 0 pressure and letting the jars sit for 5 to 10 minutes), inaccurate headspace, or there's air trapped in the jars.

Denise Geran

Friday 10th of September 2021

Hi! Can I substitute lime juice for the lemon juice? What do you think about adding some fresh or frozen mango pieces to the recipe?

Danielle McCoy

Monday 20th of September 2021

You can definitely try those things :) I'd try a small batch that way and taste it before I did a whole batch and canned it.

Rose

Friday 3rd of September 2021

Danielle, This really a question....have you ever tried using fresh cilantro and garlic in your recipe. Would you think that would be ok to use. I'm just a beginner at this and I get nervous to alter any recipe especially with canning. Would appreciate your insight. Thanks!

Danielle McCoy

Sunday 5th of September 2021

Those would be fine to use! You can mix up the seasonings in almost any canning recipe without affecting the acidity. Have fun!

Pat Romney

Tuesday 15th of September 2020

I want to add canned corn and canned black beans to my salsa recipe to can in pints. If I do that, can I just water bath it or do I still need to pressure can it?

Danielle McCoy

Thursday 17th of September 2020

No, you need to pressure can it. The beans and corn will lower the acidity far too much to safely water bath it. You'll want to process them for an hour and fifteen minutes in pint jars. If you choose to use quarts it would be an hour and a half. 10 pounds of pressure for 1,000 feet and below 15 pounds for 1,001 and above.

Jean Hashagen

Saturday 15th of December 2018

Would running the jars using my dishwasher's sterilizing setting be sufficient rather than simmering the jars?

Danielle McCoy

Monday 17th of December 2018

Absolutely! Just make sure the jars are hot when you ladle in the salsa.

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