Mexican Barley Salad with Beans, Corn, & Jicama

(3 votes)
3 minutes
March 15, 2023
Carole JonesJump to Recipe

Too busy for a healthy, delicious dinner tonight? Not with this addictive Mexican Barley Salad! It is loaded with two kinds of beans, whole grain barley, jicama, peppers, corn, and the most amazing dressing. It lasts for a week in the fridge and only gets better tasting the longer it sits.

mexican barley salad

I created this barley salad over 15 years ago and it is still one of our family’s all-time favorites! First off, you can never go wrong with southwest flavors and the jicama in this Mexican Barley Salad adds the perfect amount of crunch as well.

square bowl of barley, beans, and veggies

What is Quick Cooking Barley?

I used to make this barley salad recipe with whole pearl barley but it does take quite a long time for that barley to cook so a few years ago I began using quick cooking barley and now this whole recipe can be done in 15 minutes!

Quick cooking barley is partially steamed and rolled to make their surface area larger, then dried before being packaged. These two steps that are done make for a quick 10 minute cook when you are preparing it in your home.

bowl of mexican salad with jicama barley and corn

What Barley Salad Recipe Variations Can I Try?

Like any great recipe, the sky is the limit so feel free to substitute ingredients you know your family loves! Here are some easy additions or substitutions you can make to the original recipe:

  • 1-2 fresh jalapenos minced
  • cooked chicken, pork, or beef for added protein
  • use flat leaf Italian parsley instead of cilantro
  • for more crunch, some toasted almonds or cashews would be great
  • chopped avocado mixed in would create a more creamy texture
mexican barley salad with beans, jicama, corn, and veggies

Mexican Barley Salad Video

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mexican barley salad

Mexican Barley Salad

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 3 reviews

Simple and delicious 15 minute meal!

  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 7 large servings 1x


  • 1 C quick cooking barley
  • 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz can corn, drained
  • 8 green onions, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 C chopped cilantro
  • 3 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 large jicama, peeled and diced
  • Fresh lime, cut into wedges


  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tb chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/3 C red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 C extra virgin olive oil


  1. Cook barley according to package directions.  Once it is cooked, quickly rinse in cool water to reduce the temperature of the barley.
  2. Combine all your salad ingredients in a large bowl.  In a smaller bowl, whisk together all your dressing ingredients and pour over the salad.  Toss to combine.
  3. Serve at room temperature and squeeze a generous amount of fresh lime juice on each serving.


*If you like a bit of heat, add a minced jalapeno or two to the salad

  • Author: Carole Jones
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Salads
  • Method: Fresh
  • Cuisine: Mexican


  • Serving Size: 1/7th
  • Calories: 384
  • Sugar: 6g
  • Sodium: 758mg
  • Fat: 17g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 13g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 49g
  • Fiber: 13g
  • Protein: 12g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Carole Jones

Carole Jones is an Arizona-based cookbook author & food blogger. She's authored The 30 Minute Cooking From Frozen Cookbook and the self-published Take 5: Chicken e-cookbook. For the past 15 years, Carole has shared her culinary adventures cooking and baking for her six brutally honest children here on My Kitchen Escapades. Hot, crusty bread is Carole's love language, but her two adorable grandchildren are a close second. Yes, second. Don't judge.


9 years ago

Made this tonight, and it is absolutely delicious!!! It’s my first time using jicama, which is now a new favorite 🙂

Thank you for the incredible recipe!
God bless 🙂

9 years ago

Hi Eleni! So glad you gave the recipe a try and I couldn’t agree more about jicama! We adore it -Carole

2 years ago

I had forgotten how much I love this salad! Thanks for reminding me 🙂

2 years ago

You are very welcome Marie! Thanks for coming back and leaving your review 🙂

2 years ago

Love it.and I sever it with Tortilla chips.

2 years ago

We often scoop it up like it is salsa with tortilla chips!

Mark Wilson
2 years ago

What a delightful summer salad! This was delicious and has been added to our rotation! Thank you! – Mark

2 years ago

Thanks for coming back Mark and leaving your review! It helps so much 🙂

Shannon Carroll Sale
1 year ago

In the end of your video, you add something that I originally thought was the jicama, but that was already added. It’s white…is it chicken?? I just made this recipe to take to a ladies pot luck luncheon and can’t wait for everyone to try it!!!

Pat Kornychuk
2 months ago

Loved it, but I did revise the dressing – cut the salt down to only ½ tsp, cut the EVOO to ¼ cup and increased the red wine vinegar to ½ cup.

Will make this again, delicious!

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