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Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad

This Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad makes a spectacular edible centerpiece. It features layers of flavorful vegetables with a spicy ranch dressing.

Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad

Easy Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad Recipe

Salads like this Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad are a true favorite here in the South. This variation has evolved through the years in my kitchen because of my family’s love of Southwestern and Tex-Mex flavors. The fresh pico de gallo, is a must and takes this salad over the top. It also pairs beautifully with the classic flavors that inspired my take on cornbread salad.

Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad

How to Make the Best Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad Recipe

  • Cornbread salad needs to be made ahead to allow the flavors to fully develop. Will the cornbread soften? Yes it does, but it doesn’t become mushy.
  • Ingredients you’ll need to make homemade Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad: One box cornbread and muffin mix prepared per the instructions and cooled, dry Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix (spicy or classic works!) plus milk or buttermilk and mayonnaise to make the dressing.
  • For the layers you’ll need prepared pico de gallo, Southwestern or Mexican corn with peppers, shredded colby jack or cheddar cheese, chopped lettuce and black beans (rinsed) cooked and crumbled bacon and sour cream for garnishing the top. You can also cut rounds of fresh jalapeno to add as a garnish.
  • Kitchen gadgets you’ll need: A pan for baking the cornbread, mixing bowls, measuring cups and spoons, a cheese grater, sharp knife and cutting board.
  • If you plan on serving this salad for supper it can be made during early morning for the best same day results. Otherwise, overnight is ideal for the full impact and flavor combination to shine.
  • I recommend using pico de gallo bacon crumbles, and cheese to garnish. So, theoretically, there are four layers of pico, bacon and cheese in my salad, but, who’s counting?
  • I’m pretty generous with the dressing when assembling the so I use plain sour cream on top as a garnish.
  • When serving salad that includes spicy or hot peppers, I always try to place a few visible as a garnish, letting people know what’s inside of the dish. So, a few rounds of jalapeno are placed on top of the sour cream for the finishing touch.
  • Store leftover Southwestern Cornbread Salad chilled in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Please note, the lettuce may wilt.
Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad

More Southern Style Salads to Make

Salads can double as a side dish and a main dish depending on the ingredients included in the mix. More delicious salad recipe you may like to try:

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5 from 11 votes

Layered Southwestern Cornbread Salad

Prep Time25 minutes
Chill time4 hours
Total Time4 hours 25 minutes
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: easy-salad-recipes, layered-cornbread-salad, southwestern-cornbread-salad
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 479kcal
Author: Melissa Sperka


  • 1 7.5 oz box cornbread mix plus ingredients to prepare
  • 1 1.0 oz package dry Spicy Ranch dressing mix i.e. Hidden Valley
  • 1 1/3 cups milk or buttermilk
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • Pico de gallo:
  • 6 medium Roma tomatoes
  • 1 medium purple onion
  • 1 medium jalapeno pepper
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp lime juice
  • garlic salt and black pepper to taste
  • Salad:
  • 2 12 oz packages frozen Southwestern Corn [i.e. Steamfresh] OR 2 [11 oz] cans Mexi-Corn drained
  • 1 15 oz can black beans drained & rinsed
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • 1 small head iceberg lettuce shredded
  • 12 oz bacon cooked and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup sour cream [for garnishing the top]


  • Prepare cornbread per instructions on package and cool. Divide into thirds.
  • Prepare the dressing using 1 1/3 cup of milk or buttermilk and 1 cup of mayo. Whisk until fully combined, then chill until assembling the salad.
  • Prepare pico de gallo: In a medium size mixing bowl, toss together diced tomatoes, onion, and jalapeno pepper. Add chopped cilantro, lime juice and season with garlic salt and pepper to your taste. Chill until assembling.
  • To assemble:
  • Divide the ingredients into thirds. Layer in this order…shredded lettuce, crumbled cornbread, bacon, corn and black beans, pico de gallo, a drizzle of dressing and shredded cheese. Repeat until all of the ingredients are used.
  • Reserve some pico de gallo, bacon crumbles, and cheese to garnish the top. Dollop plain sour cream on top as a garnish.
  • Refrigerate for several hours, or preferably overnight to allow the flavors to come together before serving.


  • In the Summer months when fresh corn is abundant, I always use cooked fresh corn in this salad.
  • If you’re unable to find Spicy Ranch Dressing mix, you can use classic Ranch dressing mix. You can also use the same amount of bottled prepared Ranch dressing. 


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 479kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 975mg | Potassium: 257mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 640IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 189mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @melissassk or tag #melissassk!


  1. I do not eat lettuce. I will eat raw spinach. Do you think I could substitute raw spinach for the lettuce?

  2. Well….there you are Sweetie! I’ve not been seeing you in my feed, so I went back and “liked” a bunch of stuff, and now you’re back! YAY Anyway…..I can’t wait to try this one. I’m making chicken enchiladas for a church dinner tomorrow. This would be perfect for my “side”! Thank you….again! You always come through when I need something a little different. 🙂

  3. All o your adjustments sound so good, and I also make this salad with pinto beans at times. So happy you enjoyed it, thanks so much for stopping by to say so!

  4. This is the most awesome salad ever! So easy and tasty. I highly recommend this to everyone. I made my own cornbread and swapped out the black beans for pinto beans only because I don’t care for black beans. I didn’t find the Spicy Ranch dressing mix but I did find Fiesta Ranch which is very similar. I also found canned corn with jalapenos and another with chipotle seasoning so used one can of each. I put it all together only a few hours before the party I was attending because I didn’t want it to be soggy. it was a HUGE hit! There was only a little bit left when it was time to clean up and the hostess practically begged me to be allowed to keep the leftovers!

  5. That’s the most beautiful salad I have ever seen! I’ll be making this.for.the next get-together! 🙂

  6. This looks soooo good!! I am going to make this, and I’m going to make some taco seasoned meat and put the salad on top of the meat when I am ready to serve it!!! Yum, yum. Thanks for showing this.

  7. Oh, my! This looks to be a winner! Am definitely going to make. You have such wonderful recipes…you are my favorite blogger! God Bless.

  8. Hello! I know it can be a challenge adapting recipes. Our cornbread would be similar in texture to a savory polenta type bread. I wish I could give you a great substitute but, I’m not sure what’s available in your market, sorry. Thanks so much for stopping by!

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