Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Five Layer Fiesta Potato Salad

Jami Sorrento was our June Daring Cooks hostess and she chose to challenge us to celebrate the humble spud by making a delicious and healthy potato salad. The Daring Cooks Potato Salad Challenge was sponsored by the nice people at the United States Potato Board, who awarded prizes to the top 3 most creative and healthy potato salads. A medium-size (5.3 ounce) potato has 110 calories, no fat, no cholesterol, no sodium and includes nearly half your daily value of vitamin C and has more potassium than a banana!

Jami provided recipes for Green Bean Potato Salad, Creamy Yogurt and Dill Potato Salad, Light Potato Salad and German Potato Salad. You can check them and the full challenge out here. Thank you for a fun and tasty challenge, Jami. This challenge definitely inspired me as you can see below.


Have you ever had seven layer dip? In case you haven't, it consists of refried beans, taco seasoning, tomatoes, guacamole, cheese, sour cream, green onions and olives layered in a dish. It is addictive. I've been known to demolish it and a bag of tortilla chips at parties...by myself...not healthy and mildly embarrassing.

Inspired by that special occasion dip I created this Five Layer Fiesta Potato Salad, which fills the same craving without the messy fingers or crazy calorie intake. The nutrient dense ingredients are filling and include a good amount of dietary fiber since the skin stays on the potatoes. Keeping the ingredients layered makes for an attractive presentation that is still party perfect - at least until the first scoop happens.

Who wants traditional Seven Layer Dip only at parties when you can have this salad anytime? Feel free to tweak the recipe for your own purposes... I may add black beans in the future.

Five Layer Fiesta Potato Salad
3 Red Potatoes (approximately 1 1/4 pounds)
1 Orange Bell Pepper
2 Avocados
1 Lime
3/4 cup Salsa
1/2 tablespoon Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1/2 cup Reduced Fat Cheddar Cheese (l like Cabot's 75% Reduced Fat Cheddar.)
1/4 cup Chopped Cilantro

1. Scrub the potatoes and remove all projecting eyes/dents. Dice into 1/2 inch cubes placing them into a large pot half full of water as you go. Once all the potatoes are in the pot, turn the burner up to high and bring the water to a boil. Boil the potatoes for approximately 27 minutes or until potatoes yield easily to biting but retain their shape. Drain potatoes and rinse with cold water to prevent additional cooking.
2. While the potatoes boil, dice the orange pepper into 1/2 inch pieces. Cut the avocado into 1/2 inch cubes, placing them in a container and squeezing half of the lime over them to prevent browning. Remove the cilantro leaves from the stems and chop enough to fill 1/4 cup.
3. Place the drained potatoes into a mixing bowl. Squeeze the other half lime over them. Add 1/2 tablespoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Toss to combine.
4. Move the potato mixture to a serving bowl. This is your first layer.
5. Top the potatoes with the orange pepper, then add the avocado on top of it. Pour the salsa over the avocado.
6. Sprinkle the avocado with cheese, then cilantro.
7. Chill until ready to serve. It can be served a room temperature or cold.


  1. This looks delicious! Great job!!

  2. I love 7 layer dip and potatoes... such a great idea to put them together! Nice job!

  3. It sounds delicious AND looks great, too! I love the glass bowl presentation. Thanks for sharing your recipe, and for using Cabot cheese!

  4. Morgan - I'm glad you liked the idea. I'll do anything to make 7-layer dip happen.

    Jacquelyn - It was great. I'm glad to use Cabot Cheese. It is our favorite cheddar. Thank you for commenting; it is neat to see Cabot checking out where their brand is being used.

  5. Great idea to make it Mexican style! I think black beans would be good in this.

  6. Such a brilliant idea..like the 5 to 7 layer taco dips, but with potatoes and other healhy ingrdients! A Rainbow in a bowl!

    As for the mango-ginger potato salad, it's so delicious, just an occasional bite of mango plus the heat of the ginger, paired with your basic, but healthier, creamy potato salad. You can use an apple instead..just as wonderful :)

  7. What an adorable salad! I just love 5 layer dip. Your extension of the idea to salad is so clever - I want to dig right in!

  8. VegSpinz - I agree. I'm sure it only a matter of time before I confirm that.

    Lisa - I love the description of a rainbow in the bowl! I did bookmark your recipe. We love mangos and ginger, so I'm sure it will be a hit. I was really just being dramatic.

    Monkeyshines - I'd share but Mom's students ate it all up last night!

  9. I'm loving the layering idea, how cool is that! I'm learning so much from this challenge!

  10. Renata - It works well. The layers present nicely but then everything mixes up as you spoon it out.

  11. That layered dip is always the most popular thing at parties, so I bet this was fantastic. Great idea!

  12. I love the layered dip style and it looks delicious.:)

  13. Thank you, Oggi! If you make a layered salad, let the potatoes cool thoroughly and you won't end up with condensation inside the bowl.

  14. What a fabulous idea. Wow, was this the wrong post to visit while hungry & waiting for dinner to cook! I could eat the whole bowl, mmmm. It looks absolutely delicious.

  15. Suzler - Hehehe. I bet your dinner, whatever it was, was worth the wait. I'm glad I could tempt you a bit beforehand.