Mexican Street Corn Salad

This Mexican street corn salad is one of my all-time favorite summer sides. Fresh, bright, lightly creamy & spicy, it's easy to make and sure to please.

Mexican Street Corn Salad

This Mexican street corn salad is a breeze to make! Inspired by all of the elotes that we ate while living in Austin, it’s creamy, tangy, and a bit spicy. I simply grill the corn, mix it with a simple creamy dressing and fold in the scallions, cotija cheese, cilantro, smoked paprika (or chili powder), and jalapeño. You can serve it just after you make it, although I love it best after it’s been chilled for a bit which makes it a great make-ahead option for cookouts and picnics.

I love to serve this salad with tacos, fajitas, or portobello burgers, and of course, margaritas.

And if you love this corn salad, you have to try this corn chowder, this corn on the cob, or this pizza next!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Mexican Street Corn Salad
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This easy Mexican street corn salad is the ultimate summer side dish! Lightly creamy, spicy & bright, it's a recipe you'll make again and again.
Recipe type: Salad, side dish
Serves: 4
  • 4 ears corn
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
  • 1½ tablespoons mayo
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • ⅓ cup chopped scallions
  • ¼ cup crumbled cotija, or feta cheese
  • ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika or chili powder
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  1. Brush the corn with olive oil, grill 2 minutes per side until char marks form. Remove from the grill and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the mayo, garlic, and lime juice. Slice the kernels off the corn and add to the bowl along with the scallions. Stir to coat, then add the cheese, cilantro, smoked paprika, jalapeño and sea salt. Season to taste and serve immediately or chill until ready to serve.
I didn't bother peeling my roasted jalapeño, I just let it blacken in a dry skillet for a few minutes on each side and then chopped it.



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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. Alyssa from

    Wow! It was like you KNEW I had fresh corn already cut off the hull sitting in my fridge waiting for a corn salad recipe to make. This has to be destiny. Guess we know what’s on my menu!

    • jeanine

      ha, yes I would call this destiny 🙂

      • Alyssa from

        I made this last week and actually ended up serving it cold. I was a bit nervous my boyfriend wouldn’t like it but he absolutely loved it and told me it was something I should add to the “Make again soon!” list.

        Smoke Paprika is one of my favorite spices, so I already knew I’d enjoy this! And serving it cold made it super refreshing on such a sweaty Austin evening!

        • jeanine

          ooh yay, I love it when a recipe wins over boyfriends and husbands! thanks for sharing 🙂

  2. Jaclyn from

    This looks amazing!!! My husband is a farmer so we get lots of sweet corn in the summer…I’m constantly coming up with different ways to use it. I love adding a bit of spice and cilantro to it. I can’t wait to try this salad out!

    • jeanine

      oh I bet you get the best veggies, lucky! Love the name of your blog, btw.

  3. my auntie loves corn so much she actually grows her own. We even get varieties like white and spotted black ones. I could really use this salad on Mexican mondays!

    • jeanine

      that sounds amazing, and so does Mexican mondays!

  4. val from

    gen-i-us. Especially for people who, um, don’t like to eat corn on the cob, this is great!

    • jeanine

      ha, my husband Jack doesn’t like to eat corn off the cob, hence the salad 🙂

  5. Anthropologie talks to you too? I am glad I am not the only one that goes in to just look and always walks out with a plate or knick knack. Mexican street corn is one of my favorite summertime eats. I seriously have been having fresh corn at least once maybe twice a week.

    • jeanine

      I’m weak for the knick knacks, zero control 🙂

  6. I make this all the time in the summer and seriously cannot get enough! Best. salad. ever.

    • jeanine

      we grilled some scallops with ours… such a great side dish for any simply grilled meat.

  7. Eileen from

    There had better be a mountain of fresh corn at the farmer’s market this weekend, because I need some of this as soon as possible! NOM.

  8. Tieghan from

    Yes! Yes! Yes! New favorite salad!

  9. This looks incredible, I adore sweetcorn but would never had thought to have it as a salad. I was in New York a month ago and couldn’t resist looking around Anthropologie and dreaming about all the amazing things I would buy with a lottery win!

  10. Faith from

    This looks delicious! I didn’t grow up eating Mexican food, but as an adult it’s become a staple on my weekly menu. It never disappoints, and who doesn’t love homemade guacamole?

  11. I just discovered your blog and LOVE your photography and want to make ALL of your recipes 🙂

    • jeanine

      🙂 thank you!

  12. Sue |

    This looks delish! If I remove the cheese and mayo to make it vegan, is there anything I should substitute or do you think it will be just as good without? I don’t like vegan cheese or mayo.

  13. Sue |

    Love you website btw!

  14. This looks like my perfect salad! Cannot wait to get some fresh corn and make this. Love the flavours!

  15. Megan T from

    Oh my this looks amazing. So fresh and colorful!

  16. Feenomenale from

    This salad is very colorfully. Very summer!

  17. Jeanine, I am planning on making this salad tomorrow for a pre-fourth of July party (the best kind!). Do you think that it would still taste okay if I made it in the morning, refrigerated, and then served later that night? Should I add the cheese just before serving?

    • jeanine

      Hi Lauren… It should be ok, I would add the cheese just before serving. If you’re using fresh corn, I think it’ll hold up well and will retain a crunchy bite. Maybe cook the corn slightly less than you would otherwise, since it’ll get a little mushier after it sits in the fridge.

  18. jean

    Hi. Tried making this salad but the cheese melted into a goo-ey mess. How long should i wait for the corn to cool down before adding the cheese? Thx.

    • jeanine

      oh weird – feta and cotija cheeses don’t really “melt” so I’ve never run into that. Let it cool until it’s room temp, and maybe reduce the mayo and that’ll help make it more fresh and crisp.

  19. Christina

    When should the garlic come out?

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      sorry! just pull it out before you serve!

  20. Christina

    Thanks! It was delicious!

  21. MM

    Just made this and it was so easy and tasted excellent! Thank you!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.