Zucchini & Grilled Corn Salad

zucchini and grilled corn salad / @loveandlemons

Oh zucchini, let me count the ways… julienned, coined, grilled, sauteéd, stuffed, kabob-ed, gratin-ed, muffin-ed, pancake-d… (I know I’m missing a few)…

Right now, my zucchini method of choice is the simple ribbon. Just raw. Tossed into salads. I mean, how pretty are they? (Also – how pretty are those plates!?)

zucchini and grilled corn salad / @loveandlemons

I very often make corn recipes where frozen corn will suffice – but not this time. This is the time of year where my midwestern roots shine through and I say – you need to get your hands on some fresh corn. And then don’t cook it too much.

zucchini and grilled corn salad / @loveandlemons

I grilled my corn so that some of the kernels charred while the others remained crispy and raw. It’s a delicious mix of textures especially when paired with creamy avocado, briny capers, and bright herbs. (Ok, now I’m starving and wishing I had saved some leftovers for lunch).

zucchini and grilled corn salad / @loveandlemons

You can serve this on a big platter at your next summer gathering, pack it up for lunch, or serve it like I did – small-plate-style on these Victorian Emblem Tapas Plates, from Q Squared. (Also pictured is this Peony Salad Plate)

zucchini and grilled corn salad / @loveandlemons

Check out Q Squared and the rest of their beautiful things. Love and Lemons readers will receive 20% off! (enter code: LOVEANDLEMONS)

zucchini & grilled corn salad

Serves: serves 2-3 as a side
  • 2 ears of fresh corn
  • 2 medium zucchini
  • sliced cherry tomatoes
  • 1 small ripe avocado, sliced into cubes
  • ¼ cup very thinly sliced red onion
  • small handful of mint or basil
  • 1-2 tablespoons capers
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
for the dressing:
  • big splash of olive oil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • splash of sherry (or white wine) vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • salt & pepper
  1. Heat a grill (or grill pan). Drizzle a bit of olive oil on the corn and grill, rotating every 3-4 minutes to char each side (as best as you can, it's ok if some is still raw - it makes for a nice balance of texture). Let cool, then slice the kernels off the cobb.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk your dressing ingredients together, drop the crushed garlic in whole (you'll remove it later).
  3. Use a regular vegetable peeler to peel the zucchini into long ribbon-shaped strips.
  4. Toss together the corn, zucchini, tomatoes, avocado, red onion, mint, capers and pine nuts. Remove the garlic clove from your dressing. Drizzle dressing over the veggies & toss. Taste and adjust seasonings. For best flavor, let salad sit for 15 minutes or so before serving.
The salad can be made in advance and stored in the fridge for about a day. (Although if storing for more than a few hours, I would slice the zucchini into thin coin shapes (on a mandoline) instead of ribbons so it stays firm). Also, hold off adding the avocado until you're ready to serve.

Make this salad a meal by adding chickpeas or (good quality) canned tuna.

This post was created in partnership with Q Squared NYC. All content, ideas, and words are my own. As always, thank you for supporting the sponsors that keep us cooking & sharing!


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  1. I tried this today and I’ll be eating it later for lunch 🙂 but i wan’t able to get any of the green when pealing the zucchini (we call it courgette in England, I googled Zucchini and that it what I told it was so got that) I just pealed off the green and ended up with just white ribbons 🙁 I’m sure it’ll taste nice though xx

  2. Marie

    I just had this for dinner (yes, it’s dinnertime in Helsinki) and it was absolutely delicious!!!! Thanks for a killer recipe

  3. I’m very surprised that the Zucchini requires no cooking, is it okay to cook it slightly? xxx

    • jeanine

      You could but if you slice it thinly and let the dressing soak into it for a few minutes, it’s crisp without tasting too raw… Or I might slice it into thicker circles and lightly grill or sautee (the ribbons, cooked, tend to get soggy quickly).

  4. I absolutely love the presentation of the zucchini ribbons, they make the dish so beautiful. All of these ingredients look so fresh and delicious!

  5. cheyenne from wanderfulways.blogspot.nl

    ohh that sounds like a great combination, yum!
    xo, cheyenne

  6. Maryna from thisisasweetblog.blogspot.com

    I also am kinda addicted to corn! Cook it almost everyday (though, it is not very healthy to eat it so often!). Thanks for new inspiration!

  7. I posted a ribbon zucchini salad yesterday too, but I love that you added the extras. I totally agree…frozen corn is great but we are right in the midst of corn season and it’s been SO good! 🙂 Can’t wait to try your version.

  8. looks very delicious!! i love zucchini and corn so much, so thats a perfect recipe 🙂

  9. This salad is just the picture of summer! Can’t wait for the farmer’s market this weekend to get more zucchini (apparently 3/week is not enough).

  10. Oh yum! I’ve been on a big zucchini kick lately so these are definitely going on my list of things to make coming up soon.

  11. Your posts are always gorgeous! Love the sweetness of the corn and the aesthetic of that ribboned zucchini. Your plates are too cute 🙂

  12. I love the simplicity of this, and I’m totally with you as far as being a zucchini fan goes! In fact, as I read your post I’m eating a huge salad with heaps of zucchini noodles! You’ve just reminded me that I haven’t had any grilled corn yet this summer (whaaaat!?) and that needs to be fixed ASAP!

  13. caitlin

    There are few things better than grilled corn and tomatoes in the Summer. This looks delicious.

  14. This looks fantastic! Grilled corn sounds so good.

  15. OH yum! Now if only I had a few zucchini… oh wait, I have a bajillion bursting out of the garden. 😉 Thanks for another great idea for using up all these babies!

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.