Our Street Corn Salad is inspired by classic Mexican street corn salad. Our version is made with grilled corn, tomato, onion, and the most delicious cotija yogurt sauce with lime juice.
Drop everything you’re doing and make this Street Corn Salad today!
What is Mexican Street Corn Salad?
Our take on street corn salad is inspired by traditional elote. Elote is Mexican corn dish that is grilled over an open fire to grilled deliciousness and smothered with mayonnaise, cheese, chili powder, and other spices (sometimes super spicy spices). It is heaven on earth!
We recently made a healthier version of Grilled Mexican Street Corn that is spicy and fresh all at the same time. We took our Grilled Mexican Street Corn and turned it into this insanely delicious street corn salad!
why you’ll love this recipe
The flavors of this corn salad are fresh, summery, and delicious.
The cotija cheese sauce for this salad makes the dish! It’s salty, limey, and flavorful.
You can make this corn salad and eat it all week long on it’s own, in a burrito bowl, in tacos, or any way your heart desires.
Ingredients You Need
This street corn salad is so fresh and delicious and is made with very basic and delicious ingredients.
Here is how we prepare all the ingredients so they are ready to be mixed into the salad!
- Corn: We highly recommend using grilled fresh corn, but if you are in a pinch you can use frozen corn. Just be sure that you thaw the frozen corn and remove any excess moisture from the corn before using it.
- Cotija cheese: you make a creamy and salty cotija cheese sauce and mix it in with the corn and other veggies. You can buy already crumbled cotija or a chunk of cotija and crumble it yourself.
- Spices: we use chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, and pepper as the spice mix for this corn salad.
- Tomatoes: We recommend using cherry tomatoes and halving them, but if you need to use large tomatoes and dice them up, go for it.
- Red onion: Red onion can be a bit polarizing. If you love red onion, finely dice the red onion up and add it to your salad bowl!
- Cilantro:You can’t have a Mexican Street Corn Salad without cilantro. If you’re not a cilantro fan, feel free to skip it or fold in some arugula to the corn salad.
Ingredient Swaps + Tips
- If you can’t stand red onions or raw onions, feel free to saute the onions before putting them in the salad. Or? Try adding green onions to the salad instead!
- I would highly recommend using cilantro and dicing it up super fine! YUM.
- You can use any tomato that you would like in this corn salad, just make sure that they are cut up into bite size pieces. There is something about having every ingredient about the same size so that you can get a little bit of everything in every bite.
- Sometimes tomatoes can be pretty watery, so if you are using larger tomatoes, dice them, and salt them in a separate bowl and let them sit for 15 minutes.
- Dump out any access water from your tomatoes and then add them to your salad bowl.
make it spicy
If you want to add a little heat to your Mexican Street corn salad here’s how to do it!
- Use more chili powder or try hot chili powder. You can usually find hot chili powder at most grocery stores.
- Add a little cayanne pepper to the spice rub that is rubbed on the corn before you grill it.
- Mince a fresh jalapeño and toss it with the street corn salad before serving it.
The Greek Yogurt Sauce
The sauce for the Street Corn salad is dreamy and delicious. Traditionally you would use sour cream for this recipe, but we lightened it up with Greek Yogurt.
Ingredients for the sauce
- Greek yogurt
- Hot sauce
- Cotija cheese
- Lime juice
- Garlic powder
How to Make Street Corn Salad
You will have yourself a street corn salad in less than 45 minutes, the preparation is easy and I like to enjoy our favorite frozen margarita recipe while we’re preparing this delicious corn salad. Now, let’s get down to business.
Prep the Corn
You have a few choices when it comes to preparing the corn for this street corn salad. .
- Grilled or baked full ears of corn
- Sautéd corn on the stove top
Personally, we prefer grilling the corn. The grill flavor, the char, and who doesn’t love cooking outside? If you’re not a grill person or don’t have access to a grill, the oven will work just fine, too.
After the corn is shucked and clean cover each ear of corn with olive oil. Be sure to get the olive oil in every crevasse of the corn and then add the chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper to the corn and massage them all into the corn.
Place corn into a tin foil boat and fold then edges so heat cannot escape. Grill corn at 400ºF for 20-25 minutes! Remove the corn from the grill and use an oven mitten to hold each ear of corn while you cut the corn kernels off of the cob.
Feel free to let the corn cool before you cut the kernels off of the cob. You can also use leftover grilled corn from earlier in the week. You have SO many options.
Add corn to a large salad bowl with the rest of the salad ingredients.
You also have the quick and easy version of cutting fresh corn off the cob or using thawed frozen corn. You sautéing the corn in a skillet and add the spices rather than grilled full ears of corn.
Make the sauce
Add all of the ingredients for this street corn salad to a bowl and mix!
We love the tartness and protein that Greek yogurt adds to the sauce, but if you are feeling a little sour cream or creme, feel free to substitute part of the Greek.
The cotija adds a little saltiness to the sauce, but we have also used homemade queso fresco in this recipe and it is also a great add!
Add the rest of the ingredients
Once the corn is grilled and the sauce is mixed all that’s left is adding the rest of the ingredients to the bowl and mixing it all together!
Tips for the BEST Street Corn Salad
There are so many ways that you can make this street corn salad your own and we want you to feel confident serving this to your family or at your next BBQ.
Here are some tips and tricks we have for serving and storing this Street Corn Salad.
Mix it up
When we developed this recipe, we used all of our favorite ingredients. We kept it simple and traditional.
If there are ingredients in this recipe that don’t excite you, add ingredients that would! Other vegetables and ingredients that would be great in this corn salad would be…
- Sweet bell peppers
- Black beans
- White onion
- Matchstick carrots
- Roasted cauliflower
Any of the ingredients above would be delish in this corn salad. Just chop them up and use the same delicious sauce. Have fun and make this salad your own!
What do I serve with Mexican Street Corn Salad?
Anything you want! HA. But, really. you can serve this street corn salad by itself or with any main dish.
You don’t have to serve it with a Mexican themed dish if you just feel like making it! However, here are some of our recommendations of what we think would go best with this corn salad.
- Rotisserie Chicken Enchiladas– Skip half the prep-time with these Rotisserie Chicken Enchiladas! They’re packed with shredded chicken, veggies, beans, and topped with a homemade enchilada sauce.
- Carnitas– This carnitas recipe sits in the slow cooker all day in delicious juices. It is shredded and crisped up in the oven for the most delicious carnitas you’ll ever eat!
- Skinny Margaritas– Our signature skinny margarita recipe is made with 4 simple ingredients: lime juice, tequila, ice, and your choice of honey or agave simple syrup!
- Mexican Beef Skillet – Whether you make this on game day or eat it as a main meal, this Mexican Beef Skillet requires one pan only and only 40 minutes of your time!
- Chicken Quesadillas– Welcome to the best chicken quesadillas on the internet! This easy weeknight meal comes together in 5 simple steps and under 30 minutes. Enjoy!
This Mexican Corn Salad can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days if it is stored in an airtight container.
Delicious Mexican Street Corn Salad
- 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
- 2 teaspoons hot sauce we used Frank's
- 1/4 cup crumbled cotija cheese
- juice from one medium lime
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- To prepare the corn on the grill. First, preheat grill to 400ºF.
- Then, prepare corn by shucking and cleaning. Rub each ear of corn with olive oil.
- Prepare spice mixture by mixing together ground cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Then, season ears of corn with spice mixture by rubbing it into the kernels.
- Wrap all 6 ears of corn in tin foil and seal tightly.
- Grill foil pack at 400ºF on direct flames for around 20-25 minutes, flipping every 5 minutes.
- Once the corn is done cooking, remove from grill. Unwrap foil pack and let cool for 5-10 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, use a knife to cut the kernels off the cob.
- To prepare the corn on the stove top. Heat a large skillet over medium/high heat and add avocado oil.
- When the avocado oil is fragrant, add the corn to the skillet and toss.
- Sprinkle the cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper to the corn and toss again Sauté the corn for 10-15 minutes until the corn is cooked and begins to brown.
- Remove the corn from the heat.
- While the corn is cooking (either on the stove top or on the grill), prepare the sauce by mixing together all ingredients in a medium-size bowl.
- Place corn into a large bowl and add tomatoes, red onion, and cilantro.
- Then, pour on sauce and mix until combined.
- Enjoy with your favorite chips.
Photo credit: The Wooden Skillet