Mexican Street Corn Salad


This salad consists of perfectly seasoned grilled corn, topped with cheese and lightened up with fresh lime. Mexican Street Corn Salad is a summer side dish must have!

If you’re looking for delicious Summertime salads, be sure to try this Corn Salad, Berry Orzo Spinach Salad, or Best Ever Broccoli Salad.


Mexican street corn salad is inspired by a common Mexican street snack called Esquites. Esquites is basically corn salad in a cup, but with a mayonnaise based dressing. And let me tell you- it is delicious. I wanted to make a healthier version of Esquites so I made this Mexican street corn salad!


  • Corn on the Cob– You’ll want fresh corn on the cob to grill. Remove the husks before grilling to get a little char on the corn.
  • Olive Oil– This will be used to rub the corn before seasoning it.
  • Smoked Paprika– I prefer smoked paprika over regular paprika, but regular will work in a pinch!
  • Cumin– A classic Mexican spice to make your corn extra flavorful!
  • Salt– Any kind of salt you prefer will work.
  • Fresh Lime Juice– Use fresh lime juice to dress the salad and lighten up the flavor.
  • Cilantro– Freshly chopped cilantro will be mixed into the salad.
  • Cotija Cheese or Queso Fresco– You can find both cotija cheese and queso fresco at your local grocery store. There are Mexican cheeses that go perfectly with the flavors in this salad.

Here’s How to Make Mexican Street Corn Salad

  1. First, remove the husks from the corn. Rub olive oil on the corn and season with smoked paprika, cumin, salt and rub the seasoning on the corn with your fingertips.
  2. Grill the corn over medium heat for 10-12 minutes. Turn the corn frequently to cook all sides and avoid burning any of the corn.
  3. Allow corn to cool. Cut the corn off of the cob carefully and combine it in a bowl with lime juice, cilantro and cheese. Mix everything well and enjoy!

Why This Recipe Works

So Easy– When something is as easy as this Mexican Street Corn Salad, you just have to try it! The most difficult thing is grilling the corn, and that is still pretty simple.

Delicious and Crisp– The crunchy grilled corn with the freshness of lime makes this a wonderfully crisp salad. It would be perfect to pair with something that has higher fat like carnitas tacos since the salad will lighten anything up and provide the perfect balance!

Salty and Sweet– The salt of the cheese combined with the sweetness of the corn and the tart of the lime all makes a perfect combination of salty and sweet that you just have to try!


Variations and Customizations

Everyone makes their Mexican street corn salad a little bit differently. I like the combination of smoked paprika and cumin, but you can also season this with chili powder. Or, if you like it spicy you can dice up a jalapeƱo and throw that in, or try adding a little bit of cayenne pepper to your corn before grilling it. If you want this salad to be more like a traditional Esquites recipe, you can add mayo. The beauty of this recipe is you can make it your own!


Expert Tips and Tricks

  • When grilling the corn, turn it frequently to make sure all of the corn gets cooked and has that delicious grilled taste.
  • Not sure you want to get the grill going? No worries, you can roast your corn in the oven or boil it. If you choose to boil, add the seasoning to the salad at the end when you toss it all together.
  • If fresh corn is not available, you can use frozen corn and sear the kernels in a hot skillet with the seasonings added.
  • If you don’t have fresh lime juice, the bottled lime juice will do.
  • You can make this salad ahead of time and refrigerate for up to 2-3 days. Add the lime, cilantro and cheese when you are ready to serve it.

More Recipes You’ll Love

This salad would go great along with my Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Tacos or my Slow Cooker Sante Fe Chicken Tacos! Any tacos or burritos like my Southwest Chicken Burritos would go super well with this corn salad.

If you are looking for more salads to try, you’ll love my Corn Salad and my Mexican Street Corn Chicken Pasta Salad!

If you make this fresh corn salad, please come back and let me know what you think by leaving a comment and rating the recipe! And be sure to snap a photo and email it or tag me on social media, I love connecting with you and seeing your CDLC creations!