Jalapeño Cilantro Mexican Corn Salad - a simple but truly satisfying summer side dish. With fresh corn off the cob, red onion, jalapeños, and cilantro, this salad is the perfect make-ahead corn salad recipe everyone will love!
Mexican Corn Salad
This Mexican Corn Salad is one of those dishes I look forward to all year long. It is the epitome of summer. Fresh, sweet, and flavorful… It’s sunshine in a bowl!☀️
When we lived in New England fresh corn was only available in the summer months, and summer lasts for roughly 3 months there, so my window of opportunity was very narrow to enjoy this fresh and tasty corn salad!
But now I live in Florida and fresh corn on the cobb is readily available for at least 6 months and sometimes longer.
Regardless of where I live as soon as I see the mound of fresh corn appear in the produce department, I’m all over it.
Shucking my little heart out right there in the store.
The most versatile corn salad ever!
I take this salad to cookouts and make it for BBQs. It pairs perfectly with steaks, burgers, or any meat slathered in barbecue sauce… I love to serve it with Balsamic Baby Back Ribs or BBQ Pulled Pork Sliders.
Everyone raves about this Jalapeno Corn Salad and asks for the recipe. It’s really simple to make and looks all bright and beautiful in the bowl.✨
Initially, the inspiration for this dish came from my Boo Ina Garten. She has a wonderful corn salad recipe in The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. I’ve changed it up a bit… omitting the basil (I don’t like that it turns black) and adding a southwestern spin with jalapeños and cilantro, a bit more vinegar for a punch of zesty flavor, plus honey for more sweetness. So it really turns out to be more like a pickled corn salad. And this is perfect for me because I absolutely love pickled anything!
How to make Jalapeño Cilantro Mexican Corn Salad
First, start by cooking your corn. Wait for the water to bowl (if you'd like to add some sugar to make the corn sweeter), then add the corn and bring it back to a bowl and cook for 4-5 minutes.
Drain the corn and let it cool. Now chop your jalapenos, red onion, and cilantro and add them to a mixing bowl. Pour in the honey and red wine vinegar and sprinkle on the salt and pepper.
Next, toss it all together and chill in the fridge for a few hours so the flavors come together. Serve the salad chilled or let it sit out and serve at room temperature.
It's the perfect spring and summer side dish that you can make ahead.
How to cut corn off the cob
Here's some advice for you on removing the corn from the cob...
Let one of the ends of the cooked cob of corn vertically in the middle of a large cutting board. Hold the top of the cob securely with your non-cutting hand.
Use a large chef’s knife to cut in a downward motion, letting the corn cobs kernels collect on the cutting board. Cut all four sides of the cob and then cut the four corners that developed from cutting the sides.
And Viola... fresh corn for this amazing salad!
Here are some other tasty warm weather salads you will love...
- Mexican Street Corn Salad - full of fresh and delicious sweet corn, cilantro, jalapeno, cotija cheese, and red onion with a tangy sour cream-based dressing.
- Italian Tortellini Pasta Salad is a delicious side dish for a crowd and hearty enough to make for an easy dinner! It’s loaded with tasty ingredients like cheese tortellini, Genoa salami, fresh mozzarella pearls, and veggies all tossed in a zesty homemade Italian dressing.
- Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad - full of fresh veggies and herbs, tangy homemade Greek dressing, feta cheese, and fluffy little cheese-filled tortellini.
- Asparagus Egg and Bacon Salad with Dijon Vinaigrette – a fabulous spring salad or side dish, with asparagus, bacon and eggs, green beans, and the most delicious Dijon dressing.
- Melon Mozzarella Prosciutto Salad with Arugula - with classic Italian ingredients that create a sweet and savory take on the traditional Caprese salad.
Next time you’re at the grocery store grab some fresh corn while you still can. This Jalapeño Cilantro Mexican Corn Salad is a must-make summer recipe your family will devour again and again!
- 6 ears of corn, shucked
- 1 cup small-diced red onion, (about ½ of a large onion)
- ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves roughly chopped
- 4 Jalapeño peppers, finely diced &, seeds removed
- 5 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2-3 tablespoon honey or agave nectar, (The amount of honey needed is directly related to the sweetness of the corn. Sweeter corn will require less honey.)
- In a large pot of boiling water (I add sugar to ensure sweetness), add the corn, bring to a boil again and cook the corn for 5 minutes. Drain and let cool.
- Meanwhile, prep your other ingredients.
- When the corn is cool enough to handle, cut the kernels off the cob, cutting close enough to the cob to remove the kernels but not so close that you remove the husk with it.
- Toss the kernels in a large bowl with the red onions, jalapeño peppers, cilantro, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Taste and then start adding the honey or agave nectar as desired. The sweetness should balance out the vinegar.
- Make a few hours a head so the flavors infuse together. Chill and serve cold or leave out and serve at room temperature.
Serving Size4-5 ounces
Amount Per Serving Calories 146Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 0mgSodium 268mgCarbohydrates 23gFiber 2gSugar 11gProtein 3g
This nutrition card uses an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. This estimate is not a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice!
This corn salad pairs perfectly with BBQ pork! Check out these ideas:
BBQ Pulled Pork Sliders