This Mexican Street Corn Salad features charred sweet summer corn, roasted poblanos, diced red onion, smoky bacon, creamy avocado, and salty feta cheese. Topped with a creamy chipotle honey dressing, it’s an explosion of flavor and textures. It’s the perfect side dish for all of your summer get-togethers!Jump to Recipe
The Best Summer Side Dish
This Mexican Street Corn Salad is one of our all-time favorites side dishes to make in the summer. It celebrates summer corn, my hubby’s favorite vegetable. It’s also packed with bold flavors and good texture, making it an irresistible dish!
Sweet summer corn is the star of this salad. We’re lucky to live in IL where corn is plentiful in the summer. Fresh corn is out of this world amazing. It’s super sweet and succulent. It makes this salad shine! The corn is roasted on the grill, along with poblanos, for a charred, smoky taste.
There are also a few supporting actors that create this delicious dish. I added the charred, roasted poblanos along with creamy avocado, salty, smoky bacon, sharp feta cheese, herbaceous, citrusy cilantro, and diced red onions to the mix to make a truly unforgettable salad.
Let’s not forget the honey chipotle dressing. It makes this dish even more vibrant. The dressing is made with greek yogurt, a touch of mayo, robust honey, spicy and bold chipotle chili powder, earthy cumin, and bright lime juice. It’s super creamy, a little spicy, and perfectly balanced. Mixed all together, this salad is truly magic! It”ll be the highlight of any BBQ this summer!
What is Mexican Street Corn
Mexican street corn, i.e. elotes, is a delicious, street food found in Mexico. The word “elotes” means “corn cob” in Spanish. The traditional dish is grilled corn on the cob slathered with a mayo based sauce and garnished with chili powder, cheese, and lime. It’s widely delicious and has grown in popularity in the U.S.
This Mexican Street Corn Salad takes those traditional flavors and utilizes them in an addictive, vibrant, and lighter salad. You are totally going to want to make this while the sweet corn lasts!
Here’s what you need to make this salad:
- fresh corn, the fresh corn is charred on the grill and cut off the cob. It’s the star of the show. If possible, I highly recommend picking up fresh corn at your local farmer’s market. But if you don’t have access to fresh corn, canned corn works too (I recommend white shoepeg corn if using canned).
- poblanos, these are also charred on the grill, the skin removed, and diced. They add a beautiful smokiness and mild heat to the dish.
- avocado, adds creamy coolness to the dish.
- bacon, I mean, bacon makes everything better, right?! It adds crunch, saltiness, and smokiness that takes this dish to a whole new level.
- red onion, add color, crunch, and bite to the dish.
- cilantro, I love the fresh, citrusy, herbaceous notes cilantro bring to the dish to help round out the savory, rich flavors.
- feta cheese, adds delicious, salty, cheesy goodness! Cojita cheese also works well. You could even use a shredded sharp cheddar too!
- greek yogurt, the base of the sauce is made from greek yogurt. It provides rich, creaminess plus adds protein and healthy fats!
- olive oil based mayo, just a touch helps add extra creaminess and a slight sweetness that helps tame the tang of the greek yogurt. I prefer olive oil based mayo as it’s a richer taste and less fat than regular.
- spices, I uses a chipotle chili powder, cumin, and garlic for a smoky, slightly spicy, and little earthy taste that makes this dish shine!
- lime juice, a splash of this bright and sweet citrus juice helps wake up the other flavors and keep the dish from becoming too rich!
- honey, adds a touch of floral sweetness that helps cool down the heat from the chipotle powder and pairs beautifully with the sweetness of the charred roasted corn.
How to make this Mexican Street Corn Salad
First, heat a grill to 450 degrees (you can also use a grill pan on the a cooktop). Add the corn and poblanos and roast until both are properly charred. You want the corn to develop nice grill marks and the poblanos to become completely black and charred.
Remove both from the grill. Cut the corn off the cob and add to a large serving bowl. Remove the charred skin from the poblanos and remove the seeds. Dice up the poblanos and set on top of the corn. Add the remaining salad ingredients to the bowl. I think this dish looks prettiest with the corn on the bottom and the other salad ingredients displayed on top. I recommend adding the dressing and tossing about a half hour before serving.
For the sauce, add all the ingredients to a bowl, greek yogurt, spices, honey, and lime juice, and mix until well-incorporated. If too thick for your liking, add a little water to thin it out.
Pour the dressing over the corn and toss until all the ingredients are coated in the sauce. Top with cilantro and extra lime juice. Serve and enjoy!!
How is it lightened up?!
Here’s what I did to make this dish a little lighter:
- I used greek yogurt in place of most of the mayo. It’s high in protein and healthy fats, but still creates a creamy, delicious dressing.
- I sweetened the dressing with refined sugar free honey. It’s a natural sweetener, so easier for your body to digest, but adds a beautiful, floral note that helps make the dressing sweet and flavorful. The honey also works great with the spicy chipotle flavor.
- The dish is loaded with veggies, way more than the traditional Mexican Street Corn. It’s got corn of course, but also poblanos, red onions, and avocado.
- The dish is gluten-free and refined-sugar free. Yaas!
Here’s a few ways to make this dish your own:
- Cheesy goodness. If you don’t have feta, you could use Cojita, creamy goat cheese, sharp cheddar, or a vegan cheese. Or dare I say, omit the cheese altogether.
- Add more herbs. Basil would also work well!
- Hold the bacon. Admittedly, bacon makes this salad totally addictive. BUUTTT if you are looking for a vegetarian dish, you could omit it and add nuts for protein and crunch. You could also use turkey bacon for a less fatty option.
- Switch up the peppers. I love the smokiness roasted poblanos add to the dish. But if you do not like or cannot find poblanos, you could also use diced jalapeños or red peppers.
Other delicious summer dishes
- Cherry Kale Salad
- Rose Margaritas
- Watermelon Berry Fruit Salad
- Blueberry Brie Basil Grilled Cheese
- Grilled Jerk Chicken with Pineapple Avocado Salsa
- Vegan S’mores Tart
This Mexican Street Corn Salad is an explosion of flavors and textures. Charred sweet summer corn, roasted poblanos, diced red onion, smoky bacon, creamy avocado, and salty feta cheese, then topped with a creamy chipotle honey dressing. It’ll be the star of any meal!
If you make these Mexican Street Corn Salad, please leave a comment below. I absolutely love to hear from you guys and your thoughts on my recipes. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram or pin it on pinterest, cuz sharing is caring!
Mexican Street Corn Salad with Creamy Chipotle Honey Dressing
Mexican Street Corn Salad
- 4 large ears of corn
- 2-3 small poblano peppers or l large
- Half small red onion diced
- 1 small avocado diced
- 4 slices of bacon cooked and crumbled
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta or cojita cheese more or less to taste
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro for garnish
- Lime wedges for garnish
Honey Chipotle Dressing
- 1/2 cup greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil based mayo
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/8-1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder depending on preferred spiciness level
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cumin powder
- S&P to taste
- 1-2 tablespoons water
Pre-heat your grill to 450 degrees (or heat a grill pan on your cooktop). Drizzle the corn and poblanos with olive oil and a touch of salt. Add both to the hot grill and roast until the corn is slightly charred and the poblanos are almost completely charred and black. Remove from grill and cool slightly.
Cut the corn off the cob and add to a large bowl.
Remove skin and seeds from poblanos. Dice the poblanos and add on top of corn.
Top corn with remaining salad ingredients, diced red onion, diced avocado, crumbled bacon, and feta cheese.
In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients until everything is well incorporated. If the dressing is too thick, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of water until reach desired consistency. Pour desired amount of the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Store any extra dressing in an airtight container in the fridge.
Garnish with cilantro and extra lime juice.
Serve and enjoy!