Elote Salad

This delicious elote salad turns Mexican street corn into a salad! It’s creamy, smoky, salty, and absolutely irresistible. Our favorite…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

This delicious elote salad turns Mexican street corn into a salad! It’s creamy, smoky, salty, and absolutely irresistible.

Elote salad

Our favorite summer side dish over here? Elote, aka Mexican grilled corn. The smoky sweet corn kernels slathered in an irresistibly sauce is the epitome of the season for us. So here’s another fabulous way to eat the same flavors: this Elote Corn Salad! It’s absolutely irresistible, pairing grilled corn with a tangy sauce and bursts of salty cheese. Don’t want to fire up the grill? There’s a shortcut method, too.

What is elote?

Elote, aka Mexican street corn, is grilled corn slathered in a creamy sauce of sour cream, mayonnaise, and chili powder, and sprinkled with cheese. It’s a popular snack served by street vendors in Mexico. Of course, it’s the very best on the street in Mexico or cities that have a strong Mexican heritage to their cuisine: there’s nothing like it!

This elote salad is a spin on the popular side dish that uses all the flavor of elote. But you’ll cut the corn kernels off the cob, making it into a free form corn salad. It’s essentially the same as esquites, a version of elote served in a cup by Mexican street vendors.

Ingredients in elote salad

This elote salad is easy to make: the only part that requires any sort of technique is cooking the corn. See the methods below! Otherwise, all you’ll need is:

  • Corn on the cob (or frozen corn, see below)
  • Green onion
  • Cilantro
  • Mayonnaise
  • Lime juice
  • Cotija cheese, queso fresco, or feta cheese
  • Spices: Chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, and kosher salt
Elote corn salad

Find Cotija cheese or queso fresco (feta is a substitute!)

If you can, look for Cotija cheese for this recipe! It’s the traditional Mexican style of cheese that’s use in elote. Here’s a bit more about it and a few substitutes:

  • Cotija cheese is a Mexican cow’s milk cheese: it’s white with a dry texture and a very salty flavor. You can buy it fresh or aged, but it’s usually easiest to find fresh at the grocery.
  • Queso fresco means fresh cheese in Spanish and is another Mexican cow’s milk cheese. It works as a stand in for Cotija, but it’s much less salty. You may want to add a little salt to recipes if you use this substitute.
  • Feta cheese is a Greek cheese that has a similar crumbly texture to Cotija, and it’s easy to find at the store. It’s similar in saltiness to Cotija as well.

5 ways to cook the corn

This elote salad is delicious no matter how you cook the corn! Mix mayo, lime, and spices into pretty much anything and it will taste delicious (really). Here are our top methods for cooking corn for this recipe:

  • Grilled: Elote salad is at its best with grilled corn! Try this Perfect Grilled Corn.
  • Roasted: Roasted corn is delicious and easy. Try Roasted Corn.
  • Boiled: The standard way to cook corn? Boiled. Try Boiled Corn on the Cob.
  • Sauteed: You can use fresh or frozen corn kernels for this recipe too! Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a skillet, then add the corn kernels and cook 3 to 4 minutes until bright yellow and tender.
  • Smoked: If you have a smoker, this is the way to go! Try Smoked Corn.

That’s it! We hope you love this elote salad recipe. It’s the perfect summer side dish for a grilled dinner! Let us know in the comments below what you think.

Elote salad

More corn salad recipes

There are so many more ways to make a corn salad! Once you’ve tried this elote salad, we recommend the following:

This elote corn salad recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

Print

Elote Salad


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This delicious elote salad turns Mexican street corn into a salad! It’s creamy, smoky, salty, and absolutely irresistible.


Ingredients

  • 6 ears corn (or 5 cups corn kernels*)
  • 1 green onion
  • 3 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • ½ cup crumbled Cotija cheese, queso fresco, or feta cheese
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon each garlic powder, cumin, and kosher salt (or more salt to taste)

Instructions

  1. Cook the corn: Heat a grill to medium high heat (375 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit). Shuck the corn. Use your hands to rub oil on each corn cob evenly. Place the corn directly on the grill grates and cook until it begins to blacken, then turn. Cook about 12 to 15 minutes total, until blackened on all sides. Alternative methods: Make Boiled Corn on the Cob, Roasted Corn on the Cob, or Smoked Corn on the Cob. Or for a quick fix, use 5 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels and sauté for a minute or two in butter in a medium skillet.
  2. Cut the corn off the cob: Find a bundt pan, or large rimmed baking sheet or pan. Place the corn into the hole in the bundt pan or hold the corn vertically inside the baking sheet, then use a chef’s knife to slice down and remove the corn from the cob. The sides of the pan catch the kernels that fly when cutting. See How to Cut Corn off The Cob for more.
  3. Prep the vegetables: Thinly slice the green onion. Finely chop the cilantro.
  4. Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, mix together the sour cream, mayonnaise, lime juice, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, and kosher salt.
  5. Serve: Mix together the grilled corn, vegetables, and dressing. If desired, top with a sprinkle more cheese crumbles.

Notes

*For a quick fix, you can sauté 5 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a skillet, then add the corn kernels and cook 3 to 4 minutes until bright yellow and tender.

  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Grilled
  • Cuisine: Summer

Keywords: Elote salad, elote corn salad

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.