Grilled Corn is the epitome of summer food, and here, it’s served with fresh, flavorful fixins’ in a salad that you’ll make all season long. No grill? No problem. Use a stovetop grill pan or oven-roast your corn. Once cooked, lightly charred corn kernels are tossed with lime juice, scallions, serrano chiles, cilantro, and crumbled feta or cotija. It’s savory, charred, creamy, bright, juicy – all the things we love in a summery dish. Enjoy alongside grilled proteins, platters of ripe tomatoes, and preferably outdoors with lots of sunshine and chilled natural wine. Check out the Riffs section underneath the recipe for easy ways to spin this dish (spoiler alert: crunchy, crispy toppings like bacon and pistachios are great additions).
Grilled Corn Salad with Citrus, Herbs, + Cotija
- 6 ears corn, husked
- 1 - 1 1/4 cup crumbled feta or cotija cheese start with 1 cup - some brands are saltier than others. Add more if desired.
- 1 cup thinly sliced scallions/green onions about 4 large scallions
- 1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
- 1/3 cup fresh lime juice about the juice of 2 ½ limes - save the other half of the last lime for serving
- 1/3 cup olive oil, plus more for grilling
- 1 serrano or jalapeño, seeds removed and diced keep the seeds if you like the spice
- kosher salt
- Heat a grill or cast-iron grill pan to medium heat. While the grill is heating up, brush corn with olive oil, and season generously with salt.
- Grill corn for 10-12 minutes, or until it starts to get grill marks, being sure to turn occasionally so all sides of the corn get a bit of char, but not so much that the corn dries out.
- Let corn cool slightly, and slice kernels off of cob, and transfer kernels to large serving bowl.
- To large serving bowl with corn kernels, add crumbled cheese, sliced scallions, chopped cilantro, lime juice, olive oil, serrano or jalapeno, and several generous pinches of kosher salt to taste.
- Toss, taste, and adjust. If it needs more brightness, add more lime juice. If it needs more savory flavors, add more crumbled cheese or kosher salt. Freshen it up with more herbs if desired. Serve salad while warm or at room temp.
A FEW NOTES ON RIFFS:
- The Corn: Fresh corn is ideal but thawed, previously frozen, fire-roasted corn, also gets the job done! Trader Joe’s sells it and I can confirm, it works super well here. Make sure to really thaw and drain it before using.
- The Scallions: Scallions, or green onions, are in the allium family, so other alliums will sub in nicely. Chopped fresh chives or thinly sliced shallots would be great.
- The Cilantro: Swap in fresh basil or chives if needed.
- The Lime: Fresh lemon juice works.
- The Cotija or Feta: Cotija and feta will both lend salty, briny flavors. If you can find Ricotta Salata, it’s a great substitution. Freshly grated parm will also lend similar sharp flavors.
- The Chiles: I love serrano chiles, but jalapeño or Fresno chiles work as well. Keep the seeds if you like the heat!
- The Crunchy Toppings: Add toasted nuts like pistachios for added texture and flavor. Pro tip? Corn and bacon are a match made in heaven – throw on crispy bacon bits for added texture and savory flavor.
A FEW SWAPS FOR YOUR DIETARY NEEDS + PREFERENCES:
- Make it dairy-free and vegan: Omit the cheese and you’re golden!