Mexican Corn Salad

8 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Mexican Corn Salad is an easy no-cook side dish with corn, mayo, lime, chili powder, cilantro & cotija cheese that gives you elote flavors without the cob!

If you’ve tried out my recipes for Corn SalsaCorn Succotash and Easy Taco Salad, you know that you don’t need a long cook time to make a delicious, veggie filled meal. This corn salad recipe in particular is so fast and easy that you’ll want to make it every weeknight.

Bowl of Mexican Corn SaladMEXICAN CORN SALAD

Do you want to add some flavor to your next BBQ or potluck dinner?

Mexican corn salad is great side dish that you can also serve over corn chips as a fancy dip. This Mexican street corn salad uses the natural flavors from fresh corn, cotija, lime juice, cilantro, mayo and chili powder to make a tasty, vibrant salad that’s delicious and super quick to make.

Want to serve this dish next to one of the most popular recipes on the site? Make it and serve it with my Cheesy Taco Pasta and I promise your whole family will LOVE YOU.


  • Mix together the cooked corn with the mayonnaise, cotija, lime juice, cilantro, and chili powder in a large mixing bowl.
  • Refrigerate until you’re ready to serve.
  • Sprinkle more cotija and top with some chopped cilantro and a dash of chili powder.


  • Jalapeño: are you looking for a bit of a thrill with your food, chop up a jalapeño pepper and mix it into the salad for a slow-burning, flavorful zing.
  • Tacos: Mexican corn salad is great when rolled up in a soft tortilla or served up in a crunchy taco with Pico de Gallo. This is one of those easy recipes that you can use as a base for a variety of other dishes.
  • Veggies: you can add as many vegetables to this recipe as you would like. Some to definitely try out are red onion, scallions and bell peppers.
  • Cumin: sprinkle a little cumin onto the salad to give it some extra flavor.
  • Avocado: you can slice up an avocado and serve it up alongside the corn salad or chop it fine and mash it for a variation of guacamole.
  • Crema: crema is also called crema espesa and crema fresca, and is made from heavy cream and buttermilk, along with salt and lime. It’s delicious and is great served as a garnish on top of this salad.

Mexican Corn Salad with Cotija Cheese sprinkled on top

What to Serve with Mexican Corn Salad:

  • Black Beans: you can’t argue with an absolute classic, and black beans with corn salad is for sure a classic. Black beans are great for you and are a delicious side dish that compliments the natural sweetness of the corn salad.
  • Spanish Rice: another classic, Spanish rice is rich, delicious and goes with pretty much anything. You’ll also love how easy it is to make.
  • Mexican Stuffed Peppers: stuffed peppers are a main course that is filling, hearty and flavorful. They are also easily dressed up or down depending on what the occasion is.

If you want to try a delicious traditional dessert, check out my recipe for Mexican Wedding Cookies.

More Easy Summer Side Dishes:

  • Coleslaw – The classic staple! Or make the KFC Coleslaw (Copycat) version!
  • Macaroni Salad – Never buy this again, this is the best version ever.
  • Potato Salad – No eggs in this one, this is your perfect classic recipe.
  • Pasta Salad – 10 minutes with bottled Italian dressing (or use the homemade recipe I include in the post!)
  • Baked Beans – These are award winning! Like bbq competition award winning!
  • Baked Mac and Cheese – These may not be the easiest recipe on this list, but the fan favorite for sure!

What is Cotija Cheese?

A hard cow cheese from the town of Cotija, in Michoacán, Mexico. When it’s first made, it crumbles just like Feta but after it’s been aged it closely resembles Parmesan Cheese (it’s even sometimes nicknamed “Mexican Parmesan.”) It has a salty flavor, is very hard and doesn’t melt easily, so it’s perfect for grating over a meal to give it both flavor and texture.

How to Store Mexican Corn Salad:

  • Serve: because of the mayo in this recipe, you should refrigerate corn salad fairly quickly after serving it up.
  • Store: you can keep Mexican corn salad in the fridge for about 3 days. After that point you should cut your losses and whip up a new batch.
  • Freeze: don’t. The fresh veggies in this dish don’t thaw out very well.

Closeup of Mexican Corn Salad

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Mexican Corn Salad

Mexican corn salad is an easy no-cook side dish for your summer bbq with corn, mayo, lime juice, chili powder, cilantro and cotija cheese that gives you elote flavors without the cob!
Yield 8 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 6 cups corn
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup cotija cheese crumbled
  • 1 lime juiced and zested
  • 1/4 cup cilantro chopped
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder


  • Add the corn, salt, chili powder, mayonnaise, lime juice and zest and cilantro to a large bowl and mix well.
  • Top with cotija cheese and additional chili powder for garnish (if desired).


Calories: 205kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 473mg | Potassium: 286mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 675IU | Vitamin C: 8.9mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 0.8mg

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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    1. You could use canned corn if you’d like which wouldn’t require any cooking. If you’re wanting to use fresh corn then yes, you would need to cook it first. I hope you enjoy it.

  1. I gotta give this one a try–Sabrina–you are one of the best cooks on the web–thanks so much

  2. I love this salad! I however mix in sour cream, as well as the mayo. And I typically use feta cheese when I can’t find cotija. I have also used paprika instead of chili powder for my family who doesn’t like anything spicy. Such a delicious dish, and no messy fingers like street corn on the cob!

  3. Such a great recipe for a summer side dish with dinner! Easy, light and packed with flavor! Delicious!