Fresh Corn Salad

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Fresh, in-season corn doesn’t need much accompaniment, but this bright salad makes the most of corn’s sweet flavor and texture. Inspired by Mexican elote, grilled corn is combined with tangy pickled shallots, spicy jalapeño, and cilantro for an easy side dish to serve with grilled meat, fish, or veggies. 

Photo, recipe, and styling by Maren Ellingboe.


Quick Pickled Shallots

  • 1 large shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ¼ c unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt


  • 4 ears corn
  • 1 jalapeño, thinly sliced
  • ½ c chopped cilantro
  • ¼ c olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ¼ c mayonnaise (optional)
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp ground pepper
  • ½ c crumbled feta cheese (optional)


  1. To make pickled shallots, whisk the vinegar, sugar, and salt together in a small bowl. Add shallots and let sit for 20 minutes.
  2. Preheat grill to medium heat. Shuck corn. Grill until kernels begin to pop and it’s slightly charred and on all sides, about 15 minutes. Alternatively, place corn directly over gas flame and turn with tongs to char on sides. Let cool for a few minutes, then cut kernels from the cob with a serrated knife. Place in a large bowl.
  3. Add shallots, jalapeño, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice, mayonnaise (if using), salt, and pepper to corn. Mix well. Top with feta cheese and serve!

Recipe Notes

  • While this corn salad is delicious when served immediately, the flavors will meld more if you make it a day ahead of time. Spoon leftovers over tacos, scoop with tortilla chips, or just eat them straight from the bowl!
  • You can easily make this salad by omitting the mayonnaise and cheese or using your favorite vegan substitute for either.
  • You can also experiment with different flavor combinations. Try swapping the lime juice for lemon, or use cotija or Ricotta Salata cheese instead of feta. As long as you use fresh white or yellow sweet corn, the possibilities are endless!

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