Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

Creamy, tangy and so delicious, this Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad takes your favorite summertime side and switches it up with Mexican-inspired flavors reminiscent of Elote (Mexican street corn flavored with crema, cheese, a little heat, and lime). This pasta salad is a crowd-pleaser that is customizable, hearty, and unique. Watch it fly off the table whenever you serve it!

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

If you’ve tried our Mexican Street Corn Salad, you know I can’t get enough of the flavors of Elote (aka Mexican Street Corn). This Mexican Street Corn Pasta salad is our new go-to for entertaining. Customizable with add-ins, it is easy, delicious, and unique! It is a fun and creative way to serve up your corn. A little bit of creaminess, a little tang, and a whole lot of fresh deliciousness!

Ingredients Needed

Here is an overview of ingredients, keep scrolling for the fill recipe.

  • Corn: See below for a few different ways to prepare your corn for this recipe! When making corn on the cob, I always try to buy local corn when possible!
  • Fresh Herbs: I find for this dish, the more cilantro and green onions (scallions), the better!
  • Pasta: I love bowties here, but any pasta you like will be great.
  • The dressing: This pasta salad is tossed in a lovely (and easy) creamy dressing!
  • Mayo: I love avocado oil mayo as my mayo of choice. I haven’t tried it, but as a substitute, you can possibly try greek yogurt, though it will be tangier so you’ll want to play with the spices.
  • Spices: This dressing uses a blend of chili powder, cayenne powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. You can adjust the heat as desired.
  • Fresh garlic: When using raw garlic in a salad, I like to grate it to avoid heavy bites of garlic!
  • Lime Juice: I prefer fresh here!

How to Customize It

Keep it simple or add in your favorites!

  • Cheese (feta works well here, or Cotija for a more authentic Mexican Street Corn Salad)
  • Black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Avocado
  • Diced bell peppers
  • Bacon
  • Jalapeños

Options for Cooking the Corn

You have a few options here, and can opt for preparing the corn any way that is easiest for you! This pasta salad works with any of these options

  • Grilling the corn! This is my favorite method as the charred corn flavor really makes this pasta salad pop.
  • Instant Pot Corn on the Cob, we also love this easy method.
  • Another easy method… simply boil it!
  • Use frozen corn (fire-roasted or regular)! Use 2 bags. Simply sauté it in a skillet with a little oil until cooked! Don’t overcook the corn or it will be mushy.

How to Grill Corn

It will take this pasta salad to the next level!

  • Clean and oil/grease your grill.
  • Remove husks and rub corn with butter or oil.
  • Place corn directly on the hot side of your grill (medium-high heat) and cook, rotating occasionally, until charred and tender, about 15 minutes. When done, the yellow color of the corn will be more vibrant, and the kernels will be tender and plump.
  • Remove corn from grill and allow to cool before cutting kernels off.

What Type of Pasta to Use

Any pasta works great in this pasta salad! Make sure to salt the pasta water. It’s key!

If you like this pasta salad recipe, check out these others:

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Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

Mexican Street Corn pasta salad.

Creamy, tangy and so delicious, this Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad takes your favorite summertime side and switches it up with Mexican-inspired flavors reminiscent of Elote (Mexican street corn flavored with crema, cheese, a little heat, and lime). This pasta salad is a crowd-pleaser that is customizable, hearty, and unique. Watch it fly off the table whenever you serve it!

  • Author: Lexi
  • Prep Time: 00:10
  • Cook Time: 00:20
  • Total Time: 00:30
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Pasta Salad

Ingredients

Scale
  • 12-ounces bow-tie pasta, or pasta of choice
  • 6 corn ears, grilled or boiled (see note)
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/3 cup chopped green onion, more as desired
  • Salt and pepper, as desired

Dressing:

  • 1/3 cup mayo
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, more as desired
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt and black pepper, more to taste

Optional add-ins:

    • Cotija cheese or feta cheese
    • Black beans
    • Avocado
    • Jalapeno
    • See more above

Instructions

  1. Make the pasta: Follow the directions on the package, making sure to salt your water generously. Drain pasta, rinse, and set aside to dry.
  2. Make the corn: Grill, boil, or use frozen corn. See post for various methods. Once cooled, cut kernels off the cob, and place into a bowl.
  3. Prepare the dressing: In a bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients.
  4. Prep herbs and veggies: Chop cilantro, green onion, and any add-ins you desire.
  5. Assemble the pasta salad: Combine all the ingredients, toss with the dressing, and adjust spices as desired! You may want a little more salt, pepper, spice, and even mayo or lime juice here!
  6. Enjoy immediately. Best if eaten immediately once pasta salad is dressed.

Notes

You have a few options here, and can opt for preparing the corn any way that is easiest for you! This pasta salad works with any of these options:

  • Grilling the corn! This is my favorite method as the charred corn flavor really makes this pasta salad pop.
  • Instant Pot Corn on the Cob, we also love this easy method.
  • Another easy method… simply boil it!
  • Use frozen corn (fire-roasted or regular)! Use 2 bags. Simply sauté it in a skillet with a little oil until cooked! Don’t overcook the corn or it will be mushy.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/6 recipe
  • Calories: 290
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Sodium: 200g
  • Fat: 12g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 41g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Protein: 7g
  • Cholesterol: 33mg

Keywords: Mexican Street Corn, Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

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9 comments
June 16, 2021

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9 Responses

  1. Made this last night for dinner. Everyone loved it. It was even so good as leftovers the next day.

    5.0 rating

  2. This is so, so good! I just put it together to go with dinner tonight. I used frozen fire roasted corn from Whole Foods and added a big spoonful of greek yogurt to the dressing. I could SWIM in the dressing its so good. Thanks!!

    5.0 rating

  3. Loved the optional suggestion to use frozen fire roasted corn. Made this recipe so quick and easy. Super tasty too! I couldn’t stop snacking on it while waiting for guests to arrive!

  4. This was delicious. Perfectly creamy! 🤤 I actually used frozen sweet corn kernals (Birds Eye) and sautéed them on the grill in my cast iron. It’s all I had but am easy swap!

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