Spicy sriracha sauce and jalapeno give this Mexican street corn pasta salad the perfect amount of kick! If you love Mexican street corn on the cob you’ll definitely love this unique pasta salad recipe!
So, I was initially hoping to post this salad for Cinco de Mayo waaaay back at the beginning of May, but it took me a few tries to get it JUST right for you guys! Also, photographing this pasta salad wasn’t the easiest task, since adding the dressing resulted in this dish looking a bit barf-ish. Brownies are much easier to photograph, you guys!
Actually, I’m super happy that I’m posting this pasta salad now, because we haven’t had the warmest summer up until now and we’re finally getting some hot weather and this is a HOT weather salad!
Have you ever heard of Mexican street corn!? It’s corn on the cob amped up!
What exactly is Mexican street corn?
Mexican street corn is commonly served on the street in Mexico. It’s traditionally made by grilling up corn on the cob, then serving it with a coating of the most delicious mixture of mayonnaise, sour cream, cotija cheese, chili powder, lime and cilantro. It’s also known as elote!
If you haven’t heard of cotija, or you can’t find it in your nearby grocery store, you can absolutely substitute it for feta cheese!
How do I make this into a salad?
I’ve basically taken the traditional toppings for the street food version, added a bit of sriracha and turned it into a dressing for salad!
So, since this is a PASTA salad, you’ll need cooked noodles of your choice, rinsed and dried. Then you’ll add your grilled corn, cut from the cob after grilling, followed by some cotija (or feta), avocado, cilantro and diced bell pepper.
We like our spice, so I also added in some diced jalapeno!
What if I don’t want a spicy pasta salad?
Since you might have kids like mine that scream ‘PICY!!!’ every time you serve something remotely spicy, you can definitely leave out the jalapeno, and reduce the sriracha to 1 tsp or 1/2 tsp. I wouldn’t leave out the sriracha completely, because it adds so much flavour!
We are serving Mexican though, so I would recommend keeping all of the spice!
Because I’ve been eating this pasta salad all summer, you can be sure that I’ve perfected it and it’s delicious. I imagine it would make for such a good side at a backyard BBQ!! We love eating it with grilled chicken thighs, and actually, we ate it just on its own as a meal a few times too!
If you’re intimidated by the idea of grilling your corn, be sure to check out my friend Marcie from Flavor the Moments’ awesome guide, as it has a few different ways to cook it up!
We’re off to go glamping for the weekend with my family at a lake, and guess what I’m bringing? Mexican street corn pasta salad! 😅
It’s BBQ season, so you may need a few other tricks up your sleeve. Try some of my other salads from the blog!
- grilled romaine Caesar salad
- keto cabbage salad
- roasted corn and chickpea kale salad
- simple kale salad
Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
Spicy sriracha sauce and jalapeno give this mexican street corn pasta salad the perfect amount of kick! If you love mexican street corn on the cob you’ll definitely love this unique pasta salad recipe!
- 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 4–5 cobs of corn
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked pasta (fusilli, elbow, etc)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 jalapeno, minced
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 3 green onions, diced
- 1/3 cup cotija cheese* (crumbled)
- 1/3 cup cilantro, diced
- 1 avocado, diced**
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, full-fat
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2 tsp sriracha
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat the grill to about 350F and rub 1 tbsp of olive oil over the cobs of corn. Grill the corn for about 10 minutes, rotating it every 2-3 minutes. Remove the corn from the grill and allow it to cool. Once cooled, use a knife to slice the corn off the cob, placing it into a large salad bowl.
- While the corn is cooking, bring a medium-sized pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add the uncooked pasta and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain the water, and spread out the noodles on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Allow the noodles to dry off!
- Heat the remaining olive oil in a small pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the garlic and diced jalapeno, sautéing it for about 5 minutes, until fragrant. Remove from heat.
- Add to the salad bowl, the cool/dry pasta, the garlic and jalapeno, the red pepper, diced onions, cotija, and cilantro.
- Make the dressing. In a measuring cup, whisk together the Greek yogurt, lime juice, honey, sriracha, cumin and salt and pepper until thoroughly combined. Taste and adjust as necessary. Pour the dressing all over the salad and toss to combine.
- Refrigerate the salad for at least 1 hour before serving, and up to 1 day. Add the diced avocado just before serving!
Keep leftover salad in the fridge, covered, for 2-3 days.
*If you can’t find cotija, substitute with feta
**I add the avocado right before serving to avoid it turning brown while it rests in the salad. If the brown doesn’t bother you, add it at the same time as the cilantro!
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Category: salads
- Method: no-bake
- Cuisine: mexican
Keywords: unique pasta salad // corn dish recipes // Mexican street corn salad
I need this salad in my life! Looks fabulous, Katherine! I so love street corn and pasta salad so what a delicious collision of the two! And, of course, a little spicy heat can never be a bad thing, if you ask me 😉 Pinned! Happy almost Friday to ya!
It’s absolutely a delicious collision of two wonderful things, Dawn. Love that description!! You would definitely love this one, maybe a little extra jalapeno for you! Xoxo
As a huge pasta salads lover, I do love this Mexican-inspired version. Love all the textures and flavours here (Well perhaps I’ll leave out the jalapen haha). Also, I don’t like mayo dressings, so this one sounds perfect to my liking. Well done, Katherine!
No jalapeno for you Ben!? 😉 I definitely agree, I’m not the biggest fan of mayo dressings either. Thank you my friend!
I need to get this on our menu Katherine! I LOVE Mexican street corn and the fact that you turned it into a pasta salad! I’m all in!
Thanks Mary Ann!! You’d love this – it’s a bit less messy but with all the flavor of street corn!!
What a delicious Summer salad! I definitely could use a bite right now. 🙂
Thank you Heidi!! It’s a great summer salad, especially for those potlucks! 🙂
Hahaha! One of the biggest reasons I only do desserts is that they’re just more photogenic :). But you captured this pasta salad beautifully! And it sounds SO GOOD. Have a great weekend, Katherine!
YEEEES Kelsie – I sometimes wish I had just focused on desserts from the beginning. They are WAY easier to photograph and way more fun too, haha! Thanks my friend!
What I would give for a gigantic bowl of this sitting in front of me right now!! When Ben and I went to Mexico City, my favorite food we got was the elote! It was sooo flavorful and delicious! It was literally served to us by one dude on the side of the street and he had a big vat of bubbling fresh hot corn in it. YESS! Totally making this ASAP!!
I love this story Haylie! I can just picture you guys wandering through Mexican City and grabbing some street elote. I hope the flavours of this salad helps bring that memory back a bit more!! 🙂
Barf-ish! I love it!!😆It looks amazing and not like your typical pasta salad!! What an awesome idea to blend Mexican street corn and pasta salad! This is a definite must try. Have an awesome time, Katherine!!
Oh how I wish I could eat this salad right now!! So beautiful, with all those incredible flavors together, YUM! Such a fabulous recipe as always!!
Oh, I am loving all those flavours, even the ‘PICY’. Lol, my boys are the same 🙂 with extra spice. But I could really eat this entire salad by myself. It looks absolutely delicious Katherine. And colour is so amazing, I am definitely giving this deliciousness a try.
Corn in pasta tastes so good, right?! You’re speaking my language with all these flavors and that little extra spice! Heheh!
Hooray! Happy to hear it Ros!! 🙂
Love adding corn to pasta salads, and with all the spicy flavours in this one, I know my family would love it. I need to give it a try for our BBQ gathering coming up soon! Hope you had an awesome weekend camping!
I think this salad is PERFECT for a BBQ gathering! Thanks Leanne!! We had an awesome time!
I love these flavors and that you’ve adapted the Mexican street corn to become a salad! Delicious! Give me all the spice!
Hooray! Thanks Annie. I’m ALL about the spice too!
This, to me, is THE WAY to do pasta salad! Add something sweet and spicy, some veggies, and a delicious dressing! So CRAVEABLE, Katherine! Pinning!
Yay – thanks Laura!!! I am all about the spice!
For someone like me who loves adding corn to everything, this is just perfect! Loved your recipe.
Yaay Sheenam! Thank you! I love corn in salads too!
Fabulous! But I’d join the “PICY!!!” choir as I am worse than a child when it comes to chili peppers. I can do the sriracha, but biting off fresh chili peppers is still next level for me.
Hahah Eva!! Maybe tone down the sriracha if you end up making this one 😉
This is what I call ” perfect office lunch”. Four seasons ! Thank you !
Hooray! Thank you so much!
OMG…I could eat all of that, seriously!!!! OMG! Pinning for later because this is awesomely yummy looking!
Yay! Thanks Kim. It’s awesome, we seriously have eaten it as a meal sometimes!!