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This Corn Salad recipe is a perfect summer side dish. It’s a simple salad, full of fresh corn, tomatoes, onions and parsley with a flavorful and tangy dressing.
The Best Corn Salad
A Corn Salad is one of my favorite side dishes to make on a hot summer day. It’s filling, fast, and refreshing. There’s very little to no cooking required, so it’s great for when you need something in a hurry.
I definitely recommend using fresh corn when it’s available, but you can also use frozen or canned corn instead. The sweet pop of the corn kernels mixed with the acidic freshness from ripe tomatoes and a slightly spicy bite from the onion makes for one truly delicious salad. I added minced parsley for color but you can make your corn salad with cilantro if you prefer that flavor.
The tangy dressing is a simple combination of olive oil, red wine vinegar, and garlic. It’s light and really lifts up the flavors of the salad.
How to Make Corn Salad
- Prep the corn. Cook the corn using any method you like. In my opinion it’s totally worth the extra time to cook fresh corn on the cob, whether you grill it, boil it or cook it in the microwave. Check out this post on how to cook corn on the cob for suggestions and tips. Once cooked, remove corn from the cob. You can also use frozen (thawed and dry) or canned (drained).
- Chop the veggies. Chop the tomatoes and onions into small dices, so you can get everything together in one bite. Chop the parsley or cilantro. Use whatever kind of tomatoes and onions you like, and feel free to swap in or add other veggies, like cucumber or zucchini. Mix all of the veggies together in a large bowl.
- Whisk the dressing. Combine the dressing ingredients in a small bowl or shake together in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Add salt and pepper as desired.
- Pour and Mix. Pour the dressing on the salad and toss. I recommend to start with half of the dressing because preference can vary. You can always add more but you can’t undress your corn salad!
Simple Vinaigrette Dressing
The vinaigrette dressing is simply 3 ingredients – red wine vinegar, olive oil and minced garlic. Feel free to experiment with the flavors for the vinaigrette for your fresh corn salad. If you don’t have red wine vinegar, you could use champagne, apple cider or white wine vinegar in its place. My husband loves it when I add lime juice for the acid. Be sure to taste and add salt and pepper if you feel that it’s needed.
For the oil, I prefer the flavor of olive oil, but you could use another if you wish, like avocado oil or vegetable oil. Shake it all together in a jar with a tight fitting lid, or whisk in a bowl.
Expert Tips and FAQs
- Play around with the flavors by using different kinds of fresh tomatoes, or other ingredients like zucchini or even some crumbled feta cheese.
- Let the dressed salad sit for an hour to marinate. The extra time will really help to brighten the fresh flavors of your corn salad.
Frozen corn should be thawed and steamed, then cooled before adding it to your corn salad. Make sure to drain any liquid as well.
It will last about 3 days in the fridge, stored in an airtight container.
Hands down I prefer fresh corn, right off the cob in my corn salad. However, it may not always be readily available. Frozen corn would be my second choice, and if you don’t have theat, canned corn (well drained) is fine.
Corn Salad is a bbq staple around here. It’s so easy to make and only gets better as it sits and marinates. Add it to your next cookout menu and serve it with your favorite grilled meat, like Grilled Chicken Kabobs, Grilled Tri Tip or Grilled Chicken. It’s also great with sandwiches like Pulled Pork Sliders or a mouthwatering Steak Sandwich. As side dishes go, I love corn paired with potatoes like Red Potato Salad or Grilled Potatoes.
More Fresh Summer Salads You’ll Love
- Tomato Avocado Salad
- Summer Fruit Salad
- Shrimp Avocado Salad
- Mediterranean Green Bean Salad
- Balsamic Chicken Tortellini Salad
Fresh Corn Salad
- 5 ears of white or yellow corn or a mix of both (~4 cups of frozen/canned will work as well)
- ½ cup diced red or white onion
- 2 tablespoons fresh minced parsley
- 3 Roma tomatoes seeded and diced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 garlic clove minced
- Whisk the dressing together in a small bowl and set aside.
- Remove the husks and silk from the corn and trim the ends.
- Heat a large pot of salted water to boiling, then submerge the corn cobs. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Drain. (Note – you can also grill or microwave your corn; do whatever you prefer).
- Remove corn kernels from the cob with a sharp knife and transfer kernels to a large mixing bowl. Toss with diced tomato, onion, parsley and the dressing. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.
- Serve chilled or at room temperature.
- Feel free to customize the ingredients however you like.
- Swap out the vinegar for a different flavor. My husband love when I use lime juice.
- Use cilantro instead of parsley.
- Add more or less of any of the ingredients.
- Fresh corn is preferred but frozen or canned may be used.