Street Corn Rice Salad with Avocados and Lemon Lime Dressing
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Learn how to make the best street corn rice salad! This is Mexican style street corn (aka elotes) but in salad form! Tossed with a lemon-lime vinaigrette. This salad has tons of roasted corn, chopped scallions, cotija cheese, and of course, diced avocados!
You’re looking at my new favorite salad right here!
MEXICAN STREET CORN RICE SALAD.
And you know all about my level of excitement when I find a new salad I love! It’s elotes (or Mexican style street corn) in salad form, and it’s so gosh darn good I could eat it for every meal of the day for months on end and still want more.
It’s spring! Texas is the best place to be this time of the year. It’s breezy and beautiful. Light showers in the afternoons and the evening sky is so clear you can see all the stars glowing brightly. The sun sets late so outside suppers are a very real possibility.
And in anticipation of these glorious days, we spent all of this past weekend trying to come up with a landscaping plan for our backyard. We’ve lived here for two and a half years but sadly, hadn’t even spent 2 1/2 minutes trying to figure out what to do with all that outdoor living space. So this weekend, we had a few lawn improvement guys come out and try and help us make sense of the place. We also checked out some of the patio furniture sales that are going on right now. That ended up being a big mistake because soon I was checking out all the outdoor dining accessories and completely forgot why we were there in the first place. 🤷🏻♀️
All I want is an outdoor dining table so we can host weekend shindigs that revolve around food, know what I’m saying?
And you bet this street corn rice salad is going on the menu of EVERY backyard barbecue party we host. Not only is this salad loaded with tons of good stuff, but it’s also lighter in the calories department. And to top it off, it pairs wonderfully with grilled chicken or beef. I’d stuff it in tortillas with my steak fajitas or serve it alongside ancho chili street tacos or even the blackened salmon tacos. Honestly, this would go with just about anything!
Have you ever had elotes? It’s Mexican style corn on the cob that’s been kicked up with all sorts of delicious additions. And it’s a party for your mouth. Living in Texas, we have a place on every street corner that makes elotes. My corn rice salad is just elotes and all those toppings mixed with cooked rice, diced avocados, scallions, and of course, crumbled cotija cheese. It’s pretty much everything Mexican style corn has and more!
Bonus: it’s a whole lot easier to eat!
There’s probably a million different ways to make street corn. Some people like it with tons of sour cream or butter or mayo. Others like it with just a hint of lemon or lime and lots of seasonings. A couple of weeks ago, when the rodeo was in town, we waited for a good thirty minutes in line to get hot grilled corn. They usually have a table nearby set up with all the topping because can you even imagine how long it would take if they customized it for you? We’d be there forever! My favorite street corn involves a hint of butter, a mini dollop of mayo, tons of chili seasonings and lemon pepper to boot — pretty much every topping option ends up on my corn!
But eating corn on the cob in public is so freakin’ awkward. And what about when you’ve got all that stuff stuck in your teeth. Certainly not ideal when you’re trying to look your best at a party, right? That’s where this corn rice salad comes in — all the flavors we love about street corn but in a neatly wrapped, fork-friendly package.
And you don’t even have to grill your own corn unless you really want to. Which if you do, more power to you. I’m probably the only person that loves the smell of roasted corn. So much so that if they made that in a candle scent I’d buy it and burn it all the time. It’s smoky and comforting and it reminds me of my childhood; because you can’t get better corn than the stuff they grow in Illinois. Nowadays, most grocery stores carry pre-grilled sweet corn kernels in the freezer section. I’ve found them at both Trader Joes and Whole Foods before.
The dressing for my street corn rice salad is easy to make and requires a handful of ingredients. You’ll need lemon juice, lime juice, a bit of olive oil, a garlic clove, a hint of cayenne pepper, ground cumin, and some chopped cilantro. Toss it all in a blender and there you have it!
My corn rice salad is the perfect thing to make when you’ve got cooked rice in the fridge and need to turn it into something other than fried rice.
It feeds a crowd and tastes fantastic!
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon EACH: ground cumin and cayenne pepper
- 3 cups leftover cooked rice (see notes)
- 2 cups roasted corn kernels (thawed if frozen)
- 1 large avocado, diced
- 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced (greens only)
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (reserve 2 tbsps)
- 1-2 jalapenos, seeds/ribs removed and minced
- 1/2 cup crumbled cotija cheese (or grated parmesan)
- dressing: combine the dressing ingredients along with a pinch of salt and the reserved 2 tablespoons of cilantro in a blender and blend until smooth. Taste and adjust salt as desired.
- assembly: Combine the ingredients for the salad in a large bowl. Add the dressing and stir until the dressing is evenly distributed. Salad can be made several hours before serving. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- RICE: I suggest making the rice a day in advance. I highly recommend boiling the rice in chicken stock (or vegetable) rather than water. This adds a whole new level of flavor to this salad!
- If you usually prefer lots of dressing in your salad, feel free to double it and use the leftovers for other salads!
- Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
- Serving suggestions: steak fajitas, fajita bowls (just replace the rice with this salad), chicken tacos, and salmon tacos.
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