Warm Mexican Corn Salad

July 28, 2021mayurisjikoni




Warm Mexican Corn Salad, also known as Esquites is a tangy and spicy salad that I love to have not as a side dish but as a light delicious meal. What I like about this salad that it is versatile in several ways.

Which Corn Is Best For This Salad?

Though fresh sweet corn is the best, frozen or tinned corn can be used.

How to Cook the Corn

  • Grill, roast or simply sauté in a pan. If you’re going to grill the corn on the BBQ grill then soak them with the covering for 1-2 hours. Grill or roast for about 5-10 minutes. The soaked covering prevents the corn from burning. Or wrap each cob with aluminum foil and grill.
  • Can brush the corn cobs with oil and grill under the grill or broiler. Keep an eye on them as you will need to turn the corn so that it doesn’t get burnt on one side.
  • Or simply pan roast them.. tender corn, frozen corn (defrosted) or canned corn is easy to pan roast.

How to Serve Mexican Corn Salad?

Serve it cold or warm.

Which Cheese To Use?

Traditionally Cotija Cheese is used but if you don’t get any, then use feta cheese. I usually use feta as I don’t cotija. Paneer may make a fairly good substitute but add some salt to it.

I’m sure those reasons are enough for you to try out this easy peasy salad. During the rainy season, corn is so tender that it doesn’t take much time to cook when sautéed in a pan.


Sour Cream or Mayo?

Mexican Street Corn Salad usually has a generous dollop of mayo in it but here I’ve omitted it as I’m not a huge fan of it. However, feel free to add some if you wish. You may use sour cream. As I didn’t have any, and didn’t want to buy some, I omitted sour cream simply because I didn’t any leftover as I was closing down my kitchen.  But it definitely tastes better with it.


A trick that I learnt from my late sister in law was to allow the cobs to cook whole in a wide pan with little oil and salt. Cover the pan, shake it occasionally and within 5 minutes the tender succulent corn is ready. Allow it to cool a bit. Using a sharp knife strip the kernel off the cobs. But for this recipe, since I wanted a warm salad, I cut the kernel off the cob first before cooking it.

While on Mexican Salad, recently I had the opportunity to enjoy a Cactus Pear Salad and it was super delicious, refreshing, light, tangy and so summery.


A bit about the group:

Every month a new theme is chosen by members. Then the participants are paired up. In turn, they give each other 2 secret ingredients to use in their recipe which is prepared fitting the theme. As soon as their dish is ready, the photo is shared on our Facebook group and other try and guess the secret ingredients.  Towards the end of the month the recipe is shared on the group. Furthermore, this way members get to know each other and interact with each other.

This Month’s Theme

For the month of July Shobha  who blogs at Shobha’s Food Mazaa suggested the theme MONSOON TREATS. When she suggested the theme, I was thinking “what am I going to make, its so hot here.” But suddenly the weather changed in Mombasa. Day time hot and evenings became cold, to the extend that I had to actually pull out a sweater from the suitcase. In 38 years that I’ve lived in Mombasa, never have I worn a sweater or used a shawl! This was a first.

Next day my veggie lady as I call her came with nice tender corn and immediately I bought them. Now it was a waiting game with my partner to see what she suggests as my secret ingredients.

Coming back to Shobha, I’ve had the opportunity to meet her once in Mumbai and she is such a friendly and helpful person. When I first started my You Tube Channel she was and still is a great help, suggesting how I should make it more effective. Shobha’s Corn Chaat is very tempting. Can image enjoying that as a light meal followed by super tempting Amrakhand Popsicles

For the Monsoon Treat theme Shobha made delicious and healthy Drumstick Soup. Check out her video or recipe on how to make it in a jiffy.

Some Monsoon Treats To Check Out:

Monsoon in India equates to hot bhajias, hot soups, piping hot snacks, masala tea and as corn is readily available, lots of recipes using corn. While we don’t rains like in India, a slight drizzle or change in temperature and I just want an excuse to enjoy Monsoon Treats:

  • You’ve got to try out this Spanish Potato Dish, Patatas Bravas, so comforting and filling during the cold season.
  • Hot beetroot vada is perfect as a snack.
  • Piping hot Peas & Potato Pattis with some mango or mint chutney is the ultimate comfort food.
  • Methi na Gota is what my mum would make whenever the weather became a bit too cold in Nairobi.
  • Have you tried hot freshly fried Mangalore Buns with filter coffee? You’ve got to try it, so delicious.
  • Ambode/ Masala Vada with some spicy tea.. perfect Monsoon treat.
  • Enjoy a healthier snack made in a paniyaram pan – Moong paniyaram.
  • Growing up remember my mum and aunts would make papdi no lot especially when it is raining. And Nairobi can be cold when its raining. Piping hot papdi no lot drizzled with oil, so yummy.
  • Enjoy some hot steamed White Dhokra/ Idra/ Idada.
  • What can be better than a hot cup of Homemade Tomato Carrot Soup between your hands.
  • Don’t forget to sip on some hot rasam to keep the cold away.
  • My all time favorite during the cold season is Uji.
  • A slightly gooey buckwheat and brown rice khichdi is the best filling and comforting food during the rainy season.
  • And when it comes to hot desserts, it has to be Shiro (sooji halwa).

My Partners

Though I had added my name to participate in the Monsoon Treats theme, I was actually wondering whether I would be able to cope and make something before I closed down my kitchen. Why did I close down my kitchen you must be wondering. Well after a wait of nearly 3 years, our Permanent Residency for Canada, sponsored by my son  came through. Sudden plans were made to travel immediately before borders on either side closed down due to the Covid Pandemic. It truly was a mad rush for me getting things organized but we managed.

I explained my predicament to my partner Poonam and she graciously asked me what I have at hand to use up. By the way, do spare some time to visit Poonam’s blog Annapurna for some healthy and tasty recipes. Feta and lemon were still in my fridge and she suggested I use those. First I thought of the famous viral TikTok feta pasta. That’s when Esther, the veggie lady turns up with sweet corn. And everything fell into place. I gave Poonam paneer and black pepper and she prepared the super tempting Paneer Cheese Balls which I’d love to try out. On the list also is her makai palak which I loved to have with hot phulka.

This month I had to partner with two participants, which usually happens if we have an odd number of participants. My second partner is Priya Iyer who blogs at The World Through My Eyes. Her version of Choclo Al Comino, Peruvian style corn is what I’m going to try out ASAP. I suggested that she uses tomato and garlic to prepare her Monsoon Treat. Priya has come up with a wonderful homemade, from scratch recipe of my favourite, Baked Beans. She has used black eyed peas.

Ingredients Required For Warm Mexican Corn Salad:

  • Sweet Corn – best to use fresh if possible. However, you can use frozen or canned ones too.
  • Onion – peeled and chopped
  • Tomato – remove the pulp and dice. I usually use up the pulp for dals, soups or curries.
  • Fresh Coriander – washed and chopped
  • Lemon/Lime Juice – add according to your taste
  • Salt – use sparingly as feta is salty
  • Paprika Powder
  • Red Chilli Powder -for a bit pf spiciness
  • Butter
  • Black Pepper Powder
  • Cumin Powder
  • Oil – any oil of your choice. I used sunflower oil.
  • Sour Cream or Mayonnaise



Warm Mexican Corn Salad, also known as Esquites is a tangy and spicy salad that I love to have not as a side dish but as a light delicious meal. What I like about this salad that it is versatile in several ways.
5 from 15 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Light Meal, Starter, Street Food
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 2


  • 1 cup sweet corn kernels I used approx 3 cobs
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 1 large red onion
  • ¼ cup feta cheese or cotija cheese
  • ¼ cup fresh coriander chopped
  • 2 tbsp lemon/lime juice
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp paprika powder
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp cumin seed powder
  • ¼ tsp pepper powder
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • ½ tbsp oil


  • First of all peel the leaves off the cob, remove the silky threads and run a knife lengthwise to cut the corn kernels off the cob.
  • Peel and dice the onion.
  • Cut the tomatoes into halves, scoop out the pulp. Dice the tomatoes.
  • Heat oil in a wide pan over medium heat.
  • Add the butter and stir to melt. Immediately add the corn kernel.
  • Add salt and mix well. Cover the pan and allow the corn to cook for 3-5 minutes, depending on tender the corn is. If using canned or precooked corn then the stir fry till it becomes hot.
  • Add paprika, pepper,cumin seed and red chilli powders. Mix well.
  • Take the pan off the heat.
  • Add chopped tomatoes, onion and lemon/lime juice. Mix well.
  • Then add in the chopped coriander and feta cheese. Mix well.
  • If using sour cream or mayonnaise then mix that in.
  • Serve warm salad immedaitely with some extra sour cream and lemon wedge on the side.


  • Don't throw away the tomato pulp. Add it to dals, curries or soups.
  • Replace sour cream with mayonnaise if you prefer.
  • Don't overcook the corn as you don't want it to become hard and chewy.
  • If you don't get fresh corn, use frozen or canned.
  • The quantity of ingredients is a rough guideline for the recipe, use more or less of any ingredients you prefer.
  • Add chopped avocado, bell pepper.
  • I prefer adding a bit of oil as that prevents the butter from burning.
Keyword esquites recipe, mexican corn salad, warm corn salad recipe

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A little request:

If you do try this recipe then please either

  • add a comment below,
  • send a picture to my email mayuri.ajay.patel62@gmail.com
  •  tag me as #mayuri_jikoni on Instagram
  • or tag me on Twitter as #Mayuri1962


  • Baked Beans| How To Make Baked Beans From Scratch – The World Through My Eyes

    August 3, 2021 at 7:57 pm

    […] with Mayuri ji, the very talented blogger behind Mayuri’s Jikoni. She prepared this beautiful Warm Mexican Corn Salad for the theme. Mayuri ji suggested that I use tomato and garlic to create my dish, and I decided to […]

  • Poonam bachhav

    August 3, 2021 at 11:04 pm

    5 stars
    Mexican Corn salad with feta cheese, sour cream, lemon juice, lots of sweet corn and spices sounds like a tangy, creamy and spicy treat ! I can happily dig into a large bowl of this colorful and flavorful warm salad.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 4, 2021 at 4:01 am

      Thank you so much Poonam, please do try it, it is delicious.

  • Shobha Keshwani

    August 3, 2021 at 11:38 pm

    5 stars
    Delicioous bowl of warm corn salad can be so comforting on a rainy day. My hubby loves corn. We usually have something like this as an evening snack. I just got some frozen corn today. I will make it for him in a day or two.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 4, 2021 at 4:01 am

      Thank you so much Shobha, do try this Mexican version as it tastes so different from our Indian corn chaat because of the cheese and mayo or sour cream.

  • Preeti Shridhar

    August 5, 2021 at 5:57 am

    5 stars
    You said it rightly so Mayuri, this is perfect for a light meal. Warm and comforting. I make a similar salad but sans, feta and sour cream. I am sure these two ingredients will lift up the taste. Next time would make it your way.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 5, 2021 at 7:37 am

      Thank you so much Preeti, adding feta and sour cream makes it taste completely different from the usual Indian corn chaat or salad we make.

      1. The Girl Next Door

        August 10, 2021 at 4:55 pm

        5 stars
        This salad sounds right up my alley! I can imagine the beautiful flavours here, with the feta, sour cream, lime juice and fresh coriander going in. Served warm, this would be so comforting on a chilly, rainy day!

      2. mayurisjikoni

        August 10, 2021 at 7:01 pm

        Thank you so much Priya, try it, it definitely is so tasty.

  • Kalyani

    August 8, 2021 at 5:42 pm

    5 stars
    I made esquites in May-june sometime, but a vegan version. Your warm salad with that feta and sour cream is making me want to indugle in that creamy goodness.. wow wow wow..

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 8, 2021 at 9:50 pm

      Thank you so much Kalyani. Do give it a try with the cheese and mayo or sour cream.

  • Renu

    August 13, 2021 at 1:56 pm

    5 stars
    This salad is calling my name with all my favourite ingredients in it. Wish could grab the bowl. Simple ingredients to make a delicious and a healthy salad.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 14, 2021 at 4:13 am

      Thank you so much Renu. Make it while you get fresh corn.

  • Seema Sriram

    August 14, 2021 at 12:47 am

    5 stars
    First, the bowl in the image looks so beautiful, fantastic prop selection. Thanks for the tip on cooking the corn and then slicing it for the cold recipes, that is one area I never thought of and struggle with the cobs. The salad looks so colourful, literally fits the eat the rainbow part.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 14, 2021 at 4:11 am

      Thank you so much Seema, the bowl is very very old, my MIL was using it on her dressing table. You’ve described the salad beautifully and yes definitely fits the eat the rainbow tag.

  • Swati

    August 15, 2021 at 3:47 pm

    5 stars
    Such a flavourful delicious corn salad recipe.. I loved the addition of cheese here, which I usually don’t add in corn salad.. will try out your recipe soon as we are getting good fresh corn here these days.. will try out with fresh crumbled paneer too.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 15, 2021 at 7:23 pm

      Thanks Swaty, with crumbled paneer you may need to add more lemon/lime juice. Am sure it will taste good.

  • Jayashree T.Rao

    August 15, 2021 at 8:13 pm

    5 stars
    Warm mexican corn salad looks so colourful and something I will enjoy as a dinner. Would love to try this , need to check the availability of cheese here though.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 15, 2021 at 7:19 pm

      Thank you Jayashree, often I’ve ordered feta online from Big Basket.

  • Vasusvegkitchen

    August 15, 2021 at 9:07 pm

    5 stars
    Wow loved this cheesy, tangy and spicy Mexican corn salad.All the ingredients added surely made this salad super yummy, feta cheese and paprika powder are my favourite ingredients. As always loved reading your memories 🙂

  • Anu Kollon

    August 17, 2021 at 12:56 am

    5 stars
    I have never tried this dish before, but I am sure I am going to like it with all the delicious ingredients put together. I am going to try this the next time I buy corn!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 18, 2021 at 4:03 pm

      Thank you so much Anu, please do try the salad before the corn season ends.

  • Preethicuisine

    August 22, 2021 at 4:56 am

    5 stars
    Warm Mexican corn salad looks absolutely irresistible. I am not a Mayo fan too. This recipe works perfect for me. Loved your tip on slicing the corn kernels for cold salad. I would love to try your version soon.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 22, 2021 at 8:25 pm

      Thank you so much Preethi. It tastes so good with sour cream, try it.

  • Sasmita Sahoo

    August 23, 2021 at 11:55 am

    The warm Mexican corn salad sounds awesome!
    Love all the beautiful flavours here coming from feta, sour cream, lime juice and fresh coriander leaves.
    Such a colourful salad and I would love to try this 🙂

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 23, 2021 at 1:01 pm

      Thank you so much Sasmita. I am going to try out your version of the corn salad soon.

  • Meera Girdhar

    August 24, 2021 at 12:36 pm

    5 stars
    Such a warm and comforting bowl of salad perfect for any season. I loved the trick you shared for tender succulent corn. Gone try this next time for sure. Keep sharing such lovely recipes.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 25, 2021 at 2:16 pm

      Thank you so much Meera.

  • Narmadha

    August 29, 2021 at 10:03 pm

    5 stars
    Mexican corn salad looks so inviting and refreshing. I can indulge in the whole bowl for any meal of the day. So flavorful and love the idea of using sour cream.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 30, 2021 at 3:31 pm

      Thank you so much Narmadha

  • Priya Vj

    August 30, 2021 at 1:32 pm

    5 stars
    Ooooo Laala ! The esquite looks refreshing especially on a chill winter’s night or on a rainy evening. I love fresh corn salad anytime .

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 30, 2021 at 3:24 pm

      Thank you so much Priya.

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