Fresh Summer Corn Salad Recipe with Tomato + Video

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Summer Corn Salad is a bright refreshing taste of summer. Garden fresh corn and tomatoes come together with fresh mozzarella, herbs, and a glorious dressing that really gives it an even lighter, fresher taste. This corn tomato basil salad is the perfect summer side dish!

titled: summer corn salad


 

Summer Corn Salad

I can not get enough of salads during the summer months, but sometimes, I’m just tired of the same old lettuce combinations. 

This is where this perfect side dish is a great recipe to have on hand! It’s different than typical salad recipes, and I swear that I never get tired of the flavor of this easy corn salad recipe.

I love eating it on a hot day! 

Vegetable salads — like my Best Ever Broccoli Salad — are the easiest way to satisfy this craving.

They’re much lighter than pasta salads, and they often require much less effort to make.

For this summer corn salad, I grabbed a bunch of garden fresh ingredients (okay, they are actually market fresh), tossed them with an incredible lemon and garlic dressing, and sat down to enjoy lunch. Easy peasy!

I love to buy ears of corn by the armful when they’re on sale, and I have plenty of recipes for you to try if you do the same!

Turn those juicy, plump kernels into crispy fritters or a savory casserole — both are also a great summer side dish for potlucks and cookouts.

And if you’ve got friends coming over to watch the game, you can’t go wrong with this cheesy hot corn dip and plenty of tortilla chips!

corn kernels in a glass bowl

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Corn – We really enjoyed the flavor of the kernels fresh off the cob. You can cook yours if you prefer — in the microwaveair fryerovenIP, or on the stovetop

    Or, toss them on the grill or smoker for a little extra flavor!
  • Tomatoes – Cherry tomatoes tend to be a bit sweeter and less watery than grape tomatoes, but either is fine. 

    A medley is another great option to get a variety of flavors and colors. Whichever you choose, be sure to use my kitchen hack for slicing them in seconds!
  • Mozzarella – Use the fresh stuff for this summer corn salad recipe! Cut it into thick slices, then into bite-sized pieces. 

    If pearl mozzarella is available, you could simply slice the balls in half and use those instead.
  • Olive Oil – In such a simple dish, quality really makes a difference! 

    Choose the best quality extra virgin olive oil you can get your hands on for summer corn salad dressing.
chopped tomatoes and mozzarella with basil in bowl

Tips for Making Corn Tomato Basil Salad

  • Don’t skip the lemon juice! 

The acid really mellows out the starchiness of the kernels and creates a fabulous, refreshing flavor.

Be sure to use freshly squeezed. You can also use lime juice on top of the fresh sweet corn kernels for that citrus flavor. 

  • Try a different flavor combo. 

Swap the mozzarella for feta or goat cheese and replace the basil with fresh parsley. Need a dairy-free option? 

Omit the cheese entirely and toss in some black beans for protein!

Bell peppers, cucumber, red onion, and avocado are all tasty options too. Experiment to find your favorite combination.

  • Make ahead tip: 

Prep the salad ingredients in a bowl, then add the dressing ingredients to a mason jar. 

Store both in the fridge until you’re ready to serve, then give the jar a shake and pour it over the corn tomato mozzarella salad.

This is a great way to prep this easy side dish to pair with any main dish. 

tossing tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil with wooden spoons

Serving Suggestions

Enjoy corn tomato basil salad as a light, refreshing lunch. Or, pair it with air fryer chicken or steak for a time-saving dinner.

It also makes a great starter to satisfy your guests while they wait for a full cookout feast!

Kitchen Tools You’ll Need

  • Sharp Knife or Corn Cob Stripper – This genius tool makes quick work of removing kernels from the corn cob.
  • Citrus Juicer – This gets every last drop out, which makes juicing lemons so much easier.
  • Medium Mixing Bowl – Serve this summer corn salad in a clear bowl to really let the colorful mixture shine!

Summer Corn Salad Recipe FAQ

Can you eat raw corn in a salad?

We do exactly that with this summer corn salad recipe! It’s entirely your preference if you want to slice off the kernels raw or cook your corn on the cob first. It’s the perfect way to use sweet summer corn and get all those fresh flavors! 

How do you cut basil ribbons? 

You’ll want to chiffonade basil, which is a fancy slicing term for a very simple method.
Stack a few basil leaves on top of each other, keeping them of similar size. Roll them into a tube starting from one of the wide edges.

Then, hold the tube with one hand while you slice across it with the other. Gently separate the pieces and you’ve got thin ribbons!

mixed summer corn salad

Storing Leftover Corn Tomato Mozzarella Salad

Keep this summer side dish tightly covered in plastic wrap or transfer to an airtight container.

Store in the refrigerator and eat within a day or two for best results. 

If you plan on eating corn tomato mozzarella salad throughout the week, store the dressing separately. Then, toss with individual portions as needed.

summer corn salad in glass bowl

Enjoy!
With love, from our simple kitchen to yours.

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bowl of summer corn salad

Fresh Summer Corn Salad Recipe with Tomato + Video

Donna Elick
Summer Corn Salad is the perfect summer side dish. Fresh corn, tomatoes, and mozzarella come together with herbs and a glorious dressing.
5 stars from 2 reviews
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Method Mixed
Servings 6

Ingredients
 

  • 4 ears fresh corn on the cob, cleaned and washed
  • 10.5 ounce package grape tomatoes, halved
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into bite size pieces
  • 10 basil leaves, chiffonade (roll leaves and slice thinly)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Cut corn off the cob, place into a medium mixing bowl. Add tomatoes and mozzarella. Sprinkle with basil. Set aside.
  • Add fresh lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper to a pint size canning jar. Shake to combine. Pour dressing over salad. Toss to combine.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Video

Donna’s Notes

If you are traveling with this salad or making ahead; you can prep the salad and the dressing and wait to pour dressing over salad until ready to serve. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
You can cook the corn if you prefer, I really enjoy the fresh taste of it uncooked in this salad. The acid in the lemon juice will mellow out the starchiness of the corn and create a fabulous flavor.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 258cal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 443mg | Sugar: 6g | Fiber: 2g | Calcium: 202mg | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled image (and shown): Summer Corn Salad

Originally published July 2014, updated  and republished July 2024

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33 Comments

  1. I love this salad, as does everyone I’ve shared it with. It takes like summer! Super easy to make and never any leftovers.

    1. I love your description, Teri. Corn salad really DOES “taste like summer”!

      TSRI Team member,
      Becca

  2. 5 stars
    I love corn, but have never thought of putting it in a salad! This was so good and so fresh tasting! I love making this in the summer, and even in the ‘winter’ here in florida!

  3. Great recipe…….5 stars easy……….simple.but very healthy………folks here just loved it. I was short on the corn so I added Edamame beans………..loved the idea of dressing with Olive oil and just lemon juice………one of my favourites

    Bernie in Port Credit Ontario

  4. This is our summer go to for bbqs and parties. Always a big hit. I use microwaved steam fresh bag of frozen corn rather then fresh. Then cool. Don’t overcook it.

  5. 5 stars
    This has become our go to summer salad. So easy and tasty! It is what we bring to every party and family gathering when fresh corn is in season here. Everyone loves it! I even freeze fresh corn off the cob specifically for this recipe so I have I have it on hand to make any time of the year. Thank you for such a great recipe!

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