Corn, Tomato, & Avocado Salad is an explosion of Tex-Mex flavors and summertime textures tossed with a zippy lime vinaigrette, also great as a dip with chips!
There's something just magical about fresh corn on the cob. I have to admit, though, that I used to mostly avoid it because it was such a sticky, frustrating mess to husk. That all changed a couple of years ago when I discovered the easiest, tastiest, BEST way to cook fresh corn...no more silk sticking to everything in sight! And now I don't hesitate to load up on fresh corn whenever it's in season.
Today's recipe is a twist on a Corn, Black Bean, & Tomato Salad that I've been making for years. But I always made that one with frozen corn...and lately I've been on a total cotija cheese kick...plus, what salad isn't improved with the addition of avocado? So I decided to make a few changes, which resulted in this amazing, bursting-with-flavor Corn, Tomato, & Avocado Salad! It's just the thing to carry you through the rest of the summer.
I think what makes this salad so tasty is all of its contrasting flavors and textures. You have the fresh corn kernels popping in your mouth with little bursts of sweetness. You have the juicy acidity of the plump tomatoes. You have the cool, creamy avocado. And then there's the Tex-Mex contributions of zippy minced jalapeño, salty cotija cheese, zesty fresh cilantro, and a puckery lime dressing. Yes, this salad has something for everyone...and when you combine those somethings-for-everyone, they transform into something extraordinary!
And now for a few quick ingredient notes. Don't be afraid of the jalapeños...as long as you remove all of the seeds and membranes, they won't be spicy. On the other hand, if you prefer a little heat, feel free to leave a few of those seeds and membranes intact.
As for the cotija cheese, I recommend buying it in a block and then crumbling it yourself. I've seen it already crumbled in a bag before, but the uniformity of the crumbles seemed a little suspect to me. That being said, if your grocery store lacks the vast selection of Mexican food items that we enjoy here in Texas, feta cheese is actually pretty similar to cotija in flavor and texture and can be used in a pinch.
I recommend buying a couple of limes and fresh-squeezing the juice for the dressing. And if you don't have white wine vinegar, you can use red wine vinegar instead. You may notice that the vinaigrette is pretty potent when you mix it up, but fear not...it will be distributed over a plethora of ingredients and won't taste overly strong once on the salad.
And finally, while this recipe is coined Corn, Tomato, & Avocado Salad, I can't resist scooping it up like a dip with tortilla chips. It would even be amazing piled onto tacos or served atop a variety of Mexican entrees (think pico de gallo). Completely and utterly addictive, I tell you...
So whether you need a fresh and zesty side salad, a garnish for Taco Tuesday, or a warm-weather party dip, Corn, Tomato, & Avocado Salad is a must-make this summer. Some might even call it a fiesta en la boca... 😉
More Summer Corn Recipes
- Tortellini Pasta Salad with Tomatoes, Basil, & Fresh Corn
- Summer Couscous Salad
- Tex-Mex Fresh Corn Dip
- Ultimate Mexican Street Corn Dip
Corn, Tomato, & Avocado Salad
FOR THE DRESSING:
- 1/3 cup fresh-squeezed lime juice, plus additional lime juice for coating avocado
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
FOR THE SALAD:
- 4 ears fresh corn, roasted, shucked, & kernels sliced from cobs (about 3 1/4 cups kernels)
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
- 2 fresh jalapeños, seeds & membranes removed and finely diced
- 4 ounces cotija cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 3 large, ripe avocados, diced & tossed in fresh lime juice
- Make dressing by whisking all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly incorporated, or shaking them in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Set aside.
- Place the corn in a very large bowl. Add the tomatoes, jalapeños, cotija cheese, and cilantro to the bowl. Pour the dressing over the top and gently mix all of the ingredients with a large spoon until well combined. Refrigerate for several hours to allow the flavors to blend. Just before serving, gently stir in the diced avocado.