Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with Chili Lime Dressing

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Side Dish | July 21, 2017 | By

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with Chili Lime Dressing ~ easy, delicious pasta salad. Fresh sweet corn sautéed in bacon drippings blended with pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans and crispy bacon tossed in a simple homemade dressing.

Dannnng! I’m late to the table again ~ would you believe I just tried Mexican Street Corn? 

My daughter has mentioned 2 or was it 10 times “we” should try making it. I know that’s code for “Mom, make this next time I’m over”. The truth is it just didn’t sound appealing. Mayonnaise slathered on beautiful, fresh, sweet summer corn sounded sacrilegious.

I took a chance though and was instantly hooked. This Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad is a blend of pasta salad and Mexican Street Corn and make a really good side salad you won’t see at every summer barbecue.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

I love this season of outdoor eating, barbecues, farmers markets and roadside stands. Once the corn season hits it’s literally everywhere. I snagged 5 ears for $1.00 ~ perfect not only for Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad and Corn Chowder too. 

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

So what is Mexican Street Corn?

In Mexico, Mexican Street Corn is classic street food called Elotes ~ whole ears of corn grilled then dressed in a combination of mayonnaise, lime and chilies then sprinkled with grated cheese.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad starts with fresh corn blended with other pasta salad favorites like elbow macaroni, veggies and in this case black beans and crispy bacon that adds such great flavor to any dish.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Sautéed corn remains the star of this Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with less pasta than other ingredients. The chili lime dressing combines mayonnaise, plain Greek yogurt, lime juice and zest, some pantry spices and fresh cilantro.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad Ingredients:

  • elbow macaroni
  • bacon
  • fresh sweet corn 
  • red onion
  • bell pepper
  • black beans
  • grape tomatoes
  • cotija cheese

Tip: If you can’t find cotija cheese, parmesan is a good substitute.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Dressing Ingredients:

  • mayonnaise
  • plain Greek yogurt (you may use sour cream if you prefer)
  • lime juice and zest 
  • cayenne pepper
  • chili powder
  • garlic powder
  • cilantro 
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Cook the macaroni according to package directions. While the pasta is cooking, fry the bacon until it’s lightly crisp then remove it from the skillet and set it aside leaving the bacon drippings in the skillet. Once the bacon cools, crumble it to add to the pasta salad later. 

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Slice the corn off the cob add it to the warm drippings in the skillet then sauté over medium-high heat 2-3 minutes without over-stirring so some of the kernels can brown/caramelize.

Note: some of the corn may pop right out of the skillet, similar to popcorn. This is normal. 

Reduce the heat to medium, drop in the bell pepper and onion then continue cooking about another minute or until the onions are soft.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Add the corn, vegetables and macaroni to a large bowl and allow them to cool while you make the dressing.

In a separate bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, Greek yogurt (or sour cream) juice and zest from half of one lime, cayenne pepper, chili powder, garlic powder and finely chopped cilantro.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Season the dressing with salt and pepper to taste then if you’d like add another squeeze of lime juice. Next fold in the black beans, tomatoes, dressing, cotija cheese and half of the crumbled bacon into the pasta salad blending thoroughly.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Crumble the rest of the bacon and a little more cheese over the top then cover and refrigerate a couple of hours before serving.

What goes with this Pasta Salad:

Any kind of meat or seafood you’d grill will be really good with pasta salad starting with a simple Cheeseburger.

Enjoy!

If you make this Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad recipe then I’d love to hear from you with a comment or star rating in the recipe box.

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Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

Tasty blend of two summer favorites: pasta salad and Mexican street corn. 
PIN for later!
Print Recipe
CourseSide Dish
CuisineMexican
Keywordmexican street corn pasta salad
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Servings4
AuthorA Gouda Life

Ingredients

  • 1 cup elbow macaroni
  • 4 slices applewood smoked bacon or your favorite kind
  • 4-5 ears of corn depending on size
  • 1/3 cup red onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1 1/3 cups grape tomatoes cut in half
  • 15 ounce can black beans
  • 1/2 cup cotija cheese + more for garnish

Dressing:

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
  • ½ to 1 lime zested and juiced – according to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Cook the macaroni according to package directions giving the water a good seasoning of salt.
  • While the pasta is cooking, cook the bacon until it’s lightly crisp then remove it from the skillet and reserve it, leaving the bacon drippings in the skillet. Once the bacon cools, crumble it.
  • Slice the corn off the cob and add it to the warm drippings in the skillet the sauté over medium-high heat 2-3 minutes without over-stirring so the corn can to brown/caramelize.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and drop in the bell pepper and onion and continue cooking 1-2 minutes until the onions are soft and translucent.
  • Add the corn, vegetables and elbow macaroni to a large bowl and allow them to cool while you make the dressing.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, Greek yogurt (or sour cream) juice and zest from half of one lime, cayenne pepper, chili powder, garlic powder and finely chopped cilantro.
  • Season the dressing with salt and pepper and if you’d like, add more lime juice then fold the dressing, black beans, tomatoes, cotija cheese and half of the bacon into the pasta salad blending thoroughly. Crumble the reserved bacon on the top along with a little more cotija cheese.
  • Refrigerate a couple of hours before serving.

Comments

  1. Leave a Reply

    Mary
    July 22, 2017

    This is a perfect salad for summertime. Mama always fried her fresh corn in bacon grease….gives it a wonderful flavor. This will definitely be seen on our table next week. Pinned. Happy weekend, my friend.

    • Leave a Reply

      Bernie
      July 24, 2017

      Good Monday morning Mary! That bacon grease sure does give anything great flavor. My husband likes to say it could make a paper bag taste good — of course he’s kidding we’ve never tried it! 🙂 You must have picked up a lot of tips from your mom. She sounds like a great cook and she obviously raised a kind and good woman. Enjoy the week!

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