Corn Salsa Recipe

Bright, crisp, and fresh corn salsa recipe with fresh corn on the cob, herbs, red onion, and a bit of kick from the jalapeños. Serve this salsa with chips for the ultimate summer appetizer!

Course Salad, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword corn salsa recipe
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Chilling Time 20 minutes
Total Time 57 minutes
Servings 4 -6 as an appetizer
Calories 76 kcal


  • 4 fresh corn on the cobs (~ 3 cups)
  • 1/2 medium red onion, diced (~ 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, finely chopped (~ 1/2 cup, loosely measured after chopping)
  • 1 to 2 medium jalapeños finely diced (use 1 for mild-to-medium salsa or 2 for more spicy salsa; ~1/4 cup for mild)
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 juicy large limes (1 teaspoon zest, 1/4 cup juice)
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon EACH: chili powder, ground cumin, paprika, white sugar
  • Fine sea salt and freshly cracked pepper
  • Optional OPTIONAL additions: feel free to add in a diced avocado, 1 cup rinsed/drained black beans, diced red pepper -- whatever you'd like that's around 1 cup!


  1. OPTIONAL GRILL: Preheat grill to medium heat (400 degrees F). Shuck corns and discard silks. Drizzle corn (option to also grill the green onions and jalapeños -- Note 1) with olive oil and then lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Rub the oil and salt/pepper into all sides of the corn. Prepare the fully preheated grill by cleaning and then generously oil the grill (I drench a rolled-up paper towel in vegetable oil and, holding it with tongs, rub it over the grill grates). Add the corn to the heated grill over direct heat. Grill corn about 10-12 minutes total, rotating every 3-4 minutes until bright yellow and lightly charred. (Alternatively, cut raw kernels of the cob and use in salsa) Let grilled corn cool completely before cutting it off the cob.

  2. CHOP: add kernels to a large bowl (if you grilled them, allow to cool completely). Add in the finely diced red onion (Note 2), finely chopped cilantro, finely diced jalapenos, and thinly sliced green onions. Toss gently to combine.

  3. DRESSING: in a mason jar combine the lime zest, lime juice, vinegar, chili powder, cumin, paprika, white sugar, and salt & pepper (to taste; I add about 1/2 teaspoon of each; DON'T add salt to dressing if you salted the corn). Shake to combine. Pour over ingredients and gently stir to combine. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate (allow flavors to intensify and meld) for 15-20 minutes. Stir and then serve!

  4. STORAGE: store in a bowl, covered, for 2 days. We like this salsa best the same day its made. Gently stir before serving any leftovers.

Recipe Notes

Note 1: drizzle jalapenos and green onions with olive oil and then lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Rub the oil and salt/pepper into all sides of the veggies. Grill green onions 1 minute, flip, and grill another minute or until lightly charred. Grill jalapeños 1-2 minutes, flip and grill another 1-2 minutes or until lightly charred. Remove veggies from grill and onto a plate to cool to room temperature.

Note 2: to take away the "bite" of red onions, submerge them in a bowl or cup of ice cold water. Let the onions sit for at least ten minutes (stir 1-2 times) and then thoroughly drain and add to recipe.