A refreshing, sweet, and easy to make fresh corn and arugula salad that is the perfect healthy summer dish. Made with simple, good-for-you ingredients, like sweet tomatoes, fresh cut corn kernels, crisp red onion, and dressed in a light homemade vinaigrette. Plus, it’s gluten free, dairy free, and vegan. The perfect flavorful side for everyone!
The best sweet corn summer salad
Corn of the cobb is a staple during summer. It reminds me of those happy nights with my family grilling in the backyard and playing with my siblings.
During the summer here in Texas, all I crave is a refreshing bowl of fresh vegetables, seasoned and dressed with a simple vinaigrette. Just perfect for that 95-degree heat.
That is why I’m so excited to share this easy, fresh, and simple summer corn salad that is naturally sweet and so darn refreshing. I’ve honestly made it a dozen times now for friends and family cookouts. It satisfies exactly what I am craving for a summer meal.
Honestly, I love how easy this recipe is to make. Plus, it is perfect for meal prep. I’ve been making a batch on Sundays and enjoying it for lunch each day.
Whether you are looking for a side dish for your next summer cookout, trying to meal prep, or simply just incorporating more veggies into your diet this summer, this healthy corn salad is the best!
Why you’ll love this simple Summer salad recipe
I love the taste and feeling of a fresh salad, especially one that combines sweet and tender corn, fresh cherry tomatoes, and a light tangy dressing. This salad is so good that you would never expect it to be so healthy! Here are a few reasons why you are going to absolutely LOVE this salad recipe:
- Only takes 10 minutes to throw together. Perfect for busy people and beginner cooks!
- No added sugar. This simple corn salad is naturally sweetened by the cooked corn that is cut off the cobb.
- Light homemade vinaigrette dressing takes 30 seconds to make! Plus, it adds the perfect tang – thanks to the white wine vinager.
- Can be made into a main dish! Just add in some grilled chicken, salmon, or shrimp.
- Vegan & gluten-free. There is no gluten or animal based ingredients in this Summer salad, making it perfect for everyone!
Is corn healthy?
If you are wondering if this salad is a healthy summer choice, do not worry because corn has so many health benefits. First, it has a high fiber content that is shown to aid in digestion. Corn also contains a large amount of vitamin B per serving. Lastly, corn also provides many essential minerals such as zinc, magnesium, copper, iron, and manganese.
Aside from the many health benefits of corn, this salad is absolutely healthy because it uses minimal ingredients, relies on whole foods, and is high in vegetable content. Enjoy this recipe guilt-free!
Ingredients in summer corn & arugula salad
Super fresh summer corn & arugula salad only calls for 8 healthy ingredients. No need for a big trip to the supermarket, this recipe is super simple. Here is what you will need to make this bbq dinner side:
- Fresh corn: Grab 4 ears of fresh corn and prepare it by shucking them. We are going to boil them for 3 minutes to break down the starch and bring out the sweetness.
- Cherry tomatoes: Next, you’ll need 1 cup of halved cherry tomatoes. My favorite are the sweet tomatoes.
- Red onion: Add in 1/2 cup of finely chopped red onion for added flavor.
- Baby arugula: For the base of this summer salad, we use 4 ounces of baby arugula.
- White wine vinegar: Just 2 Tablespoons of white wine vinegar is need for the simple homemade vinaigrette that dresses this salad. If you taste the salad and want more tang, add 1 extra Tablespoon.
- Lemon: Next, add the juice of 1/2 a large lemon or 1 small lemon.
- Olive Oil: 1 Tablespoon of olive oil or avocado oil is all you’ll need for this salad dressing.
- Salt & pepper: For a simple seasoning, add salt and pepper to your taste preference.
Kitchen tools used
I love simple and easy recipes, especially those that don’t require tons of kitchen tools and allow for an easy clean-up. In fact, this side dish recipe only calls for 3 tools! Here is a list of the few basic kitchen tools needed to make this sweet corn and arugula summer salad:
- Large Boiling Pot
- Mixing bowl
- Measuring tools: 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup, and 1 cup.
How to make fresh corn & arugula salad
This sweet summer corn & arugula salad is so easy to throw together. It is seriously perfect for a quick lunch or dinner side dish on a busy day. There are 3 simple steps: first, we boil the corn, then we make the salad, then we dress the salad. Anyone can make this recipe!
First, we start by boiling our corn. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and then add in your corn and cook it for 3 minutes. Drain the pot and then quickly transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop the corn from further cooking. When the corn is cool, cut the kernels off the cob by carefully cutting close to the cob.
Next, prepare the dressing in a small jar. Simply add the white wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper to a jar and whisk it all together.
Then, in a large serving bowl, combine baby arugula, cooled corn kernels, cherry tomatoes, and red onion. Pour the dressing on top and gently toss to combine, making sure to leave some large pieces of corn.
Let the finished salad sit for at least 10 minutes and up to 2 hours to develop flavor and taste and adjust seasonings to your liking.
Serve cold or at room temperature and enjoy!
Here are my top recipe tips when making this super simple fresh corn salad:
- Let the salad marinate for at least 15 minutes up to 2 hours. For the best flavor, let the salad ingredients and dressing marinate for at least 15 minutes. This will help make the entire salad a perfect tangy- sweet taste.
- Immediately place corn in a cold water bath after cooking. Even after taking the corn off the stove, it will continue to cook. Make sure to place it in a cold water bath after cooking to stop the kernels from cooking further.
- Serve cold. For the most refreshing taste, place the salad in the fridge before serving and eat it cold.
- Make it a main dish. While this salad is amazing on its own, if you are looking to make this a main dish, just add some protein! I recommend adding grilled chicken, shrimp, or salmon on top. Any protein you pick should pair nicely with this salad.
- Toss the arugula leaves in half of the vinaigrette before adding in the other ingredients. This guarantees the leaves are properly coated and every bite will be tasty! Plus there will be big corn pieces.
- Add avocado. Just cut it up and toss it in; adds the perfect creamy note.
- Add fresh herbs. I like parsley or cilantro.
- Grill the corn instead of boiling it. Another great way to cook corn.
- Add chickpeas or beans. This gives the salad more protein and makes it a more complete main dish.
- Add grilled chicken or shrimp. Another way to increase the protein and make this healthy corn salad a main dish.
- Add bell pepper or cucumber. More veggies are always a good idea!
Best way to cook corn on the cobb:
For this salad, we are boiling the corn cob for 3 minutes. I found this to be the quickest, easiest, and most delicious way to prepare corn. Quickly boiling the corn then blanch it in cold water takes away the starch and leaves the corn perfectly sweet and tender. This cooking method will give you the sweetest and best-textured kernels for your salad! Alternatively, my next favorite way is grilling corn.
Can you make corn salad with frozen corn?
I love using fresh corn. However, frozen corn would also work if you do not have fresh corn on hand. Use around 4 cups of sweet frozen corn in place of fresh corn. Make sure to follow the package instructions on how to defrost it.
Can you make fresh corn salaad ahead of time?
Absolutely! That is why I love this recipe so much. It is the perfect make-ahead recipe if you are busy or want to meal prep. Honestly, this corn salad tastes better after a few hours of marinating in the vinaigrette.
What to eat corn salad with:
Adding a protein to this salad is a super easy way to make this a complete meal. I personally love grilled chicken or salmon on my salads, but shrimp is another great option! If serving this as a side, try pairing another Healthful Blondie dinner recipe such as:
- Balsamic Feta Stuffed Chicken Breasts
- Easy Al Pastor Shrimp Tacos
- BBQ Chicken Sweet Potato Sliders
- Healthy Pineapple Teriyaki Turkey Burgers
- Super Crispy Tofu (Air Fried or Oven Baked)
How to store leftover salad
Simply store leftover summer corn & arugula salad in one large airtight container or individual airtight containers in the fridge for 1 – 3 days. No need to heat anything up!
If you loved this simple salad recipe, check these out!
Need some more healthier, easy, and simple salad recipes? Here are some of my favorite Healthful Blondie recipes to try out….
- Healthy Balsamic Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad
- Balsamic Grilled Peach Summer Salad
- Healthy Greek Pasta Salad
- Citrus Tabbouleh Salad
- Easy Sweet Potato Buddha Bowl
Did you make this recipe?
If you make this recipe, be sure to comment and rate it down below. Also, don’t forget to tag me @healthfulblondie on Instagram and use the hashtag #healthfulblondie so I can see your delicious creation and share it with my followers!
Summer Corn & Arugula Salad
- 4 ears of corn, shucked
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup red onion, chopped
- 4 oz baby arugula
- 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
- ½ a lemon, juiced
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- In a large pot, bring salted water to a boil. Add in corn and cook for 3 minutes. Then drain and quickly transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop the corn from further cooking.
- Meanwhile, prepare the dressing in a small jar. Add the white wine vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Whisk together.
- When the corn is cool, pat dry and cut the kernels off the cob by carefully cutting close to the cob.
- In a large serving bowl, combine the baby arugula, cooled corn kernels, cherry tomatoes, and red onion. Pour the dressing on top and gently toss to combine. Make sure to leave some large pieces of corn.
- Let the salad sit at room temperature or in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours to develop flavor. Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking.
- Serve cold or at room temperature; enjoy!
Recipe by Tati Chermayeff / Healthful Blondie + Photos by The Travel Palate
I only recommend products I absolutely love and use myself. In full disclosure, by purchasing a product I recommend, I may receive a small compensation. Everything counts to keep my dream afloat; thank you for supporting Healthful Blondie!
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