This simple corn salad gets a BLT flavor upgrade with sweet cherry tomatoes, peppery arugula, salty bacon, and tender basil for a great summer salad side dish.
BLT Corn Salad
From Memorial Day’s sunny intro to summer through the final days of fall, simple potluck salads loaded with fresh ingredients are in my regular recipe rotation. Even more, when summer’s bounty of sweet corn and tomatoes come in…forget about it! Side dishes like this BLT inspired corn salad are what’s on the table.
While I am a devoted fan of my grilled corn on the cob, fresh corn salads like my zucchini and fresh corn salad are favorites everyone can get behind. In this salad, corn kernels are cut straight from the cob and added raw to the bowl for crunchy flavor bursts with cherry tomatoes, arugula and basil. Bacon is the only cooked ingredient in this salad and can even be prepared ahead of time for an ultra quick, toss together salad that’s ready in no time.
Everyday Dinners for Weeknight Success
This corn salad recipe comes from Everyday Dinners: Real-Life Recipes to Set Your Family Up for a Week of Success, the third cookbook by Jessica Merchant, author of the food blog How Sweet Eats. Jess is the queen of creating unique spins on every one of her popular dinner recipes, adding jolts of flavor, color, and exclamation points that enliven every single recipe on her blog and in her cookbooks.
Jess’s goal with her most recent cookbook? To show everyone how to get nourishing family dinners that are far from boring on the table in 30 minutes or less. I love this cookbook and each and every one of the tools and tricks Jessica has learned and shared in her years of food blogging. This girl is dedicated to her readers! And each and every recipe morsel proves it.
What’s In This BLT Corn Salad
This salad is essentially 5 ingredients:
- Sweet corn on the cob
- Cherry tomatoes
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- And an optional dose of oil and vinegar
How to Prep This Salad Ahead of Time
Jessica suggests doing most of the meal prep ahead of time—cooking the bacon, slicing the corn and the tomatoes, then refrigerating the components before assembling when ready to eat.
How to Make This BLT Corn Salad
Cook the chopped bacon until crisp. Make slicing the bacon a little easier by freezing the bacon strips for 10 minutes before cutting into chunks. Start the bacon in a cold pan on medium heat to keep the bacon from shrinking, and cook just to your desired taste. I prefer mine not too crispy, with just a little fat to make each bit juicy.
Shuck the corn cobs then slice the kernels straight from the cob. There’s plenty of tricks to cutting corn from the cob to keep the little kernels from ping ponging around the kitchen. I find it easiest to use a serrated knife and simply take my time. They always stay in place. Toss the cobs in the compost or discard.
Cherry tomatoes add sweet bursting bites. Add color by combining red and orange cherry tomatoes that are cut in half or quartered.
Arugula adds the leafy green. Look for baby arugula leaves for this salad. As the salad sits, the arugula will wilt but still retains all it’s flavor.
Basil gives this salad it’s herbed freshness. Thinly slice the larger basil leaves into ribbons and add the smaller leaves whole for a pretty presentation.
Optional: Dress this salad with a dose of oil and vinegar. Jessica’s original recipe stands 100% delicious as is and seasoned simply with kosher salt and freshly black pepper. I added a few glugs of oil and red wine vinegar for a dressed salad variation with just a tad bit of pucker.
Toss and go! Toss it all together and serve chilled or at room temperature. The salad keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
What to Serve With This Corn Salad
- The Best BBQ Chicken
- Easy Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
- Greek Turkey Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce
- How to Make the Best Grilled Salmon
- Marinated Flank Steak with Asian Chimichurri Sauce
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
BLT Corn Salad
- 6 slices bacon , chopped
- 6 ears fresh sweet corn , kernels cut from the cob
- 2 cups baby arugula
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes , halved or quartered
- ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
- ¼ cup canola oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the chopped bacon. Cook until the bacon is crisped and the fat is rendered, turning occasionally. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain.
- In a large bowl, toss the corn kernels with the bacon, arugula, cherry tomatoes, and basil. Drizzle with the canola oil and red wine vinegar and season with the salt and pepper. Toss to coat and serve at room temperature or chilled.
More Summer Salads Recipes
- BLT Pasta Salad with Avocado
- Loaded Baked Potato Salad
- Caprese Salad (Plus a DIY Caprese Salad Bar)
- Creamy Yogurt Cucumber Salad Recipe
- How to Make THE BEST Potato Salad
We send good emails. Subscribe to FoodieCrush and have each post plus exclusive content only for our subscribers delivered straight to your e-mail box.
Follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter for more FoodieCrush inspiration.
As always, thank you for reading and supporting companies I partner with, which allows me to create more unique content and recipes for you. There are affiliate links in this post of which I receive a small commission. All opinions are always my own.
This was a perfect, sunny day salad! Thank you for sharing it.
So glad you enjoyed it Linda. Thx for the comment.
Did you grill the corn? or just cook?
Hi Karen, the corn is RAW! And. it’s perfect! You could cook the corn first if you like, or grill it. But if it’s sweet and fresh, raw is awesome.
bc in edmond
This looks delicious! Do you have an idea of a “green” to substitute for the arugula? We are just not big fans of bitter greens .
Hi there! Yes, you could use baby spinach or slivered kale. Or, use more basil!