Grilled Esquites (Mexican Corn Salad)

How to make Grilled Esquites (Mexican Corn Salad)

Chef Tom fires up the PK Grills Aaron Franklin PK300AF charcoal grill for Grilled Esquites! This Mexican corn salad delivers everything you love about Elotes (Mexican street corn) with none of the mess!


  • 3 ears corn on the cob
  • 3 jalapeños
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp fresh espazote, minced
  • 1 tbsp cilantro, minced
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • Mexican crema, for garnish
  • 1/3 cup Cotija, plus more for garnish
  • 3 corn tortillas for Totopos (fried corn tortilla strips)
  • 2 tsp Cattleman’s Grill 8 Second Ride Carne Asada Seasoning, plus more for garnish
  • Heat Maverick’s Where Did the Mango MANEATER Hot Sauce
  • 3 tbsp red onion
  • Noble Saltworks Cherry Wood Smoked Salt, to taste
  • vegetable oil, for frying


Light a chimney of lump charcoal inside the PK Grills PK300AF.


Place the ears of corn in a 8 quart Briner Bucket and submerge in water to soak for about 20-30 minutes.


Julienne your corn tortillas (cut into 1” x 1/8” strips).


Dump the hot charcoal on one end of the grill, taking up about 1/3 of the grill space. Leave the other 2/3 open for indirect grilling.


Place your soaked corn on the indirect side of the grill to begin steaming the corn.


Place your jalapeños over the charcoal and char on all sides. Remove from the grill when blackened. Transfer to a zip top bag to steam for 10 minutes.


Place a Lodge 8” Cast Iron Skillet over the charcoal. Fill 1/3 full with vegetable oil. Heat to 350ºF.


Remove the husked corn from the grill. Using gloved hands for heat protection, peel back the husks of the corn. You do not need to remove them totally yet, as they are useful as a handle when turn the corn over the charcoal.


CAREFULLY move the oil to the indirect side of the grill.


Place the corn over the charcoal (direct heat) to get some char on the corn kernels. Turn until browned on all sides.


Meanwhile, fry your tortillas in the hot oil. Work in batches, taking care to not overfill the skillet and spill the oil into the grill. Cook just until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to paper towels to soak up excess oil. Immediately season with Noble Saltworks Cherry Wood Smoked Salt, to taste.


Cut the corn kernels off of the cobs and place in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the butter to the corn to melt.

| You might also enjoy: Watermelon Mojito Granita

Remove the jalapeños from the bag. Remove the stems, seeds and skin and discard. Dice the flesh of the jalapeño and add to the bowl.


Add to the bowl of corn and jalapeños the mayonnaise, cotija cheese, red onion, herbs (cilantro and/or epazote), lime juice and Cattleman’s Grill 8 Second Ride Carne Asada Seasoning. Mix well with a spatula. Taste and add Noble Saltworks Cherry Wood Smoked Salt, to taste.

| You might also enjoy: Elote Grilled Mexican Street Corn

Serve the Grilled Esquites in a cup garnished with Mexican crema, cilantro, cotija, totopos, Cattleman’s Grill 8 Second Ride Carne Asada Seasoning and Heat Maverick’s Where Did the Mango MANEATER Hot Sauce.


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