Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with Shrimp

by Hong Diep
Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with Shrimp 09

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with Shrimp

Mexican inspired street corn salad tossed with pasta and loaded with shrimp. This 30 minute pasta salad is creamy, tangy, sweet, salty, and a little spicy. Perfect for those summer barbeques!


This recipe is inspired by esquites which is often sold by street vendors in Mexico. It’s corn mixed with mayo, cotija cheese or queso fresco, lime juice and chili powder.

I wanted to find a way to make street corn salad into a meal because it’s so delicious! So I added pasta and jumbo shrimp and man IS IT GOOD!

This can be served as a side dish like any pasta salad or eaten as a meal.


The sweet corn flavor comes together with tasty pasta and succulent shrimp, and when you add in the cotija cheese and all that spice you get a beautiful symphony of flavor, all delivered in just 30 minutes of cooking!



  • Pasta– I used penne but any short pasta will work.

  • Corn– Fresh corn on the cob is best for its crisp texture but you can use canned corn in a pinch.

  • Jalapeño– serrano, or any other spicy pepper of your choice. You can also omit it to make this pasta salad mild.

  • Cotija cheese– queso fresco or feta will work.

  • Shrimp– You can easily make this with chicken breast or leave out the protein.

  • Sour cream and mayo– try Greek yogurt or Mexican crema.


  1. Cook the pasta.
  1. Mix the shrimp with the seasoning blend.
  1. Cook the shrimp.
  1. Sauté the corn.
  1. Make the dressing.
  1. Toss everything together and top with shrimp!


  • Grill the corn and shrimp! Brush some butter on the corn and grill it on the cob then cut off the kernels. This will give the dish a smoky flavor!
  • Cook the pasta until al dente. No mushy pasta here.


What is street corn?

Street corn is an Americanized version of a popular Mexican street food called elote. It’s made with roasted or boiled corn on the cob, mayo and/or crema, chili powder, lime juice and cotija cheese. The Spanish word elote means corn. Check out my Mexican corn salad post for more information.

Can I make this ahead of time?

Yes, you can make this ahead of time but store the dressing separately and mix it in right before serving.

How do I store leftover street corn pasta salad?

Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

How do I reheat leftovers?

You can eat it cold or heat it up in the microwave until lukewarm. Don’t microwave it until hot or else it’ll lose it’s creaminess.

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad with Shrimp


  • 1/2 pound penne pasta
  • 4 ears corn kernels off
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 jalapeños finely diced
  • 1/4 cup red onion finely diced
  • 1/4 cup cotija cheese or queso fresco crumbled
  • 1 pound jumbo shrimp
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
Seasoning Blend
  • 3/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 1/4 cup cilantro chopped
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1/2 seasoning blend above


  • Cook the pasta until al dente in salted boiling water.
  • Meanwhile, combine the seasoning blend in a small bowl.
  • Mix the shrimp with 1 teaspoon of the seasoning. Heat a large skillet with oil and cook the shrimp on medium heat. This should take about 5 minutes. Transfer the shrimp to a bowl.
  • In the same pan, add the corn and butter and sauté on medium high heat for 5-8 minutes until lightly browned. Turn off the heat.
  • Combine the dressing ingredients with the remaining seasoning blend.
  • Add the dressing to the corn along with jalapeño, red onion, cotija, and pasta. Mix everything together then top the pasta salad with shrimp. Garnish with more cheese and cilantro. Serve warm or cold.
  • Grill the corn and shrimp! Brush some butter on the corn and grill it on the cob then cut off the kernels. This will give the dish a smoky flavor!
  • Cook the pasta until al dente.


Calories: 364kcal
Carbohydrates: 32g
Protein: 17g
Fat: 18g
Saturated Fat: 6g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g
Monounsaturated Fat: 5g
Trans Fat: 0.2g
Cholesterol: 122mg
Sodium: 794mg
Potassium: 250mg
Fiber: 2g
Sugar: 2g
Vitamin A: 655IU
Vitamin C: 11mg
Calcium: 104mg
Iron: 1mg

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