Carne Asada Salad With Grilled Corn & Cilantro: It’s Summer Salad Season!

Salad carne asada 9

This carne asada salad with grilled fresh corn is the decadently delicioso warm-weather dish we didn’t know we needed.

Summer is here. That means it’s time to eat leaner and greener. And that means more ensaladas. But we still crave the savory flavors of our favorite wintery traditional dishes. And most lighter fare—while good for us—is blah. A bit triste, honestamente.

So we turned to one of our favorite hearty-food cooks Michelle Ezratty Murphy. What do she and her Puerto Rican husband Pat make when the days get longer and the temperature rises in Arizona, where they live? Turns out it’s this southwestern-inspired salad.

”I LOVE steak, especially skirt steak. I find it to be the most versatile when it comes to adding sauces or salads with it. It’s tender, slices well, and has a really great texture when grilled,” says Michelle. “I also LOVE salads. So when I can make a salad with fresh ingredients like lime, avocado, pico de gallo and marry it with a skirt steak, I’m satisfying two cravings at one.”

Michelle’s family-famous carne asada salad also layers in the flavors of roaster corn with sazón, homemade tortilla strips, red onion, and a cilantro and lime crema dressing.

Watch Michelle make her carne asada ensalada with grilled corn and lime crema—step by step.

Key to this salad’s crave-worthiness? Marinate the steak the night before, Michelle says. And tip two: fire up the grill. That’s the only way you can get the beautifully charred, medium-rare, caramelized beef that makes this carne asada so mouth-wateringly good. While you’re getting ready to grill the steaks, put the fresh corn cobs, buttery and wrapped in foil, on the grill too. That’s how you get golden-brown kernels that are extra sweet and crispy-good.

”The roasted corn grilled with butter and sazón is crazy delicious, and can actually be served as a side dish with pretty much anything. But when mixed in with the salad, it adds a burst of traditional flavor that pairs perfectly with the steak and pico de gallo,” says Michelle.

Consider making extra marinade because it has so many uses, she advises. “It doubles to dress my steak or chicken for fajitas. It’s a great combination of southwestern flavors that is tasty and full of flavor.” 

The summer season of salads is here, and we are ready, thanks to Michelle. ”This dish is a crowd pleaser, she says. ”I love serving dishes that are as beautiful as they taste, and this is one of those salads that gets lots of applause from those that eat it.”

For more of Michelle’s family-famous hearty recipes con mucho sabor, check out her loaded super nachos, Mexican meatball soup or caldo de albondigas, chili con carne with bacon and sofrito; and her Familia Kitchen Recipe Contest winner: Pat’s Titi Rosa’s famous arroz con pollo.

Ready to Grill This Carne Asada Salad With Grilled Corn?

Carne Asada Salad With Grilled Corn, Cilantro and Lime Crema Dressing

5 from 1 vote
Recipe by Michelle Ezratty Murphy Cuisine: Southwestern


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 1 1/2 lbs 1 1/2 skirt steak

  • 3 to 4 ears 3 to 4 corn

  • 2 Tbsp 2 sazon or adobo, for the corn

  • 6 to 8 Tbsp 6 to 8 cold butter, for the corn

  • 1 tsp 1 kosher salt, or to taste, for the corn

  • 1 head 1 leafy lettuce, such as romaine or butter lettuce

  • 1 1 ripe avocado

  • 1/2 1/2 lime, juiced

  • 1/4 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced

  • For the Carne Asada Marinade
  • 4 Tbsp 4 avocado oil

  • 2 Tbsp 2 lemon (or lime) juice

  • 1 1/2 tsp 1 1/2 seasoned salt, or you can also use sazón or adobo

  • 1 1/2 tsp 1 1/2 dried oregano

  • 1 1/2 tsp 1 1/2 cumin

  • 1 tsp 1 garlic powder

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 chili powder

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 paprika

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

  • For the Pico de Gallo
  • 4 4 Roma tomatoes, diced

  • 1 1 white onion, finely diced

  • 1 bunch 1 cilantro, finely chopped

  • 1 1 lime, juiced

  • For the Cilantro Lime Crema Dressing
  • 1/4 cup 1/4 mayonnaise

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 sour cream

  • 2 to 3 Tbsp 2 to 3 fresh lime juice

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 kosher salt, or to taste

  • 2 Tbsp 2 cilantro, finely chopped

  • For the Tortilla Strips
  • 1 cup 1 packaged tortilla strips OR

  • 1 to 2 cup 1 to 2 packaged or fresh tortillas (if making from fresh)

  • 1 cup 1 vegetable oil, to fry tortilla strips (if making from fresh)


  • Marinate the Steak
  • In a bowl, mix all the ingredients for the marinade.
  • Place the skirt steak in a glass pan with high sides. Pour the marinade over the steak and turn a few times to make sure that the steak is covered well with the marinade.
  • Let the skirt steak marinade for at least 4 hours, turning the meat a few times.
  • Make the Pico De Gallo
  • Mix all the ingredients to make the pico de gallo.
  • Place in the refrigerator at least 1 hour before assembling the salad, so that it has time to develop its flavors.
  • Make the Dressing
  • Mix together all the ingredients for the dressing.
  • Place in the refrigerator for at least a hour before serving, to deepen the flavors and to chill.
  • Prep the Tortilla Strips
  • If using pre-made tortilla strips, measure 1 cup and set aside.
  • If making your own tortilla strips, take 1 fresh tortilla (cooked or uncooked), cut it into 1/8 inch strips, and fry in hot oil (350 degrees).
  • When the strips are lightly browned, remove and place on a plate lined with paper towel. Squeeze a little lime over them while still hot. Let them cool.
  • Grill the Fresh Corn
  • Preheat the grill to 500-550°.
  • Take one ear of corn at a time. Place each ear on a large, square piece of aluminum foil big enough to fold tightly around the full length of the corn.
  • Place 1 cold Tbsp of butter on the ear of corn and press until the butter is firmly spread on the corn. Liberally sprinkle with salt.
  • Turn the ear of corn halfway and press another piece of cold butter against it. Again liberally sprinkle with sazón, making sure that all kernels are seasoned. Wrap the corn tightly around the cob, so that the butter does not drip out of the foil package.
  • Repeat this with all the ears of corn. Place all the tightly wrapped corn cobs on the preheated grill. Close the lid and grill for 15 minutes.
  • Turn the foil-wrapped ears of corn. Grill for another 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the grill and allow to cool. The roasted kernels will have a dark amber or golden color.
  • Prep Your Salad Assembly
  • In a very large dish or bowl, assemble the salad. Cut the lettuce into large pieces and place them in the bottom of the bowl.
  • Slice the avocado and place them in one corner of the bowl. Lightly salt the avocado slices with kosher salt. Squeeze the juice of ½ lime over the avocado for both the taste and to keep it from browning too quickly.
  • Thinly slice the red onion and place next to the avocado.
  • Stir the pico de gallo. Taste for salt and lime, adjusting as necessary. Spoon the pico onto the salad, on the other side of the avocado slices.
  • Hold each ear of corn straight up, with one end flat against a cutting board and the other end firmly in your hand. Run a sharp knife against the ear of corn, cutting off the kernels. Stack the kernels together, on top of the salad.
  • Finally! Grill the Steak
  • Preheat the grill to 500-550°. Set out the marinaded skirt steak so that it is room temperature before grilling.
  • Place the steak on the preheated grill. Close the lid and cook for exactly 3 minutes.
  • Turn the steak over and cook for exactly 2 minutes. This will give you a medium rare steak.
  • Remove the steak from the grill and place onto a platter. Cover lightly with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Thinly slice steak against the grain, and place neatly in the center of the bowl.
  • Add the Dressing and Serve the Salad
  • Stir the dressing. Taste for salt and lime juice, and adjust as necessary. Drizzle the dressing over the salad or serve on the side.
  • Crumble the tortilla strips over the top of the salad.
  • It’s ready to serve! ”Bring the salad to the table deconstructed because it is an absolutely beautiful and appetizing-looking. And you want everyone to be able to see your masterpiece,” recommends Michelle.
  • Give it a big toss, drizzle a list flourish of salad dressing , and serve.


  • Double the salad dressing part of the recipe if you think that people will be putting on their own dressing, rather than you drizzling it over the whole salad and then serving.

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