Grilled Corn and Avocado Pasta Salad Recipe

Yields: 4-6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes

Ingredients:

For the Salad:

  • 1 pound short-cut pasta (like penne, farfalle, rotini)
  • 4 ears sweet corn, shucked
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (plus a drizzle to brush the corn)
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 large avocados, diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the Chili-Lime Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

Instructions:

Cook the pasta:

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente.
  • Drain, rinse with cool water to stop cooking, and set aside.

Grill the corn:

  • Preheat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.
  • Lightly brush the corn with olive oil. Grill the corn, turning every few minutes, until slightly charred and cooked through (about 10-15 minutes).
  • Remove from the grill and let cool slightly. Once cool enough to handle, cut the kernels off the cob.

Make the dressing:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, honey, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

Assemble the salad:

  • In a large bowl, combine the cooked pasta, grilled corn, tomatoes, avocado, cilantro, basil, and red onion.
  • Pour the dressing over the salad and toss gently to combine.
  • Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper as needed.

Chill and serve:

  • Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to meld. Serve chilled.

Tips & Variations:

  • Add protein: Boost this salad with grilled chicken, shrimp, or crumbled feta cheese.
  • Customize the herbs: If you don’t like cilantro or basil, try fresh dill, mint, or parsley.
  • Get creative with veggies: Add diced bell peppers, cucumbers, or black beans for extra flavor and texture.
  • Spice it up: Add a pinch of cayenne pepper or a minced jalapeño to the dressing for a little heat.

Enjoy your delicious and refreshing grilled corn and avocado pasta salad!

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