Sauces and Condiments, Sides

Grilled Poblano Corn Salsa: A Fresh Twist on Classic Dip

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Last updated on April 2nd, 2024 at 03:57 pm

Usually, I don’t like chunky salsa. But the corn salsa option from Chipotle has brought me around a little. Get ready to indulge in the smoky and vibrant flavors of this grilled poblano corn salsa. This delightful salsa combines the natural sweetness of grilled corn with the mild heat and distinctive taste of poblano peppers, creating a harmony of flavors that will keep you coming back for more.

I love the taste of fresh homemade salsa and this recipe takes full advantage of making it from scratch. The result is a super fresh mix of flavors that will brighten up your dip game.

Tortilla chips surrounding a mixed bowl of poblano corn salsa ready to serve

Grilled poblano corn salsa is the perfect addition to your outdoor feasts, picnics, or even a simple chips-and-salsa snack session. With every bite, you’ll experience a medley of textures and tastes that will awaken your palate and leave your taste buds dancing with joy.

So, grab your apron, fire up the grill, and let’s embark on a culinary adventure that will have your friends and family asking for seconds. Get ready to savor the essence of summer in every spoonful with our grilled poblano corn salsa—a delightful twist on regular salsa.

Poblano Corn Salsa Ingredients

To make poblano corn salsa you must start with good ingredients. That’s why we recommend using fresh produce whenever possible. And fresh is really the only way to go when it comes to this delicious salsa.

To craft the mouthwatering and vibrant flavors of this grilled poblano corn salsa, I’ve assembled a medley of fresh and zesty ingredients that harmonize to perfection. Each element contributes its unique character, resulting in a salsa that is truly a culinary masterpiece. Trust me.

Poblanos, red bell pepper, and corn ready to be roasted in the grill
  1. Corn: A star ingredient adding a delightful, sweet crunch to the salsa. Grilling the corn enhances its flavors, making it a perfect base for our charred and smoky salsa.
  2. Poblano Peppers: Milder, flavorful peppers for a gentle kick of heat and a rich smokiness to the salsa. The grilling and steaming process removes some of the harshness of the peppers.
  3. Red Bell Pepper: Adding a burst of color and a touch of sweetness; it really makes things look pretty.
  4. Black Beans: Hearty legumes provide a satisfying texture and earthy flavor to balance out the salsa.
  5. Avocados: Creamy and indulgent, avocados bring a luscious texture and richness to the salsa.
  6. Red Onion: With its sharp tang, red onion adds a refreshing zing, cutting through the other ingredients.
  7. Cilantro: This aromatic herb infuses the salsa with its herbal fresh and bright notes.
  8. Lime Juice: Sour and acidic tang for added zest.
  9. Spices:
    • Salt: You always need salt.
    • Cumin: Warm, earthy undertones that complement the smokiness of the grilled components.
    • Chipotle Powder: Subtle smoky heat! I may have a chipotle pepper addiction.
    • Black Pepper: Infusing a gentle spiciness that enhances everything.

The vibrant colors, bold flavors, and delightful textures will make this salsa a standout addition to any meal, be it a lively gathering or a simple moment of indulgence.

Grilling the Corn and Peppers

Grilling the corn and peppers infuses the salsa with a nice char and smokiness, elevating both flavor and texture. Let’s dive into the simple yet transformative process of grilling these ingredients.

Grilling corn and peppers to start off the poblano corn salsa
Yeah, I know I grilled more than what is listed in the recipe. Follow the recipe. Sometimes you just need more for photos and backup just in case…

Start by preheating your grill to medium-high heat. We want it nice and hot before placing anything on the grates. You may want to wipe down the grill grates with some oil using a paper towel and long grilling tongs. Take a look at my top 10 grilling tips for some more details.

Prepare the corn by shucking it to remove the husks and silks. Rinse the corn under cold water to ensure it’s clean and ready for grilling. Pat it dry with a clean kitchen towel. Prep the poblanos and red bell pepper by washing them thoroughly and drying them with a towel.

With the grill preheated, place the corn, poblano peppers, and bell pepper directly on the grill grates and let them cook for 10-15 minutes, turning occasionally to achieve even charring. The corn should be tender and slightly charred with a beautiful golden color when it’s ready. The peppers should have blistered and slightly blackened skin.

Blackened, charred vegetables for making poblano corn salsa

If a grill isn’t available, char them under the broiler. Place the veggies on a baking sheet and put them on a rack 4-6 inches from the heat. Let them cook, turning occasionally for 5 to 15 minutes until charred.

These ingredients will be the focal point of a salsa that embodies the essence of summer and outdoor grilling. But we’re not quite done with preparing the peppers, we’ll need to do something with them right after taking them off the grill.

Getting Steamy with Poblano Corn Salsa?

After grilling, it’s time to get steamy. With the peppers. This simple step allows us to remove the papery, charred skin from the outside.

Once the peppers are nicely charred, carefully transfer them into a resealable plastic bag or a bowl covered with plastic wrap. This simple steaming method creates a mini sauna inside the bag, causing the residual heat to soften the peppers and create steam. As the peppers steam, the trapped heat further loosens the skin, making it a breeze to peel off.

Steaming red bell peppers and poblano peppers in a ziploc bag

Seal the bag and let the peppers rest for about 10 minutes. During this short but crucial time, the peppers undergo a transformation—the skin loosens, and the flavors intensify as the steam works its magic. When you open the bag after the steaming process, you’ll notice the skin is wrinkled and separated from the flesh.

While the peppers are steaming, you can begin some of the chopping and measuring of the remaining ingredients.

After 10 minutes, remove the peppers from the bag or bowl. Gently rub the skin off the poblano peppers with your fingers or a paper towel. The skin should peel off effortlessly, revealing the smoky, tender flesh underneath.

Chop and Mix the Ingredients

It’s time to bring together the vibrant medley of flavors that will make our grilled poblano corn salsa truly exceptional. Get your chopping board and knife ready for the next phase.

Note that you can be doing a lot of this prep work while other items are grilling or steaming. It’ll make the whole salsa come together much faster.

All ingredients for the poblano corn salsa in a bowl, ready to be mixed together

Take the grilled corn and carefully cut the kernels off the cobs. You can do this by standing each cob upright on a cutting board and sliding the knife downward to remove the kernels.

With the skins removed, dice the grilled poblano peppers and bell pepper into small, bite-sized pieces.

Rinse and chop the cilantro, peel and finely dice the red onion, and halve and dice the avocado. Drain and rinse the black beans to remove any excess liquid.

Add all of the ingredients together into a large mixing bowl. Gently toss the ingredients together, trying to get an evenly distributed mix.

As the ingredients come together in a vibrant symphony of colors and flavors, you’ll witness the magic unfold right before your eyes. The result is a grilled poblano corn salsa that’s as visually captivating as it is irresistible to the taste buds. So, grab your tortilla chips, tacos, or anything else you desire, and get ready to dive into a salsa experience like no other.

What to Serve with Poblano Corn Salsa

You’ll never go wrong serving a big bowl of salsa with chips, but there’s a lot more you can do with it. Try it as a dip, or serve it as a salad topping, or use it as a side dish.

As you prepare to indulge in this smoky and vibrant delight, consider some delightful serving ideas that will truly elevate your meal. Try any of the following recipes for a delicious combination:

Perfectly mixed and balanced poblano corn salsa with chips on the side ready for dipping
  • Classic Tortilla Chips – It’s a classic for a reason. This match made in heaven combines the flavorful, smoky salsa with the perfectly salty crunch of chips.
  • Ultimate Meat and Cheese Quesarito – A quesadilla an a burrito combined. Add some of this salsa either inside or on top to really elevate this culinary creation.
  • Fried Baja Shrimp Burrito – Fried shrimp with a creamy sauce can only get better with this salsa mix.
  • Rice Cooker Mexican Rice – If using the salsa as a side dish, pair it with this simple and delicious side as well.
  • Nachos – Elevate your nacho game by topping them with some poblano corn salsa.
  • Grilled Meats – If you’re already grilling for the salsa, may as well grill up some meat like chicken, carne asada, or pork chops.

No matter how you choose to serve it, this grilled poblano corn salsa is the star of the show. Its versatility allows you to pair it with an assortment of dishes, transforming each bite into a fiesta of flavors.

How did yours turn out?

I’d love to hear when you try out this poblano corn salsa! Take a pic of your food and share your success with me by adding it to your Instagram stories or feed, and tagging me @doyouroux, or by using #doyouroux.

Plus, leave a rating to let me know how you liked the recipe. It helps me out a lot to know how things worked out… or didn’t.

Fresh Grilled Poblano Corn Salsa

Recipe by Marc PetersonCourse: CondimentDifficulty: Easy


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Learn how to grill and roast poblano peppers, red peppers, and corn so they become deliciously charred in this poblano corn salsa.


  • 3 ears corn

  • 2 poblano peppers

  • 1 red bell pepper

  • 1 cup canned black beans

  • 2 medium avocados

  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced

  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

  • 2 tablespoons lime juice, freshly squeezed

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  • Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.
  • Shuck the corn and wash the peppers.
  • Place the corn, poblano peppers, and red bell pepper on the grill over medium heat or alternatively, place them under the broiler on a sheet pan.
  • Grill for 15-20 minutes, flipping throughout to get an even char.
  • Once cooked with an even char, remove them all from the grill and then immediately place the poblano and red bell peppers in a plastic bag or in a bowl covered with plastic wrap.
  • Seal the bag shut and set it aside to steam for about 10 minutes.
  • While the peppers are steaming, cut the kernels from the corn cobs when they are cool enough to handle and add them to a large bowl.
  • Rinse and chop the cilantro, peel and finely dice the red onion, halve and dice the avocados, drain and rinse the black beans to remove any excess liquid. Add all of them to the bowl with the corn.
  • Remove the peppers from the plastic bag or bowl and peel the skin off the outside.
  • Chop the peppers and add them to the bowl.
  • Add the lime juice, salt, cumin, chipotle powder, and black pepper to the bowl.
  • Gently toss the ingredients together, trying to get an evenly distributed mix.

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