There is something I have yet to whine about on here, and it’s the fact that there are some foods in my life that I just don’t think are… worth it.

Just Like Chipotle's Corn Salsa I

And it’s not because I don’t like them or enjoy their taste. It’s moreso because the food to work ratio is waaaay off. A lot of work for a little food.

Take chicken wings for example. A ton of picking and peeling and tearing and chewing, a ton of mess… and all for a few little bites of chicken (and often wonderfully crispy skin mind you), sauce covered fingers, often eaten when the waitress who has her back to you is wearing shorts that wouldn’t have fit you in third grade.

Just Like Chipotle's Corn Salsa I

Another? Those pretty little young coconuts that you can find at Whole Foods and even my scrappy local grocery store these days. Yes, I want the delectable meat. Yes, I want the water. No I do not want to chop off my arm with a machete.

I even feel this way occasionally about… artichokes.

And this one? Well this one is going to get me a lot of flack: crab legs. Oh crab legs – you are so fantastic and make for one hell of a seafood feast, but I would much rather prefer that someone else pluck me out a cup or two of fresh meat and place it directly in front of my face with a big bowl of clarified butter. Right next to my glass of ice cold pinot grigio.


Just Like Chipotle's Corn Salsa I

The most recent one that jumped to the top my list is making those homemade chipotle burrito bowls for week night dinners. Just not feasible. I tried it a few weeks ago and between the black beans, the pintos with bacon from scratch, the long grain brown rice, the chicken, the guac, the multiple salsas, the possible carnitas… there was just TOO MUCH GOING ON. It took a good two hours to complete everything from start to finish, and when I spend that amount of time on dinner I want to be rewarded with filet, lobster, a roast chicken and twice-baked potatoes. Notice the “and.” Not or.

And no, I’m not going to give anything from my favorite bowl up. That’s one of the best things about going to Chipotle – the array of flavors and textures, all lumped together in one big pile just begging to be scooped up with a crispy chip.

When I first discovered what I can now call my favorite restaurant chain, I was strictly a burrito girl. I used to watch in awe as others ordered bowls and it just did not make any sense to me. I couldn’t even fathom not having everything smashed together in that soft and fluffy tortilla. So it’s funny that I don’t remember how or when or why it happened – the day I found myself with a bowl in hand and bag of salty chips in the other. I didn’t eat much of the bowl with my actual utensil… but instead, one by one, used those incredible chips to scoop everything up. And I’ve been a bowl girl ever since.

Just Like Chipotle's Corn Salsa I

The only thing that stuck from my homemade bowl was the corn salsa. I mean, guacamole already plays a large part in my life (that’s just how it works when you have to spend your savings on a half decent avocado) and if we want any the other items? We simply throw them together mid week for other meals. But this salsa… THIS salsa.

For well over six weeks I’ve been making a batch on Sunday and putting it on everything I can think of. And I do mean everything – potatoes, sandwiches, eggs.

Last night I even spooned some on top of a burger.

It’s by far my favorite topping at Chipotle, and each time I’m fairly amazed that such a simple dish takes my bowl over the top. The best part about it is that it is completely customizable. You can add more heat, add less lime or leave out the cilantro completely… since I know you’re not all into that sort of thing. The below combo is my ideal after weeks upon weeks of combining and adding and subtracting ingredients. The only thing better? Making this with grilled corn. Summer can’t come soon enough.

Just Like Chipotle's Corn Salsa I

Just Like Chipotle’s Corn Salsa

makes a big bowl

1 12-ounce bag of frozen sweet yellow corn, defrosted and drained

2 medium-sized jalapenos, seeded and chopped (leave in some seeds for more heat if desired)

1/2 red onion, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)

3/4 cup fresh cilantro, torn or chopped

the juice of 2 (juicy!) limes

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix, mix, mix. Season with additional salt and pepper if desired. Add more cilantro, jalapeno or lime according to your tastes!

Note: obviously fresh corn would be the BEST option here… however I don’t have access to that at the moment… and when I do have access to it, it’s only for about 2-3 months. This was the next best thing.

Just Like Chipotle's Corn Salsa I

Now someone give me a chip.

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230 Responses to “Just Like Chipotle’s Corn Salsa.”

  1. #
    Rachael S — April 5, 2012 @ 12:50 pm

    I LOVE chipotle’s corn salsa…the jalapeno with no seeds, does that just add flavor or heat? I dont like really spicy food but want to make this!


    • Jessica — April 5th, 2012 @ 5:53 pm

      Without seeds it’s mostly flavor. I’d say it’s about 2-3 on the heat scale of 10.


  2. #
    Heather — April 5, 2012 @ 1:49 pm

    Please tell me you tried it… with bacon! Somehow, I bet a little smoked bacon would be awesome in there…


    • Jessica — April 5th, 2012 @ 5:51 pm

      That does sound terrific.


  3. #
    Jen — April 5, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

    What i find even harder to find is a decent lime lol


  4. #
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — April 5, 2012 @ 2:08 pm

    OMG I love everything Chipotle!


  5. #
    Michelle — April 5, 2012 @ 2:19 pm

    I think I’m going to go get myself some Chipotle now…


  6. #
    Bridget — April 5, 2012 @ 2:31 pm

    Would you be terribly jealous if I told you I had some fresh sweet corn from this summer in my freezer right now that is so coming out to make this corn salsa? ;)


    • Jessica — April 5th, 2012 @ 5:50 pm



  7. #
    Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen — April 5, 2012 @ 2:33 pm

    I am seriously addicted to this stuff. 100% marry me I’m in love with chipotle corn salsa.


  8. #
    Cait's Plate — April 5, 2012 @ 3:13 pm

    You had me at “Chipotle”


  9. #
    Mackenzie — April 5, 2012 @ 3:37 pm

    As a diehard Chipotle fan- THANK YOU! Buttt reading your conversion experience brought up my ONE beef with Chipotle (har har)- what happened to the free chips with my burrito bowl? I SWEAR they used to do this, but the local Chipotle employees all seemed to think I was crazy when I asked recently. Anyone else remember this?


    • Jessica — April 5th, 2012 @ 5:50 pm

      Hmmm I have only been eating Chipotle for about 5 years and I definitely don’t ever remember that, but it could have been before my time. It sounds like a fabulous idea though.


  10. #
    Julia {The Roasted Root} — April 5, 2012 @ 4:29 pm

    Oh Chipotle…I love that place! Their carne asada burrito is very dear to my heart. Thanks for the homemade salsa recipe! It looks simple and sure to bring all sorts of sweet, spicy crunch flavor to whatever it is added to!


  11. #
    Diana @ frontyardfoodie — April 5, 2012 @ 4:56 pm

    I LOVE their corn salsa and often make burrito bowls at home using this and guacamole.

    Now, if I could just get some sour cream that’s all creamy and smooth like theirs!


    • Emily F. — April 6th, 2012 @ 2:30 pm

      Creme fraiche should do the trick. Mix buttermilk and heavy cream, and then let it sit to let the cultures work their magic.
      At work I make it in 10-quart batches, and I’m sure you don’t want to drown in the stuff.
      2 TB buttermilk and 1 cup heavy cream should do the trick at home. Combine in a container with a lid (like a jar or tupperware, doensn’t have to be airtight), stir/shake, and then let sit somewhere that isn’t drafty or cold. Twelve hours later, the mixture should be thickened and smooth.


      • Diana @ frontyardfoodie — April 6th, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

        Holy cow whoa. thanks for the directions! Can’t believe it’s such a simple process and they charge up the arse for it! haha

    • Maggie — May 29th, 2012 @ 2:01 pm

      I used to work there. It’s Daisy brand *pourable* sour cream. I’ve been looking at stores all over ever since I discovered that, and I’m pretty sure it’s not available to consumers. /sad face


      • rick — June 1st, 2012 @ 7:43 pm

        What is used on there chicken???? Thanks so much

        • Maggie — June 2nd, 2012 @ 9:58 am

          A proprietary adobo wet rub. We didn’t make it in house, so I have no idea!

      • Erin — June 24th, 2012 @ 3:48 pm

        Try some crema from a mexican market. Good stuff.

      • Alexis — August 14th, 2012 @ 12:09 am

        Maggie, do you happen to know what gets sprinkled on the veggies as they’re being grilled?

        • Maggie — August 14th, 2012 @ 6:31 am

          Just chopped fresh oregano and kosher salt!

  12. #
    Colleen @ Culinary Colleen — April 5, 2012 @ 5:32 pm

    I’m always tempted to order EXTRA corn salsa every time I go to chipotle. Clearly I also need to start making it myself!


  13. #
    Laura — April 5, 2012 @ 5:34 pm

    One of my favorite salsas ever. It looks spot on!


  14. #
    Jenn @therebelchick — April 5, 2012 @ 5:39 pm

    Yum, Yum, and more yum! I might actually try to make this myself, we could eat it all week!


  15. #
    Michelle — April 5, 2012 @ 5:50 pm

    And now I can taste Chipotle’s chips in my mouth. Must have.


  16. #
    Quiche-ing Queen — April 5, 2012 @ 6:08 pm

    With Tostitos Hint of Lime Chips this would be heaven. Yummy!


  17. #
    mems — April 5, 2012 @ 6:25 pm

    Then I guess that means you’ll never attempt making South Asian food? Because most of it takes forever… :(


  18. #
    serena — April 5, 2012 @ 6:45 pm

    or fondues. in which you have to fry you meat for a ridiculous amount of time. waaay too hard and time consuming when you’re way hungry. i loveLOVE chipotle’s corn salsa, i shall have to try this soon.


  19. #
    serena — April 5, 2012 @ 6:45 pm

    or fondues. in which you have to fry your meat for a ridiculous amount of time. waaay too hard and time consuming when you’re way hungry. i loveLOVE chipotle’s corn salsa, i shall have to try this soon.


  20. #
    Meg — April 6, 2012 @ 6:06 am

    That salsa looks delicious–Chipotle’s corn salsa is probably my favorite too :) :)


  21. #
    Kat — April 6, 2012 @ 6:40 am

    Yummo! Have just made this to have with our Good Friday fish tonight. Sooooo looking forward to it!


  22. #
    Rhonda — April 6, 2012 @ 7:09 am

    Ok I have lusted for a year now over your site & recipes! Do not laugh please do not judge I want to Pin stuff and need an “invite” cause it is YOUR stuff LOL….can u help me out? ❤


    • Jessica — April 6th, 2012 @ 7:11 am

      Just sent you one!


      • Rhonda — April 6th, 2012 @ 7:20 am

        Thank you much! Gotta upgrade my FB to time line UGH! Luv ur blig sooo much gave shared with several co-workers. I used to live & work in PA area. U make me home sick (sometimes)….Happy Easter & thanks for the hook-up! ❤ we need “puppy pic fix” soon.

  23. #
    Rhonda — April 6, 2012 @ 7:21 am

    Luv ur *blog*


  24. #
    Rachel — April 6, 2012 @ 9:45 am

    It’s so funny what you said about crab legs… I’m with you on the whole lengthy process of cooking and if you have to cook something that takes you 12 hours in the kitchen just for a dinner, blah… Not worth it. But CRAB LEGS?! Haha, it’s just so funny because I actually cooked crab legs for my family on Sunday and while we were eating them I commented “Something I love about crab legs is that they take so long to eat”… But not sarcastically, I really do love how long they take to eat!

    Anyway, now I’m off to find a wonderful bread recipe on your site… I’m going to try my first home-made bread baking attempt today :)


  25. #
    Sommer@ASpicyPerspective — April 6, 2012 @ 10:18 am

    My, my, my… does that ever look good! I could just scoop it up with my hands and be satisfied.


  26. #
    Karriann — April 7, 2012 @ 12:21 pm

    I can picture myself eating this with a bag of chips. Can’t wait to whip this up in my kitchen! :)

    “Spice it Up”


  27. #
    Becca — April 7, 2012 @ 7:39 pm

    Bless you!! No Chipotle’s in the whole state.


  28. #
    Kendall — April 8, 2012 @ 5:04 pm

    So I did a little taste testing because as many of us know, this is the best salsa EVER. I felt that something was missing… I went to Chipotle’s website and low and behold, they have an ingredients list! I could not believe my eyes. Anyway, the technical name is “Roasted Chili – Corn Salsa.” I roasted 2 poblano chilies along with the corn, and it was life changing. Futhermore, great recipe and I absolutely love your blog!


  29. #
    Jasper @ crunchylittlebites — April 9, 2012 @ 3:23 pm

    Is a Cadbury egg coma anything like the hunger games’ tracker jacker stings, you think ;) ?


  30. #
    Cookie and Kate — April 9, 2012 @ 9:46 pm

    Yes! I’m a total Chipotle salsa theme. Every time I go there, I ask for ALL the salsas. I can’t ever pick just one! I’ve figured out how to make a homemade version of the cilantro lime rice, so I could top that with some beans and a whole lot of this salsa… yep, happening.


  31. #
    Annie — April 12, 2012 @ 1:14 pm

    Can you freeze this since it makes so much? How long does it last in the fridge?


    • Jessica — April 12th, 2012 @ 1:22 pm

      I don’t think I’d freeze it… especially if the corn was already frozen then defrosted, I’m just not sure how it would be. Instead I would halve (or even quarter?) the recipe… just use half of the frozen corn and stick the bag back in the freezer.


  32. #
    Katie — April 14, 2012 @ 1:20 pm

    My mom adds black beans to this, it’s delicious! You should definately add some next time :)


  33. #
    Jen — April 17, 2012 @ 11:45 am

    I made this over the weekend-delicious!!!


  34. #
    Stephanie — May 2, 2012 @ 11:37 am

    So if I wanted to make it with fresh sweet corn I wonder if it would taste better straight out of the husk or grilled?


    • Jessica — May 2nd, 2012 @ 3:04 pm

      I think it’s going to be best with corn that has been cooked, so even if it is fresh (like right out of the husk) I’d still cook it somehow.


  35. #
    Em — May 6, 2012 @ 3:59 pm

    Made this last night and served with shrimp tacos and black beans. Sooooooo amazingly yummy!


  36. #
    Dana — May 21, 2012 @ 8:59 pm

    Eating this out of the bowl…right now. I may never get around to making the rest of the chipotle ingredients!


  37. #
    Carol — May 24, 2012 @ 3:16 pm

    Tip for cutting jalapenos. Use latex (or Nitrile) gloves – disposable. You won’t burn your eyes when you remove contacts lenses. ;-)


  38. #
    Shanae — May 28, 2012 @ 6:18 pm

    This recipe is divine. It’s spot on – my sister (a Chipotle fiend) gave me her approval.Thank you so much!


  39. #
    Caryn — May 28, 2012 @ 6:46 pm

    I’d like to make this next weekend with grilled corn – how many ears do you think I’d need for 12 ounces? Thanks!


  40. #
    Cheryl — June 24, 2012 @ 10:05 am

    How can one salsa recipe outshine all the others like this one does? You did you homework well because Food Network Magazine published their version of this salsa in their “Copy That” segment a year or so ago. The only difference is that they add 2 roasted poblano chilies (too much work for me, I use a can of diced chili peppers) plus 1 tsp sugar. I can’t get enough!


  41. #
    Leeann — July 3, 2012 @ 9:58 am

    Thanks! I’m vegan and we just went to Chipolte Grill yesterday for the first time. I went googling for the corn salsa, now I just have to figure out what was in some of the other toppers they had. I appreciate the post!


  42. #
    Victoria — July 3, 2012 @ 6:53 pm

    This looks delicious!!! I usually only have lemons on hand. Do you think I can substitute lime juice for lemon juice? Thanks for the lovely recipe!


  43. #
    Tina — July 9, 2012 @ 7:22 pm

    HA! I had some left over chicken from a recent trip to the mexican joint up the street. Decided I would make myself a burrito bowl…. what a pain and I thought mine was easy version. I bought microwave rice, already had shredded chicken, black beans, couldn’t find corn salsa so I mixed corn relish with regular salsa (not as bad as it sounds), added cheese, lettuce, guac & chips. It was good, but the kitchen was a mess by the time I was done, then decided to pack the left overs for lunch tomorrow… 8 separate plastic tubs and or bags of ingredients!! I hope I can get it all put together before my lunch hour is over! I’m looking forward to trying this recipe and am sure I will also be putting it on EVERYTHING! Thanks!!


  44. #
    Lindsey — July 12, 2012 @ 6:40 pm

    Do you let the corn defrost? Or mix everything together while it’s still frozen?


    • Jessica — July 12th, 2012 @ 9:52 pm



  45. #
    Emily — July 18, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

    So happy someone else shares my obsession with their corn salsa!!! Thank you!!


  46. #
    Stephani — August 10, 2012 @ 5:18 pm

    I was sooo excited to find this recipe. I just made it but I don’t know what I did wrong. I think I might have added too much lime juice (I had less corn on hand and only lime juice so I estimated). I also saw another reciped that said to use lemon AND lime juice so I did that. Can’t quite put my finger on it but it’s not quite right. Also I wanted to throw a tip out there that I started in college. I love grilled corn and was into making quesadillas for a cheap meal. So I sauteed frozen corn in a skillet with a little butter or olive oil (very little so it toasts it and makes it brown a little). It really brings out the sweetness of the corn and gives it that grilled flavor. And its quick and easy if your low on time or don’t have a grill.


  47. #
    Alexis — August 14, 2012 @ 12:07 am

    Thank you for posting this! I LOVE THIS STUFF! :) I had Chipotle for lunch today, and I really hate paying $8 for something I know I can make myself! Now if I could just figure out what is in the shakers that gets sprinkled on the veggies lol


  48. #
    Ashish — August 22, 2012 @ 1:13 am

    Thanks so much for giving these instructions! Seems amazing and really tasty :) Can’t wait to make it tomorrow :D


  49. #
    Debbie — August 23, 2012 @ 7:10 pm

    My favorite little restaurant (Jalapeno’s in Ada, Ohio), told me they use a mixer on their sour cream to make it that particular texture. Kinda pourable, ya know? Haven’t tried it yet, though, but will, along with this recipe!!!


  50. #
    taren — August 25, 2012 @ 7:29 pm

    I love this salsa. But way too much cilantro. I cut it back to a scant quarter cup. And I used fresh corn that I cooked 3 min.



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