Best Grilled Salmon with Summer Corn Salad.

Cumin and brown sugar rubbed grilled salmon served atop a summer corn salad that combines fresh corn, garden tomatoes, red onion, mozzarella, basil, extra virgin olive oil and white wine vinegar. This is the ultimate summer meal – guaranteed to please anyone at your table.

An overhead image of grilled salmon over summer corn salad.

Salmon is one of our favorite foods to throw on the grill, not surprisingly, because it’s one of our favorite foods in general. Throughout the year, we eat it at least once a week, and sometimes in the summer we have it more often. Grilled salmon is one of those “mains” that most people like, so it’s great to serve when company is over, no matter how many guests you’re serving. And, because of it’s richness and fat content, it’s a more forgiving when it comes to overcooking.

This recipe serves 4-6 adults (if you have young kiddos, it’ll serve them as well) – perfect, since that’s the maximum number of guests we’ll be having over this summer – you too, probably.

This salmon rub is very similar to the one we use during the colder weather months – spiced baked salmon – just without the chili powder. It’s earthy, slightly sweet, smokey, garlicky and oh so delicious.

What’s in this grilled salmon rub?

  • light brown sugar
  • ground cumin
  • garlic powder
  • kosher salt

What’s in the summer corn salad?

  • fresh sweet corn sliced off the cob (you can either lightly boil it for a few minutes, or add it raw)
  • cherry tomatoes (if you’ve got garden tomatoes, use those!)
  • mozzarella (we love the little pearl mozzarella balls) or you can cube a ball of mozzarella
  • red onion
  • basil (if you don’t have basil, you could use cilantro or parsley)
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • white wine vinegar (or any vinegar you have – we often use seasoned rice vinegar and apple cider vinegar)
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

And here are a few recipe notes:

  • if we don’t have fresh mozzarella, we’ll make this salad with avocado instead. Just as good!
  • not a salmon fan? This corn salad would be great topped with seared scallops, grilled shrimp (you could use this rub on the shrimp too) or this grilled chicken.

What’s so great about this dish?

  • Hello, summer flavor! This dish is packed with all the things we love about summer: fresh corn, garden tomatoes and herbs and SEAFOOD!
  • It’s packed with heart and brain health promoting omega-3s, Vitamin D, calcium, Vitamins A&C, zinc, iron and more. It’s a healthy, stunning and hearty dish to serve up this summer. Tastes best al fresco, as most things do.
  • We eat with our eyes first … and this dish will be beautiful on your table.

An overhead image of the Best Grilled Salmon over corn salad on a white plate

Here’s how to make the Best Grilled Salmon with Summer Corn Salad:


An overhead image of grilled salmon with corn salad

Best Grilled Salmon

Cumin and brown sugar grilled salmon served atop a summery corn salad with fresh corn, garden tomatoes, basil and mozzarella.
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 606 kcal


For the Salmon

  • 2 lbs salmon filet (center cut, if possible), skin on, cut into 4 equal portions
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

For the corn salad

  • 5 ears fresh corn-on-the-cob, shucked
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 8 ounces pearl mozzarella balls (or cubed mozzarella)
  • 1/2 red onion diced
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup basil slivered or torn

For serving

  • 1 lime cut into wedges
  • 1 baguette
  • softened salted butter


  • Prepare a large piece of tin foil. Place salmon portions onto the foil, skin side down. Pat salmon dry with a paper towel. Combine cumin, light brown sugar, garlic powder and salt in a small bowl. Coat salmon on top and sides with spice rub. Set aside, at room temperature for 30 minutes while you make the corn salad. 
  • Meanwhile, heat a large pot filled halfway with water over high heat until boiling. Add corn, cover, bring back to a boil, then lightly boil for 5 minutes. Remove corn from pot with tongs and let cool slightly. Once corn is cool enough to handle, slice the corn off the cobs into a large serving bowl. 
  • Add tomatoes, mozzarella, red onion, white wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper to the bowl with the corn. Toss to combine. Add in basil and toss again gently. Set aside. 
  • Preheat grill to high heat. Clean grates. Place salmon (keeping it on the foil) onto grill and reduce heat to medium high. Grill until salmon flakes easily with a fork and until it’s just barely opaque in the thickest part of the filet (time will vary depending on the thickness of your filets, but a good rule of thumb is to cook the fish 8-10 minutes per inch of thickness). You do not need to flip the salmon. Remove salmon from the grill. Using tongs, place filets overtop corn salad. 
  • Serve with lime wedges, your favorite loaf of bread and softened butter. 


Calories: 606kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 43gFat: 35gSaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 113mgSodium: 1250mgPotassium: 1040mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 823IUVitamin C: 19mgCalcium: 269mgIron: 4mg
Keyword Best Grilled Salmon
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