Elote Pasta Recipe | PBS Food

This elote pasta has a nice dressing that is tart and isn't overly heavy. (Recipe Credit: Adrianna Adarme of Fresh Tastes)


Yield: Serves 4-6


  • Dressing:
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Ancho chile powder
  • Zest from 1 lime
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • Salt
  • Pasta Salad Fixings:
  • 1 pound pasta of choice (I used farfalle)
  • 1 ear of corn 
  • 2 ounces cotija, crumbled 
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro, plus more leaves as garnish


  1. To Make the Dressing: Add the sour cream, mayonnaise, cayenne, chile powder, lime zest, lime juice and a few pinches of salt. Whisk together until it becomes smooth. Give it a taste and adjust the salt, as needed.
  2. To Make the Pasta Fixings: Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook per the instructions on the package, or until al dente. Drain and run under cold water. (I normally would never run my pasta under cold water but I do this for pasta salad only.) Return back to the pot and drizzle with a teaspoon of olive oil and toss. The oil will help the pasta from sticking as it cools.
  3. Char the ear of the corn over the flame of your stove, rotating it every so often, until it's evenly charred. Slice the corn off the cob and reserve a handful of them to use as garnish.
  4. To a medium bowl, add the pasta, dressing, corn minced cilantro and cotija. Toss together until evenly coated. Give it a taste and adjust the salt as needed. Make sure to get a bite with the cheese because that helps with the saltiness in this dish. Top with the reserved corn and some more cotija and cilantro. Serve! This is a great thing to make ahead for a party or bbq. I would add all of the ingredients to the bowl and toss in the dressing just before serving.
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