This simple peach salad recipe is perfect for summer. It’s light and fresh and delivers an incredibly satisfying crunch. Seasoned with just lemon, salt, pepper and a bit of sumac, this summer salad is truly all about the produce.
Table of Contents
About the Recipe
I stand by the idea that the simpler a side dish, the more delicious. When you use high-quality ingredients (especially ripe produce) half of the work is done for you. This peach salad recipe leans on ripe peaches, in-season sweet corn, and crunchy English cucumber.
Those three ingredients mingle so well together all they need is a bit of salt, pepper, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice. If you’ve got it, a sprinkle of astringent ground sumac makes this simple salad feel very high-brow.
To streamline things I have you steam the corn in the microwave. It’s a super simple process and takes just a couple of minutes. I use plastic wrap (I promise it doesn’t melt) but you can also cover the bowl with a microwave-safe plate.
Tips for Making the Best Peach Salad
- Use ripe peaches: the more ripe your peaches are, the more flavorful the salad will be. Under-ripe peaches will still work, and thankfully the lemon juice will soften them a bit, but the salad will be slightly less sweet and flavorful.
- Roll-cut the cucumber: if this knife-cut is new to you, check out the step images I’ve included in this article, or watch this video on how to roll-cut vegetables. I love this knife technique because it increases the surface area of a vegetable and makes for a gorgeous presentation.
- Season to taste! Toss all of the salad ingredients together then give it a quick taste before serving. Season with additional salt, pepper, lemon juice or vinegar to taste. Don’t be afraid to add more salt!
- Any other stone fruit such as peaches, plums or apricots will also work well.
- If you don’t have scallions, use a few tablespoons of shredded white onion (shredded on a large-hole box grater). You could also try very thinly sliced red onion here.
- For more flavor, add chopped fresh basil, parsley, cilantro or mint.
- Make it a meal and serve Grilled Lime Shrimp over top.
- Toss in some fresh arugula or baby kale.
FAQs About This Recipe
I don’t recommend using regular cucumbers (aka pole cucumbers). It’s best to use thin-skinned cucumbers with small seeds such as English cucumbers (long slender cucumbers which usually come individually shrink-wrapped, sometimes labeled Hothouse Cucumbers) or Persian cucumbers (short narrow cucumbers sold in packs of four or five on small trays). These varieties of cucumbers are flavorful, less watery and leaps and bounds more enjoyable than classic pole cucumbers.
I would not use canned peaches for this fresh salad. They lack flavor, have a mushy texture, and will likely add too much liquid to the salad (even when drained). Fresh peaches are absolutely a must in this salad.
Technically? Sure. You can use canned or frozen corn, but I must say—fresh sweet corn is best.
If you can’t find any fresh sweet corn, opt for a high-quality frozen sweet corn. Thaw it in the microwave for one to two minutes before draining and adding to the salad.
A great question! Both ingredients add acid to this salad and if you don’t have both, go ahead and substitute one for the other. However, I find the two strike a really nice balance of acidity. The lemon brings a tart brightness, while the white wine vinegar is more savory and subtle.
Simple Peach Salad with Sweet Corn & Cucumber
- 2 ears sweet corn, shucked
- 2 peaches, cored and cut into chunks
- 1 english cucumber, roll-cut or cut into chunks
- 3 scallions, sliced
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
- Flaky sea salt
- Black pepper
- Ground sumac, for serving
- Cut corn from cob then transfer to a medium microwave-safe bowl with 2 tablespoons water; cover tightly with plastic wrap and microwave for 3 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes then carefully remove plastic, drain and transfer to a large bowl with peaches, cucumber and scallions.
- Add oil, lemon juice, ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt and 10 turns of cracked pepper; toss to combine.
- Season with additional salt and vinegar to taste.
- Transfer to a serving plate and sprinkle with ¼–½ teaspoon sumac and a bit more flaky sea salt.