Here are all the best easy corn recipes for making this seasonal vegetable taste incredible! Includes options for both frozen and fresh sweet corn!
Bright yellow corn kernels add an irresistible sweet pop to recipes! Sweet corn on the cob is best summer treat, and frozen corn ensures you can eat this veggie year round. Corn is also part of a healthy diet: it’s rich in vitamins and minerals, fiber, and may promote eye health (source). Move over carrots!
Here’s a list of our favorite fresh and easy corn recipes! There’s our number one favorite, Mexican grilled corn (elote). Grilled corn is tender and charred, then topped with a creamy, spiced sauce, cheese crumbles, lime and cilantro. Then we’ve got lots more ways to make it taste incredible: how to cook corn the easiest way (in the oven!), salad, soup, and more. Ready to get cooking?
First up in our corn recipes: Mexican grilled corn (called elote in Mexico)! If you've never tried corn this way, it's time to try. You'll grill corn on the cob until it's tender and lightly charred. Then spread it with a creamy sauce made of sour cream, mayo, cumin, and chili powder. Top with feta crumbles, cilantro and lime, and there's so much flavor going on, you won't be able to put it down!
This corn chowder is impossibly creamy and delicious: but there's no heavy cream! Here milk and butter make for thick and creamy texture. You'll also boil the corn cobs in the chowder to get an elevated sweet flavor to contrast with the savory onion and garlic. This one's a big fan favorite! See also: Vegan Corn Chowder, thick and creamy with no dairy at all.
This corn salad recipe is all about fresh flavor: sweet bursts of corn, juicy tomatoes, and herbaceous basil pair with a tangy, light vinaigrette. Top with feta cheese crumbles if you like, or keep it as a plant based salad: it’s just as good either way. Here’s all about how to make it…including a tip on how to cut corn off the cob: without the mess! Also try:Grilled Corn Salad.
Did you know the easiest way to cook is corn on the cob is in the oven? This one is a game changer. There’s literally no prep time: you don’t even need to husk it! Throw it on the oven grates to roast and it comes out beautifully moist. Said one recipe tester, “This is heaven! The corn was cooked perfectly.”
Here's a tasty corn recipe that makes it part of a filling main dish: this oven baked shrimp boil! It's an easy way to make this meal on a weeknight: no large pot or fire required! What results is a seafood boil full of oven-roasted goodness. The corn becomes browned and caramelized, perfect against the salty and seasoned nuance of cozy Old Bay. And the shrimp are perfectly tender!
Another tasty corn recipe: Fresh Corn Soup! The flavor is sweet and nuanced, full of vegetables like onion, celery, potatoes, and of course: loads of corn! Many corn soup recipes are heavy with rich cream and butter, but this one is light and healthy. On its own it’s vegan and plant-based, but we like serving it with a dollop of sour cream to make it a little more filling.
Grilling corn is a very easy way to prepare it! Husk the corn, place it on the grill, and cook until it begins to blacken, about 4 to 5 minutes, Then turn and continue cooking and turning until all sides are blackened. That’s it! It’s a simple method that infuses smoky, charred flavor in every bite. Top with butter and salt (and maybe a sprinkle of Old Bay), and it's divine.
Here’s a basic skill everyone needs to know: how to boil corn on the cob! This tried and true method is the easiest way to do it. Seasoned with butter, salt, and pepper, it’s truly a classic American side dish. The best part of summer is sinking your teeth into those golden, juicy morsels!
This vegetarian potato corn chowder recipe is healthy, full of vegetables, and filling, featuring white beans for added plant based protein. The secret is boiling the corn cobs right in the soup, which adds a fantastic richness and complexity of flavor. You can still make this chowder with frozen corn and omit the corn cobs: just make sure to try it during corn season to experience the full effect! Using milk instead of heavy cream, the end result is a light and healthy chowder that’s bursting with flavor.
Here's a delicious corn recipe that stars tangy, rich tahini against spicy cilantro and sweet bursts of corn kernels. For this spicy corn on the cob, you'll boil the corn for about 8 minutes, until tender. (Or, you could use the grilled or oven roasted methods above.) Mix together tahini and lemon juice, then drizzle it on with Sriracha hot sauce. That’s really all there is to it: and it looks beautiful.
This black bean and corn salsa is a salsa fresca—a fresh salsa—and embodies everything that’s good about summer. It's got lightly roasted corn kernels, black beans, garden cherry tomatoes, and a bit of lime and cumin. Though it takes a little bit of time to put together, it’s truly simple. You can use either fresh or frozen corn for this one. Serve with tortilla chips, over salmon, or over a Grilled Cauliflower Steak.
Another great corn recipe: put it on a pizza! Corn on pizza, you say? Yes, yes, yes! The combination of roasted poblano pepper and roasted corn is to die for. Add that with melty mozzarella cheese, and it’s a match made in heaven. This poblano and corn pizza uses storebought naan bread to keep it quick and easy. If you have time, use our Homemade Pizza Dough (which is even tastier!).
This tasty, colorful main dish salad features sweet corn that's roasted alongside sweet potatoes. Roasting the corn makes it even sweeter and more tender (you can use frozen corn if sweet corn is not in season). Serve the veggies over greens with cumin-scented brown rice and a drizzle of a green chile vinaigrette. It's a filling main dish salad that's 100% plant based.
Fresh corn makes for tasty sweet bursts in salads! This flavorful and easy Mexican quinoa recipe is inspired by Mexican flavors, featuring black beans, fresh corn, tomatoes, and fajita seasoning. It all comes together into a beautiful jumble that's perfect as a side dish or to meal prep for lunches. You can use either fresh corn or frozen corn here.
Last up in our corn recipes, a salad featuring all the summer vegetables! This one is a beautiful mix of green beans and yellow wax beans, fresh cherry tomatoes, and fresh corn served over a pile of greens. Top it off with sesame ranch dressing, and it's a stunning salad that celebrates the bounty of the season.
More corn recipes
This isn’t enough? Here are a few more recipes where this veggie makes an appearance:
Shuck the corn by peeling down the outside layers one at a time and keeping them attached, facing downwards away from the cob. When you’ve finished, use kitchen twine or string to tie the leaves together (see the photos).
Use your hands to rub oil on each corn cob evenly, then place them on a baking sheet.
In a small bowl, mix the sour cream, mayonnaise, feta or queso fresco (crumbling any large chunks into smaller chunks with your fingers), chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, and kosher salt in small bowl.
Place the corn on the grill and cook until it begins to blacken, then turn. Cook about 12 to 15 minutes total, until blackened on all sides.
Place the corn back on the baking sheet and use a spoon to coat it with cheese mixture. Garnish with a squeeze of lime and torn cilantro leaves. Serve immediately, using the tied husks as a handle for easy eating.
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.