20 Corn Side Dishes with Three Steps or Less

skillet corn
Photo: Photographer: Antonis Achilleos, Prop Stylist: Christine Keely, Food Stylist: Karen Rankin

Enjoy summer corn while it lasts with these side dishes starring your favorite healthy grain. From salsa to succotash, the sweet flavor of fresh corn shines in these recipes. Recipes like our Corn Fritters with Yogurt Dill Sauce and Cheesy Corn Casserole showcase the many ways you can prepare corn as a delicious side in only three steps or less.

01 of 20

Mexican Street Corn


Soaking the corn in its husk in water for up to two hours before grilling is definitely a new approach to cooking corn on the cob, but give it a try! The addition of salt, spices and cheese takes this side dish to new levels.

02 of 20

Corn Fritters with Yogurt-Dill Sauce


This healthier version of classic corn fritters uses less oil for frying but still packs plenty of fresh corn flavor. A creamy dill sauce on the side brightens up each bite.

03 of 20

Cheesy Corn Casserole


This cheesy corn casserole is surprisingly light and fluffy, thanks to eggs and a whirl in the blender. The sweet corn batter and salty Cheddar cheese make this casserole pleasing to kids and adults alike.

04 of 20

Chunky Black Bean Salsa with Corn & Bell Pepper

chunky black bean salsa with corn & bell pepper
Fred Hardy

This TikTok-trending, veggie-packed salsa gets inspiration from Texas caviar (aka cowboy caviar), a dish created in 1940 to ring in the New Year by Helen Corbitt, who was a chef at Neiman Marcus. Scoop it up with tortilla chips or try it as a topping for grilled meat or fish, or as a filling for a quick quesadilla.

05 of 20

Skillet Corn

skillet corn
Photographer: Antonis Achilleos, Prop Stylist: Christine Keely, Food Stylist: Karen Rankin

This skillet corn recipe features plenty of sweet, fresh summer corn. A small amount of aromatics complement the corn but don't overpower it. Parsley adds color and freshness.

06 of 20

Black Bean, Corn & Avocado Pasta Salad

black bean corn avocado pasta salad
Jen Causey

Serve this colorful, veggie-packed pasta salad at your next outdoor gathering. From creamy avocado to crunchy bell peppers, this pasta salad is full of texture and flavor. A homemade herb-lime vinaigrette ties everything together.

07 of 20

Garlic Butter Campfire Corn

Garlic Butter Campfire Corn

This flavorful corn couldn't be easier to prepare. Just cover the ears of corn in a quick garlic-and-chive-flavored butter and wrap in foil and they're ready to throw on the grill at home or over coals at the campsite.

08 of 20

Nopales Summer Salad

Nopales Summer Salad
Ali Redmond

A beloved ingredient in Mexican cooking, nopal cactus can be enjoyed both cooked and raw. Here, we cook it and toss it with tomatoes and corn for an impressive summer salad that doesn't break the bank.

09 of 20

Fresh Southern Succotash with Bacon

Fresh Southern Succotash with Bacon
Andrea Mathis

This Southern succotash is packed with flavor and fresh ingredients, including okra, tomatoes, corn and bacon—so much goodness in one bite! If you can't find fresh okra, feel free to use thawed frozen okra. Read the author's story behind the recipe: Nothing Says Summer to Me More Than My Mom's Southern Succotash.

10 of 20

Watermelon, Cucumber & Corn Salsa


This refreshing summer salsa combines cooling watermelon and cucumber with the kick from jalapeño. The heat from jalapeños can vary widely. For those that like the heat, use a whole jalapeño. Serve with tortilla chips on the side.

11 of 20

Corn on the Cob with Cilantro-Lime Butter


A dash of crushed red pepper adds the perfect amount of spice to this flavorful cilantro-lime corn on the cob.

12 of 20

Southwestern Calico Corn


Peppers, cumin and chili powder are a natural combination with corn and hominy (dried corn that's had its hull removed).

13 of 20

Creole Skillet Cornbread

Cornbread in a cast-iron skillet
Jerrelle Guy

Baking cornbread in a cast-iron skillet results in the ideal crispy crust enclosing a tender crumb. In this recipe, tender corn kernels provide additional texture. As with many recipes, how much sugar you like in your cornbread may depend on how your grandmother made it, so add more or less sugar to taste. Read the author's story behind this recipe: Skillet Diaries: A Cast-Iron Legacy

14 of 20

Jalapeño Creamed Corn

Jalapeño Creamed Corn

Sweet and savory creamed corn gets a creamy kick from Cheddar cheese and jalapeño. We love the added spice sliced jalapeño adds as a garnish, but this is also great without it if you want to tame the heat. Try it alongside grilled steak or chicken or with your Thanksgiving spread.

15 of 20

Easy Corn Pudding

Easy Corn Pudding

This easy Southern-style corn pudding is a great way to use up fresh corn if you've got it! But to speed up the prep time, frozen corn kernels work just as well. This simple casserole is light and savory-sweet. It's the perfect companion for grilled or roasted chicken, pork or steak or can stand on its own as a vegetarian main dish.

16 of 20

Stir-Fried Carrots, Corn & Peppers


This eclectic stir-fry is a colorful combination of carrot, red bell pepper, corn and romaine lettuce. This recipe exemplifies how to stir-fry vegetables with different textures. The carrots, which are a "hard vegetable," should be stir-fried for a minute before adding "medium-hard" vegetables like peppers or corn, which require slightly less cooking. Finally, add "soft or leafy vegetables" in the last 30 seconds to ensure all the vegetables achieve the same level of doneness. Make sure the lettuce is dry--if it's wet when added to the pan, it will turn the stir-fry into a braise.

17 of 20

Parmesan Roasted Corn on the Cob

Parmesan Roasted Corn on the Cob

Savory Parmesan cheese and sweet corn team up in this easy corn on the cob recipe that's good for every season. Wrapping the corn in foil keeps in the flavors of smoked paprika, garlic powder and thyme. Pair with roast chicken, steak or pork or serve as part of a vegetarian meal.

18 of 20

Cornbread-Topped Corn Casserole

Cornbread-Topped Corn Casserole
Photography / Caitlin Bensel, Food Styling / Ruth Blackburn

This sweet cornbread-topped corn casserole with spicy pepper Jack and smoky poblano peppers is sure to become your new favorite side dish! The natural sweetness of the corn is balanced by a dash of hot sauce, which adds pep and acidity that brings everything together.

19 of 20

Roasted Corn, Black Bean & Mango Salad


This simple, fresh-tasting salad adds delicious variety to grilled foods, such as salmon, halibut, chicken or pork. Browning the corn in a skillet gives it a nutty, caramelized flavor that contrasts with the sweetness of the mango.

20 of 20

Fresh Sweet Corn Salad


We love fresh summer corn when it's in season, but frozen corn makes a great year-round substitute in this quick and easy side dish.

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