Zesty & Delightful: Yes Corn On The Cob Can Be Exciting!

You have a bumper crop of corn to deal with and you’re binged out on the traditional slathered-on buttery, salty goodness that we all enjoy…now you’re looking for some culinary inspiration to jazz it up and make things more interesting.

This is the recipe sheet for you! Here you’ll find over 20 different ways you can boost up that flavor using a variety of ingredients featuring zesty butters, cheeses and seasoned spreads– so delish! Some also highlight an ethnic influence.

Pretty much everything here is super simple to put together and sure to be a hit. If you’re hosting a large gathering or trying to figure out what to bring to the upcoming BBQ potluck, these are a great option!

First up I’ll share a few quick and easy recipes with you then you’ll find a collection at the bottom where I’ve handpicked some more goodies from around the ‘net…each promising to deliver a party for your taste buds!

Don’t Miss It: I’ve also put together a reference sheet with directions for all the ways you can cook whole cobs of corn (steaming, boiling, grilling, microwave, oven roast, etc.).

With these two handy lists, you’ll have everything you need to be a Corn on the Cob Connoisseur!

10 Quick & Easy Recipes

Firecracker/BBQ (yields 8)

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 TBS Tabasco brand Original Red Sauce

  • Mix these two items well in a small bowl.
  • Peel back one side of husk and without removing leaves or the silk, brush the mixture over kernels and cover again with leaves.
  • Place directly on hot coals (covered with gray ash and medium hot), close lid. If doing in a fire pit, timbers should be medium heat and tent everything with foil.
  • Cook 3 minutes or so per side. Husks will char.

Old Bay Favorite (yields 4)

1/4 pound salted butter
1 tsp finely diced jalapeno
1 tsp finely sliced green onion
1 1/2 tsp Old Bay seasoning

  • Combine ingredients then slather on cooked corn. Sprinkle evenly over the full platter with another 1 1/2 tsp of Old Bay (or to taste).

Best Molasses Spread

1/4 cup butter
2 TBS Molasses
Sea salt (pinch)

  • Combine ingredients, pack into a small bowl and refrigerate. Keep chilled until you need it (bring it out about 10 minutes before you need it).

Caesar Spread

1/4 cup butter
2 TBS Parmesan (grated)
1 tsp chopped fresh parsley
2 TBS Caesar dressing

Maple Mustard

1/4 cup maple syrup
2 TBS Dijon mustard
pinch of allspice

  • Combine ingredients and chill. Use the same day.

Sriracha Kicker

1/2 cup butter
2 TBS Sriracha sauce

  • Combine ingredients and chill before using.

Spicy Lime

1/3 cup lime juice (approx. 6 limes)
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground pepper

  • Brush over just-cooked corn or if you’re grilling, brush this mixture over the top exposed kernels every time you turn it while cooking.

Ancho Chili (yields 8)

3 TBS butter
1 TBS chopped cilantro
2 tsp ancho chili powder (smoked paprika is a good alternative)

  • Mix & melt ingredients then pour over just before serving. Shake bowl to cover all sides.

Orange Kicker

1 1/2 TBS Maldon Sea Salt
2 tsp orange zest

  • Blend thoroughly then sprinkle over hot corn before serving.

Paula Deen’s Bacon Wrapped

  • Pull back the husk (keeping it attached on one end) then remove all the silks.
  • Soak the cobs in water for 30 minutes, remove from water and pat dry.
  • Spiral wrap a strip of bacon around each cob (from one end to the other), pull the leaves back over then tie the ends closed.
  • Place them on a hot grill (medium heat) and cook for about 20 minutes. Remove when both bacon & kernels are cooked.

Also see this page for making compound butters in bulk to freeze (nice time saver): Freeze Ahead Flavor Bombs.

Tips & Techniques: For a smoky, slightly charred flavor, remove silks and husks, then brush exposed kernels with oil before grilling. Prefer a moister kernel? Strip away silks only and grill the ears inside their husks after a 20-minute soak in cold water. Source: Country Living.

Recipes From Around The Net

  • Chili Lime: Try this zesty, tender, Mexican-inspired recipe from Guy Fieri – perfect for your next barbecue. Delish.
  • Mexican Street/Elote: A favorite street food in Mexico that’s easy to make at home on your grill. Slathered with chili mayo and finished with fresh cilantro, crumbled cotija cheese, a sprinkle of smoked paprika and a squeeze of lime. Pinch And Swirl.
  • Jalapeno-Lime: Rachael Ray’s tasty twist found on Food Network.
  • Parsley/Thyme/Sage: A picnic favorite is made even better when drizzled with this! Country Living.
  • Lemon Thyme: Available at farmers markets and specialty produce markets, this herb lends a delicate lemony-herbal flavor, but feel free to use regular fresh thyme instead. You can pull back the husks and use them as a handle while eating. Epicurious.
  • w/Burnt Onion Ketchup: Green onions, fresh oregano and coriander, Parmesan cheese–how could this not be great! Lifestyle Food.
  • Indian Street: Roasted on the BBQ then slathered in Indian spices, melted ghee and topped with chopped cilantro and a huge squeeze of lime. The Art of Doing Stuff.
  • Molasses: A spicy barbecue twist! Cumin seeds, small red onion, garlic cloves, ancho chile powder, spanish smoked paprika, cayenne, molasses, Worcestershire, Kosher salt & more. Good Housekeeping.
  • A Trio of Treats: Spread with one of these flavorful blends for a luxuriously indulgent touch (Chili – Sun-Dried Tomato – Truffle). Self Magazine.
  • Baked w/Herbs: Enjoy an all-American classic with 20 to 24 sprigs fresh basil, rosemary, thyme, dill weed, marjoram or sage. Betty Crocker.
  • Parmesan: Easy and delicious! This also has chopped garlic and Italian parsley to really make things pop. Food Network.
  • Cheesy: For a nifty, hands-on way to coat the kernels, pack mixture into a plastic-lined ramekin and chill; then let guests roll their own cobs in the butter. Martha Stewart.
  • Curried With Goat Cheese: Can also do this with queso fresco or any other crumbly cheese such as feta. Parmesan is also good, and even though it won’t spread well, you can sprinkle the mixture on. Taste Of Home.

Bonus Ideas:

  • 10 Ways To Try: Ideas offered are Mayonnaise, Chili & Cheese; Fruit Chutney; Creamy Guacamole; Cinnamon Spice; Curry Powder & Nuts; Easy Seasonings; Fresh Herbs; Pesto & Parmesan; Hummus & Peppers; Herbed Pepper Seasoning. From Better Homes And Gardens.
  • Fresh Fried (Shucking, Silking, Cooking, and Freezing): There is nothing in this world like the flavor of corn, shucked and cut off the cob and cooked up in a skillet. No matter how hard companies may try (and I do appreciate their efforts!), no frozen or canned varieties will even come close. The taste is night and day, as if it were two different vegetables entirely. From Southern Plate.

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