Combine the flavors of the classic Mexican street food into a comforting creamed corn dish. Super easy to make. Without a doubt this is the perfect summertime side dish. Or make this for Cinco de Mayo. Any celebration is a great excuse!
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Over my many years of blogging, I have seen numerous food trends.
Some I ignore and some I embrace.
I am here today to totally embrace the Etole craze that is going on now. We aren't just seeing people enjoy the dish itself but also seeing a rise in people using the seasoning. Trader Joe's even came out with an "Everything But the Elote" seasoning blend.
It's time for my own spin on Etole with this easy to make Elote Skillet Creamed Corn. I combine the flavors of the popular street food into a bowl of delicious corn that can be made whether or not fresh corn is in season.
🙋 What Does Etole Mean?
In case you were wondering Elote means "tender cob."
Here is what you will need from the store to make this dish. There are different ways to make it and we offer you some substitutions.
- Ears of fresh sweet corn (frozen if out of season)
- Sour cream or Mexican creama
- Cotija cheese (queso fresco cheese could work)
- Pepper Flakes or Chili powder
- Stone ground corn meal
- Chopped Cilantro
- Chopped green onions (optional)
- Fresh lime juice or lime wedge (optional)
For the recipe you can use either regular sour cream or Mexican crema, which normally isn't as thick. Mayo is used for traditional Elote. You could also substitute with room temperature cream cheese if you like, but keep in mind it's thicker than mayo.
Wild Violet Corn
As far as corn goes use the best corn on the cob you can find or the best frozen corn (skip the canned stuff).
When I made the dish for this post I was able to use Wild Violet sweet corn I found at my local Kroger store. Yes this is actually a sweet corn that is white corn dotted with violet colored kernels. It's sweet and you can taste the difference.
Chili powder (or chipotle powder) is what is commonly used for elote. But I really love using the pepper flakes from the Flat Iron Pepper Company Their flakes are high quality and come in a wide variety of bold flavors. I can't say enough about how good they are.
Another option for heat is using canned chipotle peppers. Just chop them up to taste and add to the dish.
For a Mexican corn dish, you gotta have a Mexican cheese. Cotija is perfect for this. Some call it the Mexican version of Parmesan. It crumbles up nicely and has a flavor that is somewhat similar to parm. Seek it out, it will make this dish.
Most major grocery stores carry it. Sometimes as a round or in a container already crumbled.
Feta cheese could also be used instead if you wanted.
💡 Top Tip
To make removing the corn from the cob easier:
- Place a corn holder into one side of the cob
- Put the cob into the hole of the top of a bundt pan
- Run a knife down the corn and it will all be collected in the bottom of the bundt pan.
I don't remember where I picked up this technique but I love whoever come up with the idea.
🍳 Cook in a Skillet
I make the dish in my cast iron skillet. I cook the corn until it has charred kernels, before adding all the ingredients. This will give it that roasted flavor you would find on a good stick of Mexican street corn.
🌽 More Corn Recipes
Here are some other corn based recipes on the blog to check out.
- Hatch Pepper Creamed Corn
- Blue Cornmeal Muffins
- Grits with Fresh Corn, Chiles and Bacon
- Cornmeal Onion Rings
Elote Skillet Creamed Corn
- Remove all the corn kernels from the cob.
- Add a couple tablespoons of cooking oil to a pan or skillet. Turn the heat to medium high.
- Add the corn. Cook until the corn has taken on some brown color, anywhere from 5 to 8 minutes.
- Add in mayo, sour cream, half and half, and ground meal. Stir to combine. Add more half and half or water it it's too thick for your liking.
- Top with cilantro and Cotija cheese. Season with salt and pepper flakes to taste. Optional - add a fresh squeezes of juice from a fresh lime.