Make good use of bargain-priced fresh corn with these unexpected and flavorful ways to prepare this summertime staple. 

By Antara Sinha
August 15, 2017

Through summer's end, expect to find corn in abundance at farmers' market stands and grocery store produce sections. If you’re tired of rotating through your tired-and-true corn recipe rut (yes, there’s more you can do with it than slap it on the grill), try a new dish that breathes new life into a budget-friendly summer staple.

Photo: Victor Protasio

1. Tomato, Basil, and Corn Pizza

Corn makes for an unexpected pizza topping, but it works so well you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of it before. Tangy balsamic glaze and in-season tomatoes elevate the humble pizza to next-level goodness.

Photo: Jennifer Causey

2. Creole Shrimp and Creamed Corn

Creamed corn stands in for grits in this Creole-inspired dish. Bolstered by smoky paprika and accented by the sweetness of creamed corn, this seafood recipe can do no wrong.

Photo: Caitlin Bensel

3. Elote-Style Zucchini Noodles

Inspired by a Mexican street food favorite, this salad proves that greens are anything but boring. Crumbly queso fresco, a spritz of fresh lime, and another seasonal favorite, zucchini, make for a perfectly balanced combination.

Photo: Jennifer Causey

4. Grilled Corn Salsa

Flavorful char from grilled corn, citrusy freshness from fresh-squeezed lime, and heat from jalepeños make this versatile salsa a perfect partner to blackened fish, tacos, quesadillas, or even as an omelet topping.

Photo: Caitlin Bensel

5. Silky Tomato-Basil Soup with Fresh Corn

Using summer-specific produce makes even this hot soup work well for warm-weather meals. Silken tofu replaces heavy cream and gives this dish a boost of protein. A tangy bruschetta topping adds garden-fresh flavor. Serve with good, crusty bread for a filling, satisfying weeknight meal.

Photo: Victor Protasio

6. Sweet Corn Oatmeal with Peaches

Is it unexpected? Yes. Will it become your new go-to summer breakfast? Probably. Sweet corn is made sweeter with maple syrup, vanilla-spiked Greek yogurt provides a protein-packed tang, and fresh, ripe peaches bring all the best of summer flavor, just because.

Photo: Jennifer Causey

7. Grill-Steamed Corn with Cilantro and Chile Flakes

A traditional grilled corn on the cob gets dressed up with cilantro, chile flakes, and a steam-in-husk technique that combines the smokiness of a grill char with the tenderness of steamed corn.

Photo: Jennifer Causey

8. Applewood-Smoked Corn on the Cob

Applewood gives corn a distinct sweet, smoky flavor and turns the corn a beautiful burnished color, perfect for picnic table presentation. Toppings are kept simple here, just salt, pepper, and butter to let the corn shine as the star of the show.

Photo: Caitlin Bensel

9. Brined Shrimp with Charred Corn Salad

For a recipe that only takes 13 minutes of active preparation, this simple dish pops with fresh, vibrant flavor. Brining the shrimp before preparation makes sure they stay succulent, and don’t dry out when they sear.