Simple and fast recipes are the best, especially when they taste as good as this Grilled Mexican Corn. The Chipotle and Cotija cheese pack this recipe with the classic elote flavor for the quintessential side dish for your summer cookout.
🍽️ Why This Works
Super Fast – I love that this whole recipe can be whipped up in about 10 minutes. Save yourself even more time by making the spread ahead of time. Then, all you have to do is throw the corn on the grill. We love to make these as the Chipotle Lime Chicken is cooling since they grill so fast.
Packed with Flavor – This sauce holds the secret. The pepper adds the earthy tones, while the slightly salty Cotija cheese is offset by the bright flavors of the lemon and cilantro.
Easy to Prepare – Spoiler Alert! Make this sauce ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you are ready to grill the corn. A simple grilling on direct heat and brushing on the sauce, and you’ll have a line at the BBQ with friends wanting more.
Scalable – This recipe is set for 2 ears of corn but is easily adapted to more by simply doubling or tripling the recipe.
Sauce | You’ll recognize almost all of the ingredients for the sauce. The two you may not be as familiar with are ground chipotle pepper and Cotija cheese. The chipotle is simply a dried and smoked jalapeño pepper that is ground to a fine powder. The Cotija cheese is a Mexican variety of a dried and hard cheese, similar to parmesan. It is typically a bit saltier, and authentic varieties have been aged for over three months.
Together, these ingredients offer a slightly salty, earthy, smoky and bright sauce that is phenomenal.
Sweet Corn | We shucked the corn and threw it straight on the grill. It goes super fast! You’ll enjoy the slight char flavor. Alternatively, consider making beer corn. I like the extra flavor that comes from the beer, but definitely takes a bit more time.
Step One: Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk to thoroughly combine. Place in the refrigerator while you are grilling the corn.
Step Two: Set up the grill for direct heat at 350 degrees. Shuck the corn and place the cob straight on the grill grate for 3-4 minutes per side. The kernels should start to darken and appear charred.
Step Three: Remove the corn from the grill and let cool slightly. Brush the sauce on the corn, making sure to get all sides.
Step Four: Sprinkle with crumbled Cotija cheese and chopped cilantro and serve!
❗ Expert Tips
Insert a wooden skewer into the corn before brushing to give your guests something to hold on to and avoid getting their fingers gooey. Or, if you’re like me, just grab it an eat and don’t worry about the mess!
Chop the cob into thirds before placing it on the grill to offer your family smaller portions. The bite sized servings work well if you have a lot of people.
I mentioned it before, but cook the corn in beer before searing on the grill. That adds such an amazing flavor!
If cojita cheese can’t be found, substitute parmesan cheese.
Add in some queso fresco cheese as a fun substitute.
If you don’t like the taste of mayonnaise, substitute more sour cream.
If you can’t find fresh corn, use the frozen by defrosting and dry off the excess moisture. Proceed as the recipe recommends.
This can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days covered. Reheat in the microwave or eat chilled.
Use this recipe as it is and add it to the Grilled Corn and Black Bean Salsa in place of the grilled corn in that recipe for an incredibly tasty twist.
Once the recipe is made up, top it over the Grilled Tex Mex Flank Steak in place of the Avocado Salsa or replace this corn for the corn in that salsa.
Elote is another term for Mexican Street Corn. It is a sweet corn slathered in a mayonnaise coating with spices and a salty cheese.
Elote and Esquites are essentially the same thing with the exception that Elotes are served with the corn on the cob and Esquites are served with the kernel of the corn cut off in a bowl. Esquites are much better for folks who don’t want to get their fingers messy.
No, it will soften but it doesn’t melt.
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Grilled Mexican Street Corn – Elote
- 2 ears Sweet Corn
- 1 tsp Lime Juice
- 1 tbsp Sour Cream
- 1 tbsp Mayonnaise
- 1 tbsp Cilantro
- 2 tbsp Cotija Cheese crumbled
- 1 tsp Chipotle Pepper ground
- Combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a medium bowl and stir to thoroughly combine.
- Cover and let it rest in the refrigerator while you grill the corn.
- Set up the grill for direct heat at 350 degrees. Add the shucked corn to the grate and grill for 3-4 minutes per side. The kernels should darken and may even be slightly charred.
- Let the corn cool slightly and then brush it liberally with the sauce. Sprinkle with Cotija cheese and chopped cilantro.