Mexican Street Corn

Authentic Mexican Street Corn Recipe: A Flavorful Delight!

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If you’ve ever wandered the streets of Mexico, chances are you’ve come across the irresistible aroma of elote, or Mexican street corn. This beloved street food is a popular snack enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. With its combination of sweet corn, tangy mayonnaise, and savory cheese, it’s no wonder this dish has captured the hearts (and taste buds) of so many. In this recipe, we’ll show you how to recreate the magic of Mexican street corn right in your own kitchen!


  • 4 whole ears of corn on the cob or 6-8 half cobs
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 4 tablespoons queso cotija


1. Prepare the Corn:

  • If using whole ears of corn, shuck the corn and remove any silk. If using half cobs, cut the ears of corn in half.

2. Grill the Corn:

  • Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Place the corn directly on the grill grates.
  • Grill the corn, turning occasionally, until it is tender and lightly charred, about 10-15 minutes.

3. Prepare the Seasoning Mixture:

  • In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, chopped cilantro, lemon juice, chili powder, and garlic powder. Mix until well combined.

4. Coat the Corn:

  • Once the corn is cooked, remove it from the grill and let it cool slightly.
  • Using a basting brush or spoon, coat each ear of corn with the mayonnaise mixture, making sure to cover all sides evenly.

5. Garnish with Cheese:

  • Sprinkle each ear of corn with queso cotija, ensuring that the cheese sticks to the mayonnaise mixture.

6. Serve and Enjoy:

  • Serve the Mexican street corn immediately while it’s still warm. Enjoy the delicious flavors and textures of this iconic street food!

Cook’s Notes and Variations:

  • Grilling Alternatives: If you don’t have a grill, you can also boil the corn on the cob until tender, or even roast it in the oven.
  • Seasoning Variations: Feel free to customize the seasoning mixture to suit your taste. You can add more or less chili powder for extra heat, or even sprinkle some paprika for a smoky flavor.
  • Vegan Version: For a vegan-friendly version of Mexican street corn, you can substitute the mayonnaise with a dairy-free alternative and use vegan cheese or nutritional yeast instead of queso cotija.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Q: Can I use frozen corn instead of fresh? A: While fresh corn is ideal for this recipe, you can certainly use frozen corn if that’s what you have available. Just be sure to thaw it completely before grilling or cooking.

Q: Where can I find queso cotija? A: Queso cotija is a Mexican cheese that can typically be found in the dairy section of most grocery stores, especially those with a selection of international foods. If you can’t find it, you can substitute it with crumbled feta cheese or Parmesan.

Q: Can I make this ahead of time? A: While Mexican street corn is best enjoyed fresh off the grill, you can prepare the seasoning mixture in advance and store it in the refrigerator until ready to use. Simply coat the grilled corn with the mixture and garnish with cheese just before serving.

Keto and Low-Carb Versions:

  • Keto Version: For a keto-friendly version of Mexican street corn, you can use grilled zucchini or cauliflower florets instead of corn. Coat the vegetables with the seasoning mixture and garnish with crumbled cotija cheese or grated Parmesan.
  • Low-Carb Version: To reduce the carb content, you can skip the mayonnaise or use a low-carb mayonnaise alternative. You can also decrease the amount of lemon juice and use a sugar-free substitute if desired.

With its bold flavors and irresistible combination of sweet, tangy, and savory elements, Mexican street corn is a true culinary delight. Whether enjoyed as a side dish at your next barbecue or as a snack on its own, this classic street food never fails to impress. With this easy-to-follow recipe, you can bring the authentic taste of elote right to your own kitchen. So fire up the grill, gather your ingredients, and get ready to savor the deliciousness of homemade Mexican street corn!

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