Grilled Mexican Street Corn (Elotes)

If you aren’t able to find traditional Mexican crema in your local grocery store, by all means, use regular sour cream. You can also substitute grated Parmesan cheese for the cotija.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings


  • 6 to 8 medium ears sweet corn, husks removed
  • 1/2 cup Mexican crema, or sour cream
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup minced cilantro
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons lime zest, from one lime
  • 2 tablespoon lime juice, from one lime
  • 1/2 cup cotija cheese, crumbled
  • Lime wedges, to serve


1 Heat a gas or charcoal grill to 400F. Clean the grates once it has heated.

2 Whisk together the sauce: In a bowl, whisk together the crema, mayonnaise, cilantro, garlic, chipotle pepper, lime zest and lime juice. Taste and season the mixture with salt if needed. (Crema has a little salt already, so add extra judiciously.) Set aside.

2016-07-29-Street-Corn-6 Grilled Mexican Street Corn

3 Grill the corn: Place the husked corn directly onto grill grates. Grill the corn for about 3 minutes, undisturbed, or until kernels begin to turn golden brown and look charred. Turn over and repeat. When all sides are browned, remove from the grill onto a plate.

Grilled Mexican Street Corn Grilled Mexican Street Corn


4 Top the corn with sauce and cheese: Using a brush or a spoon, coat each ear of corn with the crema mixture. Sprinkle with crumbled cojita cheese. Sprinkle with additional chipotle pepper, if desired. Serve immediately with extra lime wedges.

Grilled Mexican Street Corn

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  • Kam

    Really easy…great flovour. Everyone loved it


  • Lynnda

    Tried it! Loved it! I now make it often, whenever I can find the cotija cheese.


  • Maddie

    Fabulous! I made a deconstructed version of this with your exact recipe. It was incredible, light and refreshing. Thank you!


  • Christina

    I made this for my son and it was absolutely AMAZING!!!!


  • Nancy Heard

    Wow, this is delicious! My husband and son loved it too. So easy to make. Couldn’t find the Mexican Crema but had plain Greek yogurt and that worked fine. Will definitely make again.


  • Joanne

    I love street corn but was never brave enough to make it. I decided to try last night and we all loved it! I followed the recipe as written and wouldn’t change a thing!


  • Michele Woods

    Amazing- so much so that the kids didn’t leave any kernels on the cob.


  • Gina

    Absolutely delicious. Party hit! And so so easy! Yummy. Make a lot because everyone had seconds. Dipped grilled shrimp in the extra spread and it was yummy too.


  • Kathi

    I’m making this tonight and have ever but the ground chipotle pepper. What can do use instead?
    I have chili powder, cayenne pepper or Smoked paprika.

    • Summer Miller

      Hi, Kathi! I would blend all three of the spices you mentioned together! Be careful on the cayenne unless you really like things spicy!

  • Lynne

    I made this last night. It was fabulous. I will definitely be making this all summer!


  • Ashley

    I found this recipe and I havent eaten corn on the cob any other way since I started making this! The flavor profile is amazing!

  • Michelle

    Omg! Made these last night. So delicious!


  • Eileen

    I wanted to make this after having it a restaurant in Boston. We had just picked up a bunch of fresh sweet corn at a farm stand in Maine. But I didn’t have most of the authentic Mexican ingredients on hand so I winged it with substitutions – sour cream thinned with a little heavy cream, feta mixed in the sauce and then Parmesan sprinkled on top when serving, and a mixture of parsley with oregano for the cilantro since sadly my cilantro plant had shriveled up and died. Like others suggested, we cut it off the cob and served it in a bowl as a side. It was devoured by everyone. Can’t wait to make it again when I have the time to pick up the real Mexican ingredients!


  • Vicki

    Luv the corn! I like to cut the corn off the cob after grilling and tossing in the sauce some times. A bit less messy and stores a few days in sealed container. Reminds me of when I was young.

  • sudeesh

    I have tried this. It really worked out. The final corn was golden brown in colour and was very tasty. Can i just try another cream over this????Can you suggest me to use another one?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Sudessh! Instead of the crema, I’d suggest using sour cream or full-fat yogurt. Creme fraiche would also work if that’s something you have available! Enjoy!

  • Jamie

    I make my own creme, buy “natural” sour cream, dilute with 1 – 2 tablespoons of lime juice to taste and desired consistency with a dash of salt, whisk and pour

  • Mark

    I plan on making this in a couple of days and have a question about the crema. Is pourable Crema Mexicana (Mexican table cream) what’s called for here, or should I be looking for something in a sour cream – type container?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Mark! Emma here, managing editor. The pourable Mexican crema is what you want here. It has the consistency of thin sour cream or extra-thick heavy cream. Hope that helps!

      • Mark

        Got it, thanks! Made this recipe twice this week, and will continue to use it while fresh sweet corn is in season — it’s mighty tasty!

  • Carolyn

    Best corn on earth !!

  • Greg

    Just made these today. Excellent and will be a summer and Cinco De Mayo staple at our house. Thank you!,

  • Wendy

    Had a salsa-like version from The Fresh Market. Found your recipe and knew I had to try it. I cut the corn off the cob after roasting and tossed it in the sauce. LOVE IT! I also marinated some chicken breast in the sauce and grilled it. I am going to make a salad of Roma tomatoes, jalapeno, red onion, cilantro and lime. Then combine the three on a flour tortilla. Thank you!!!!


  • Jereda Lison

    Can I broil it instead of grilling (or pop in the oven)? My grill just went kaput and I’ve promised my company that I’d make this tonight!

  • John

    Perfect! I had heard about Mexican Street Corn (Elote) and tried Megan’s recipe out for our Fourth Of July with friends. Wow! You sure made me look like the Galloping Gourmet! I actually had a guest say that the corn was, “…to die for.” Several people commented on it and it was fantastic! It not only tasted fantastic, but it really looks nice on the plate. We had it again last night and I can’t wait to make it again in a couple of nights. You will crave this fun side dish! Would go great with “taco night”, “hamburger night” or cookout. Thank you!

  • Doni Brune

    This is a crave recipe. Once you have it you crave it. I use sour cream but might try the crema sometime. Didn’t have cojita so I used queso fresco crumbling cheese. I like the Chipotle chile powder, a little pricy but worth it for the smoky flavor.

  • Betty

    can some other cheese be substituted for the cotija?

    • Emma Christensen

      I’d probably substitute feta (though its flavor is stronger) or parmesan (though it’s less crumbly). Anyone else have suggestions?

    • Laura

      We usually use mozzerella. It is easier to find in north west ohio.

  • Robert Blackman

    Does the sauce need to be made fresh, just before serving? Or can it be made a few hours in advance and have the same (or better) flavor and texture?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Robert! Yes, I think you could prepare the sauce a few hours in advance and be just fine!

      • Robert Blackman

        Awesome, and thanks for the quick response! After 20 years of being the ‘grill guy’ and my wife doing the regular cooking, she decided it was time to move on, so I’m learning all I can about this indoor prep/cooking! I’m actually making this tonight with Spanish rice and venison steaks dusted with Carne Asada seasoning!

    • JC

      Fine to make ahead of time, just bring it to room temp before slathering onto corn so you don’t make your corn cold. Delish!

  • Terry Ann

    Hi Megan! What is the difference in taste between Mexican crema and sour cream? Is it worth making a special trip to try and track Mexican crema down? Thanks!

    • C Hoffman

      I think that Mexican crema tastes more like heavy whipping cream, but with a slightly more sour cream consistency.

  • [email protected]

    OMG! I am really craving corn right now but here in the Dordogne, it is very rare to find corn on the cob. How I miss it. We only find it in cans as it is not a popular food item here. Corn is seen as animal fodder for some reason. What a waste.

    • Mike

      You can make this with canned or frozen corn and make it into a salad, it’s called esquites. It is essentially the same ingredients with a different presentation.

  • Aya

    This was a fantastic last minute side dish. I was using the oven for an entree and put the corn in there. Probably not as good as on the grill but so easy and everybody loved it!

  • Vivian | stayaliveandcooking

    That taco cart sounds like something I should visit! I love the way this looks, I think this would be a great variety to our regular corn from the barbecue :)