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Easy Blackened Corn is a simple summer side dish the whole family will love! Corn on the cob is seasoned with spices, then cooked in butter until it's charred and lightly blackened for optimal flavor.
'Tis the season for corn on the cob, and this year I've really been loving blackened corn.
What is blackened corn, you ask? It's corn that's been seasoned, then charred either in a cast iron skillet or on the grill until it's blackened on the outside, which makes it incredibly flavorful. Ultimately, it's a tasty way to cook corn, and a great way to switch up how you normally eat it.
- An easy side dish that features everyone's favorite vegetable: corn!
- The homemade blackened seasoning makes this dish incredibly flavorful.
- Can easily customize to your liking, and can be made with either fresh or frozen corn (see below).
Corn - There are many options for this recipe. You can use fresh corn on the cob, frozen corn on the cob or frozen corn kernels -- whatever you have on hand!
Oil - Preferably an oil with a high smoke point, like avocado oil or ghee.
Butter - An absolute must-have when cooking corn!
Spices - A mix of smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, onion powder, and cayenne pepper works well, but feel free to omit the cayenne if you want it to be less spicy.
Herbs - I opted for fresh chives, but fresh parsley or even fresh cilantro works too.
Step 1: Partially cook the corn. NOTE: only follow this step if you're using corn on the cob; if you're using corn kernels, skip to step 2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then place the corn in and boil for 3-4 minutes to partially cook the corn; drain and run cold water overtop, then place the corn on a plate or in a shallow bowl.
Step 2: Season. Combine the spices together in a small bowl, then use your hands to rub the spice mixture over the corn.
Step 3: Char. Heat oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, then add the corn and cook for 2-3 minutes per "side" until the corn is slightly blackened, repeating this process until the ears are charred to your liking. Remove from the heat, then add a small amount of butter atop each ear of corn and allow it to melt.
Step 4: Finish. Use tongs to place corn on a cutting board. Once the corn is cool enough to handle, slice it off of the cob and into a large bowl. Garnish with chives and enjoy!
Tips and tricks
- Place a lid on the skillet and reduce heat as needed to avoid smoke.
- While this recipe gives the option for fresh or frozen corn, I don't recommend using canned corn because the texture won't be the same.
- Serve blackened corn alongside grilled chicken thighs, pesto chicken salad, this beef enchilada skillet, or these rotisserie chicken tacos.
Cooking on the grill
Prefer to grill instead of cooking inside? No problem. The method is fairly similar to using frozen corn on the cob, but you udon't have to partially cook it beforehand.
To grill , simply heat your grill over medium-high heat, then place the shucked and seasoned ears of corn directly on the grill (make sure to oil the grates first). Cook the corn until it's blackened on all sides.
Cooking methods for fresh vs. frozen corn
Fresh ears of corn: First, husk the corn. Then, bring a large pot of water to a boil and boil the corn for 3-4 minutes to partially cook it; drain and run cold water over it. Season the corn with the spice mixture, then cook it in a cast iron skillet with oil or on the grill until blackened.
Frozen corn on the cob: Follow the steps above, but there's no need to husk the corn because it should already come without the husk in the frozen food aisle at the store.
Fresh or frozen corn kernels: Heat oil in a cast iron skillet, then place the corn in a single layer, stirring every 2-3 minutes until it's blackened to your liking.
Besides chives, feel free to add the following to the corn to take it up a notch:
- Feta cheese
- Cotija cheese
- Chopped crispy bacon
- Sliced red onion
- Cooked cherry tomatoes
- A squeeze of fresh lime juice
Refrigerator: Store cooked corn in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
More easy side dishes
If you made this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Thanks!
- If you're using fresh corn on the cob, be sure to husk it beforehand, then slice each ear of corn in half.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add the corn and cook for 3 minutes to partially cook it; drain and run cold water over the corn.
- Meanwhile, combine the smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, onion powder, and cayenne in a small bowl.
- Place the corn on a plate, then use your hands to coat the corn in the seasoning mix.
- Heat oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, then add the corn and cook for 2-3 minutes until charred. Use kitchen tongs to turn the corn and continue cooking until it's blackened to your liking. NOTE: you may need to reduce heat throughout the cooking process to avoid smoking.
- Remove the skillet from the heat, then add a dollop of butter on top of each ear of corn and allow it to melt. Sprinkle with chives and enjoy! Alternatively, you can slice the corn off of the cob, then sprinkle with chives.
- Heat your grill over medium-high heat, then oil the grates. Place the corn directly onto the grill and allow it to cook for a few minutes until the kernels are charred. Use tongs to turn it and continue cooking until it's blackened to your liking.
- Remove the corn and place it on a plate, then add a dollop of butter on top of each ear of corn and allow it to melt. Sprinkle with chives and enjoy! Alternatively, you can slice the corn off the cob, then sprinkle with chives.