This hot skillet of spicy Blackened Corn has the perfect blend of spices, the sweet crunch of corn, and a touch of melted butter. Spicy Cajun flavors come alive with this very simple recipe you can prepare in under 15 minutes.
Buttery blackened corn is the ultimate side dish for anything coming off of the grill or skillet. This recipe is so quick and simple, that it can be prepared while your steaks or roasts are resting. Customize the flavors with different herbs and citrus to match your meal. You can also add it to a BBQ Chicken Salad or mix it with fresh Pico De Gallo.
Why This Recipe Works
- QUICK. It might take you more time to shuck or thaw the corn than it will to cook this dish. Don’t worry about last-minute planning, this blackened corn is the solution.
- FEW INREDIENTS. Only 3 core ingredients are needed, which means you’ll spend less time on prep. There’s a great chance you have everything in your pantry.
- CUSTOMIZABLE. Mix and match herbs, spices, and citrus to alter the dish as you see fit. This base recipe is great on its own but can be customized easily.
the Cajun Technique of “Blackening”
You’ve likely seen the term “Blackened” before with Cajun food. Blackening is a searing technique hailing from Louisiana. Typically the technique is used to prepare fish, chicken, and other meats.
Food is dipped or brushed with butter, seasoned generously with a mixture of flavorful spices, herbs, cayenne pepper, and black pepper, seared in a very hot cast iron skillet. The browned milk solids from the butter and charred spices create a dark brown crust, which gives the name “Blackened”.
Using a Cast Iron Skillet for Blackened Corn
When it comes to blackened corn, using a cast iron skillet is essential. The high heat of a cast iron skillet allows for a quick and even sear, giving the corn its signature charred flavor.
Whether you’re cooking the corn on the stovetop or grill, the high heat of a cast iron skillet quickly sears the corn, sealing in its natural juices, and intensifying its flavor.
Plus, cast iron is one of the key elements for creating that authentic Blackening flavor!
- CORN. Fresh summer corn offers a sweet and vibrant taste, always unique depending on where and when it is harvested. However, if fresh corn isn’t available, frozen corn is a convenient alternative.
- BLACKENING SEASONING. Traditionally you’ll want to use your favorite Cajun seasoning blend, with many available. Try the Sedona Sand All-Purpose Rub, with very similar flavors and is also sugar-free, bringing that punch of heat.
- UNSALTED BUTTER. Make sure you don’t use salted butter, as the combination with seasoning tends to be quite overwhelming.
What can I add to blackened corn?
Try out some of these flavorful additions to enhance your blackened corn:
- Finish the blackened corn with a squeeze of fresh lime or lemon juice.
- Sprinkle cotija cheese or feta cheese, adding a savory and salty bite.
- Finely diced red bell pepper kicks up the flavor with some sweet and sharp notes.
- Pour beer into the skillet after the first sear to deglaze the pan, adding a richer flavor.
- Finely diced herbs such as fresh cilantro, fresh chives, or green onions will brighten up the dish.
Do you need to boil corn before charring?
No, searing the fresh corn in the hot skillet with melted butter will completely cook the corn. Boiling it beforehand will make the corn soft, and create a soggy mess in the skillet.
How to Make Blackened Corn
- Prepare the Corn Kernels. If using fresh sweet corn, shuck the ears and carefully cut off the kernels. If using frozen corn, thaw it according to package instructions.
- Heat the Cast Iron Skillet: Place your trusty cast iron skillet on medium-high heat. Let it get hot – the sizzle is the secret to the blackened magic. Add in the butter when the skillet is hot and let it melt.
- Add Corn Kernels and Seasoning: Toss the corn kernels into the hot skillet and sprinkle on the Cajun seasoning. Mix everything with a spatula to ensure the corn is coated evenly.
- Press Down and Sear. Use your spatula to spread out the corn into an even layer, and press down gently, ensuring each kernel gets that perfect char.
- Stir, and Sear More. After about 3-4 minutes, stir everything up with the spatula and create another flat layer, searing a second time. This helps the corn to brown and caramelize, creating sweet and crispy textures.
- Finish it Off. The blackened corn will be done after about 7-8 minutes. Taste test, and then remove from the heat. Add in your fresh herbs, a squeeze of lime juice, or additional seasoning.
Storing and Reheating Your Blackened Corn
Once your blackened corn is cooked, store any leftovers in an airtight container. When reheating, simply place the corn in a skillet over medium heat, and warm it through. You may need to add a little butter to moisten up the corn.
Squeeze fresh citrus over the corn once it’s warmed through. This will ensure your charred corn tastes just as delicious as when it was first prepared.
When storing charred corn, use an airtight container to keep its spicy flavors fresh. The corn will stay fresh for about 3-5 days.
Dishes to Pair With Blackened Corn
Check out some of our favorite dishes to pair with charred corn. Or, you can sit there with a spoon and eat the whole pan. We won’t judge.
- Smoked Rack of Pork
- Spicy Cajun Pork Ribs
- Cajun Steak and Shrimp Etouffee
- Creamy Smoked Mac and Cheese
- Southern Macaroni Salad
- Grilled Pork Steaks
- Smoked Chicken Pecan Salad
Blackened Corn Recipe
This summer side dish will quickly become a staple for your menu. At Chiles and Smoke, we’re here to bring people together with bold flavors, using spice and flames to ignite the food and friendships.Print
- 4 cups corn kernels
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 tablespoons Sedona Sand All-Purpose Rub, or Cajun seasoning
- Juice from lime or lemon to serve
- Prepare the corn. If using fresh sweet corn, shuck the ears and carefully cut off the kernels. If using frozen corn, thaw it according to package instructions.
- Heat the cast iron skillet: Place the cast iron skillet on medium-high heat. Once it’s hot, add in the butter and let it melt.
- Add corn and seasoning. Once the butter has melted and just starting to sizzle, add in the corn kernels and top with the seasoning. Mix around with your spatula, adding more seasoning if needed.
- Sear the corn. Press all of the corn down with your spatula, allowing it to sear for about 3-4 minutes. Once the corn has started to brown and lightly char, stir the corn around and repeat for another 3-4 minutes. Taste the corn and season more if needed. Remove from the heat.
- Season the corn with herbs and citrus. Stir in chopped herbs, scallions, or squeeze some citrus juice on to finish. Serve immediately.
- Using a cast iron skillet is a must for this recipe, which is needed to create the charred textures.
- When storing charred corn, use an airtight container to keep its spicy flavors fresh. The corn will stay fresh for about 3-5 days.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 8 minutes
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Cast Iron
- Cuisine: Side Dish
Keywords: blackened corn, blackened seasoning, cajun seasoning, charred corn, cast iron corn