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Mexican Street Corn – Elote [+ Video]

20 Reviews
Elote or Mexican street corn is grilled corn on the cob lathered in creamy, cheesy goodness that is so irresistible! If you’ve never had it, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it!
A photo of several cobs of elote mexican street corn lathered in cotija cheese and seasonings.
This is not the typical mayonnaise and butter Mexican street corn that is found all over the web these days. This Elote is so delicious, you will forget about any other Mexican Street Corn recipe you have ever tried. Trust me!

I’m finding myself dreaming about our trip to Mexico and all the delicious food we ate while we were there! The elote was to die for! I seriously could have eaten it at every meal! And it’s so easy to make right at home.

What is Elote?

This authentic Mexican Street Corn, known as Elote, is smothered in Mexican Crema, and sprinkled with Cotija (a dry Mexican cheese). Next you add a little, smoky chili powder or smoked paprika and fresh cilantro and then immediately dive in. And the best part? This Mexican Street Corn is grilled, which makes it pop with juicy, sweetness, and the crema is like buttah (that’s butter in case you didn’t notice;).

Ingredients You’ll Need for Mexican Street Corn:

I’ve mentioned most of the ingredients you will need for this dish, but let’s look into them a little closer. Many of them might be out of your comfort zone, but no need to worry! I know that trying ingredients from other countries, especially if you don’t really cook can seem a bit too adventurous, but I promise that these six ingredients are essential to the best elote you’ll ever have!

  1. Corn
  2. Mexican Crema
  3. Cotija cheese
  4. Chili powder or smoked paprika
  5. Limes
  6. Cilantro

A photo of several cobs of elote mexican street corn lathered in cotija cheese and seasonings.

Make Mexican Street Corn – Elote

Let’s start with the corn, of course! Head on over to our post on the best grilled corn recipe where we share all our secrets for the making perfect grilled corn every time. We also discuss how to pick good corn on the cob at the grocery store in that post. Follow everything in that post except for adding the salt and sugar at the end. You don’t need to add salt to this corn because the cotija is going to add all the saltiness you need.

What is Mexican Crema?

Crema is slightly soured and thickened cream, milder and less thick than American sour cream. You will find it in specialty cheese section of your grocery store. As soon as you pull the corn off the grill, spread the Mexican crema all over each corn on the cob. If you can’t find Mexican crema, you can use mayonnaise as a substitute.

A photo of several cobs of elote mexican street corn lathered in cotija cheese and seasonings.

What is Cotija Cheese?

Cotija cheese is a hard, crumbly Mexican cheese. Cotija cheese is made mainly from cow’s milk and is quite salty.

It resembles feta cheese. In fact, feta can be used as a substitute if you absolutely cannot find cotija, but try your hardest to find the cotija! It will also be in the specialty cheese section.

Sprinkle the cotija all over the corn that has been lathered in crema.

How to Season Elote

The classic seasoning for elote is chili powder, but we have also found that we love it with smoked paprika. So maybe do a few cobs with each and see which one you prefer. You can sprinkle them on the corn with the cotija cheese and then squeeze fresh lime juice all over each corn on the cob. Top off each cob with some chopped fresh cilantro.

A photo of several cobs of elote mexican street corn lathered in cotija cheese and seasonings.

Can You Reheat Corn on the Cob?

There are a few ways to reheat corn on the cob that will keep it juicy and tender.

  • Microwave:  Place the corn in a microwave safe dish and cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap. Set the timer for 10-20 second bursts and continue heating till corn is warm.
  • Oven: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add butter, 1 tsp. water, salt and pepper to the corn and wrap in foil. Place in the oven for 5-7 minutes.
  • Boiling Water: Bring water to a boil. Add the corn and boil for 1-2 minutes.

How Long Does Elote Keep?

Fully prepared elote will last for up to 3 days in the refrigerator, but it is by the best when it is eaten fresh! It doesn’t freeze very well, so we don’t recommend that.

A photo of several cobs of elote mexican street corn lathered in cotija cheese and seasonings.

What to Eat with Elote Mexican Street Corn

I could make this elote Mexican street corn my whole meal, but most of you are probably going to want it as a side. So if you are looking for a main dish to go with it, here is a link to all our Mexican main dishes and a few of our favorites:

A photo of several cobs of elote mexican street corn lathered in cotija cheese and seasonings.

More CORN RECIPES You Are Sure to Love:


Mexican Street Corn – Elote

Our favorite side all summer long, Mexican street corn!
Elote or Mexican street corn is grilled corn on the cob lathered in creamy, cheesy goodness that is so irresistible, you won't be able to live without it! I need this ASAP!

Mexican Street Corn - Elote

4.45 from 20 votes
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 6-8 Ears of Corn husked
  • Mexican Crema found in your local grocery store by the cheeses or Mayonnaise
  • Cotija Cheese Again, over by the cheese section
  • Chili Powder or Smoked Paprika
  • 2 Limes
  • Fresh Cilantro chopped


  • Heat a grill to medium-high heat and add the corn.
  • There is no need to add salt as the cotija cheese is salty.
  • Grill on each side for a few minutes until some of the kernals begin to look darker, and a little charred, as pictured above.
  • Remove from the grill and immediately spread the mexican crema all over the corn.
  • Sprinkle lightly with cotija cheese, chili powder and lime juice.
  • Top with a little bit of the fresh cilantro and enjoy.
  • Best eaten hot off the grill, so be careful not to burn yourself.
Nutrition Facts
Mexican Street Corn - Elote
Amount Per Serving (1 ear)
Calories 63 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 10mg0%
Potassium 199mg6%
Carbohydrates 14g5%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 135IU3%
Vitamin C 9mg11%
Calcium 7mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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About the authors

carrian feik cheney oh sweet basil

Cade and Carrian have three children and love to spend time together whether it’s vacationing or snuggled up on the couch for a good movie.

And this family especially loves to eat.

They love everything from the keep you fit and healthy to the get out your sweat pants indulgent and everything in between.

But most of all, they love the memories made, shared and treasured and it’s all thanks to a meal shared together with loved ones.

Leave a comment


  • If you love elote you’ll love esquites even more! I just tried it the other evening in Mexico City and it was divine. It’s basically corn removed from the cob then cooked in butter (and water?) with chopped bell pepper and poblano chile pepper strips (I don’t know what else). It is served in a cup and topped with lime juice, mayo, and cotija. Stir it all up and it is delicious!

    *I actually learned from friends that the version we ate in Mexico City is better than any they’ve eaten in the Puebla/Cholula area. I hope to learn how to make this version soon 🙂

    • Reply
    • That sounds absolutely amazing! I’ll have to try to figure that one out!

      • Reply
  • How much did it cost to make this dish roughly? I love street corn, but I’ve never made it at home. Cheers!

    • Reply
    • Hey Nikki! I would say maybe $10-12 for the whole recipe if you do it in peak corn season, a little more if corn is out of season.

      • Reply
      • Thank you so much! I can’t wait to try this and share it with my family!

  • It’s 897 calories for one ear of the corn? That seems very high.

    • Reply
    • That is for the whole recipe. So the 897 is for the 6-8 ears…roughly 150 calories per ear. Phew!

      • Reply
  • just PERFECT!!!!! This looks so good.

    • Reply
    • You’re going to LOVE it!!

      • Reply
  • This was fantastic! I’ve made it with mayo/butter and now this way, I far prefer this to the other! Thanks for sharing!

    • Reply
    • Thank you for the feedback Tamara! So glad you enjoyed it!

      • Reply
  • It’s 897 calories for one ear of the corn? That seems very high. 

    • Reply
    • Oh goodness no! We had some problems with our nutritional info extracting properly over the summer. I’ll have to go back and fix this one! Off the top of my head, I would guess it’s somewhere around 150 calories. Thank you for letting us know about this error!

      • Reply
      • 😂😂 oh, thank goodness!! Can’t wait to try this then! 

      • We would love to hear what you think!!

  • I’ve seen something similar at the PC Farmer’s market and it’s amazing. I’ll give this one a whirl.


    • Reply
    • Seriously, we cannot eat it fast enough!

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  • The corn looks delicious. I agree about cooking. Experimenting is always fun and you never know what a wonderful dish you’ll create on your own until you try.

    • Reply
    • Exactly, you just have to take that first step.

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  • I’m Mexican and this isn’t how we make elotes… We do use butter and mayo, lol. Just cause these are Mexican ingredients doesn’t mean we use them for everything.

    • Reply
    • Exaxtly, Im not mexican but i grew up in southern CA. Mayo and butter at least she got the cheese right. And it’s usually boiled with the husk. Not saying theres anything wrong with this recipe but dont call it AUTHENTIC mexican its more of a twist.

      • Reply
      • Thanks for your comment Brit. This was a recipe I was taught by someone who is Mexican so I guess it just depends on the family or region. I’ll have to try the butter and mayo way asap!

  • Oh friend! YUM. I simply ADORE corn and the addition of the cotija and chili powder and lime… I knew I liked you 🙂 <3

    • Reply
  • WHOA!!!!! I have to try this corn, every time I see it somewhere it makes me drool! love it 🙂

    • Reply
  • I have seriously been grilling corn like crazy lately. This sounds SOOO good!!

    • Reply
  • The corn looks awesome! There is a vendor at the Park City farmers market that makes a similar corn and it's one of our favorite things to treat ourselves with when we go!

    • Reply

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