Elote : Mexican Style Street Corn

CATEGORIES: Latin, Sara, Vegetables

Mexican Style Street corn is a simple dish to prepare at home.  You can find different variations, but it generally involves a slathering of mayonnaise, crumbled Mexican cheese, chili powder and fresh lime juice. In this version, I ease preparation by mixing the seasonings right into the mayo, along with a little sour cream to make a side dish that’s quick and easy to prepare.  It’s great along side any grilled chicken or steak, especially other latin inspired dishes like Grilled Taco Chicken, or Lime-Chili rubbed Steak.  You might also enjoy my deconstructed version of this dish, Mexican Street Corn Salad.

Mexican Street Corn on Platter

How to Make Elote, Mexican Style Street Corn

This simple side starts with fresh corn on the cob.  You can use any favorite method to cook it, including simmered in water, on the grill, or in a pressure cooker.  While your corn is cooking, simply combine your mixture of mayo, sour cream, and seasonings.

Mayo and seasonings in bowl

I also like putting my cotija cheese in a large, shallow bowl so the corn can be rolled and sprinked easily.

crumbled cotija cheese in a bowl




To assemble, use a spoon to spread the mayo mixture on all sides of the corn and then sprinkle all over with the cheese.  It’s that easy!
Mexican Street Corn on Platter

Here’s some other Latin Favorites you might enjoy with your Mexican Style Sweet Corn!

Lime-Chili Rubbed Steak
Taco Chicken
Best Fajitas Ever
Homemade Tortillas
Black Bean Soup
Quick and Easy Black Beans
Creamy Chicken Taquitos
Shredded Beef Taquitos

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Mexican Street Corn on Platter

Elote : Mexican Style Street Corn

  • Author: Sara Wells


Fresh corn on the cob is brightened with a creamy sauce, flavorful seasonings, and crumbled cheese.  Inspired by the classic street food in Mexico, this corn is super easy to make at home!



4 ears fresh corn on the cob, cooked and warm
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons sour cream
1/41/2 teaspoons lime zest
1/2 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
tiny pinch kosher salt
1 cup crumbled Cotija Cheese* (use fresh parmesan or queso fresco if you can’t find Cotija)


While corn is cooking, combine mayo, sour cream, lime zest and juice, cayenne pepper, chili powder and salt.

Spread mixture on warm corn and then roll or sprinkle with cheese.


*Cotija is similar to Parmesan cheese. It has awesome flavor and a great texture. You may have never noticed it before, but it’s available in most regular grocery stores. It’s often near the cream cheese/refrigerated cheeses. If for some reason you can’t find it at your store, a latin market is sure to have it. You could also substitute Queso Fresco, or Parmesan.


  1. Looks so good! Also, if you can't find Cojita, you can use Queso Fresco. It's not quite as tangy and flavorful, but it's easier to find and a little cheaper and it has the same texture.

  2. Yum, yum, yum! I LOVE elote–had it in Minneapolis with my Mexican peeps for 18 months. I thought the whole mayo thing was bizarre at first but it's not, it's delicious. And I don't even like mayonnaise! Thanks for the recipe. Gotta get me some corn.

  3. Good point about the queso fresco Kate, I should add that in the post.

    Lindsay- I didn't know you went to Minneapolis (ya know, because we're so tight I should know everything about you, right?? lol) that's awesome. I thought the mayo was weird at first too, but it's so yummy!

  4. Mmmm looks good! I saw Paula Deen slather corn in mayo once. I wasn't surprised (come on, it's Paula Deen!) but it's good to see that regular people do it, too 😉
    Love the pictures, too. I can imagine the meltdown that occurred when the corn was taken away…

  5. Ha ha – that's so cute. . .

    I love corn on the cob – I can't wait to try this!!!

    (hahaha – Brigham just laughed-screamed, "Mommy, look at that crazy kid!!")

  6. i tried this for the first time about a month ago at a friends house. I normally don't get into spreading fat on all my food (dangers of being a dietitian) but i'll try anything once…and I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. I'm excited to try it with lowfat condiments to see if it still works.

  7. Yummy! We had corn on the cob three days this week and I am ready for a different variation! If kids love it, than I definitely will make it!

  8. I'm going to miss garden week. I loved getting a new recipe each day. I've gotta admit, mayo on corn sounds strange, but I'll give it a try! I'm surprised your little guy will eat spicy stuff, or did you leave out the cayenne for his corn cob?

  9. So cute! How old is the little man? My cutie will be 1 (in 9 days!!) and I never thought about giving him corn on the cob.

  10. Kira, it's actually not that spicy! When the cayenne is spread out at mellowed by the lime and sour cream and covered in cheese, the heat isn't too bad at all.

    Jaime- my little guy was 14 months in that pic; he's a total runt!

  11. I just found your blog (thanks to my sister for sharing) and I LOVE your recipes. It seems like everything you cook is something I want to eat 🙂 I'll be coming here a lot for fresh ideas, so keep them coming!

  12. I just made this and it is delicious. But, I had some problems rolling the cheese on. It would just slide off? Is it because the corn was buttered before grilled? Or was there too much sauce? I tried it a couple different ways and mainly we had to scoop the cheesy goop up and try to smash it on the bit of corn you were trying to eat. What happened?

  13. cusaks- If you had "cheesy goop" and it was sliding off, then yes- I'd say you definitely put on too much sauce! As you can see in the pictures it's just a thin layer and everything stays on just fine.

  14. I'm speechless. We made this a few days ago and it really is RIDICULOUSLY good. Thanks for the recipe! If you don't mind, I think I'm going to post it on my blog (with a link back to you fabulous ladies, of course)

    Your little guy up there inspired me to try it. (And to see if my two-year-old would eat corn on the cob. She loved it!)

  15. THANK YOU! I love corn on the cob, especially grilled. We didn't grill ours since we don't have a grill, but our corn- that wasn't quite as tasty as it should be with the regular butter, salt and pepper just really came to life with this delicious recipe. Mmm. Finger licking good. My husband had always wanted to try the corn from "Nacho Libre", I imagine this was it. We will be making this many many more times. Thanks again!

  16. My BF is mexican and they actually have carts here in SoCal where you can buy this delecacy. I have found it in other forms, such as simply corn kernals mixed with the ingredients listed and eaten with a spoon (my preferance since I don't enjoy getting messy while I eat… wierd I know).

    Other substitutions for the cheese is parmesan cheese. It give the tangy-ness that cotija does and can be found easier. Here though, we find it at our regular grocery store.

  17. Wow, just last night I was telling my DF that I wanted to find the recipe for the Elote from our favorite mexican restaurant…and here it is! WOO HOO! Thanks so much!

  18. Just when you think it just can’t get any better – there you go and up the ante into the sky! This blog is soooooooooo wonderful! And now I craving corn like crazy!!

  19. I know this is a weird question but my husband and kids all HATE mayo and sour cream. Are there any substitutions for those ingredients? Can it be made without them?

    1. Try it! My family doesn’t like any kind of olive (I love them) and one of their favorite meals is pizza bread whose filling’s main ingredient is black olives.

  20. We’ve made this several times and it is amazingly delicious. However, during these cold winter months I had a serious craving for this and there is no corn on the cob to be found. In desperation I mixed frozen corn with the sauce and sprinkled the cheese on top. It turned out really well! My husband was skeptical at first but went back for seconds later 🙂

  21. when you get it at a stand the use Tajin powder when it is on the cob and Tajin Liquid when it is in the cup. You can use Trechas too but its not as good. Its better sprinkled on top and not mixed w/mayo.

    Also to get it on good you take a butter knife and roll the cob with the mayo and it pushes it between the kernels.

  22. I know I’m totally late to the party, but this this is NACHO LIBRE Corn! Ha, ha. My family loves that movie and I’ve always said that I’ll have to make that kind of corn for my family. I just stumbled upon this recipe, perfect! You guys have the coolest recipes!

  23. If you are lazy, you can swap Chipotle Mayo for the mayo/sour cream/seasonings, toss in a bit of butter, the cotija cheese and some fresh-squeezed lime. Delicious!

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