Full of zesty, creamy cheese flavor, this Parmesan Cilantro Corn is the perfect side dish for your favorite meal. Even my kids beg for a second helping!
Corn is one of the most versatile vegetables around – I love that it can be used in salsas, chowders, dips, creamed corn, or all on its own! This parmesan cilantro corn side dish has a little kick from some cayenne pepper and is tossed in a deliciously creamy cheese sauce. You’ll find yourself scooping seconds, thirds, and even fourths onto your plate, it’s that good!
PARMESAN CILANTRO CORN
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There is nothing that says summer more than fresh corn on the cob. I have such vivid memories from my childhood of my mom sending me and my brother on our bikes to the farm stand down the street from our house to get fresh vegetables. We’d race down the street to see who could make it there first. I swear the farmers could hear us coming, we were laughing so loudly!
Anyway, one of the things we always bought from the farmers was their fresh, sweet corn. We’d buy one ear of corn for each member of our family and then a few extras so our mom could whip up some kind of amazing corn dish (like this yummy Southern Fried Corn).
Then my brother and I would string our bags of veggies to our handlebars and continue our ride home. The race didn’t stop there though, we had to see which one of us could shuck the most corn the fastest! No, it was probably not the tidiest way of cleaning off the corn so my mom could cook it, but it got the job done and it kept us busy. (and I typically won!)
Now that I’ve got you all excited about buttery corn on the cob, I’ve got to get back to what you actually came here for – Parmesan Cilantro Corn! This recipe is one of my absolute favorite ways to prepare corn for my family.
During the summer, we use fresh corn from our local farmer’s market, but in the offseason, frozen corn or even canned corn works JUST as well! Canned corn side dishes are my jam when fresh ears aren’t in season. I guarantee you and your family will love this cheesy sweet corn side dish!
Ingredients for Parmesan Cilantro Corn
Get ready to find out why corn and parmesan cheese are best friends. You need them in your life!
- Corn kernels (fresh off the cob OR frozen!)
- Lime juice
- Cayenne pepper
- Grated parmesan cheese
- Heavy cream
- Black Pepper
This recipe works great regardless of whether or not you have fresh corn on hand. If you’re using fresh corn you’ll want to boil your corn on the cob and then shave off the kernels using a knife, cutting as close to the cob as possible. If you’re using canned or frozen corn, I’ve found that the sweet variety works best!
How to Make Parmesan Cilantro Corn
One thing that I love about this recipe is that it is a one-pan wonder. You’ll just need a large skillet and a small cutting board to chop the cilantro on. Talk about an easy clean-up! So easy the kids could even do it on their own as you shovel more corn onto your plate!
- Start by melting the butter over medium-high heat. Once it is all foamy and sizzling, add in the garlic and corn and mix them all up. Continue stirring it for 2 minutes to get that buttery deliciousness all melded together.
Next, add in the lime juice, cumin, and cayenne pepper and cook (keep stirring!) for 2 minutes more.
Prepare yourself because this next part is where the magic happens (anytime cheese is involved, it’s a magical experience for me)….stir in the cheese, and then add the heavy cream. Make sure you continue to stir – you wouldn’t want any of that creamy yumminess to stick to the pan!
Add the salt and pepper and cook the corn until almost all of the cream has absorbed (it usually takes about 5 minutes more).
Last, remove from heat, stir in the cilantro and call your family to the table – this is a dish best served HOT!
Corn Side Dish Recipes
Like I mentioned before, corn is one of the most versatile vegetables around. I love that it’s sweet, tender, and (in my humble opinion) the all-around perfect vegetable. Here are some of my other favorite ways to utilize corn to pull a family meal together.
- Roasted Corn and Quinoa Salad – this zesty salad uses a variety of great summer veggies to make the perfect side salad!
- Mexican Street Corn – take your corn on the cob to the next level with this spicy recipe!
- Italian Style Creamy Corn Casserole – this is not your grandma’s mushy creamed corn… with pancetta and sun-dried tomatoes, this casserole is ah-maz-ing.
All corn-ed out? Need some other side dish ideas? I got you.
- Easy Bacon & Avocado Pasta Salad
- Simple Broccoli Casserole
- Cauliflower Fried Rice
- Rainbow Macaroni Salad
- Asiago Asparagus
- More SIDE DISH recipes…
Tools used to make Parmesan Cilantro Corn
Large Skillet: This frying pan is my absolute favorite… I use it practically every day!
Cutting Board: I love this set of cutting boards because I can choose whichever size I need for the recipe I’m making. For this recipe where you only need to chop some cilantro, I’d use the tiny one!
*This post originally posted on 06/17/2013.
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 4 cups fresh corn kernels approx 6 large ears
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter.
- When butter is foamy add the garlic and corn and stir to coat in butter. Cook for 2 minutes stirring frequently.
- Add lime juice, cumin, and cayenne pepper to the corn and cook for 2 more minutes.
- Stir in cheese so it gets melty. Then add heavy cream, salt, and pepper. Continue to stir so the corn won't stick to the pan. Cook corn until almost all of the cream has been absorbed, about 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Stir in cilantro and serve immediately.
- You can substitue 4 cups frozen corn that's been thawed or canned corn that's been drained if needed.
- Pre time will be less is you're not using fresh corn.
Ashley Benner says
A friend recently brought this dish to our friendsmas and I’m obsessed. I can’t wait to bring it to my family’s Christmas dinner! I don’t even like cilantro and this was simply fantastic. So happy I tried it!
Julie @Real Housemoms says
Thanks for making our day Ashley! So glad you loved the recipe. I’m totally into food obsessions too!
how many servings?
I was wondering this, too.
Linked recipe in the description above says 4-6 servings.
Julie @Real Housemoms says
About 4 to 6 servings
Just made this for a party last night and everyone loved it – thanks for a super easy, delicious recipe!
As my husband said, after tasting this, “if a vegetable can make a fat boy happy, you know it’s good!”. Thank you for this! Btw, pinterest find.
What exactly is heavy cream? I’ve never used it obviously, but i love cilantro and plan on attempting to make this.
Aubrey Cota says
It’s also called heavy whipping cream. You can find it in the dairy section of your grocery store.
Since I only have skim milk on hand, is there any way this could work instead of the heavy cream? Is there something I could add to the skim to make it work? Thanks!
You can try adding some melted butter to skim milk and mix thoroughly. Hope that works.
That makes sense, yes! I’m going to try it. Thanks so much!
Can you serve it cold at a picnic?
Gigi Bailey says
I’m gonna use frozen corn like you did. Did you thaw it first?
Would this be good as a cold salad? A make ahead dish?
I used two cups of corn and one can of black beans rinsed and drained. Complete protein so use it as a main dish for my husband and me. We love it.
Barbara, That sounds delicious! I love the addition of black beans! Great idea and I will try it next time!
I made this tonight and it was a BIG hit with my family!!! I will be adding this recipe to my list for sure, thanks!!
Julie, Thank you so much for letting me know! I am glad it was a big hit with your family! I am already looking forward to making it again soon!
Delly Cohen says
I will make it tomorrow night,thanks from Belgium
Gloria @ Simply Gloria says
What a great twist on the norm of corn! Love all of these ingredients! Yum!
Mindy, Thank you so much for featuring our Parmesan Cilantro Corn in your Thanksgiving Recipes! 🙂