Behind the Seasoning: Mexican Street Corn Seasoning
Street food is a key part of many cuisines. Whether you're snacking on satay, putting down some pad thai, devouring dosa, finishing off some falafel, or snarfing sausage, there's something satisfying about street food. In Mexico, these tasty treats are known as antojitos or "little cravings" and include tacos, tamales, empanadas, and elotes.
That last one inspired one of our summer must-haves, Mexican Street Corn Seasoning. This bold flavor is the perfect spice for summer corn, so let's explore this fiesta of flavor.
Are elotes from Mexico?
Quick answer, yes!
The longer answer is that elote (Spanish for corn) is actually one food that’s native to the Americas. Countless varieties have been cultivated over thousands of years. While you might just think of the sweet, yellow type that’s used (fresh, frozen, and canned) throughout the United States, the world of corn is so much bigger! It’s a biofuel, food for both humans and livestock, and can even be made into a plastic substitute. It also has a 10,000 year history as a crop that has been highly important throughout Mexico’s history. In fact, there are varietal differences between the sweet corn we’re familiar with and the earthy, white corn that is most common in Mexico. But don’t worry, your street corn will be delicious – even if it’s not elote blanco.
Why do they call it Mexican Street Corn?
Let’s start with one quick clarification. As we mentioned before, elote means corn in Spanish. But it’s also used to refer to a specific style of corn on the cob that’s common throughout Mexico (street corn in a cup is called esquites). The name Mexican Street Corn is mostly an American thing and yes, it means pretty much exactly what you’d expect. Elote is an incredibly popular street food in Mexico. Yup, it’s corn that’s sold by street vendors throughout Mexico…thus, Mexican Street Corn.
What is elote made out of?
What is Mexican Street Corn made of?
Ok, we’ve already clarified that elote and Mexican street corn can be used interchangeably. So from here on out, we’re just going to call it Mexican street corn. Start with corn that’s still on the cob, that’s key for authentic Mexican street corn. Squirt it with a bit of lime juice and then slather it with mayonnaise (not a dainty spread, we’re talking about a generous smear). We know that this particular condiment can be a bit divisive but it’s really the only way to make authentic street corn. Then sprinkle on seasoning and queso fresco or cotija cheese. It’s best eaten on a hefty skewer as you can imagine that it’s a bit messy.
Grilled Mexican street corn might not be traditional but it’s delicious! Street corn already has a balance of tangy, salty, sweet, creamy, and fresh tastes but when you toss the corn on the grill first, you add those nice roasty, caramelized notes that only a quick sear will contribute.
What is the red powder on elotes?
That powder is flavor! Inspired by the chile and lime flavors that make this snack a favorite, we created an earthy, zesty, warm blend of spices…Mexican Street Corn Seasoning.
Recipe for Mexican Street Corn
Our flavorful Mexican Street Corn Seasoning inspired both traditional-ish and totally new recipes that we’re sure will fire up some ideas of your own. And while we’re staying corn-centric in this recipe round up, feel free to use your Mexican Street Corn Seasoning to add a little zesty flavor to your tostadas, tamales, fish tacos, grilled chicken, salsa or guacamole, or as a substitute for taco seasoning. There really are endless flavor possibilities for this summer favorite.
Mexican Street Corn
Also known as “elote,” Mexican street corn is grilled, covered in fresh, creamy toppings, and served on a stick. You can skip the stick, but don’t skip this zesty, lime-forward seasoning that adds easy, authentic flavor and bold color.
Layered Elote Salad
Also called esquites, this Mexican street corn in a cup packs all the flavor of elote into a portable package. It's great for people who prefer their corn off the cob. Think of it as the 7 layer dip of the street corn world!
Cheesy Elote Nachos
Here's where we're going to veer from the traditional preparation. Mexican Street Corn Seasoning pulls double duty as a bold flavor in the nacho cheese sauce and sprinkled over the toppings.
Marbled Skillet Cornbread
This is not your grandma's cornbread. The bold flavor of Mexican Street Corn Seasoning and a tangy cream cheese swirl revamp classic southern cornbread into a surprising savory, citrusy summer treat.