Photo by Sonia Mendez Garcia

Esquites Tostados (Mexican Toasted Corn)

Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 8-10 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
All the flavor you love of Mexican esquites served as an appetizer with plenty of cotija cheese, mexican crema and fresh salsa!

Esquites Tostados, or toasted corn off the cob, is the perfect recipe to prepare right now. The summer corn is abundant and so fresh! I love traditional esquites (corn in a cup), but this is an easier way to enjoy the flavors of fresh cooked corn, with minimal cooking time. This simple appetizer will really impress your friends, so you may want to double the recipe! Mexican street corn is all the rage right now. Make sure you head to your farmers market this week to pick up some fresh corn and salsa ingredients.


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  1. In a bowl, combine the tomatoes, serrano, onion, cilantro, juice of 1 lime, salt and pepper. Stir well to combine. Taste for salt, cover and set aside.
  2. Remove the corn from the cob. Set aside.
  3. Preheat a cast-iron skillet or griddle pan to medium heat for a few minutes. After a few minutes, add the fresh corn and spread out in an even layer. Cook for 3-4 minutes before stirring.
  4. Drizzle on 1 tablespoon of oil and stir corn to mix. Continue cooking for 4-6 more minutes, or until the corn begins to release its natural sugars and starts to toast lightly.
  5. Cook until you get the desired look for the corn. If you like darker toasting, then leave it on a little longer. To plate, you could leave the toasted corn in the pan or you can serve it on individual plates. Top with some of the fresh salsa in the center. Drizzle on some of the crema and sprinkle on some of the cotija cheese and chile limón seasoning. Serve with lime wedges and tortilla chips.

Chef Notes

If fresh corn is not available, I would suggest using a good-quality frozen corn that has been defrosted. Pat dry with paper towels before toasting for better results.

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