In this article, we’ll answer your top questions about corn. You’ll find out about the taste, texture and different types, plus how to use it in your vegan noshes from snacks, to sides, to the main course.
Let’s check it out…
What Does Corn Taste Like?
The kind of corn you get on the cob, sweet corn, is definitely sweet with a soft, buttery flavor. There’s also a starchiness to it when it’s raw, but this is traded for an intensified sweetness when you cook it.
The starchy flavor is much more noticeable in the mellower field corn, which you can identify by the more shriveled, dimpled appearance of the kernels.
The kernels of sweet corn are firm on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside, even when raw. They become even softer when cooked and take on a slight chewiness.
Field corn is tougher than sweet corn, but any overcooked corn can become tough. This is one cereal grain that’s better undercooked than left in the pot too long.
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Is All Corn Sweet?
Because we end up eating sweet corn either primarily or exclusively, we think of corn as invariably sweet. But some corns are different.
Field corn, also referred to as cow corn since it’s the kind that’s grown for cattle feed, is not particularly sweet. In fact, it may not even be sweet at all.
Can We Eat Field Corn?
Believe it or not, people can and do eat many types of field corn even though it’s grown for animals. These can be eaten raw or cooked.
The trick to eating field corn is catching it at the right time. When it starts to “ripen” but it’s still not fully mature, it’s soft enough to eat and even a bit sweet. It’s when it reaches full maturity that it becomes too hard to eat.
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How to Cook Field Corn
Roasting it is a popular method of cooking field corn, but there are many more ways to prepare it. It can be dried and ground like masa harina and used in polenta, tortillas and tamales.
Other ways of cooking field corn involve creating creamed corn dishes or simply sauteing it in a skillet with some oil and seasonings. You can more or less cook it like sweet corn.
To properly store corn, here’s our guide on how to freeze corn on the cob.
Corn Serving Tips
These recipes are going to change the way you cook. Corn is perfect any time of the year—in hearty fall soups, zesty summer salsas and more.
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Have you ever tried elotes? They’re Mexican street food snacks with smoky, spicy and zesty flavors that pop. You’ll want to make them again and again.
Grab these ingredients:
- Boiled or grilled corn
- Vegan mayo
- Chili powder
- Vegan parmesan
- Melted vegan butter
Corn chowder is one of the most satisfying soups in the world. This one is creamy and super easy to make.
Here’s what’s in it:
- Red potatoes
- White onion
- Frozen corn
- Veggie broth
- Vegan milk
- Nutritional yeast
For a side dish, try this vegan creamed corn with fried sage. The coconut milk makes it incredibly rich while the fried sage adds a culinary flair.
Here are the ingredients:
- Frozen sweet corn
- Light coconut milk
- Sweet onion
- Coconut oil
- Ground flaxseed
- Maple syrup
- Sea salt
- Sage leaves
- Olive oil
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Sweet corn, the kind at the supermarket, is sweet and juicy. The starchier, less sweet field corn can also be eaten, just when it’s in that perfect stage of maturation. Whether you have fresh or frozen corn, try making creamy vegan corn chowder, corn salsa or tasty vegan elotes.
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Hey, I’m Joey. I’ve been cooking since I was a little kid and love everything about it. You can find my writing about food, kitchen appliances (such as blenders) and much more. Thanks for stopping by!