This fried corn is cooked with bacon and chives until golden brown and caramelized. The ultimate easy summer side dish that pairs well with grilled meats, fish and hamburgers. A Southern classic that never goes out of style!
There’s nothing better than fresh, sweet corn in the summertime. While corn is obviously delicious enjoyed on the cob with a little butter, it’s even better when made into Southern fried corn. That combination of caramelized corn and savory bacon just can’t be beat!
How do you make fried corn?
This recipe starts with bacon, which is cooked in a skillet until crisp. The bacon is removed from the pan and corn kernels and onions are fried in the bacon grease, along with some seasonings and a bit of sugar. The sugar helps the corn to get those flavorful caramelized bits. The final step is to stir the bacon back into the corn and add a sprinkling of chives. I always serve my fried corn alongside grilled chicken, and it’s the perfect easy side dish for a summer gathering.
Tips for Fried Corn
- You can use fresh or frozen corn kernels for this recipe. I don’t recommend using canned corn because it has added sodium and the texture isn’t as good. Yellow and white corn work equally well here.
- You’ll want to drain off some of the bacon grease, leaving about 1 tablespoon left in the pan to cook up your corn.
- If you’re concerned about adding sugar, you can omit it. That being said, the sugar doesn’t make this dish overly sweet, it just makes the corn kernels brown better in the pan.
How do you cut corn off the cob?
If you’re using fresh corn for this dish, you’ll need to remove it from the cob before you can proceed with the recipe. There are a few simple ways to remove corn from the cob without making a huge mess. One option is to buy a corn stripper, which is a tool designed for this exact use. If you’d rather not buy another kitchen tool, lay an ear of corn flat on a cutting board and carefully slice the kernels off. You can also stand the ear of corn inside a large bowl, then cut the kernels off so that they’re all contained within the bowl.
Fried corn variations
Traditional Southern fried corn has just a few ingredients to really let the corn flavor shine through. That being said, there are many different flavorings you can add to your corn to make it your own.
- Vegetables: You can add diced red bell pepper, fresh tomato, or a can of green chiles to the mix.
- Herbs: Instead of chives, try parsley, green onions, basil or thyme.
- Meat: Swap out the bacon for diced ham.
Once you taste this dish, you’ll find yourself making it all summer long! It’s the absolute best way to enjoy fresh corn.
More delicious side dishes
Fried Corn with Bacon
- 6 slices bacon diced
- 1/3 cup onion finely diced
- 4 cups corn kernels fresh or frozen (thawed)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons chives sliced
- Place the bacon in a large pan. Cook over medium high heat until browned and crisp.
- Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and set on a paper towel to drain.
- Drain grease off pan until approximately 1 tablespoon remains.
- Add the onion to the bacon grease. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until translucent.
- Add the corn, sugar, salt and pepper to the pan.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until corn starts to caramelize and brown on the edges.
- Stir the bacon back into the corn. Top with chives and serve.