Creamed Corn is a crowd-pleasing side dish that feels a little more special than your usual corn on the cob, but is still easy to make. It’s delicious comfort food made in 20 minutes!

Creamed Corn - In a Blue bowl with Fresh Thyme on Top

What I love about corn is it’s always a reliable ingredient for pleasing everyone at the table. So many of our family favorite sides are corn-based, like my epic Cornbread Recipe or Corn and Avocado Bean Salad.

Why This Recipe Is So Great

Very simple, but still feels special – Corn is good enough on its own that most people usually just eat it plain, but jazzing it up here with a few extra ingredients creates a really delicious side dish.

20 minutes to make – This is truly a quick recipe, and I’m always able to make it in 15 to 20 minutes.

Great flavor and creaminess – The natural sweetness and richness of dairy enhances the corn beautifully, but without any crazy or distracting flavors. Shallot also gives a nice flavor base, and fresh thyme adds a fresh herby note.

Use fresh or frozen corn – In the summertime, this dish is excellent when you can cut fresh corn from the cob. You can even take it up a notch and grill the corn before cutting, to add a smoky flavor. However, most of the time I make this, I use frozen corn kernels straight from the bag for convenience. The choice is up to you, and you can choose to prioritize what you’d like here. 

It goes with nearly everything – This side dish is extremely versatile. We love pairing it with Santa Maria Tri Tip, Crispy Braised Chicken Thighs, Buttermilk Fried Chicken, and Smoked Pork Butt.

Creamed Corn Recipe - Served in a Bowl Bowl with Serving Spoon and Thyme Leaves

I want to note here that I do add some shallots, but not garlic. I like garlic, but I find it’s a little too strong here.

And while I prefer to use fresh thyme as the herb for this dish, other herbs that go well with corn are basil, chives, rosemary, dill, parsley, cilantro, and marjoram.

How to Make It Step-by-Step:

Creamed corn is a simple dish that will only take 15 to 20 minutes to make, and it’s all done on the stovetop.

Soften the aromatics

In a medium skillet or saucepan, combine butter, chopped shallots, a fresh bundle of thyme, and salt:

Butter, Shallots, and Thyme Bundle in a Skillet

I like to tie the thyme leaves together so they’re easy to take out later, but it’s not required.

Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until the shallot softens. 

Add flour to thicken

Add some all-purpose flour to the pan, which will help thicken the cream sauce:

Cooked Shallots and Thyme in Skillet with Flour Added

Stir everything around and cook for 1 minute, until the shallot is coated in the flour and moistens into a paste:

Cooked Shallots Cooking in Flour Butter

Add the corn

Now add your corn kernels to the skillet:

Pouring Frozen Corn into Skillet with Shallots and Butter

I add the corn kernels in a frozen state. There’s no need to thaw ahead of time.

You can also use fresh corn kernels here, and in that case, cut the following simmer time in half. 

Add half and half (cream and milk)

Add some half-and-half to the pan. I purchase actual half-and-half from the store, but of course, you can just combine heavy cream and milk if you have that on hand:

Adding Cream and Milk (Half and Half) to the Skillet

Simmer, but do not boil

Simmer the creamed corn on medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes:

How to Make Creamed Corn - By Cooking Gently on the Stovetop

The sauce will thicken up over this time period, and the corn will absorb some of the cream.

Homemade Cream Corn - In A Skillet with Red Spatula

Remember, if you are using fresh corn, you only need to simmer for 4 to 5 minutes, which is plenty sufficient for thickening the dairy and cooking the corn kernels through.

Serve with extra thyme for garnish

Take another sprig of thyme and run your fingers down the stem to release a few leaves on top. This looks nice, and also gives an extra pop of flavor.

Cream Style Corn - in blue Dish with Fresh Thyme On Top

This would be great served with Crab Cakes, or something more hearty like Roasted Pork Tenderloin or Chicken Milanese. Enjoy!

Recipe FAQs

How do you store creamed corn and for how long?

Leftovers keep beautifully! Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Is it okay to freeze creamed corn?

Freezing is not ideal, because the dairy will inevitably curdle.

What makes the best creamed corn; fresh or frozen corn?

You may use either here, though of course fresh tastes better. I usually use frozen corn because it’s more convenient.

What are some top herb substitutions for creamed corn?

Try basil, chives, rosemary, dill, parsley, cilantro, and marjoram.

More Corn Recipes:

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Creamed Corn in a Blue Bowl with Serving Spoon

Creamed Corn

Creamed Corn is a crowd-pleasing side dish that feels a little more special than your usual corn on the cob, but is still easy to make.
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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp butter (salted or unsalted)
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots (about 2 small shallots)
  • 10 sprigs fresh thyme (I tie with a string for easy removal later)
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 16 ounce bag frozen corn kernels (about 2.5 cups of corn kernels)*
  • 1.5 cups half-and-half (or use 3/4 cup heavy cream + 3/4 cup milk)
  • extra thyme leaves for garnish optional

Instructions 

  • Heat a high sided skillet or saucepan over medium heat.
  • Melt the butter, and add the shallots, thyme, and salt. Cook for about 5 minutes, until softened.
  • Add the flour, and stir for 1 minute until it coats all the shallots and turns into a paste.
  • Add the corn kernels to the pan, and stir for 1 minute.
  • Add the half and half, and bring to a simmer, taking care not to boil the creamed corn (the dairy can curdle). Simmer for 8 to 10 minutes, until the sauce thickens and the corn is cooked through.
  • Serve immediately in a dish, adding extra thyme leaves on top for garnish. Enjoy!

Notes

*If using fresh corn kernels, you only need to simmer for 5 minutes for the corn to cook through, and that will be enough time for the sauce to thicken as well.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Freezing is not ideal, because the dairy will inevitably curdle. 

Nutrition

Calories: 288kcal, Carbohydrates: 31g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 17g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 49mg, Sodium: 447mg, Potassium: 392mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 667IU, Vitamin C: 9mg, Calcium: 123mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.