This Traeger Mexican Street Corn (Elote) is creamy, tangy, and so so delicious. It's super easy to make and the perfect addition to any summer or fall meal.
What is Elote?
Elote, also known as Mexican Street Corn, is the Mexican interpretation of corn on the cob. The corn is typically grilled and topped with a mayonnaise-based sauce, chili powder, lime juice, and Cojita cheese. This Traeger street corn recipe is simply our interpretation on something we love, and shouldn't be taken as super traditional.
Why We Love This Street Corn
We first started making street corn when we discovered that Wegmans sells an "Elote Street Corn" kit that is super easy and tasty. After making it several times, we decided to recreate it ourselves, and this recipe was born. We love it for several reasons, but here are the highlights:
- It's easy: Grill the corn on your Traeger, gas grill, or pellet grill, lather it in an easy homemade creamy sauce, top it with cheese, and throw on some cilantro for color. It's that simple and looks so much more impressive than it actually is.
- It's super tasty: The flavor of this street corn is unmatched. It takes regular sweet corn from boring and routine to a delicious work of art. It's salty, tangy, creamy, and sweet all at the same time.
- It's great for a crowd: We love serving this elote to large crowd because it's inexpensive, easy, foolproof, and always a crowd pleaser. It's especially great in the summer and fall when corn is in season.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
Sweet corn: We love finding great local sweet corn when it's in season, but use whatever you have access to.
Sour cream: We mix a little bit of sour cream with our mayonnaise to make the sauce on the corn a little creamier and to tame the mayonnaise flavor. If you prefer straight mayonnaise, go for it! You could also substitute whole milk greek yogurt for a healthier alternative.
Mayonnaise: Use whatever brand you typically love.
Queso Fresco or Cojita Cheese: Traditional elote is made with Cojita cheese, but we prefer the milder taste of queso fresco, which isn't aged like Cojita is. If you like a stronger, saltier cheese, opt for Cojita; if you like a milder flavor, go for queso fresco.
Chili Lime Seasoning: We use Tajín, which you can find with the spices or in the international aisle at most grocery stores. You can also just use plain chili powder if you want to go the more traditional route.
Lime juice: Use freshly squeezed juice for the best flavor, not the bottled stuff.
See recipe card for full ingredient list and amounts.
Step 1: Preheat your Traeger or pellet grill to 400°F.
Step 2: Place your shucked ears of corn directly on the grill grates and cook for 20 minutes, rotating every 5 minutes to ensure an even cook.
Step 3: Add sour cream, mayonnaise, cilantro, garlic, and lime juice to a mixing bowl and mix until well combined. In a separate small bowl, combine the crumbled cheese and chili lime seasoning. Set aside both bowls aside.
Step 4: Once the corn is done cooking, slather each ear with the sauce (a spoon or basting brush works well), then top with the crumbled cheese mixture, cilantro, and extra lime juice.
- Flip the corn every 5 minutes to ensure an even cook.
- Get good-quality ingredients for the best flavors (fresh lime juice, local sweet corn, good mayonnaise, etc.).
- Try to keep the temperature on your Traeger steady for the duration of the cooking time. Minimize the amount of time you leave the lid open.
Frequently asked questions
Yes! Follow the same instructions on a gas or charcoal grill.
If you plan to have leftovers or make this corn ahead of time, store all of the components in separate air-tight containers or baggies for up to 4 days. When ready to eat, heat the corn in the microwave or in the oven (425°F for a few minutes should do the trick) until warm, then top with the other ingredients.
Ours takes about 20 minutes at 400°F.
Main Dish Ideas
Try some of our other grilling recipes: