12 Delicious, Healthier Toppings for Corn on the Cob

Dress your summer cobs with enticing flavor twists sure to become your new go-to recipes

Corn on the cob may be a summer staple but all the salt and butter we slather on it can really do a number on our health. If you’re clamoring for corn on the cob this summer why not get creative and try these healthier, more mouthwatering recipes that are guaranteed to up your summer grill game.

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Dietitian Anna Taylor, RD, has created a dozen flavor sensations that convert plain old corn on the cob as a side dish into the main attraction. Plus, you can feel good about dressing up those golden kernels with ingredients that are more health-friendly for you and your whole family. (Sorry, butter and salt — you’ve been replaced!)

Corn is good for you

One plain ear of corn has only 100 calories and almost 3g of fiber — which is good for your digestive tract and can help you feel fuller longer. It also contains some very healthy phytonutrients like lutein and zeaxanthin, which are antioxidants that support eye health.

It’s what you top it with that makes it unhealthy. For example one tablespoon of butter also has 100 calories, not to mention 7g of saturated fat (which clogs arteries and can increase cholesterol levels). Also, excess salt intake can contribute to high blood pressure and heart disease.

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By switching up the traditional toppings of salt and butter to some more healthful (and exciting) flavor combinations, you can glean the nutritional benefits of this tasty vegetable while also keeping your taste buds happy. Try them on or off the cob!

Try these sweet, savory, tangy and spicy recipes

  1. Low-sugar fruit chutney cooked with diced strawberries, cherries or oranges with vinegar and chiles.
  2. Low sodium MSG-free teriyaki sauce.
  3. Powdered cinnamon, cumin, coriander, oregano, ginger, pepper, ground clove and olive oil.
  4. Basil-lemon pine nut pesto.
  5. Guacamole with mashed avocado and lime with small diced tomatoes and scallion.
  6. Olive oil, rosemary, thyme, parsley, and black pepper.
  7. Reduced-fat feta, chili powder and a squeeze of lime.
  8. Olive oil, oregano, basil, plain greek yogurt, feta and diced red onion. 
  9. Salsa made with minced red onion, tomato, bell pepper and cilantro (add black beans for extra fiber).
  10. Olive oil, lime, oregano, chili powder, paprika, garlic, onion, black pepper and cumin.
  11. Creamy homemade soy or low-fat yogurt-based wasabi sauce.
  12. Cob curry made with natural peanut butter, canola oil, chickpea flour, greek yogurt, turmeric and red chile.

“It can be hard to kick those less-healthy, go-to recipes we’re more accustomed to,” Taylor says. “But each time you make small changes to explore healthier yet equally as satisfying options like this — you’re setting yourself up for a lifetime of better eating habits for you and your family.”

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