Korean Corn Cheese

I'd welcome this corny, cheesy side dish to any gathering.

Close-up: Cast Iron Skillet With Korean Corn Cheese Topped With Sliced Green Onions and a Spoon (After Some of the Korean Cheese Corn Was Served)

Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

Corn cheese is exactly what it sounds like: corn and cheese. The two are mixed with a bit of mayo to create a creamy, cheesy, and crunchy side dish that’s super popular at Korean BBQ restaurants and easy enough to make at home. 

This recipe is as easy as it sounds—mix all the ingredients together and heat until the cheese is melted. I like to incorporate a bit of parmesan cheese for extra salty savoriness, and a sprinkle of gochugaru and green onions for spice and color. It’s so simple to put together that it makes for a fantastic side dish for any meal. 

Though it isn’t traditional to eat with Korean BBQ, it’s a must-have, especially since it pairs so well with soju (a clear distilled Korean spirit often enjoyed with BBQ) as an anju, drinking food in Korean.

Overhead View of Korean Corn Cheese Topped With Sliced Green Onions and Gochugaru, and in the Surroundings, a Bowl of Thinly Sliced Scallions, a Glass of Water, and a White Kitchen Towel

Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

Why Corn?

Corn is prevalent in many Korean dishes, which may seem odd considering sweet corn is not native to the country. The type of corn that was traditionally grown in Korea is savory and chewier than the bright yellow ears we find in the U.S. 

Through Western influence, sweet corn has become super popular in Korea as a topping on pizza, in flavored corn milk, or in crunchy puffed corn crackers. If you can’t find fresh corn, I encourage you to use canned corn. 

How to Cook Corn Cheese

Many Korean BBQ grill pans have wells around the perimeter specifically for cooking corn cheese—the cheese slowly melts while the meat grills. 

If you don’t have a grill pan, use a small cast iron skillet or nonstick pan on the stove, or an oven-safe casserole dish and melt the corn cheese in the oven. You can also broil or blow torch the cheese topping for extra smokiness.

Other variations I like: 

  • Toss in diced onions or bell peppers for extra color and crunch 
  • Mix in cubed Spam or diced bacon to add a smoky and savory flavor
Spoonful of Korean Corn Cheese Raised From Cast Iron Skillet With the Rest of the Cheese, Creating an Ooey Gooey Cheese Pull

Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

Korean Corn Cheese

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 ears fresh corn

  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise (Kewpie brand preferred)

  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

  • 1 teaspoon gochugaru, divided

  • 3 green onions, chopped

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

Method

  1. Prepare the corn:

    Shuck the corn, removing the husks and silks.

    Set a large, shallow bowl in the sink. Hold a shucked ear of corn by the stalk end and position it upright with the tapered end steadied against the bottom of the bowl. Use a sharp knife to shave the corn kernels from the cob, working in long strips down towards the bottom of the bowl.

    An Ear of Fresh Corn With Some of the Kernels Sliced Off in a Bowl With More Fresh Kernels and a Knife Korean Cheese Corn Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

  2. Mix the corn cheese:

    Add the corn to a small nonstick or cast iron skillet, or into the well of a Korean BBQ pan, and mix in the Parmesan, mayonnaise, 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, 1/2 teaspoon gochugaru, green onions, and salt.

    Corn Kernels, Cheeses, Mayonnaise, Gochugaru, and Green Onions Added to a Cast Iron Skillet on the Stove for Korean BBQ Cheese Corn

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

  3. Melt the corn cheese:

    Place the skillet over low heat, stirring until the cheese melts. Turn off the heat, and top with the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon gochugaru. Cover the skillet with a lid for a few minutes until the cheese is melted, and serve immediately.

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    Korean Cheese Corn Ingredients Mixed Together in the Cast Iron Skillet

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

    Cheese Corn in Cast Iron Skillet Topped With More Cheese for Korean Barbeque Cheese Corn Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

    Cheese Corn in a Cast Iron Skillet With the Top Layer of Cheese Completely Melted

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

    Close-up: Korean Corn Cheese Topped With Sliced Green Onions in a Cast Iron Skillet

    Simply Recipes / Ciara Kehoe

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
315 Calories
21g Fat
22g Carbs
14g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 315
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 21g 27%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 36mg 12%
Sodium 825mg 36%
Total Carbohydrate 22g 8%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 14g
Vitamin C 8mg 41%
Calcium 341mg 26%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 272mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.