Southern Fried Corn

Southern Fried Corn makes a simple, classic southern side dish. Made of corn, milk, butter, and bacon, this fried corn recipe is one you’ll love.

Okay y’all, I’m about to share with you a recipe that with one single bite elicits immediate groans and mmm’s from those who taste it. There really are no two ways about it, Southern Fried Corn is beyond delicious.

Growing up, I remember my Uncle James would have field after field of corn growing during the summer. It seemed like it took him forever on his big tractor plowing the fields and then coming back throw planting the corn for his crop. My Daddy on the other hand only had a small garden area behind our house that was dedicated to his corn. Instead of a huge tractor and hours of time, Daddy would simply plow his garden spot, walk the row with a long wooden stick making a hole every few steps, and then dropping the kernel of corn into the hole he’d prepared. My job was to follow behind him to push the dirt back over the hole.

Baby stalks would seemingly jump out of the ground and Daddy would start his annual work of keeping the deer and rabbits out of his garden. Each year brought a different solution he’d heard about and each year we’d still lose a few plants to the animals. He and my uncle would conspire over the latest tricks that were working for them.

Throughout the hot days of the summer, they would tweak this or that and then their beautiful corn would begin to tassle and be ready for the picking. Numerous corn dishes would ensue from corn casserole, roasted corn, creamed corn, and my favorite – fried corn.

This year, we attempted to grow corn but we didn’t have all of the tricks up our sleeves that Daddy and Uncle James must have had when we were growing up. The deer happily grazed each evening on our beautiful corn just as the stalks were about knee high. But, thankfully, our local farmer’s market has kept gorgeous corn this summer and I haven’t missed harvesting those rows one bit.

Here’s how I make my Southern Fried Corn.

Cut your bacon into bite sized pieces or smaller.

Cook in a frying pan or skillet until nice and browned.

Now, take your corn and clean it.

With a small, sharp paring knife, cut all of your corn off of the cob.

Then with the back of the knife, scrape out all of the milk into your frying pan.

Add your salt, pepper, and sugar.

And pour in your milk.

Cook over medium to low heat, being sure to stand close by and stir often.

You don’t want to scorch your corn.

At the very end of cooking, stir in a tablespoon of butter and cook about one more minute.

Cook until reduced and your corn is tender and then be ready to watch it be gone in a flash.

Yield: 4

Southern Fried Corn

Total Time 30 minutes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Southern Fried Corn makes a simple, classic southern side dish. Made of corn, milk, butter, and bacon, this fried corn recipe is one you'll love.
4 from 1 vote
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  • 4 strips bacon cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 ears corn cleaned
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter


  1. Fry bacon pieces until browned.
  2. Cut corn off of ears into the frying pan.
  3. Scrape milk from corn cob into the frying pan.
  4. Add in all ingredients except butter.
  5. Cook over low to medium heat, stirring often for about 20 minutes.
  6. Add in butter and cook another minute.
  7. Serve warm.

All images and text © Robyn Stone for Add a Pinch

Did you have a garden this year? How did it do for ya?


22 comments on “Southern Fried Corn”

  1. You are one of the few people I have seen who make their fried corn like I make it! Good stuff that’s for sure.

  2. This looks incredible! Can’t wait to try with a BBQ Butt!
    What a great side dish for grilled meals!

    More guy pleasing recipes like this, please!

  3. Wow, this looks amazing!

  4. Wonder if this would work with olive oil instead of bacon? (No meat for me!)

  5. This is going on my must make list! Need to go buy some fresh corn!

  6. Oh my word- that looks so good!

  7. ***Bookmarked***
    Thanks for sharing!

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  9. This may seem like a silly question, but do you use raw or cooked corn from the cob?

  10. Wow, does this bring back memories! You guys have got to try this…it is without a doubt the best corn you’ll ever have the pleasure of eating! Thanks for the memories, and for sharing!

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  13. Oh, my! THANK YOU for posting this! I just discovered your website last night. This caught my eye. Off to the store I went this afternoon. A generous bowl is now resting in my stomach!

    Pinning it!!!

  15. For me, the corn is sweet enough without the sugar. Corn was my favorite food when I was a kid. I’d go visit my grandmother and she’d always prepare some sweet corn and homemade noodles as she knew these were my favorites. And they still are…..but I’d add okra to the list now.

  16. would frozen corn work also?

  17. I found this recipe through Pinterest today while looking for a corn dish to put with a new meatloaf recipe. I used a 1 lb. bag of frozen corn instead of fresh and just before the end, I added 1/3 fresh ground pecorino romano cheese.

    It was delicious and all commented on it. Cannot wait to make it again. Thank you, Robyn. Now I will go write a review for the meatloaf recipe, which I just realized was posted by Robyn too.

  18. When I was growing up, the only good way to eat corn was off the cob after boiling (my opinion of course). Then I moved to the South and married a local girl, who’s favorite way to eat corn was fried – and I loved it – may be my new favorite.

  19. My father taught me how to make fried corn when I was young. He was from Tennessee. The receipe is the same except he would thicken it with cornstarch and hot water. He would serve it with fried chicken and corn bread.

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