Mexican Sweet Corn Cake
Mexican Sweet Corn Cake is moist, sweet corn cake perfect as a side dish for whatever Mexican meal you’re serving!
When I was in my twenties, I often frequented Chevy’s or El Torito’s restaurants. Besides a margarita, there was always one thing I had to have — a double order of the sweet corn cake on the side.
I know, right? I still have an enormous weakness for the stuff, but I show a little more restraint this days.
This Mexican Sweet Corn Cake is sweet, moist, and loaded with corn flavor. It’s the perfect match for whatever you’re serving for Cinco de Mayo, or any other time you’ve got a wicked corn cake craving. 🙂
Mexican Sweet Corn Cake
A few years ago I decided to make homemade Mexican Sweet Corn Cake and was so glad that I did. It tastes exactly as I remember — soft, and moist with kernels of corn throughout.
These corn cakes utilize corn in 3 ways: masa harina, or corn flour, regular corn meal and whole corn kernels. That’s 3 times the corn flavor!
If you’re not familiar with masa harina, it’s a fine corn flour used to make corn tortillas. I need to put that masa to use, so I think I’ll try making my own tortillas soon.
I need to do something else with it because I can’t make this Mexican Sweet Corn Cake all the time. It’s much too tempting for me to have it around often!
You can use cooked, fresh or frozen, thawed corn. I opted to use frozen roasted corn this time around to save time. The corn kernels need to be pulsed in a food processor for just a bit. Leave them chunky — we don’t want mush.
I love the nice, rustic look of the corn chunks, too.
This Mexican Sweet Corn Cake would be the perfect addition for your Cinco de Mayo feast or any time you’re serving Mexican dishes. 🙂
Here are some of my other dishes that would be wonderful for Cinco de Mayo as well:
Mexican Sweet Corn Cake
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
- 1/3 cup masa masa is corn flour, which cannot be substituted with corn meal
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn thawed, if frozen
- 1/4 cup cornmeal
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Add the masa and water, and beat until incorporated. Set aside.
- Pulse the corn in the food processor. Leave the corn chunky! Stir the corn into the butter mixture.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the milk, and stir to combine.
- Stir the corn meal mixture into the butter-corn mixture just until incorporated. Pour into an ungreased 8x8" baking pan.
- Place the baking pan into a 13x9" baking dish with water filled up 1/3 of the way full. Cover the corn cake with foil.
- Place on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 50-60 minutes. Cool 10 minutes, then use an ice cream or cookie scoop for serving.
- Use roasted corn for extra flavor and flair!
Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.
74 Comments on “Mexican Sweet Corn Cake”
This looks delicious! I love corn cakes and this would be a fabulous addition for Cinco de Mayo. Lovely post. 🙂
Thank you, Anne! I have a serious weak spot for corn cakes!
I’m a little confused the masa harina look like maseca with which tortillas are made? and another question is added powdered or first make the dough? please answer me?
I want to do very soon and I stay exactly as you prepare. thank you very much for your recipe.?
Hi, Eva! Yes, masa is used to make tortillas. This recipes uses masa and regular cornmeal, which makes this sound a bit confusing. If you have any more questions, let me know, and I hope you enjoy the corn cakes!
I’ve been wanting a recipe for this! Thank you! My Cinco de Mayo celebration is complete!
You’re very welcome! This corn cake is definitely a must!
I don’t think I’ve ever had a corn cake, but I have to have one now! These look amazing.
Thank you, Jenn! If you try them, you just might get hooked!
Yum, Marcie! I have some masa harina at home that needs a new project. I think I just found it!
This is the perfect project for it, Nicole!
This sounds amazing…can this be made ahead??
I’ve never tried it but I’m sure you can bake it ahead of time then reheat it gently in the oven or microwave.
Oh yes. The perfect side for Cinco de Mayo!!! YUM.
It’s just not the same without sweet corn cake!
I used to love going to Chi Chis when I was younger for their sweet corn cake. I’ll be trying this out ASAP!
This makes Mexican food even more fun!
OMG…sweet corn cake was my favorite thing about El Torito as well!!! After I moved to Iowa, I had to learn to make my own as well. Looks awesome 🙂
I have to make it myself cuz I never go to El Torito anymore! Lol. Happy Cinco de Mayo!
I’ve never had a Mexican sweet corn cake before, but I LOVE the sound of it! I just might whip this up tonight!
I’ve never had it outside a Chevy’s or El Torito restaurant — I wonder if any really authentic places have it? I hope you enjoy it if you try it! Happy Cinco de Mayo.
This looks amazing! I love corn because it goes with so many main dishes. This recipe steps the corn up a notch and will surely be the talk of dinner. Can’t wait to try this. 🙂
I love my corn, too! I really hope you enjoy it!
Can this be made ahead and frozen?
My honest is answer is I’m not sure, but my guess would be no. I think you’d be better off to make a few days ahead at the most, refrigerate it, then follow the cooking instructions from there. Freezing could work, but I won’t know for sure unless I try it. Sorry!
Thanks! I am planning on taking it camping. If I make it Thursday night, do you think it will be good on Saturday?
How would you be reheating it? It needs to be baked in a water bath, like steaming. If you did that beforehand and just reheat it gently over low heat it should be fine. I reheated mine on low in a microwave and it worked well, too.
These are easy and so delicious!
I just made this recipe last night–wonderful! I’ve tried to make this dish before–unsuccessfully. This was soft, sweet and full of corn flavor. Thanks for posting this!
I’m so glad this was a success for you, and I appreciate the feedback! Thanks for stopping by! 🙂
uuummmm, not really adapted since you the only thing you changed was to use milk instead of cream
I tried this recipe recently and it came out exactly the way I’ve always had it at restaurants! Very good and easy to make.
I’m glad it worked out for you, Kelly, and thank you for the feedback! 🙂
Oh my gosh, Marcie! I LOVE the Chi Chi’s version of this but would love this one even more! Can’t WAIT to try it!
We don’t have Chi Chi’s, but I always used to eat these at Chevy’s or El Torito’s. I’d get a whole side for myself! haha Thanks, Cathy!
My kids would gobble these! Pinned!
My kids would if I didn’t first! 🙂
Yum! My family loves Mexican-inspired food! This needs to go on our menu soon!
Thanks, Jamie! 🙂
I, too, was a freak in the 1980’s and 90’s for our local Annie’s Santa Fe Spoon Bread – always got a double order or traded my guac garnish with my fellow diners. Then, Annie’s closed and I was feeling like I could never recreate the taste. I found this recipe too about six years ago and it is exactly the taste I was missing! Thanks to food bloggers like you, now everyone can share in its delishiousness! . Great post & pics, the recipe is great for anyone who loves a little sweetness to go with the spice of Mexican food.
I rarely ever get these out anymore because they’re so easy to make at home! I love this recipe, and thank you for the wonderful comment! 🙂
There is a little place north of me that always serves these with their Mexican dishes. I love them and thought they would be fantastic for thanksgiving. Last night I did a trial run using half the recipe. Instead of a square pan I’m using a mini muffin tin pan. They came out great – and are wonderful the next morning – which is going to safe me some oven space on thanksgiving. Thank you thank you thank you. I’ll definitely be serving this every time I make red or green chile.
I’m so glad you enjoyed them, Toni, and thank you for sharing the way you prepared them! That’s good to know that they’re great the next morning, too — maybe next time they will last that long. 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving! 🙂
I just want to say if you follow the directions exactly you will get an excellently tasty product. I have never had creamy corn cake before this but this is super phenomenal. My brother finished it off so now I am making more lol.
I’m so glad that this turned out well for you and thank you for leaving your feedback! 🙂
I made the corn cakes recipe this weekend, but it didn’t rise at all. I followed the recipe as it is written. Any idea what went wrong? I’ve double checked and I didn’t miss any ingredients. I want to make this again…but hopefully with the correct outcome. 🙂
Hi Rita — the recipe doesn’t rise the way the regular cornbread does. Is that what you mean? Your baking powder could be expired — does it seem to be working in other recipes?
I am planning on making this for a trip we are going on where I am making tacos and wanted a side item. There’s a Mexican restaurant that has this on the side of some dishes and I have so badly wanted to make it. I found this recipe hoping it would be similar. Only thing is the one I had at restaurant didn’t have chunks of corn. And it had a darker color. So for this recipe I did half brown sugar and half white sugar. I went ahead and left the corn chunky. It was absolutely delicious. I may try it next time making the corn completely smooth. Just to see if it is more like that restaurant. Thank you for sharing this recipe.
Hi Shianne! I’m so glad you liked this recipe, and I appreciate your feedback. I think this would be great smooth as well!
Also would it be possible to do this in a crockpot?
Unfortunately I do t know if this would work as I’ve never tried it. If you try it I’d love to hear how it goes!
Seems like something went wrong. Did not rise at all. My baking powder is good. It was very thin after spread in pan. Could never have used an ice cram scoop to serve. I’m perplexed. I followed exactly as written. Made enough for 4 people, barely. Thin little squares. Really wanted to make this for a party but reluctant to try again.
Hi Kirk — I’m really sorry that this didn’t turn out for you. I’ve never heard of anyone having a problem with this recipe, so I’m not sure what could have happened?
What would happen if you left out the cornmeal? Would it still be worthwhile?
I wouldn’t advise leaving out the cornmeal as the mixture would be too wet.
Can this be made the night before? I have used your recipe for our thanksgiving for about 3 years now and it’s a huge hit but I’ve never tried to make it the night before so It’s one less thing to make on thanksgiving. Thanks for your advice!
Hi Laura! I’m all about making things in advance, and I don’t see why you couldn’t make it the day before and rewarm it tomorrow. Have you ever had leftovers? Did they fare well reheating? I’d have to think it would be ok.
I cannot find corn flour in any of my local stores, just cornmeal. What else can I do?
Unfortunately masa is the only flour that will work for these. I ordered some online from Amazon a little over a month ago, so I would suggest that.
I was so excited to try these with ground beef enchiladas for dinner tonight. They turned out exactly like the picture. Unfortunately, these were too sweet for our taste buds and the texture wasn’t appealing to us. It was worth a try though!
I’m sorry the texture and sweetness didn’t work for you but thank you for your feedback!
For the people that complained that the sweet corn recipe didn’t rise. Would opening the oven to check on it too many times have something to do with it? Just asking.
This recipe does not rise like typical cornbread, so I’m wondering if it’s simply taking people by surprise.
I have made this many times. The first time I made the way it said. It was good but not like this restaurant that makes something similar and was looking for a recipe close to it. So I changed it the second time and used brown sugar instead of white and cut the sugar down by half. Then instead of leaving corn chunky I creamed it to make more smooth. OMG!!!! It seriously was just like theirs and it’s amazing. It was very good the first go round. Just with a few adjustments it was totally what I was looking for. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you very much for your feedback Shianne, and for sharing your adaptions. I’ve been meaning to try this with less sugar, and I love the idea of creaming the corn!
I HAVE MADE THIS TWICE CHANGING THE METHOD OF MIXTURE TO MY LIKING & IT TURNED OUT PERFECTLY. THANK YOU
You’re welcome Sherrelle and thank you for taking the time to leave your feedback!
I am making this right now for the first time. I feel that I am looking for a clarification for how to foil it. Do you foil just the corn cake container or do you foil the water container to steam it?
So far it tastes amazing! I had to try the mixture before popping it in the oven.
Sorry I didn’t see this until now…I hope it worked out for you!
Is this sweet corn cake known by any other name?
I don’t it by any other name…sorry.
What if your have no corn meal on hand?
I would suggest purchasing some as the recipe won’t work without it.
I want to make this for a potluck dinner for 16 people. I would need to double the recipie, but what size pans would I need to do this? I plan on baking this right before leaving to take it right from the oven.
The purpose of the water bath is to steam the corn cake, so I’d advise using (2) 8×8″ dishes, which means you’d also need (2) 13×9″ dishes as well.