Red Corn

Did you peel back your green husks and silken threads expecting golden nuggets of yellow corn, only to find ruby red kernels in their place? No, your corn has not been infested by bugs, artificially dyed, or crossed with a pomegranate (as my 12-year-old suggested). It is in fact Red Corn – just one of the thousand varieties of corn available each year.

Like its yellow counterpart, red corn is a type of sweet corn. It’s kernels can carry shades of red ranging from deep ruby to creamy pink. The cobs of red corn are typically leaner and less plump than the more common variety. But don’t let its smaller size fool you. Red corn is said to be exceptionally sweet and nutty in flavor. This delicious grain packs an extra powerful, healthy punch. Red sweet corn provides twenty percent more protein than white or yellow corn. The anthocyanin pigment that creates the red color provides antioxidants, and has anti-inflammatory properties linked to the reversal of diabetes and nerve damage. According to red sweet corn contains 350% more antioxidants than common yellow or white.

Of course all of this is fun to know but what we really want to do is EAT it. Red corn can be prepared in exactly the same way as you would prepare yellow or white corn- frozen, grilled, etc., but to retain it’s color boiling is not recommended.  If color doesn’t matter to you then you may boil it!  There are so many great corn recipes, but I want to make something that really showcases the special color so I am thinking corn and avocado salsa. This recipe seems pretty good. As I know my family likes heat I will probably add one seeded and chopped jalapeno. Also, to really showcase that beautiful corn color, I think I will substitute green pepper for the red.

Corn Salsa from A Cozy Kitchen

While it won’t show off the color too much, I think I will combine the power of sweet red corn, the yellow summer squash (also in my basket today), and my remaining BB Tortillas, to make a dinner of Corn and Squash Quesadillas. In the hot Las Vegas heat, I really like that this is an oven-free recipe. Accompanied with a nice fruit salad, it should make for a flavorful summer supper.

Corn 'n Squash Quesadillas from A Taste of Home

If, after all that fun, I still have some corn left over, I will put my slow-cooker to use making this corn chowder (replacing the frozen corn for fresh, RED kernels).  Again, I love that it won’t heat up the house, and all of crockpot365’s recipes are gluten free- a necessity in my kitchen.

Corn Chowder from A Year of Slow Cooking

Just remember- if today’s basket had you seeing RED…that’s the way it is supposed to be. Get creative in the kitchen and enjoy this sassy, sweet, surprise. Happy Cooking!


  1. GMO??? Please let us know! Thanks!

  2. Is this corn GMO?
    Was it grown with pesticides?

  3. tori sparks

    Just an FYI about GMO’s. Says we should be in the clear.

  4. I have purchased non gmo corn from bountiful baskets in the past. It has been two years, though. I’d like to know if this is gmo corn or not. I hope someone responds before the ordering window closes.

  5. Sara Pittman

    Is this corn GMO and is it grown organically or not?

    Up above someone said their husband cleaned the corn with a Mr. Clean eraser. Those erasers are made of abrasive chemical cleansers. In fact children are not to use them as it can cause blisters.

  6. Kristine Sheehan

    Hi there…do you know if this corn is GMO corn? I always wonder to about some of the stuff, if it doesn’t say organic, is it full of pesticides…or is it like getting stuff at the farmers market, where it’s not labeled organic because of the COST for that certification, but it doesn’t use pesticides? Thanks!

  7. Jaci Baze

    Would love to try this . Is this corn GMO free?

  8. My middle son freaked out at the red corn. He is the hardest person to please food-wise. We are thankful that he would eat yellow or white corn. He ate around the middle of the cob (because I made him) and then was done. I wouldn’t mind the red corn again. I will definitely steam it. I loved the red color.

  9. So glad I found all these comments about the red corn. I have never encountered red corn before.
    I thought it went bad. I boiled it anyway just to see. Some of the others were right about the color leaving and the water looking muddy.
    My husband did try one but I didn’t dare. I do have more in the freezer and will try them real soon.

  10. JoAnn Williams

    Christi B- I felt the same way about the red corn. I liked that it was not as sweet as the yellow or white. My husband and I both enjoyed the “nutty” flavor that it had. Thanks for the link with additional recipes!

  11. Laura Brown

    I had never tried the red corn before. I roasted it – some on the cob, some off the cob just on the stove, and it was unbelievably delicious! So tender, moist…Yummy!!! I preferred it on the cob actually but loved the way it popped off the cob so easily – like the difference between cling & freestone peaches!!! Hope to see it in our baskets again sometime !!!

  12. This is a great article on the red corn and a good recipe as well. The one thing I noticed is that the red corn has a more “earthy” flavor and is quite a bit more “starchy” than it’s yellow counterpart…

  13. JoAnn Williams

    Emily- adding jicama to the corn salsa sounds like a perfect addition- I love that stuff. Letha- I learned the first week we got it that boiling it does change it’s color quite a bit. I usually only boil my corn for 1-2 minutes so it didn’t discolor too badly but, it did look better when we grilled it.

  14. Letha Gunter

    I have never seen this corn before. My father was a truck gardener and he would have loved to grow it. We discovered that the color turns quite muddy if you boil it. It was so pretty and so quickly became unattractive.
    It is best to steam it.

  15. Thanks for filling me in! I was in for quite a surprise! We’re going to roast them on the grill. I’ve made the corn salsa before. it’s amazing! Especially if the corn is grilled and you can mix jicama with it.

  16. My hubby found a great way to cook corn on the cob. He first cleans the corn really well, a rubber jar opener or a Mr Clean Eraser helps get the silk off the corn, then he butter and seasons, then places each piece on a piece of waxed paper, wraps it around the corn, twists the ends and cooks each piece in the mircowave for about 3-4 minutes. Yummy!

  17. The Corn Salsa sounds perfect for showcasing the Red Corn. I’m so excited to cook it now! I’m also thrilled to use the Kale this week one of our favorite recipes:! I’ve been doing BB for just over a month and LOVE it!

  18. I would have loved to see red corn in my basket. Some of us aren’t getting these wonderful ingredients yet. Hope that will change soon.

    • Jana ~ We’ll put it on our wish list for other areas too! Different produce distributors put different amounts of effort into working with us to get the produce we would prefer, so sometimes it is hard, but rest assured we work to get as many sites with our better vendors as soon as it is feasible.

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