corn cob flexing muscles
Credit: Photo by Johanna Parkin via Getty Images

Do you know why corn goes so well with butter? Because corn kinda sorta tastes like butter. It’s got a tinge of sweetness, a light hint of salt, creaminess that’s a result of its natural liquid mixing with starch, plus the yellowness of it all. Wouldn’t it be great if you could add some of that corniness to bland stuff like oatmeal, swirl it into bread pudding, or level up with another vegetable on your avocado toast? Well you can. And with the minutes of optimal sweet corn season rapidly ticking past us, there’s no better time to learn this trick so you can stock your freezer and fridge with gallons (OK, pints) of it.

Corn contains a lot of natural starch—you know, cornstarch. The same stuff you use to thicken up sauces and puddings and whatnot. Everything you need to make corn butter is right inside the corn. We’re talking pure, 100-percent uncut corn puree that you can meta-slather all over corn on the cob, because you and corn are like David Gahan and Martin Gore: You just can’t get enough.


A whole bunch of sweet corn


Chef’s knife
Blender or juicer
Fine mesh strainer
Silicone spatula


Use your knife to cut all the sweet corn kernels into a big bowl, then firmly run the back of your knife down the cob to extract any liquid. Leave no corn milk behind.

Put the corn through a juicer, or run it on high in a blender, adding water as necessary to create a smooth puree.

Pour the corn puree through the strainer bit by bit, pressing down with the rubber spatula to separate the pulp from the corn liquid. Discard any solid bits.

Put the corn puree into a skillet over medium heat and stir gently with the spatula, making sure to scrape the corners and bottom of the pan. Continue until mixture thickens and coats the spatula like a pudding. Add actual butter if you want to, or keep it vegan. Use warm, or pour into a jar and keep refrigerated for up to 10 days, or freeze for use in corn-less seasons.