This corn cakes recipe has quickly become one of our go-to quick snack, lunch, and/or easy dinner recipes. They come together so quickly, use only 4 basic ingredients and fill up little bellies fast. Enjoy them as is, with some tomato ketchup or sour cream, or dress them up with some creme fraîche, chives, and smoked salmon. They are also a great vehicle for adding some leftover veggies or cheese from the fridge - simply grate and add to the recipe.
If you love simple fritter recipes like this then you should try this 5 Ingredient Cheddar and Riced Broccoli Fritters recipe next.
4 Ingredient Corn Cakes Recipe
As a teenager, my favorite thing to eat after a day at the beach was a deep-fried corn dog.
We would buy the huge Costco-sized bags of frozen 'dogs' from the store, and my mum would fry up batches for all the neighborhood kids.
I naively thought I was being so much healthier than all those people eating the weird meat versions.
Yes, I did.
Nowadays I just can't handle deep-fried foods like I used to.
So I came up with this little fresh corn cakes recipe to offset the huge craving I get as soon as the sun comes out and the beach starts calling.
Plus they are super freaking easy, so make the perfect 'I can't be bothered making dinner' dinner.
What Ingredients Are Needed?
This recipe uses only minimal ingredients for the basic version:
- corn: fresh sweet corn, frozen whole corn kernels, or canned corn will work. If you do plan on using frozen corn simply allow it to thaw in a bowl of water before using;
- eggs: I usually only use one egg for this recipe, however if the batter if looking a bit dry then feel free to add an extra egg, it won't hurt;
- flour: yes you can use gluten-free or ancient grain alternatives, but for ease I have just listed regular all purpose flour in the recipe;
- baking powder.
Of course, there is the obligatory salt and pepper, and any other add-ins or toppings you want to add if you feel like jazzing them up on the day.
You will also need cooking oil of choice, cooking spray, or some melted butter, for frying the corn cakes.
But with 4 main ingredients, how can you go wrong?
Want To Add Extras?
If you want to make the recipe a little bit fancier or want to sneak some extra veggies in there then why not try some of these simple additions:
- some grated carrot or zucchini (be sure to squeeze out any excess liquid from the zucchini before adding to the mixture);
- finely chopped brown onion or spring onion;
- grated cheddar cheese or crumbled feta cheese;
- chopped sundried tomatoes;
- grated potato or sweet potato;
- leftover parsley, basil or chives;
- chopped red pepper if you prefer spicy corn cakes;
- chopped bell peppers;
- some leftover peas.
Or whatever else you think might work in there.
TIP: If you do add more ingredients, remember to add another egg so that the mixture holds together when cooking.
How To Make and Serve Homemade Corn Cakes
Four ingredient corn cakes, or corn pancakes, whatever you want to call them, are so easy to make.
You are simply going to:
- Add all of the ingredients to a medium bowl and give it a good mix until everything is combined. Mix enough so that all of the dry ingredients are covered with the egg, but do not overmix, or the batter may become gummy;
- Heat some cooking oil of choice over medium-high heat in a large saucepan;
- Once the oil is hot, drop a spoonful of the mixture into the pan and flatten slightly;
- Cook for about 2 minutes, flip and cook on the other side for about 2 minutes. The corn cakes should be golden brown on the outside, and slightly cripsy. Please note, if you make the corn cakes larger, you will need to increase your cooking time;
- Serve and enjoy.
You can make the corn cakes large or small depending on how you plan on serving them.
I tend to use about a heaped tablespoon of mixture at a time.
Tip: when you remove the corn cakes from the saucepan, place them on a plate lined with paper towels to soak up any excess oil.
Batter too dry?
If your eggs are on the smaller side you might end up with a batter that is a little bit too dry.
Just add some milk one tablespoon at a time to loosen the batter up and it should cook up just fine.
Alternatively, you can add another egg if you have added more veggies.
Tip: These corn cakes do not have to look perfect. The batter is dolloped into a hot pan and will develop more of a rustic shape. Embrace it.
To serve you can either go fancy and pop on some créme fraîche and smoked salmon, some sour cream and green onions, or eat them as is, straight out of the pan with a big dollop of ketchup.
You could also serve with avocado salsa, or with a simple side salad if you would like to serve as a main meal.
Serving At A Dinner Party/Potluck
If you will be serving to a lot of people then make a large batch and make smaller versions of the corn cakes for quicker production.
When it comes time to serve, simply add the cooked corn cakes in a single layer to a large baking sheet or cookie sheet and reheat them in the oven.
Remove from the oven, add toppings and serve.
Meal Prep Tips and Tricks
Homemade corn cakes can be made ahead of time with no problem.
Make a big batch at the beginning of the week and store them in the fridge for afternoon snacks or in lunch boxes.
And I must say they go down a treat.
Especially for hungry little ones when school finishes for the day and we have a few hours before dinner.
When serving leftovers at home I do tend to give them a quick 2 minutes in the air-fryer to crisp them up and serve them nice and hot, although the kids don't mind having them cold in their lunch boxes.
Need More 4 Ingredient Recipes?
If you are looking for some more 4 ingredient recipes for easy cooking during the week then check these out:
- 4 Ingredient Teriyaki Salmon;
- 4 Ingredient Chicken Skewers;
- 4 Ingredient Homemade Mint Pesto;
- 4 Ingredient Low Carb Peanut Butter Cookies from Wholesome Yum.
Do you get a hankering for fresh corn cakes when they start to show up at the markets?
Let me know in the comments what recipes you use for your fresh corn.
4 Ingredient Corn Cakes
- 1 cup corn kernels either canned or cooked fresh corn
- 1 egg (for vegan alternative: see notes)
- ¼ cup plus 2tbsp whole wheat flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a large bowl, mix the corn kernels with the egg until the kernels are coated
- Using a sieve, slowly add in the flour and the baking powder to the corn mixture, and gently combine
- Add salt and pepper to taste
- Heat some cooking oil of choice (I used avocado oil) in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once oil is hot, add a tablespoon of the mixture at a time. Cook for about 3 minutes on one side, or until it's browned, flip, and cook another 3 minutes, or until it's browned. Remove and repeat for all the other corn fritters (I can usually fit about 4-5 into each batch).
- Serve immediately.
- grated and drained zucchini,
- grated carrot,
- a spare bit of onion,
- grated potato or sweet potato,
- leftover parsley or basil,
- or even some peas.
If you tried this recipe please comment and rate it.
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Old photos of this recipe that you might have found over on pinterest, where they seem to be incredibly popular!?!
do I have to use whole wheat flour and can I use frozen corn.
You can use regular white flour if preferred, and frozen corn should work just fine, however I would thaw it first.
Sony Sherpa says
This corn cake recipe is so awesome! I'll definitely make this on the weekend and add lion's mane mushroom powder for extra protein and health boost
Chris David says
Its really a nice recipe and mouth watering.
These corn cakes are so good! And I love that they're only 4 ingredients. So easy!
I made your corn cakes on my Blackstone Flat Top Griddle today and they turned out AMAZING!!I had some extra shredded butternut squash that I wanted to use so I added it to this recipe. My family ate all of them!!
Love the addition of the butternut squash, great way to use it up!
You're right - these are quick, good, and tasty! Filling, too! Love ours with sour cream. Yum!
We really enjoyed these! They were simple and easy to make, one of our new favorite sides.
Mandy Applegate says
I love how easy these corn cakes are AND so delicious!
These came out great! We don’t have corn too often so my kids thought they were super cool.
Made these today. They were pretty good. I did add some sugar to sweeten them up a bit. I think I will add a little jalapeno next time. Thank you!
Thanks for popping by CJ, I love the addition of the jalapeno (although I love adding jalapeno to everything!!)
Molly Kumar says
These are so delicious and love that it's only 4 ingredients. Yummmm!
Lewis Johnson says
I'm making this tonight.
I've never seen anything like this before. I need to try it.
Corn is definitely one of those ingredients you either love or hate!
Haha, I like crab cakes too 🙂
I have never in my life seen these before. They look delicious and I'm going to dust off the ol pans to try them. Thanks.
I hope you enjoy Sarah, they are super easy 🙂