Fresh Corn Recipes and Iowa Corn Quest

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Here’s a roundup of my favorite fresh corn recipes that I think will become your new favorites. Cornbread, fresh corn soups and chowders, and much more!

Photo collage of Favorite Fresh Corn Recipes

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Iowa Corn. I traveled to Iowa as a guest of Iowa Corn, but all opinions expressed are always my own.

What’s your favorite way to enjoy fresh corn? Corn chowder, corn bread, or straight from the cob?

Iowa Corn recently invited me and a great group of other food bloggers to visit Iowa and learn more about Iowa farms and the importance of corn to our economy.

The #IACornQuest was a fun, informative whirlwind trip. We stayed at the luxurious Des Lux Hotel in the downtown area of pretty Des Moines, Iowa. 

photos collage of the IA Corn Quest

The first night, they whisked us away to the Iowa Distilling Company and treated us to some specialty cocktails, including one made with Prairie Fire. Iowa Distilling’s signature hot cinnamon-flavored whiskey.

Fresh Corn Recipes

Then we were treat to a special menu featuring great fresh corn recipes, including a sweet corn cake with berries for dessert.

Photo collage of magazine covers and tour at Meredith Corporation.

We were up early the next morning for a behind-the-scenes tour of Meredith Corporation. Home of Better Homes & Gardens, Successful Farming, Martha Stewart Living, Rachel Ray Everyday, and more popular magazines.

We were able to see the photographers and food stylists in action, as well as stroll through their prop storage room. How fun would it be to have such a huge selection to choose from to style food photos.

Photo collage of first stop at the IA CornQuest -  the Blair Farm to learn about ethanol and cattle feed.

Then we hit the road and traveled to the Blair Farm for lunch and to learn about Iowa corn farming. We learned that Iowa corn farms are generally family owned and passed from one generation to the next.

How Fresh Corn Becomes Ethanol

Much of the fresh corn that’s grown in Iowa is sent to ethanol plants. Ethanol plants use every part of the corn. The starch becomes ethanol fuel and the protein becomes distillers grains to feed livestock.

Photo collage of Iowa harvest time.

Our next stop was the Kenney Farm, where they were harvesting soy beans. The farmers rotate growing soy beans with corn to improve the soil and decrease insects and disease. They also plant a cover crop in the fall to help retain the soil and prevent erosion.

The farmers are passionate about preserving the rich, black Iowa soil for the next generations. They select their own seeds and choose seeds that allow them to use less pesticides and weed killers.

Photo collage from a tour of the Iowa Speedway

We ended the day at the famous Iowa Speedway. We took a quick ride around the track and then met with representatives of The American Lung Association to learn more about the benefits of ethanol. Did you know that ethanol is good for the economy and good for the environment?

Photo collage of fresh corn inspired lunch at the Des Moines Social Club

Our final day started with breakfast with Dr. Ruth McDonald, a Professor at Iowa State University. She dispelled our misconceptions about GMO’s and high fructose corn syrup, and stressed that a healthy diet is based on balanced nutrition.

We ended the trip with a Chopped style cooking competition at the Des Moines Social Club. The competition was followed by a food styling presentation, and a great Mexican feast for lunch.

I came home from the #IACornQuest excited to share what I’d learned with my family and you. I’m also excited to share with you my favorite fresh corn recipes.

Fresh Corn Recipes

This Fresh Corn Chowder is the absolute best corn chowder. You use the corn cobs to make a corn broth, so it doubles the flavor of the sweet fresh corn. You can even freeze the broth to use in soups all year long.


If you’re a pressure cooker fan, here’s my Pressure Cooker Fresh Corn Chowder version. If you love a little spice, you’ll love this Pressure Cooker Poblano Corn Chowder.

Or, if you’re a slow cooker fan, give this Slow Cooker Potato and Corn Chowder a try.

Pumpkin corn chowder - a soup made with fresh corn

This Pressure Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Corn Chowder is the perfect fall soup. Here’s a stove top Pumpkin Corn and Potato Chowder.

Pair the soups with Pressure Cooker Cornbread or a hearty oven baked Cheesy Green Chile Cornbread.

moist cornbread, made in a pressure cooker

Pressure Cooker Corn on the Cob is easier and better tasting than corn cooked the traditionally way, by boiling it in a pot on the stove.

These easy-to-make Black Bean Tostadas with Sweet Corn Guacamole are a great way to use fresh corn. You could even make your own Corn Tortillas.

Turn cornbread into a one pot meal. Chicken Taco Cornbread Wedges is a quick, weeknight meal that your whole family will love. The spicy ranch drizzle makes this meal extra special.

I’d love to hear from you. What is your favorite fresh corn recipes? 


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photo collage of favorite corn recipes made from fresh corn

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