This Spicy Corn Pasta is a creamy, comforting dinner that uses fresh, frozen, or canned corn to make a delicious quick sauce for your noodles.
This sauce has it all! Sweet from the corn, spice from the red pepper flakes, and a good helping of cream to bring it all together to make the most fantastic sauce!
Serve this with spaghetti, tagliatelle (or any pasta shape), a little side salad and you have dinner for the whole family. Or use it as a side dish for your grilled chicken or seared steak!
What corn to use
So we all know that fresh corn, straight off the cob is A-mazing! But frozen corn or canned corn make great substitutes when you are adding them to dishes like Creamed Corn Casserole with Bacon, Jalapeño Lime Chicken with Corn Mash, Smoked Fish and Sweetcorn Tartlets or this corn pasta.
So use what you have!
If you are using frozen corn, there is no need to defrost it before you add it to the sauce. Unless it has been at the bottom of your freezer for two years and is covered in ice crystals (tell me I am not alone in finding a half-empty bag of corn hiding) in which case, rinse it with hot water to remove the ice and drain it well before adding it to the pan. Then write "Frozen Corn" on the shopping list!
If you are using canned corn, drain it well before adding it to the pan.
I love spaghetti or linguine; I think the kid in me loves the slurping! But any shape will work here.
The longer noodles slither and slide in the creamy sauce, whereas a chunky shape will soak more sauce up inside. So again, go with what you have.
What to serve with it
As with most pasta recipes, I think a side salad and some bread works fabulously.
But you could add a side of vegetables, like garlic green beans or sautéed kale.
Or serve this pasta as your side and add a grilled chicken breast, seared steak, or some shrimp kebabs!
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Spicy Corn Pasta
- 12 oz pasta - see note 1
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 4 tablespoon butter
- 2 ½ cups corn - see note 2
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 3 garlic cloves crushed
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes -see note 3
- ¼ teaspoon Italian herbs
- 1 cup heavy cream - see note 4
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
- Fresh basil/parsley
- extra parmesan
- Bring a large pan of water to a boil. Add the salt and cook the pasta for 1 minute less than the packet suggests. (Set your timer)
12 oz/340g pasta
2 tablespoon salt
- Remove 2 cups of the pasta cooking water. Drain the pasta.
- While the pasta water is coming to a boil, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
4 tablespoon butter
- Add the corn and cook for 4-6 minutes until it has softened.
2 ½ cups corn
- Season with salt and pepper, then add in the crushed garlic, the red pepper flakes, Italian herbs, and the heavy cream.
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
3 crushed garlic cloves
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon Italian herbs
1 cup heavy cream
- Bring to a simmer and cook for 4-5 minutes over medium-high heat, until the sauce is thick. Reduce the heat to low until the pasta has finished cooking.
- Add the drained pasta to the sauce along with ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.
- Stir the pasta gently until it's coated in the sauce. Then add in the parmesan and more pasta cooking water if needed to make a luscious sauce.
½ cup grated parmesan
- Season to taste and serve.
- Use any pasta you have available. We like spaghetti, but a chunky shape works well too.
- You can use fresh, frozen, or canned corn for this recipe. If using frozen, there is no need to defrost it. And if using canned drain well first.
- Add more red pepper flakes if you like it extra spicy. Or reduce it to ¼ teaspoon for a milder spice.
- You can replace the heavy cream with half and half or milk, but the sauce won't be as rich. To thicken a sauce made with milk or half and half, mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch into 1 tablespoon of cold water and slowly whisk that into the milk/half and half.
Really delicious and easy! We made it with angelhair pasta and a bit of jalapeno for extra spice. Highly recommend.
Claire McEwen says
Oh I am so glad you enjoyed it, extra spice sounds like a great idea!
Chef Mimi says
I love this! Really smart. I like the idea of the group that focuses on cooking what you have. To me, it’s the best way to cook, because it teaches you how to be creative. For me, I did it when we were extremely poor, so I didn’t let one carrot go to waste. I think it also helps people loosen up about having to follow a recipe to a T. Great idea.