ArabianFrenchIndianItalianMainsPakistaniQuick & Easy

Miso Butter Corn

30 mins Cook
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MeruMiso GrilledSweetCornwithSmokeyMisoButter

The recipe for Miso Butter Corn demonstrates the beauty of simplicity! A touch of miso is the secret ingredient that elevates this sautéed corn into a versatile side dish that complements a wide range of main courses, whether it’s chicken rissoles or gyoza. You can also turn it into a complete meal by pairing it with a fried egg, avocado, and tortillas for a delicious stuffing option.

Butter Corn Miso Butter Corn

Miso butter corn

The world owes its gratitude to David Chang for introducing the marvel of sautéed corn with miso and butter, even though he wasn’t the first to create it; he certainly propelled it to fame! In fact, this dish became so wildly popular at his New York restaurant that it gained a reputation as the “corn restaurant” that also happened to serve noodles, prompting him to remove it from the menu.

For those new to miso, it’s a soybean paste widely recognized as the foundation of miso soup (you can find my mom’s recipe here). Despite its unassuming appearance, it packs an abundance of savory flavor into one innocent-looking container, be it a tub, jar, or packet. Due to its potent nature, miso finds application in a plethora of dishes, both Japanese and Western, adding depth and richness to a variety of culinary creations

Today’s miso corn serves as an excellent illustration of a fusion Asian dish where miso takes center stage alongside a somewhat unexpected co-star: corn!

Ingredients in Miso Butter Sautéed Corn

You won’t need a plethora of ingredients to whip up this dish. In fact, it’s quite simple!


Here’s what you’ll need for the recipe, and the list is quite straightforward:

  1. Miso – While various types of miso exist, you should opt for one labeled “white miso” or “shiro miso” (where “shiro” translates to “white” in Japanese). If you’re using red miso, it’s slightly more potent, so a heaped tablespoon will suffice. (Side note: My mom provides a concise breakdown of miso varieties in her Miso Soup recipe).
  2. Bacon – Streaky bacon is preferred, as the fat rendered from the bacon is used to sauté the corn, adding to the dish’s delectability.
  3. Butter – Choose unsalted butter since the bacon and miso contribute adequate saltiness. If you have only salted butter on hand, slightly reduce the miso amount.
  4. Garlic – Garlic is a must, especially when butter is in the mix with corn.
  5. Cooking Sake – This is one of the three fundamental sauces in Japanese cuisine. A rice wine tailored for cooking, it can now be found in the Asian aisle of many grocery stores. It’s utilized to deglaze the pan post corn-cooking. This term refers to the use of liquid to dissolve the flavorful bits adhered to the pan’s base into the sauce. Additionally, sake lends an extra savory nuance to the dish. The alcohol content evaporates during cooking.If you can’t find sake, mirin or Chinese cooking wine are good substitutes. In a pinch, even water will do, primarily for the deglazing purpose.
  6. Green Onion – This ingredient imparts freshness to the dish. Cut it slightly chunkier than the usual fine slices commonly suggested in recipes. The chunkiness ensures a refreshing burst with each bite.
  7. White Pepper – White pepper is often used in Japanese dishes, so I tend to use it by habit. But, given this dish’s fusion nature, black pepper will work just as well.

I hope this helps, and happy cooking!


Certainly, the star of the show is corn! Using freshly cut corn straight from the cob is highly recommended because it possesses several advantages. Firstly, it’s relatively dry, which allows for superior sautéing, resulting in those delightful golden spots. Moreover, fresh corn offers an unmatched flavor profile – sweeter and more pronounced. In terms of texture, it maintains its firmness without becoming soggy.

If fresh corn isn’t available, frozen corn serves as the next best option. Use it directly from the freezer, but be prepared for a slightly longer cooking time as it needs to thaw and dry out before achieving that golden sauté. Canned corn, while a viable choice, falls behind because it retains more moisture, making it less ideal for sautéing.

If you’re wondering how to efficiently remove corn kernels from the cob without creating a kitchen mess, here’s a handy tip: use a large bowl to catch the kernels, prop the corn cob on a small dish for stability, and wield a small knife for precise and controlled cutting.

How to cook Miso Butter Corn

Let’s kick off this recipe by sautéing bacon, which not only lends flavor but also provides bacon fat, making our corn all the more delectable! Once everything is cooked, we’ll meld in the miso butter for that velvety finish.

  1. Preparing the Corn – To efficiently remove corn kernels from the cob, place the cob upright on a small ramekin or a similar container set inside a larger bowl. Using a small knife, slice down the cob, allowing the bowl to catch the kernels. A bundt pan can be a handy alternative.
  2. Miso Butter Preparation – Blend the miso with softened butter until it forms a uniform mixture.
  3. Bacon Time – Start with a cold pan and place the bacon in it. As the pan warms, the bacon fat will render, eliminating the need for additional oil. The key is to opt for streaky bacon.
  4. Harnessing Bacon Fat – Once the bacon is crisply golden, extract it using a slotted spoon, retaining as much bacon fat in the pan as possible. Now, introduce the corn. Sauté the corn for about 4 to 5 minutes until you see those delightful golden specks, ensuring it’s well-cooked and sweet to taste. Remember, fresh corn tends to be a bit firmer in texture than its frozen or canned counterparts. Stir the corn intermittently (roughly every minute) to allow those golden spots to form.
  5. Incorporate Garlic – Be sure to add garlic towards the latter part of the corn’s cooking process to prevent it from charring.
  6. Deglazing the Pan – Pour in the cooking sake and keep stirring until it fully evaporates, which should take around 15 seconds. This deglazing step dissolves those appetizing golden remnants (known as fond) from the corn’s sautéing process into our dish, infusing more flavor.
  7. Melding in the Miso Butter – With the stove turned off, blend the miso butter with the corn. The aim isn’t to sizzle but to allow the butter to gently integrate, ensuring a lustrous, buttery consistency. It’s essential to remember that miso can caramelize rapidly, so we want to maintain that silky texture.
  8. Final Touches – Mix in the pre-cooked bacon and fresh green onions, and you’re ready to serve!

Matters of serving

I adore the incredible versatility of this dish. It’s a corn side dish bursting with such rich flavors that you’ll find yourself indulging by the spoonful. Who even needs to know what the main course is when you have a dish like Miso Butter Corn on the table?

As previously mentioned, despite its miso component, this dish doesn’t lean specifically Japanese or Asian in taste. Its universal appeal makes it a perfect companion to a wide array of main courses. Imagine it alongside a hearty serving of Crispy Herb Roasted Chicken with gravy or a succulent Pork Tenderloin with Creamy Mustard Sauce. Equally, it effortlessly harmonizes with Asian main dishes like Chinese Char Sui BBQ Pork, a generous platter of gyoza, or Grilled Marinated Thai Chicken (Gai Yang).

However, my personal favorite is transforming it into a full meal by adding a fried egg, some burst roast cherry tomatoes (just pop them in the oven for about 10 minutes), avocado, and tortillas for either scooping or stuffing. Whether it’s breakfast, dinner, or lunch, this combination works like a charm any day of the week.

So, let’s talk about your preferences! How would you serve this delightful dish, and what would you pair it with?

Miso Butter Corn

Miso Butter Corn

The recipe for Miso Butter Corn demonstrates the beauty of simplicity! A touch of miso is the secret ingredient that elevates this sautéed corn into a versatile side dish that complements a wide range of main courses, whether it's chicken rissoles or gyoza. You can also turn it into a complete meal by pairing it with a fried egg, avocado, and tortillas for a delicious stuffing option.
prep time
10 mins
cooking time
30 mins
total time
40 mins




  • 30g / 2 tbsp unsalted butter , softened

  • 1 1/2 tbsp white miso (shiro miso) (Note 1)

  • CORN:

  • 200g / 7oz streaky bacon , chopped into 1cm / 1/2″ pieces

  • 3 cups corn kernels , preferably freshly cut off 3 – 4 corn cobs else frozen thawed (Note 2)

  • 2 garlic cloves , finely minced

  • 2 tbsp cooking sake , optional (sub mirin or dry sherry, Note 3)

  • 1/8 tsp white pepper (sub black pepper)

  • 1 cup green onion , cut into 0.5cm/0.2″ slices


Prepare the Miso Butter: Begin by mixing the butter and miso in a small bowl until they blend into a uniform mixture.
Crisp Up the Bacon: Place the bacon in a large non-stick pan that's not yet heated, and there's no need to add any oil. Set the stove to medium-high heat. As it gradually warms up, the bacon's fat will begin to render, allowing the bacon to cook in its own flavorful fat. Cook the bacon for about 3 to 4 minutes until it turns golden. Then, using a slotted spoon, transfer the crispy bacon onto a plate lined with paper towels. Retain the bacon fat in the pan.
Sauté the Corn: If you don't have 1 tablespoon of fat left in the pan, you can top it up with some butter. With the heat still on medium-high, introduce the corn to the pan and stir only occasionally, roughly every minute. This allows the corn to develop those enticing golden spots. Continue sautéing for approximately 5 minutes, or until the corn is just cooked and possesses a delightful sweetness. Add the garlic and stir for an additional 30 seconds. Then, pour in the sake and stir until it evaporates, which should take around 15 seconds.
Melt the Miso Butter: Turn off the stove, and introduce the miso butter into the pan. Stir until the miso butter is completely melted. Season with pepper, then add the crispy bacon and fresh green onion. Toss everything together until it's nicely coated with the flavorful sauce.
Serving Suggestions: This dish is ideal as a side dish and pairs wonderfully with a variety of main courses. Alternatively, you can serve it in a corn taco with a fried egg and avocado for an incredibly delicious combination.


Miso: Various miso varieties are available, but opt for "white miso" or "shiro miso" (where "shiro" signifies "white" in Japanese) for a balanced flavor. If using red miso, use a slightly smaller amount, approximately 1 heaped tablespoon, as it has a more intense flavor. Corn: Freshly cut corn is the preferred choice because it's drier and sautés more effectively. Thawed frozen corn can also be used, but be prepared for a slightly longer cooking time as it needs time to thaw, dry, and cook. Canned corn is acceptable but, due to its higher moisture content, may not develop those golden spots as well. Cooking Sake: A fundamental sauce in Japanese cuisine, cooking sake can usually be found in the Asian section of grocery stores. It adds an extra layer of savory goodness to the dish. The alcohol content evaporates during cooking. If unavailable, you can substitute with mirin, Chinese cooking wine, or even water, as the primary goal is to have a liquid for deglazing the pan. Recipe Credit: This recipe is adapted from David Chang's renowned "Roasted Summer Corn with Miso Butter." Modifications were made to reduce the miso quantity and omit the chicken stock, as the original recipe was a touch too salty. Storage: Leftovers can be stored for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator and are also suitable for freezing. Nutrition: The provided nutritional information is calculated per serving, assuming there are four servings as a side dish.
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