Oh how I love you, sweet corn season. Maybe it’s the perfect little bites of grilled corn added to any and all summer recipes, or maybe it’s watching my two boys savor every messy bite of corn on the cob.
Okay, it’s definitely both.
I had been dreaming up a new, unique way to use up sweet corn this summer and remembered this simple yet incredibly delicious pasta recipe I made this winter with rich brown butter and acorn squash as the sauce. Why not turn sauteéd corn into an equally as luscious sauce?
That’s how this brown butter corn pasta came to life. I love that this wonderful meal only requires a few ingredients, but the result is the perfect combo of sweet, savory, creamy and fresh. You’ll blend sweet corn right in with some ricotta to make the sauce, and then mix in the rest of those delicious kernels. Long story short, this might just be your new fav way to use up summer corn, so load up at the farmer’s market or grocery store and get to it!
Ingredients in this brown butter corn pasta
One of the best parts about this absolutely delicious corn ricotta pasta is that it’s made with just a handful of ingredients. While it seems so simple, the flavor combo in this dish is out-of-this-world good. Here’s what you’ll need to make it:
- Butter: we’re browning that butter, baby! You’ll mix brown butter right into the pasta, and you’ll need a bit to sauté your corn down.
- Corn: there’s nothing better this time of year than fresh sweet corn. You’ll actually use the corn kernels in the sauce as well as sprinkled throughout the pasta dish.
- Ricotta: the rest of the sauce is made with creamy ricotta cheese. YUM.
- Pasta: I love using pretty tagliatelle pasta, but feel free to use your favorite shape like fettuccine, linguine, and more.
- To season: we’re simply seasoning this brown butter corn pasta with salt and pepper!
- To garnish: add fresh basil and green onion to give the pasta the perfect amount of freshness.
Can I make it vegan or gluten free?
- To make vegan: I haven’t tested this pasta dish with a vegan ricotta substitute, so I’m not sure how the flavor would turn out. Let me know if you try it! You’ll also need to use a vegan buttery stick, and please note that you cannot brown vegan butter. You’ll just melt it before adding it to the pasta.
- To make gluten free: simply use your favorite gluten free pasta shape like this one.
How to brown butter
Why add regular butter when you can add rich, nutty, absolutely delicious brown butter? The brown butter adds such incredible flavor to this corn ricotta pasta recipe. Get all of my tips and tricks for browning butter in this post — it’s amazing in both sweet and savory recipes!
Brown butter and corn ricotta pasta in 5 steps
- Brown your butter. Start by browning your butter until it reaches a lovely amber color, then set it aside to cool.
- Cook your pasta & corn. Boil the water for your pasta, then sauté your corn kernels in some butter or olive oil, salt & pepper. While the corn is cooking, cook your pasta and reserve some pasta water before you drain it.
- Make the sauce. Add half of the sauteéd corn, ricotta, salt, pepper & the reserved pasta water to a blender and blend until nice and creamy.
- Add the butter & sauce. Stir the brown butter into the cooked pasta, then toss with the corn and ricotta mixture.
- Garnish & serve. Finish with the extra corn, fresh basil, green onion, salt & pepper and serve! Feel free to add some red pepper flakes for a little heat, too. YUM.
Delicious veggie add-ins
When Rebecca, Abra and I tested (and fell in love with) this corn and brown butter pasta, we couldn’t stop dreaming up even more summer veggies to add to it. Feel free to try adding:
- Fresh or burst cherry tomatoes
- Grilled asparagus or zucchini (learn how to grill veggies here!)
- Sweet peas
- Spinach or kale
The options are truly endless!
Add a boost of protein
This brown butter & corn pasta already packs about 15g of protein per serving from the pasta and ricotta, but these protein add-ins would also be delicious:
- A can of chickpeas (to keep it vegetarian)
- Grilled chicken
- Grilled shrimp
- Crispy bacon
- Ground pork or turkey sausage, or your favorite sliced chicken sausage
How to store this corn ricotta pasta
Store any leftover brown butter corn ricotta pasta in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days. To reheat simply do so in a microwave safe dish or on the stovetop with a splash of water.
More delicious ways to use sweet corn
- Chipotle Lime Salmon Tacos with Corn Avocado Peach Salsa & Cilantro Yogurt Sauce
- Grilled Corn Salad with Avocado, Goat Cheese & Hot Honey Vinaigrette
- Damn Good BLT Pasta Salad with Creamy Jalapeño Cashew Dressing
- Southwest Chicken Corn Chowder
- One Pan Sazon Skillet Chicken
Get all of our recipes using corn here!
I hope you love this creamy sweet corn and brown butter pasta! If you make it be sure to leave a comment and a rating so I know how you liked it. Enjoy, xo!
Creamy Sweet Corn & Brown Butter Ricotta Pasta
Creamy sweet corn and brown butter ricotta pasta made with 4 core ingredients and fresh garnishes. The luscious sauce in this summery pasta dish is made right in the blender with brown butter, ricotta, and corn! Enjoy this wonderful, comforting dinner as is, or customize it with your fav seasonal veggies and proteins.
- For the brown butter:
- 1/4 cup salted butter
- For the corn:
- 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
- 3 cups fresh sweet corn, cut off the cob (3-4 ears of corn should yield roughly 3 cups)
- Freshly ground salt and pepper, to taste
- For the ricotta:
- 1/2 cup ricotta
- ½ teaspoon salt
- For the pasta:
- 10 oz tagliatelle pasta (or sub fettuccine or linguine or any type of pasta you want!)
- 3/4 cup reserved pasta water
- To garnish:
- 1/4 cup basil, cut into ribbons
- 1/4 cup sliced green onions
First, brown your butter: add butter to a medium saucepan or skillet and place over medium heat. The butter will begin to melt, crackle, and then eventually foam. Make sure you whisk constantly during this process. After a couple of minutes, the butter will begin to brown and turn a nice golden amber color on the bottom of the saucepan, this usually happens once it foams. Continue to whisk and remove from heat as soon as the butter begins to brown and give off a nutty aroma. Immediately transfer the butter to a medium bowl to prevent burning, making sure you scrape all the yummy brown bits from the pan with a rubber spatula; this is where the flavor is! Set aside to cool.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil for your pasta, then start cooking your corn.
Place a skillet over medium high heat and add in 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter. Once oil is hot or butter is melted, add in the corn, season with salt and pepper, and saute for approximately 10 minutes; stirring every so often until corn begins to caramelize and turn slightly golden in places. Add half of the sauteed corn to a blender with the ½ cup of ricotta and ½ teaspoon salt and set aside; do not blend yet. Reserve the remaining half of corn for stirring into the pasta.
While the corn is cooking, you can cook your pasta according to the directions on the package. Before draining pasta and adding back to the pan, reserve ½ cup of pasta water and add to the corn/ricotta mixture, then blend the mixture until mostly smooth.
Finally, add brown butter to the cooked pasta and stir to coat, then toss in the blended corn/ricotta mixture, extra corn, basil and green onion. Add freshly ground salt and pepper to taste. If you like a little heat, i think red pepper flakes would be fabulous. Serves 4-6.
To make gluten free: simply use your favorite gluten free pasta.
See the full post for tips, tricks & easy ways to customize your pasta with extra veggies or protein!
This pasta is absolutely delicious! Loved it with fresh basil and onion, the spice of the red pepper flakes, and the sweetness of the corn. And, of course, the brown butter. Making this as much as I can while corn is still good this summer. Thanks for another great recipe!
I’m SO happy you loved it, Jennifer! Aren’t those flavors incredible together?!
I made this last night and it was delicious! My corn wasn’t super sweet but sautéing it really brought out the sweetness. I loved the creaminess the ricotta added without being so heavy. Also, this is my first recipe using browned butter and now I’m sold. I forgot the red pepper flakes but think they would be a great addition.
Yay!! So happy you tried it and that it came out delish 🙂 Isn’t brown butter INCREDIBLE?! Seriously one of my fav ingredients ever.
This was delicious! So summery and pretty easy, too. I ended up making everything as written except I used a full 16oz of pasta since I forgot and dumped the whole bag in— it still worked great! There’s plenty of sauce to go around.
Amazing! So glad it came out perfect and that you loved it 🙂 Thanks for commenting!
Absolutely delicious and so easy! My husband and I were fighting over who got the leftovers LOL! Enjoy!
Omg I LOVE this recipe. I meal prepped it for the week and am actually looking forward to eating it a few more times. I added some sautéed zucchini and sliced chicken sausage just to make it more filling. Didn’t change anything else and it turned out perfect!
Yaaaaay I’m so happy you loved it! The added zucchini + chicken sausage is such a great idea. Thanks for commenting, Catie!
This was delicious and I will be incorporating into our family’s rotation. I added spinach near the end and some sautéed chicken breast. I did find the sauce a better consistency if eaten the day it is made (as I do with any ricotta based sauce). So good!
Yay!! So happy you enjoyed it. Love the idea of spinach + chicken in here 🙂
THIS WAS AMAZING. I actually forgot to reserve water but I subbed vegetable broth. I also sautéed in the green onion stems in with the corn since I had them on hand and a clove of garlic. I also air fried some asparagus and tossed that in, too. Very creative and easy enough for a weeknight dinner.
WOW that all sounds incredible! Love the idea of air-fried asparagus in here 🙂 Thanks for sharing, Katie!
Made this tonight with our local super sweet corn and it was amazing. The brown butter really takes it to another level.
Doesn’t it?! I LOVE the flavor of brown butter. Happy you do, too!!
This was absolutely DELICIOUS! I would follow Monique into any new-to-me flavor territory, but this was just beyond! The fresh creamy corn sauce, the brown butter nuttiness, the whole sweet and saltiness of it… amazing. I had cottage cheese on hand so I used it instead of ricotta, and it still worked great for me!
Aren’t the flavors incredible together!? So glad you enjoyed this one. And love the cottage cheese sub 🙂
Added spinach! Strong recommendation. Kiddos loved it.
Great idea! SO happy you all loved it!
This looks amazing! Most of my family is anti-ricotta, and I usually substitute cottage cheese. Do you think it would work in this recipe?
Ha! I didn’t see the comment above…excited to try with cottage cheese!
Yes! It should work perfectly! Enjoy 🙂
Sooooo yummy!! I ended up blending about a teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes into the ricotta/corn mixture and it gave the dish a perfect little subtle heat!
Could you precook the corn a day or two in advance?
Definitely! Hope you love this recipe 🙂
You know it’s a success when the husband says, “This may be the best pasta I’ve ever had.”
This was SO good! My husband and I and all 4 kids gobbled it up!! I’m not always a fan of brown butter in baking and have never tried it in a savory dish, It wasn’t overpowering and added a really nice extra layer of flavour to the pasta. This will be added to our list of summer meals! Thanks for the great recipe!
Omg that is AMAZING! I’m so thrilled to hear you all loved it 🙂 Thanks for your sweet review, Kristy!
SO DELICIOUS AND SUCH A HIT IN MY HOUSE EVEN WITH MY PICKY 8 YEAR OLD !
I’m so glad!
I’m a second generation American of Italian decent so I’ve eaten more than my share of pasta over the years. I’m also an avid cook trying as many as 2 or 3 new recipes a week. With that said I will repeat what I said to my wife after the first few bites. “This is one of the best bowls of pasta I’ve ever eaten” I make quite a few pasta dishes with peas but I’ve never used corn and it’s corn season so I had to try this. I’m also able to get wonderful imported fresh refrigerated tagliatelle and was looking for interesting things to do with it. This recipe was the ticket for all of the above. The ricotta corn and pasta water made a delightful creamy sauce and the brown butter gave it a nutty note that pushed it over the top. Fresh basil from my garden and the scallions balanced everything to a T. I followed the directions exactly except I used a full pound of pasta and increased most of the ingredients by 60% to keep the same ratios. This was a grand slam right out of the gate.
Amazing! I’m so happy to hear that you loved this one. It was fun to come up with and such a great way to use fresh ingredients.
LOVE LOVE LOVE! I had some extra time on my hands so I made some small adjustments 🙂 I added the corn cobs and zest of one lemon to the pasta water and boiled it a bit, then removed the cobs before adding the pasta. This added a slight sweet tang to the Trotolle I used. I deglazed the pan after cooking the kernels with vermouth, this was AMAZING! I added crushed red pepper, lightened up the basil, and used finely chopped chives from the yard. Next time I will add dried basil to the pasta water and leave off the fresh, it got stuck in my teeth and was distracting from the super subtle corn and vermouth sweetness. I also kept aside a few kernels and heavily charred them, the crunh and color was nice. I have some great pics I took, thank you for the inspiration today, I needed it 🙂
Looove all these additions! It sounds incredible. Thanks for sharing!
Delicious! Only made half the pasta, but have extra sauce. Do you think it would freeze well?
Sorry if I’m late! I haven’t tried freezing it. I think so, though! You may just need to add some water when reheating.
Just made this last night and loved it! I usually don’t cook much with butter but this is worth the splurge! Already looking forward to leftovers.
So happy to hear that you are loving this recipe ❤️🙂
This was absolutely delicious! Felt like I was having a restaurant quality dish at home!! Will definitely make again!
This recipe is fairly easy and SO GOOOD. My meat loving husband raved about it and my picky toddler gobbled it up, I will probably add chicken to it next time for extra protein, but other than that, this recipe is absolutely perfect and will be added to my rotation!