Creamy Corn and Tomato Orecchiette

As the summer comes to an end and corn is in high season, I like to put it in all my dishes - salads, pizza, casseroles, pasta.

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When I wrote this recipe for Creamy Corn and Tomato Orecchiette, I wanted a creamy corn pasta sauce, but I didn’t want to have to add cream to it so that I could keep it bright and fresh and to save a few calories while I was at it.  After all, if you can save a few calories without sacrificing flavor, why not? Of course, if you’re thinking “I love creamed corn, Meredith and I want this pasta to be luscious and decadent just like creamed corn”, please do add some cream at the end. You could add anywhere from 1 to 3 tablespoons and we’ll still be friends.

Orecchiette with Creamy Corn, Roasted Tomatoes and Scallions

  • Prep Time: 20 m
  • Cook Time: 30 m
  • Total Time: 50 m
  • Servings:


  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes halved
  • olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 scallions whites and green separated and sliced ¼-inch on the bias
  • 4 cups fresh corn kernels cut off the cob (about 4 ears)
  • ¼ cup water
  • 12 ounces dried orecchiette pasta
  • 4 teaspoons lime juice about 1 lime
  • fresh basil leaves torn


  1. Pre-heat the air fryer to 400ºF or pre-heat the oven to 375ºF.
  2. Toss the cherry tomatoes with olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Air-fry at 400°F for 6 minutes or roast on a baking sheet in the oven for 15 minutes, until tomatoes are soft. Toss tomatoes a couple of times during the cooking process.
  3. While the tomatoes are roasting, melt the butter in a large sauté pan. Add the scallion whites and corn kernels to the pan and sauté for a minute or two. Add the water and simmer for 5 minutes, until the corn is tender. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and remove the pan from the heat. Transfer three quarters of the corn to a food processor, reserving ½ cup of the corn kernels.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the orecchiette pasta and cook until it is al dente according to package instructions (usually 9 to 11 minutes). Reserve one cup of the cooking water and drain the pasta.
  5. Add the reserved cooking water to the food processor. Process the corn in the food processor until smooth.
  6. Return the sauté pan to the stovetop over medium-high heat. Add the scallion greens and remaining ½ cup of corn kernels. Sauté for a minute. Stir in the puréed corn and heat through. Add the cooked orecchiette to the pan and toss to coat with the sauce. Stir in the roasted tomatoes gently and squeeze the fresh lime juice over everything. Toss together and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  7. Serve in pasta bowls and top with some fresh torn basil leaves and another grind of black pepper.
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Comments (9)Post a Reply

  1. 5 stars
    I made the orrechiette with corn recipe last night and it was fabulous! Cooking 3 ways (air fryer for the tomatoes, saute pan for the corn sauce, saucepan to boil/cook the pasta) kept me busy, but it was done quickly and tasted sooo good!

  2. 4 stars
    Very good summertime dish, 12 year old kid enjoyed it! Definitely a make again, though I would cut the lime juice down to 1/2 a lime. I also added in Mozzarella pearls for extra protein, and used Farfalle pasta (it’s what I had). To cut down on washing so many dishes, I boiled Pasta first, then used same pot for the corn mix. Delicious and nutritious.

  3. 5 stars
    I made this dish the other day, and it was so yummy! Mine didn’t turn out as pretty as your picture, but it did taste as good! One thing, I followed the directions on the pasta package but that was a couple of minutes too long, and the pasta stuck together in “stacks” of 2-3. Next time I think I will use fusilli or rotini so it will stay separated better.

  4. 5 stars
    Love this recipe. The only change I made was to cut the corn off the cob’s I boiled the corn cobs in water and then used that water to boil the pasta. And I used the leftover pasta water in the blender with the corn when I made that added a little extra creaminess to it I think but overall I love the recipe and will use it all summer long

  5. 5 stars
    Another great recipe Meridith. I added the corn cobs in the water for thé pasta and some pecorino at the end. It’s incredible what can happen with a simple recipe and fresh ingredients!

  6. Meredith, wouldn’t it be just as easy, and less work, to use canned cream corn? If you agree, would one can be sufficient?
    Love your recipes, and love the photos of your adorable, precious fur babies equally.

    1. It would be easier to use canned corn but it would not taste as good as fresh sweet corn and the consistency of the sauce could be a little different. But you certainly could give it a try. One to one and half cans should be enough.

  7. A stunning way to celebrate the delicious corn and tomatoes from the farmstand at the end of our summer here. light, delicious and a bit different. Definitely a keeper!

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