The Loaf Pan Hack For Mess-Free Elote

Whether you're throwing together a Mexican food-themed event or you're on the hunt for your next best summer appetizer, you might want to consider whipping up some elote, also known as Mexican street corn. This Mexican street food is famous for being wonderfully creamy, satisfyingly spicy, and a little bit tangy. The flavorful charred elote, which is Spanish for "corn cob," gets slathered in a dairy-rich cream sauce and sprinkled with a multitude of seasonings, like chili powder and the country's famous Tajín. Garnished with a squirt of lime juice, cotija cheese, and fresh cilantro, this easy-to-make dish is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.

However, making elote can admittedly be a bit of a messy process. Slathering dozens of rounded corn cobs with a runny sauce and several powdery ingredients can leave your kitchen in a slight disaster zone. But, don't let the cleanup process stop you from trying out this dish for yourself. Molly Baz, the former food editor at Bon Appétit, came up with an ingenious loaf pan hack that will keep your counters clean and the food prep process twice as quick.

In her no-grill elote recipe, shared with Bon Appétit, she prepares the sauce in a loaf pan, mixing in most of the ingredients into the contained space. Then, she rolls the corn cobs in the sauce. The end result is a platter of evenly-coated corn cobs ready to be garnished and served.

Coat the corn in the loaf pan

When making elote, many people will often just have a single stripe of sauce along the top of the corn, rather than coating the entire cob. While this makes sense for convenience purposes, most foodies know that the best elote experience is one not-light on the cream sauce.

To try out this loaf pan hack, simply scoop in the pre-measured sauce ingredients and fully combine them in the loaf pan. Baz adds cilantro to this combination, but you can also save this garnish until the end. Then, you can roll the corn on the cob in the pan, moving it around effectively with tongs. This will help you to make tastier elote in a shorter amount of time, all while keeping your kitchen clean. Triple win!

If you're feeling creative, you can also test this hack out with regular corn on the cob. Buttering the hot, cylindrical surface can be a pain and a time-consuming process. Instead, try adding melted butter to the loaf pan and rotating the cob in the contained area before serving it. And, if corn isn't your favorite, you can try out your under-utilized loaf pan for all types of other dishes, from a classic meatloaf to no-churn ice cream.

Don't wait on making holiday breads or birthday cakes to bust out this handy pan. Instead, try this elote trick out just in time for summer and ensure an easy cleanup.