Elote is a Mexican street-food version of corn on the cob that has been experiencing time in the spotlight both on menus and in social media. Traditional preparation is grilled corn topped with mayonnaise, cotija cheese, chile, lime and cilantro.
Operators may also ditch the cob and serve it simply as spiced corn, or borrow the flavor profile for “elote-style” offerings. It is an increasingly popular side dish and appetizer at restaurants ranging from global independents to barbecue restaurants.
This Flavor of the Week is growing in popularity, but it has plenty of runway for expansion. It’s found on only 2% of menus in American restaurants, but it has increased by more than 110% over the past four years, according to market research firm Datassential. Hispanic consumers, Millennials and Generation Z are most familiar with this menu item.
Click through the slideshow to learn more about elote, including another menu idea.