Chilled Corn Soup with Corn Custard

corn soup with corn custard
Photo: Pamu LLC
Prep Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
4 hrs 35 mins

Like so many of us, Martha can't get enough of sweet summer corn when it's in season which is why she doubled up on the golden kernels in this easy and elegant soup recipe that uses the corn cobs for stock. The creamy soup is creamless, the silky texture comes from the corn. Serve chilled with corn custards for a Martha-level presentation.


  • 4 ears corn, shucked

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 cup minced white onion

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • Minced or snipped chives

  • 1 recipe Corn Custard, (optional), for serving


  1. Remove kernels from 3 corncobs, then scrape milk from those cobs into a bowl with kernels (you should have about 3 1/2 cups kernels); set aside. Combine scraped cobs and 5 cups water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 8 minutes.

  2. Add remaining whole ear corn; simmer 2 minutes more. Strain liquid, discarding cobs and setting aside whole ear. (You should have 4 cups corn broth.) Cut kernels off whole ear and refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to serve.

  3. Return saucepan to medium heat; add butter. When melted and foam subsides, add onion, season with salt, and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in broth and reserved corn kernels and cob milk from bowl. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, until corn is tender and sweet, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat; let cool 10 minutes.

  4. Working in batches, transfer mixture to a blender (a high-speed one, such as Vitamix, works best) and purée until very smooth, 2 to 3 minutes a batch (remove center cap from lid and cover opening with a clean kitchen towel, which allows steam to escape). If desired, strain through a fine-mesh sieve for the silkiest texture. Let cool 15 minutes, then refrigerate in an airtight container until very cold, at least 4 hours and up to 3 days.

  5. When ready to serve, ladle soup into bowls containing corn custard; garnish with chives and reserved chilled corn kernels.

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