Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes

Written by Beth - Budget Bytes

I used to really dislike corn, but I think that’s because I never had it prepared in a decent way. Ever since learning to roast corn in my oven, I’ve kind of fallen in love. I don’t always have time to roast it, but frozen corn makes a great quick fix alternative. It still has all the sweetness and juicy snap of fresh corn, but with only a fraction of the prep needed.

These Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes are fast and full of flavor. The acidic tomatoes, rich butter, savory garlic, and sweet corn all balance perfectly to create a side dish that is has summer written all over it. You can eat it plain as a side, or scoop it over grilled chicken, or baked fish. This recipe makes four small side dish sized servings, but can easily be doubled or tripled, if needed.

Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes

Top view of Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes in white dish

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4.73 from 11 votes

Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes

These Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes are the perfect quick fix side dish for summer. Savory, sweet, and full of flavor, they pair perfectly with grilled meat.
Author: Beth - Budget Bytes
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 25 mins
Servings: 4


  • 1 Tbsp butter ($0.15)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 1 15oz. can diced tomatoes ($0.89)
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)
  • Freshly cracked black pepper (15-20 cranks of a pepper mill) ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp sugar ($0.02)
  • 2 cups frozen corn kernels ($0.93)
  • 1 handful fresh parsley (optional) ($0.10)


  • Mince the garlic and sauté it with butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat for one to two minutes, or just until softened.
  • Add the diced tomatoes (with juices) to the skillet, along with the basil, salt, pepper, and sugar. Stir to combine and turn the heat up to medium. Allow the skillet to simmer for about 10 minutes, or until most of the juices have evaporated and the mixture has thickened.
  • Add the frozen corn to the skillet (no thawing needed). Stir to combine and heat through (3-5 minutes). Taste and adjust the salt if needed. Sprinkle with a handful of fresh chopped parsley if desired.
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Serving: 1 ServingCalories: 119.5 kcalCarbohydrates: 21.78 gProtein: 3.6 gFat: 3.8 gSodium: 356.78 mgFiber: 4.6 g
Nutritional values are estimates only. See our full nutrition disclaimer here.

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Top view of Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes in skillet


Step by Step Photos

Garlic and butter in skillet

Mince two cloves of garlic and then sauté with 1 Tbsp butter over medium-low heat in a large skillet. Sauté for 1-2 minutes, or just until the garlic has softened.

Can of Diced Tomatoes

Add one 15-oz. can of diced tomatoes. I used plain diced tomatoes, but you could use fire roasted, or tomatoes that are already seasoned with garlic and basil for more flavor.

Tomatoes and seasoning added to skillet

Also add 1/2 tsp dried basil, some freshly cracked pepper (about 15-20 cranks of a pepper mill), 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp sugar. Stir the ingredients to combine, turn the heat up to medium, and let it simmer for about ten minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated.

Simmering tomatoes in skillet with wooden spoon

You want it to simmer long enough so that the juices are no longer watery. There is still some sauciness that will coat the corn with flavor, but it’s not really “juicy”. As you can see, when I drag the spoon through the mixture, it doesn’t run back into the empty space. It has reduced and thickened.

Frozen corn added to skillet

Add 2 cups of frozen corn kernels (no thawing necessary), stir to combine, and heat through (3-5 minutes). Taste the mixture and adjust the salt if needed.

Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes with parsley sprinkled on top

I added a small sprinkle of fresh parsley on top, but that’s optional.

Close up of a dish of Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes

Sweet, savory, and Oh So Good!

Top view of a plate of fish with Sautéed Corn and Tomatoes on top

It’s great on its own, but it’s also fabulous spooned over some grilled chicken or fish! I put mine on top of my Blackened Tilapia. SO GOOD.