This post may include affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

Vibrant and bursting with bright, fresh flavors, this Southern Succotash recipe features buttery corn, tender lima beans, sweet peppers, juicy tomatoes, and crispy bacon. Made with 8 simple ingredients in 30 minutes or less, this sweet corn and lima beans side dish is the ideal crowd pleasing spring and summer side dish. 

This beautiful succotash goes with everything and I’d gladly make a meal of it! So perfect for the peak summer corn right now.

Madison
Overhead photo of succotash corn and lima beans in a serving bowl with a spoon inserted into the dish.

Update: This post was originally published in August 2021. I’ve made updates to the post below to include more information about making this recipe for corn and lima bean succotash at home.

About this corn succotash recipe

This Southern Succotash is bright, fresh, vibrant and brimming with buttery corn, creamy lima beans, salty bacon, sweet bell peppers, juicy tomatoes, fresh herbs and aromatic seasonings! The flavors and textures in this vegetable salad or side dish are everything you could hope for! It’s light, yet filling and bursting with creamy, crispy, juicy, salty, savory, slightly sweet and bright elements. And, it’s all built around super fresh ingredients!

You can serve this recipe one of two ways – as a warm side or as a cold salad! If you are looking for a warm, hearty side dish, you can go all out and melt a few pats of butter into the succotash for a touch of beautifully rich flavor. Or, if you are looking for a veggie-centric salad, you can garnish this succotash with a healthy sprinkling of crumbled cheese (think feta or goat cheese) and plenty of creamy avocado!

And, did I mention this recipe is super easy to prepare (just one pan!) and totally customizable!? You can use fresh or frozen corn depending upon the season, substitute the lima beans for your favorite beans, and throw in whatever produce you love (or whatever’s in season)! Hooray!

If you love sautéed veggies, be sure to try these sauteed onions and peppers or mushroom saute next.

Why you’ll love this corn and lima beans dish

  • Celebrates summer’s bounty! Fresh, homemade Southern succotash is the perfect way to celebrate the abundance of delicious, fresh summer produce!
  • Flavorful! This corn and lima bean dish is perfectly flavorful – it’s fresh, bright, savory, slightly sweet and 100% delicious!
  • Easy to find ingredients: This colorful dish is made with just 8 easy-to-find ingredients, along with a few pantry staples! Plus, you can use fresh or frozen vegetables depending upon the season!
  • Simple and fast to make! This straightforward recipe can be ready in 40 minutes or less!
  • Customizable! You can completely customize this flexible lima bean and corn recipe! Feel free to throw in your favorite produce or any vegetables you have hanging out in the refrigerator!
  • Versatile! Succotash corn pairs well with a wide variety of dishes! Plus, you can use it as an ingredient in omelets, salads, soups, burritos and more!!
  • Crowd Pleaser! Everyone loves this colorful dish! Even people who think they hate lima beans fall in love with this flavorful succotash!

What is succotash?

Corn succotash, pronounced suh-kuh-tash, is a vegetable dish featuring sweet corn cooked with lima beans. The succotash recipes we know today are actually an adaptation of Native American vegetable stew. Today, succotash is a flexible dish and it can contain a wide variety of vegetables. You will often see tomatoes, bell peppers, okra and onions added to this dish. However, to be considered succotash, it must contain, at the very least, corn and beans as prominent ingredients.

This succotash southern recipe includes corn, lima beans, peppers, onions, tomatoes and bacon.

Whats the origin?

Succotash has deep Native American roots originating in Northeast America. The name succotash comes from the Narragansett Native American word ‘sohquttahhash’ which means “broken corn kernels”.

Corn and beans were core crops and a foundation in many Native American diets. In the 1600’s, the Native Americans taught the Pilgrims how to prepare succotash in order to help them survive. And, as time went on, succotash became a popular dish that spread across America – with regional communities each lending their own interpretation and variation to the dish.

Overhead photo of the ingredients to make succotash - corn, lima beans, tomatoes, bell pepper, onion and fresh herbs - neatly organized on a kitchen tray.

Ingredients for southern succotash

This southern succotash is a colorful, simple dish made with corn, lima beans, cherry tomatoes, red bell peppers, red onion, flavorful seasonings and fresh herbs! (Please see below for substitutions and variations!)

  • Bacon (optional): You need 8 ounces of bacon for this recipe. I recommend cutting your bacon into larger 1/2-inch pieces or strips. (See substitutions below for vegetarian option!)
  • Bell Pepper: A fresh red bell pepper adds a delicious, slightly sweet flavor! You can use green, orange or yellow peppers if you would like!
  • Onion: Red onion provides a mild, yet bright onion flavor and beautiful pops of color!
  • Seasonings: A combination of ground cumin, cayenne pepper, kosher salt and ground black pepper all provide a depth of flavor!
  • Garlic: Two cloves of fresh garlic provide a distinctive, yet subtle punchy taste! Make sure you use fresh garlic and not the pre-minced variety sold in a jar.
  • Corn: You will need 4 cups of corn to prepare this recipe. You can use fresh corn on the cob or frozen corn kernels, depending upon the season!
  • Beans: Baby lima beans provide the most delicious creamy texture that perfectly complements juicy corn! I use frozen-fresh beans for ease and convenience.
  • Vinegar: A touch of apple cider vinegar adds a layer of complexity and enhances all the flavors.
  • Tomatoes: One cup of cherry tomatoes adds juicy pops of bright, sweet, concentrated tomato flavor! You can substitute Grape or Roma tomatoes if you prefer!
  • Herbs: A combination of fresh basil and green onions add a ton of bright, earthy, fresh flavor that really brings this succotash to life. However, you can add parsley if you’re your looking for an herby corn lima bean dish.

Optional mix-ins

All the ingredients below are completely optional; however, if you are looking for the most flavorful succotash corn recipe, they are highly recommended! You will use the below ingredients depending upon how you are serving your homemade succotash – warm (butter) or cold (cheese).

  • Butter: If you want to serve your succotash warm, I recommend adding a couple pats of butter to your succotash just before serving! Butter provides the perfect touch of rich flavor!
  • Cheese: If you prefer to serve your succotash cold, as a salad, I recommend garnishing the dish with a healthy scattering of feta or goat cheese! Either cheese will add the perfect tough of creamy, rich flavor!

Substitutions

This corn and lima bean recipe is extremely flexible! Feel free to omit any ingredients you don’t have and substitute them for ones you love!

  • Vegetarian Option: If you want to make this a vegetarian succotash, simply omit the bacon and use 2 tablespoons of good-quality olive oil to sauté the peppers and onions.
  • Lima Beans: You can swap out the lima beans for your favorite bean. The following beans all work great:  edamame, red kidney, Fava, borlotti and even black-eyed peas!
  • Peppers: Want to add a layer of smoky flavor? Try substituting some or all of the red bell peppers for poblano peppers!
  • Onion: If you are looking for a milder onion flavor, you can swap the red onion for sweet onion or shallots instead!

Recipe variations

This southern succotash with bacon is incredibly easy to customize! Plus, it’s a great way to use up your farmer’s market haul or any produce you have hanging around the kitchen! Feel free to add whatever vegetables, seasonings or fresh herbs your family loves!

  • Zucchini or Squash: Fresh zucchini or summer squash are popular additions to succotash! If
  • Okra: If you are looking to make a creole succotash, okra is a classic addition! Okra will add a mild, grassy flavor.
  • Avocado: If you are looking to add a super creamy element, try using diced avocado as a garnish!
  • Jalapeños: If you like your succotash with a bit of spicy heat, try adding in finely chopped or raw jalapeños!
  • Seafood: If you are a seafood lover, you can add chopped cooked shrimp or lobster meat to succotash (add it in step 4 of the recipe)!
  • Heavy Cream: If you prefer creamy succotash, you can stir in 1/3 to 1/2 cup of heavy cream along with the vinegar in step 4 of the recipe!
Overhead photo of a sweet corn, lima beans, tomatoes, crispy bacon, and fresh herbs in a white skillet.

How to make corn succotash at home

This humble, yet delicious dish is incredibly simple to make! This recipe can be prepped, ready and on the table in 40 minutes or less!

  1. Cook bacon (Optional): Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Use a slotted-spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
  2. Add the pepper, onions + garlic: Reduce the heat to medium and add the bell peppers, onions and seasonings. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft. After that, add the garlic and cook until fragrant.
  3. Add the corn + lima beans: Add the corn and lima beans to the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender.
  4. The next step will depend upon how you want to serve your succotash – warm or cold.
    • SERVING WARM – Add the butter + vinegar: Add the butter and vinegar to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until the butter melts. Remove from heat and proceed directly to the next step.
    • SERVING COLD – Add the vinegar: Turn off the heat and add the vinegar to the pan. Stir the succotash to combine. Remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes before proceeding to next step.
  5. Add tomatoes + fresh herbs: Add all of the cherry tomatoes, along with half the basil and half the green onions. Gently stir to combine.
  6. Garnish and Serve: Top the succotash with the crispy bacon and the remaining fresh herbs (basil and green onions). Serve and enjoy!

Step-by-step photos: making southern succotash recipes

(Don’t forget to scroll down for the detailed instructions in the complete printable recipe at the bottom of the page.)

Step-by-step photo collage illustrating how to make southern succotash.

FAQs: frequently asked questions

Got questions? I’ve got answers! If you ever run into an issue, have a question, or need any clarification – please feel free to drop them in the comments section. I’m happy to help when I can! 

Can I frozen or fresh corn?

You can use fresh or frozen corn to make succotash with bacon at home, depending upon what is readily available at the market!

  • Fresh corn: Use a sharp knife to slice the kernels off of the cob before preparing succotash.
  • Frozen corn: Thaw the corn under cool running water and drain well before using in the recipe.

Do you serve succotash warm or cold?

You can serve sweet corn succotash warm or cold, depending upon your preference!

  • Serving warm: If you are serving succotash warm, I recommend melting a few pats of butter in the succotash just before serving for a luxurious, buttery, rich finishing touch.
  • Serving cold: If you prefer to serve succotash cold as a vegetable salad, I recommend sprinkling a bit of cheese, such as feta, goat or parmesan, over the dish just before serving!

Can I prepare this in advance?

This corn succotash recipe can easily be prepared in advance! The vegetables can be chopped, and the bacon can be cooked up to 1 day in advance and refrigerated.

  • Veggies: Place the peppers, onions and garlic together in a storage bag or container, and the corn and lima beans together in a separate bag.
  • Bacon: Store the crisped bacon in a separate container.
  • Herbs: Make sure you wait to slice the fresh herbs until just before serving!

Is corn succotash healthy?

While I am not a registered dietitian, homemade southern succotashes are mostly made with fresh veggies and herbs. As well, corn succotash recipes are typically a good source of potassium, vitamins, and antioxidants,

How many calories and carbohydrates?

The exact number of calories and carbohydrates in sweet corn succotash will depend upon the recipe and precise measurement and ingredients you use.

This southern recipe serves six and has approximately 196 calories and 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving.

Is it keto?

Since corn is a starchy item this lima bean and corn succotash recipe is is not keto-friendly.

Action photo of a spoon serving corn and lima bean succotash with bacon out of a white bowl.

Serving Suggestions

Corn lima bean succotash is an incredibly versatile dish that can be served as a light main or as a vegetable side dish. This dish pairs well with a wide variety of mains and sides. It goes perfectly with everything from grilled meats, fish and seafood to burgers, roast chicken, sandwiches and ribs.

Chef serving recommendation: Try pairing this corn and lima bean recipe with Chicken in Beer, Slow Cooker Brisket or Ultimate Black Bean Burgers for a hearty meal the entire family will love!

16 delicious dishes to serve with sweet corn succotash

  • Bread: A big ‘ole bowl of sweet corn and lima beans and a few slices of toasty garlic bread make a wonderful quick and easy lunch.
  • Fruit: Keep things light and healthy with fresh fruit, fruit parfaits, or vibrant fruit salads. My family loves berries, cantaloupe, watermelon and honeydew!
  • Bacon: Double up on the bacon and serve your corn dish with maple candy bacon for a meaty delight.
  • Coleslaw: Crisp coleslaws pair perfectly with this vegetable dish.
  • Soup: Summer soups are a great pairing option if you are looking to keep things light! My family loves pairing gazpacho or spring minestrone with this lima bean salad.
  • Italian Salad: A hearty, meaty Italian salad is a great option if you are looking for a hearty side dish.
  • Broccoli Salad: A crunchy broccoli salad perfectly contrasts and complements corn succotash recipes.
  • Potato Salad: If you are planning a picnic, potato salad and cold succotash salad are fantastic side options.
  • Pasta Salad: Opposites attract – try pairing hot dish succotash with cold pasta salad.
  • Sandwiches and Paninis: Carolina BBQ pork sandwiches or warm paninis make a quick and easy pairing option.
  • Hot Dogs: Hot dogs or chili dogs are a must if you are planning a BBQ.
  • Ribs: Saucy, tender ribs pair perfectly with this vegetable side dish.
  • Grilled Meats: Corn and lima bean succotash is the perfect light pairing option for steaks and burgers.
  • Chicken: Your favorite chicken recipe (think grilled breasts and thighs or kebabs and chicken sausages) goes great with succotash.
  • Seafood and Fish: Try grilling your favorite fish or poaching seafood for a light, yet hearty dinner.
  • Meatloaf: Have a southern-style dinner by pairing it with classic meatloaf and cheddar bacon deviled eggs.

Unique serving suggestions

Most people think of this corn and lima bean dish as side; however, you can also use it as an ingredient to create a new recipe or dish!

9 ways to use leftover succotash corn

  • Omelet: Add a few scoops of succotash corn to your next omelet.
  • Frittata: If you prefer a more hands-off approach to breakfast, try adding it to your egg frittata.
  • Dip: Try serving this lima bean dish as a cold dip with plenty of salty, crunchy chip.
  • Soup: Make a quick and easy soup by using lima beans and corn as the vegetable component.
  • Salad: Spruce up your next salad by tossing in some leftover sweet corn succotash.
  • Grain Bowls: Top your favorite grain bowl with this vegetable dish along with your favorite protein and toppings.
  • Nachos: Do you load your nachos up with plenty of veggies? Save yourself some time and try using sweet succotash as a nacho topping.
  • Burgers: Try using this dish as a relish (topping) for your burgers.
  • Burritos: Give you next burrito a southern spin by using it as a filling.
  • Quesadillas: Prefer crispy quesadillas over burritos? Lima bean succotash makes a great filling for those too.
Close-up photo of lima bean and corn succotash with tomatoes in a white serving bowl.

storing corn and lima beans

This sweet corn succotash recipe stores beautifully, making it perfect to have on hand for easy lunches.

To store, first allow the corn and lima beans to cool completely to room temperature. Next, transfer the cool leftovers to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Can you freeze this dish?

You can absolutely freeze leftover succotash! However, you will need to make a few minor adjustments to the dish.

  • Undercook it: To protect the texture, I recommend undercooking succotash if you plan of freezing it. Undercooking the vegetables will prevent them from becoming mushy when upon thawing and reheating.
  • Store the bacon separately: Transfer the crispy bacon to a freezer-safe zip-closure bag and store it separately in the freezer.
  • Hold the fresh herbs: Do not add the fresh herbs until serving the succotash.

To freeze succotash: After making the alterations above to the recipe, allow the succotash to cool completely to room temperature. Transfer the dish to a freezer-safe airtight container and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Close-up photo of sweet corn succotash with lima beans, bacon, corn, and fresh herbs.

Join me in celebrating the best of spring and summer with this easy, crowd-pleasing sweet succotash recipe with lima beans, corn, and bacon.

Cheyanne

Craving MORE? Follow all the deliciousness on FacebookPinterest and Instagram!

More sweet corn side dishes!

If you love this Southern succotash, try one of these delicious recipes next:

Overhead photo of corn succotash with lima beans in a white serving bowl with a glass of wine off to the side.

Southern Succotash

Total Time: 30 minutes
Prep Time: 12 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Servings: 6 Servings
Vibrant and bursting with bright, fresh flavors, this Southern Succotash recipe features buttery corn, tender lima beans, sweet peppers, juicy tomatoes, and crispy bacon. Made with 8 simple ingredients in 30 minutes or less, this sweet corn and lima beans side dish is the ideal crowd pleasing spring and summer side dish. 
Recipe can be scaled up or down by using the slider if you hover your mouse over the number of Servings.

Equipment

  • 1 Large, Straight-Sided Skillet (for cooking succotash)
  • 1 Wooden Kitchen Spoon (for stirring while cooking)

Ingredients 

  • 6-8 slices Bacon – cut into ½’’ pieces (about 6-8 ounces) (SEE NOTES for vegetarian option)
  • 1 medium Red Bell Pepper – seeded & small dice (about ¾ cup)
  • ½ medium Red Onion – small dice (about 1 heaping cup)
  • ½ teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • ¼ tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • To Taste Kosher Salt & Ground Black Pepper
  • 2 cloves Garlic – finely chopped
  • 4 whole Ears Corn – shucked & kernels cut from cob (or 4 cups frozen corn kernels) (SEE NOTES)
  • 2 ½ cups Fresh-Frozen Baby Lima Beans – thawed (about 10 ounces) (SEE NOTES)
  • 2 TBS Butter – cut into small cubes (OPTIONAL – IF SERVING WARM ONLY!)
  • 2 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 cup Cherry Tomatoes – halved (about 6 ounces)
  • ¼ Cup packed Fresh Basil – thinly sliced & DIVIDED
  • ¼ Cup Green Onions – thinly sliced & DIVIDED

Instructions

  • Cook Bacon: Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is crisp and the fat renders, about 8-10 minutes. Use a slotted-spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
    Drain all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the pan.
  • Add the pepper, onions + garlic: Reduce the heat to medium and add the bell peppers and onions. Season cumin and cayenne, along with 1 ¾ teaspoons of salt and a ¾ teaspoon of black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 4-5 minutes.
    Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  • Add the corn + lima beans: Add the corn and lima beans to the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just heated through and just tender, about 6-7 minutes.
  • IF SERVING WARM – Add the butter + vinegar: Add the butter and vinegar; and cook, gently stirring constantly until the butter is melted, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and proceed directly to the next step.
    IF SERVING COLD – Add the vinegar: Turn off the heat and add the vinegar to the pan. Gently stir the succotash to combine. Remove from heat. Let cool for 10 minutes before proceeding to next step.
  • Add tomatoes + fresh herbs: Add all of the cherry tomatoes, along with half the basil and half the green onions. Gently stir to combine.
  • Garnish and Serve: Top the succotash with the crispy bacon and the remaining fresh herbs (basil and green onions).
    Taste and adjust for seasoning and vinegar before serving. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • Vegetarian option: Omit the bacon and skip step 1 of the recipe. Use 2 tablespoons of good-quality olive oil to sauté the vegetables in step 2.
  • If using frozen vegetables: You will need to lightly thaw the frozen vegetables before proceeding with the recipe. To thaw frozen veggies: Place the vegetables in a colander and gently rinse for 1 minute with cool water. Let the vegetables drain and continue to thaw at room temperature while you prep the rest of the ingredients. Drain the vegetables well before using!
  • Serving: You can serve this succotash as a warm side dish or as a cold salad! If serving warm, I recommend adding a few pats of butter to the pan for a touch of luxurious, rich flavor (see step 4). If you are serving it cold, I love to add crumbled feta or goat cheese along with some avocado just before serving for a bit of creamy, rich flavor!
Nutritional information is an approximation based upon 6 servings. Exact information will depend upon the brands of ingredients and precise measurements used.

Nutrition

Calories: 196kcal    Carbohydrates: 15g    Protein: 5g    Fat: 13g    Saturated Fat: 6g    Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g    Monounsaturated Fat: 5g    Trans Fat: 1g    Cholesterol: 25mg    Sodium: 193mg    Potassium: 340mg    Fiber: 2g    Sugar: 6g    Vitamin A: 1058IU    Vitamin C: 37mg    Calcium: 16mg    Iron: 1mg

Did you make this recipe?

Mention @nospoonnecessary on Instagram and tag it #nospoonnecessary!

©No Spoon Necessary.  All images and content are under copyright protection. Please do not use any images without prior permission. Please do not publish this recipe without prior consent. To reference this recipe, please link directly to this post.