How can I Prepare Corn on the Cob?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 October 2019
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Corn on the cob is a popular food with diners of all ages. In addition to being tasty and versatile, it also provides reasonably good nutrition, since corn is high in fiber and has a surprising amount of protein. There are a number of ways to prepare the corn, and there are a number of things to dress it with afterwards.

Corn is perfectly edible and in fact quite delicious raw. Therefore, the cooking time for any preparation method varies widely, depending on whether you prefer crunchy corn with a slightly raw, milky interior, or more well cooked corn. Once cooked, corn on the cob can be dressed with compound butter for an unusual flavor, or just plain butter or oil, salt, and pepper. Other dressings could include more unusual ingredients like lime juice, chili sauce, or mustard. Serve immediately, and stick some corn holders in if you don't want diners to burn their fingers.


In the kitchen, corn on the cob can be broiled, roasted, boiled, or steamed. In all of these cases, the corn is usually shucked first, meaning that the layers of protective material over the cob are removed. After the corn has been shucked, thready corn silk is usually left behind. A quick rinse under the faucet can remove the bulk of the silk, and the few strands left behind will not hurt anyone. Some cooks prefer to leave a thin layer of the husk on the corn when baking or broiling, so that the corn almost steams inside, and the husk is usually removed by diners when the corn is served.

To broil corn, lightly oil it in olive oil and sprinkle some herbs over the corn, if desired. Stick the cobs under the broiler in a sturdy pan for a few minutes, turning partway through for even heating. Baked or roasted corn can be made by preheating the oven to 400°F (204°C) and cooking the oiled corn in an oven-proof baking dish, or rolled in foil, for 5 to 15 minutes. If other foods are being cooked at the same time but they require a different temperature, just leave the corn in a bit less or more, depending on the temperature.

On the stovetop, boiled corn can be cooked by dunking the cobs in boiling water for 2 to 10 minutes, depending on the level of desired doneness. When the corn is finished, fish it out with tongs. Corn on the cob can also be steamed in a steamer insert, which will require a slightly longer cooking time than boiled corn, but will yield a less watery final product.

Grilled corn on the cob is another way to prepare corn, especially during the summer months when the weather is pleasant for barbecuing. A corn grilling basket can be used to secure the cobs for grilling, or oiled corn can be laid directly on the grill. For a less browned and blackened version, the corn can be wrapped in aluminum foil with a small pat of butter. The foil will cause the corn to steam on the grill as it cooks, yielding a more tender ear.


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Post 4

@turtlez - My family grills it, but not like ivanka described previously. We also use the foil method and wrap it in with season salt and butter. Sometimes we use just salt and pepper with butter, which is also very simple but great tasting.

Aside from that, we will grill it straight on the grill sans foil, but I like the above method much better as the seasonings get down into the corn as a whole. Very tasty, you should experiment with all types of methods!

Post 3

@turtlez - we often broil it like a baked potato in the oven - with tin foil wrapping. We put our spices or sauce in the foil, wrap it up and broil away for a few minutes or until the corn on the inside is crisp, but a little less firm than when you bought it (raw).

Post 2

Corn on the cob can be found frozen or natural and while I used to prefer the frozen variety as it was easier, I have now seen the light of preparing the natural variety.

While it's true that rinsing off the corn cob under the faucet can get most of the corn silk off, you might want to invest in a soft bristle kitchen brush to help get the threads caught in-between the corn pieces. I normally still boil it, but I've heard of other great recipes, too. Anyone have other ideas?

Post 1

Another way to prepare corn on the cob is by grilling it in the husk. Remove outer parts of the husk, and leave on just the inside part for the best result.

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