Few things are as wonderful as fresh corn on the cob on a beautiful summer night. Here are four different cook corn on the cob recipes, depending on what you have going on in the kitchen— all of them foolproof and completely delicious.
Looking for other gold star corn recipes? My copycat recipe for Chipotle Corn Salsa might appeal, or try two different recipes for Mexican style corn: Mexican Corn Salad, or Elote, aka Mexican Street Corn. Make cheesy and irresistible Hot Corn Dip with the leftovers and scoop it up with tortilla chips.
And now that you know the four best (and easiest) recipes for corn on the cob, there’s simply no excuse not to pick up a few ears at the store when you see it. Plus, you get to break out those cute corn cob holders that are somewhere in the kitchen. It’s a win-win.
How to store fresh corn:
Ideally, corn is best enjoyed the day it is picked off the stalk before the sugars have a chance to turn to starch. But these days it’s almost impossible to get the absolute freshest corn unless you’re lucky enough to live near a farmer. Knowing what to shop for and how to store fresh corn will help keep the starch at bay until you’re ready to dig in.
When shopping for corn, look for corn still in the husks. Search out husks that are plump, green, and still moist, with fresh, light yellow silk. If you can, select one and peel back the husk to expose the corn. The kernels should look bright, fresh, and almost sparkly. Avoid corn that has dead, dull-looking kernels or any sign of pests or disease.
To store corn, keep it in the husk. But even the husk needs to be protected from drying out, so here’s what to do: wrap the ears up in a damp paper towel and store them in a plastic vegetable bag in the coolest part of your refrigerator.
Try not to leave the corn out on the counter overnight, and don’t throw it into the refrigerator without wrapping it in a bag first.
How to make corn in the Instant Pot:
An electric pressure cooker is an easy way to cook corn that doesn’t heat up your kitchen.
You’ll need the metal wire trivet that (hopefully) came with the Instant Pot. A steamer basket works, too. Lower it into the bottom of the pot and place the shucked cobs inside. Then add 1 cup of water to the pot.
Next, all you have to do is close the lid, make sure the valve is sealed, and cook for 2 tiny little minutes on high pressure.
Corn on the cob cooking time, Instant Pot: 2 minutes (plus ten minutes to come to pressure).
How to make corn on the grill:
Corn needs high heat to cook well on the grill. If you’ve got the room and the heat, this method yields smoky, sweet corn with little charred bits that taste fabulous.
With a gas grill set on high or a charcoal grill over the hottest coals, oil the grates and place the shucked corn directly over the hot side of the grill.
Rotate the ears occasionally, until cooked through, tender, and charred in spots.
Corn on the cob cooking time, grill: about 8 minutes.
How to make corn in the microwave:
Super easy, and fast, too! You don’t need to waste a plastic zip lock bag to cook corn–all you need is a paper towel.
First, wrap each shucked ear of corn in a damp paper towel. Place them on a microwave-safe plate and cook for 4-5 minutes on HIGH.
Corn on the cob cooking time, microwave: 4-5 minutes.
How to boil corn on stove:
This tried and true method is useful for cooking big batches of corn for larger groups of people because you can reuse the boiling water and continue to drop fresh ears of corn in as you need them.
Bring a big pot of water to a boil. Add shucked corn and boil for 4 minutes. Don’t overdo it–you still want the corn to be snappy when you bite into it.
Corn on the cob cooking time, boiling: 4-5 minutes.
Corn on the cob seasoning:
You don’t absolutely need seasoning on corn on the cob, especially if the corn is at its peak. Okay, maybe just a little butter and salt… However, here are a few other ultra-delicious things to slather on your perfectly cooked corn once it’s done:
Garlic butter: fresh garlic minced and mixed into softened butter tastes so, so good on corn.
Margarita salt: this homemade salt mix for Margaritas can also be delicious sprinkled on freshly cooked corn. It gives a little citrus kick to each bite.
Chopped mint or cilantro: fresh green herbs chopped up fine can be sprinkled on hot, buttered corn. You’ll love it!
Corn on the Cob (4 Ways)
- 4 ears corn husked
To Make in the Instant Pot:
- Remove the husks and silk from the corn.
- Place the trivet in the bottom of your instant pot, and add the corn cobs with 1 cup of water.
- Close the lid, make sure the valve is set on "sealing", and set it to cook for 2 minutes on high pressure.
- It'll take about 10 minutes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure. Once the countdown has finished, do a quick pressure release.
To Make on the Grill:
- Set half the burners of a gas grill to high heat. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill, and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil grilling grate.
- Place corn directly over hot side of the grill and cook, rotating occasionally, until cooked through and charred in spots on all sides, about 8 minutes total.
To Make in the Microwave:
- Wrap each ear of corn in damp paper towel.
- Place ears on a microwave-safe plate, and microwave on high for 4-5 minutes.
To Make on the Stovetop:
- Fill a pot with water, and over medium heat, bring it to a boil.
- Add corn to the water, and boil for 4 minutes.
- Remove cobs from water immediately and serve.