The Best Ways to Cook Corn on the Cob

Overview

No barbecue or beach party would be complete without corn on the cob. It's sweet, healthful and easy to make. There are a variety of methods, whether you're setting up a grill on the beach or trying to get a quick meal on the table at home. The cooking varies, but the end result is always the same, whether you drench it in butter or prefer just a pinch of salt.

Grilling

Grilling corn on the cob requires a little finesse, but the results are worth the effort. You will leave the corn in the husk for this method. Begin by getting your coals fired up or turning on the gas. While things are heating up, submerge your corn fully in water for about 15 minutes. Then, take the corn out, shake out excess water, and put it on the grill. Cover it up, and let it sit. For gas grills, the corn will need to be turned about every 5 minutes. However, if you're using a charcoal, you'll turn it every 15 minutes. Don't worry if a few stalks catch on fire--that's normal. Keep it on the grill until the husk turns completely brown. Then, pull it off and let it cool for a moment before pulling the husk away. Rinse it off, and then salt it, butter it and season it to your heart's content.

Steaming

Steaming corn on the cob is not the most exciting way of cooking. However, it's very reliable and easy to do. You'll begin by bringing a large pot of water to a boil. You won't need to fill up the pot all the way, since you'll be steaming it, so a couple of inches of water should do. While that's going on, shuck your corn, removing all excess silks and fibers. Then, once the water is boiled, place your corn onto a steamer rack and put the rack in the pot. Cover it up, and leave for between 10 and 15 minutes. Once the corn is done, use tongs to pull it out as it will be very hot. That's it--once you've got it on the plate, the rest is up to you.

Microwaving

Most chefs and home cooks are aghast at using the microwave for, well, most anything. However, corn on the cob does really well when it is microwaved. Your corn will be in the husk for this type of cooking. Begin by soaking your corn in water for about 30 minutes. Drain the corn and put it on a plate that can safely go in the microwave. Cooking times vary based on your microwave as well as how much corn you put in there. Usually between 7 and 9 minutes will get the job done. Hopefully your microwave has a rotating plate. If it doesn't, stop the process halfway through and turn the plate. When the microwave beeps, pull your corn out carefully and shuck it carefully. You may have to use a dishtowel or oven mitt, as it will be hot.

About this Author

Jan DeVille is a writer, photographer, and video editor/videographer. Her work has appeared in numerous publications over the last five years, including Relix Magazine and Real Simple Magazine. DeVille graduated from New York University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism. She currently lives and works in Nashville.