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Make the perfect boiled corn on the cob. Learn how long to boil corn on the cob and the best ways to serve it.

Kitchen thongs holding a the perfect boiled corn on the cob.

Boiling corn on the cob is one very simple way to enjoy corn. That’s why I’m sharing with you a very simple way to prepare it at home.

The simple method and  ingredients make this boiled corn recipe unique.

It is ready in 20 minutes and requires a few easy steps and minimal ingredients.

This easy boiled corn on the cob is perfectly sweet, milky and buttery.

Ingredients:

You’ll need:

  • corn
  • large pot of water with a lid
  • butter
  • sugar (optional)
  • toppings for the corn (optional)

Tips to choose and purchase the perfect sweet corn:

Corn on the cob with husks removed halfway

You can purchase corn on the cob for boiling at any supermarket or at your local Farmer’s Market.

But it is not fun, when you get back home and you realize, after pulling back the husks that the corn you got does not look good on the inside. It doesn’t look good to strip down all the ears of corn at the store in order to get the best.

You can just buy corn that has been cleaned already – husks and silk removed.

If you still like to purchase corn on the cob with the husks on, here is a simple tip:

  • To choose the perfect, fresh corn, make sure the tassels look brown and sticky, this means that the corn is fresh.
  • Another tip – you do need to peek a little, but not take off the whole husk – if the silk is light and yellow, corn should be fresh, if it has turned dark, then the corn is not.
  • Also you can try to feel the kernels through the husk, there should be no holes.
  • Husk should be green color, not dry and yellow.

Preparation for boiling corn:

  1. Purchase your corn on the cob following the tips above.
  2. Remove the husks and silk.
  3. You may choose to boil the ears of corn whole or break them into halves or quarters.
  4. Fill a large pot with cold water. There should be enough water to cover the corn.

Steps to make boiled corn :

Prepare the corn for boiling, following the directions above.

  1. Bring water in the large pot to a boil.
  2. Add 1 tsp of sugar and 2 tbsp butter.
  3. Drop the corn inside the pot.
  4. Reduce heat to medium.
  5. Cover the pot with a lid and boil for 15-20 minutes.
  6. Using kitchen tongs, remove the corn from the pot and place on a platter.

NOTE: Certain recipes call for adding milk to the pot. I personally don’t think this boiled sweet corn needs it, because it is perfectly milky, but you can add up to 1 cup of milk to the pot to boil the corn.

A ear of sweet corn on the cob taken out of the pot with hot boiling water

How long to boil corn in a pot?

I’ve discovered that it is pretty easy to make the perfect boiled corn on the cob. When corn is fresh, it  needs less than 20 minutes to boil. I mean 20 minutes after the water has started boiling.

It still depends on the type of corn you’ve got, so sometimes you may need to boil it for a few more minutes, but generally, sweet corn on the cob is done in 15 minutes.

White corn boils even faster – in 5-7 minutes.

The fresher the sweet corn is, the less time it requires to boil.

Bi-color corn, like the one I used in this boiled corn on the cob recipe requires 15-20 minutes.

It is hard to overcook boiled corn.

Cooking time also depends on your your personal preference.

Some people may like their corn to be soft and others may prefer it hard and crisp.

I personally like it soft and easy to bite into, so 15 minutes in boiling hot water are more than enough.

Cook the corn depending on the type you’ve got and your personal preference.

thongs holding a ear of Boiled corn on the cob out of the pot

How to eat corn on the cob?

You eat it while the corn is still on the cob, hold it in your hands and bite off the kernels. I’ve also seen some cute corn holders, that make eating corn off the cob very easy and fun.

Another way to eat sweet boiled corn on the cob is if you cut off the kernels. Hold the corn vertically and using a sharp knife, cut off the kernels. This way you can also use the already boiled corn in salads, soups, salsas or other dishes.

Toppings:

Toppings are optional.

I rarely add any.

I like to add some butter and salt, also black pepper occasionally. I brush the warm boiled corn with butter before serving.

This works best if it is consumed right away, since butter will harden at room temperature.

I’ve included some surprisingly simple toppings, that you can add to this perfectly boiled corn on the cob and jazz up its flavor.

  • grated cheese
  • bacon
  • dried herbs of your choice
  • hot sauce
  • harissa or sriracha
  • nutritional yeast

How to serve ?

Corn on the cob makes a great side dish, party snack for both kids and adults.

You can just make this boiled corn on the cob and serve it on its own as a snack or a treat.

You can also serve it along meat, fish, seafood or vegetables.

This perfect boiled corn is a staple at most of our summer gatherings. I just break the corn in halves or quarters and put it on a platter. Then anyone can have some as a side dish with some grilled or smoked meat.

Recipes that go well with this one:

Ears or boiled corn on the cob on a white plate
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Kitchen thongs holding a boiled corn on the cob.
5 from 8 votes

Easy Boiled Corn On The Cob

By Lyubomira L
Looking to make the perfect boiled corn on the cob? Learn how long to boil corn on the cob and the best ways to serve it.
Prep: 2 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 22 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients 

  • 6 corn on the cob, , peeled
  • 1-2 tsp sugar, (optional)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • black pepper
  • fresh dill, (optional)

Instructions 

  • Purchase your corn on the cob following the tips above.
    Remove the husks and silk.
  • You may choose to boil the ears of corn whole or break them into halves or quarters.
    Fill a large pot with cold water. There should be enough water to cover the corn.
  • Bring water in the large pot to a boil.
    Add 1 tsp of sugar and 2 tbsp butter.
  • Drop the corn inside the pot.
    Reduce heat to medium.
    Cover the pot with a lid and boil for 5-7 minutes for white corn and 10-15 for yellow corn.
    Using kitchen tongs, remove the corn from the pot and place on a platter.

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 80kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 1g, Sodium: 13mg, Potassium: 243mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 170IU, Vitamin C: 6.1mg, Calcium: 2mg, Iron: 0.5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: side
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @cookinglsl or tag #cookinglsl!

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Hi! I'm Mira.

I share simple, mostly low-carb and Keto recipes, that don't take a lot of time to make and use mostly seasonal, easy to find ingredients. I'm a supporter of healthy eating, but you'll also find some indulgent treats too.

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14 Comments

  1. i do love corn on the cob.. don’t eat enough of it! inspired to recreate the recipe now.. thanks!

    1. You’ll like this one! It s very easy to recreate and it only takes 20 minutes too boil. I love making it in the summer 🙂

  2. I love corn on the cob and this is such a great way to prepare it! Love how easy this is, so perfect for the summer. Pinned!

  3. What a great recipe! Thank you for such a detailed explanation, Mira! I enjoy Corn on the Cob all summer long! Pinned!

      1. You said use your kitchen thongs not kitchen tongs and they were joking with the mistyped word

        STEPS TO MAKE THE PERFECT BOILED CORN ON THE COB IN JUST 20 MINUTES.
        This step
        6. Using kitchen THONGS (not tong), remove the corn from the pot and place on a platter.