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  • Writer's pictureAnita Chastain

Fresh Corn Off the Cob

This fresh corn recipe is buttery sweet, tastes delicious, and cooks in the microwave.

Fresh ears of corn

Fresh sweet corn is one of the best foods of summer. Not only does it taste great, it's versatile too.

You can grill, boil, or bake the ears whole. Or you can cut the kernels off the cob and cook them on the stovetop or the microwave. You can dress up fresh cut corn with fresh herbs, lime juice, and red onions or keep things simple with butter and salt.

In this article, you'll learn how to make a deliciously simple version of kernel corn that's a popular staple at the summer dinner table. Read on to learn more.


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This recipe for fresh corn cut off the cob is quick and easy to make. You only need three ingredients: freshly husked corn on the cob, unsalted butter, and salt.

In addition, because you cook it in the microwave, the kitchen won't get as hot as it would if you cooked it on the stovetop.

A Quick Overview of How to Make Fresh Corn

Remove the corn from the husk and remove any remaining silk from the corn cobs. Rinse the cobs at the sink.

Use a knife or corn-cutting tool to cut the kernels off the cob and scrape the cob to release the juices. Add corn, butter, and salt to a microwaveable bowl and microwave till cooked (approximately 12-15 minutes).

That's it. It's really that easy. This simple process produces an absolutely delicious end result.

If you've never cut corn off the cob before, don't worry. It's not hard to do. You'll find more detailed instructions below the recipe.

Recipe for Fresh Corn Off the Cob

You can print the recipe below or save it to your phone.

Fresh corn off the cob recipe

How to Store Leftovers and Unused Corn

If you have leftovers, they'll keep in the fridge for four to five days. Store the cooked corn in an air tight container.

If you bought more corn than you want to cook at one time, you can keep it in the fridge. Leave the corn in its husks and place it in a plastic bag while it's in the fridge. This will help retain moisture while still allowing for airflow around the ears.

Fresh, unhusked corn will keep in the fridge for one to three days.

Using this Recipe with Frozen Corn

You can use this recipe with store-bought frozen corn kernels or canned kernels, but the taste will be different. Fresh corn kernels have a better flavor than store-bought frozen or canned options - even when you dress up the store-bought options with butter or add fresh herbs.

I've found that fresh corn kernels also have a crispier texture and a sweeter taste than the frozen corn sold in the store. The flavor and texture of store-bought canned corn is even worse than frozen corn.

While you may have financial or other reasons to buy store-bought corn, opt for fresh when you can. I think you'll taste the difference when you do.

Fresh kernels are always a great option because they offer so much flavor, and they're so easy to cook.

Partially husked corn on the cob

Tips for Selecting Fresh Corn to Buy

Before you head to the farmers market or the grocery store, keep these tips in mind to help you buy fresh sweet corn:

  • Select ears that have brown and slightly "sticky" tassels.

  • Look for ears that feel firm and have tightly wrapped husks.

  • Choose ears with husks that look fresh and are light green in color.

  • Avoid husks that appear brown or dried out or have holes or bruises.

Tips for Cutting Corn Off the Cob with a Knife

Many people love fresh sweet corn but avoid cooking it because they think prepping the corn and cooking it will be harder than it really is. Cutting corn off a cob is a messy job, but not a difficult one.

Here are several tips for making this slightly messy job easier and less messy:

After removing the husk and silk, rinse the corn cob. Then, select a sharp knife with a medium-length blade. Stand the cob upright on top of the Bundt pan center. Slice straight down with the knife, cutting close to the cob. The kernels will drop right into the pan - most of them anyway.

No Bundt pan? No problem. Place a small bowl upside down inside a large bowl. Stand the cob on top of the upside-down bowl and slice the kernels off.

You can also place the cob upright on a baking sheet or large plate and slice down to remove the kernels.

When cutting the corn cobs, keep bowls and pans in place by placing a towel under them. The towel will keep them from sliding around.

Fresh kernel corn on a bowl

Cutting Corn the Easy Way Using a Corn Cutter Tool

If you plan to cook a lot of fresh corn, using an inexpensive cutting tool is easier and safer than cutting the kernels off with a knife.

It's easier because you can cradle the cob in your hand over a big bowl, and the kernels will (mostly) drop straight into the bowl.

It's safer because you don't have to worry about cutting yourself if the blade slips. While the corn cutter tool blades are very sharp, the blades are smaller and easier to handle, which reduces the chances you'll cut yourself when using it.

I bought the plastic corn cutter tool below on Amazon a few years ago. It cost less than $10.

Even after several years of using it, it still cuts corn smoothly. It hasn't cracked, split, or rusted. It looks exactly like it did when I bought it.

Here's the one I bought. Note...This is not an affiliate link, just a suggestion for anyone who's interested.

Give This Fresh Summer Corn Recipe a Try

What's better in the summer than fresh-cut corn, butter, and a little salt? If you love fresh corn as much as I do, there's not much that's easier to make or tastier to eat.

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