Grilled Corn on the Cob

Nothing screams summer like grilled corn on the cob! Learn how to grill corn perfectly every time, and find inventive ideas for serving it.

Grilled corn with butter, lime, and salt

Let’s make grilled corn on the cob! Can you sense my excitement? Here in the Midwest, sweet corn season doesn’t arrive until the end of July. When it does get here, it doesn’t stay long, so right now, I’m busy eating as much corn as I can. I’m tossing it into salads, simmering it into soup, and even topping it onto pizza! But grilled corn on the cob is my absolute favorite part of summer.

It’s crisp and juicy, sweet and smoky, and so darn easy to make. Below, I’m sharing two simple methods for how to grill corn on the cob, as well as tasty ideas for seasoning it. Have fun experimenting with different sauces, spices, and herbs on your corn, or stick with good old butter, salt, and pepper! When it comes to peak-season grilled corn on the cob, you really can’t go wrong.

Ears of corn in husks

How to Grill Corn on the Cob

I have two methods for how to grill corn on the cob. They yield slightly different results, but both are delicious. Which one I pick on a given day depends on how much time I have and what I’m craving. Feel free to choose whichever sounds best to you!

1. In the husk – In this method, the ears of corn steam inside the husk, yielding juicy, tender kernels that are bright yellow and barely charred. I pull the husks of the corn back, leaving them attached at the base, and remove the silk. Then, I pull the husks back up and soak the corn in the husks for 10 minutes. (Soaking corn hydrates the husks, preventing them from burning too much on the grill.) After the corn soaks, I pat it dry and grill it in the husks until the corn is tender and light char marks form. I choose this method when I’m craving really juicy, sweet grilled corn on the cob, and I’m not as concerned about the char.

2. Straight on the grill – Choose this method if you’re all about the char! Here, I shuck the corn, removing the silk and husks, and cook the cobs directly on the grill. Cooking corn this way means that the kernels won’t be quite as juicy – they’ll lose some of their moisture to the hot grill grates. However, they’ll be nicely charred and full of smoky flavor. This method is also great if you’re short on time. With no soaking required, the grilled corn cooks up in minutes.

Grilled corn on the cob

Grilled Corn Serving Suggestions

No matter which method you choose, serve the grilled corn hot, with olive oil or butter and plenty of salt and pepper. For a zesty twist, try rubbing it in cilantro lime butter (recipe below), and sprinkling it with chopped cilantro and red pepper flakes. It would also be fantastic with drizzles of chipotle sauce, cilantro lime dressing, green goddess dressing, or vegan ranch!

I love serving grilled corn on the cob as a side dish with vegetarian tacos, but of course, it’s also great with classic cookout recipes like these:

If you have leftovers, slice the kernels off the cob to make my Mexican Street Corn Salad or Grilled Corn Tacos! Enjoy!

grilled corn on the cob

More Favorite Grilling Recipes

If you love this grilled corn recipe, try one of these summer grilling recipes next:

Grilled Corn

rate this recipe:
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time: 12 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Serves 4 to 8
Nothing screams summer like grilled corn on the cob! Both of these methods for how to grill corn yield great results. Choose the first one if you like your corn sweeter and juicier, and choose the second if you want it to have a smoky, charred flavor from the grill.

Ingredients

  • 4 to 8 ears fresh corn

Topping options:

  • Butter, sea salt, lemon or lime wedges, red pepper flakes
  • Cilantro Lime Butter, recipe below
  • Vegan Ranch

Instructions

Husk-on method

  • Pull back the husks of the corn leaving them attached at the base. Remove the silks (as much as you can) and close the husks back over the corn cob. Soak the corn in a large pot of cold water for 10 minutes. This will prevent the husks from burning too much on the grill. Drain and pat dry.
  • Heat a grill to medium-high heat. Place the corn on the grill and cook, turning every 3 to 5 minutes, until all sides of the corn are cooked, about 15 minutes. Remove from the grill, tie back the husks and use them as a handle. Serve with desired toppings.

Husked method

  • Remove the corn husk and silks and preheat the grill to medium-high heat. Place the corn on the grill and cook, turning every 3 to 5 minutes, until all sides of the corn are cooked and light char marks form, about 15 minutes. Remove from the grill and serve with desired toppings.

Notes

Cilantro Lime Butter: In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro with ┬╝ teaspoon lime zest, and 1/2 teaspoon sea salt. Mash in 1/4 cup softened unsalted butter until well combined. Roll into a log, wrap in parchment paper, and chill until firm.

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A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.