Here’s How to Boil Corn On The Cob for Perfect Results Every Single Time!

Boiled Corn on the Cob

yield: 4 SERVINGS

prep time: 15 MINUTES

cook time: 11 MINUTES

total time: 26 MINUTES

Ingredients

Directions

1

Fill a large pot about 3/4 full of water on the stove.

2

Heat the water to boiling. If adding sugar and lemon juice, stir that in as the water starts to heat up. Add the corn to the pot once boiling.

3

Turn off the heat, cover the pot with a lid, and let the corn cook for 11-12 minutes.

4

Remove the corn from the water and top with butter and salt as desired to serve. Enjoy!

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holding up corn on the cob over a pot

Learning how long to boil corn is a cinch!

It’s one of the earliest cooking lessons I can remember, and it’s so simple and easy to do, plus it makes a delicious side dish. Most would agree that enjoying a piece of juicy buttery corn on the cob is truly one of life’s simplest pleasures, especially during the summer at its sweetest.

plate of boiled corn

Did you know “how long to boil corn” is an extremely popular search on Google?

I realize this is a very simple way to cook corn, but in case you’re wondering – here’s how to do it! There are so many ways to prepare corn, whether it’s in the microwave, using the Instant Pot, air fryer, grilling, roasting, or boiling corn on the cob on the stove for the most fail-proof classic method that I remember my mom and grandma doing as a kid.

This method will result in corn that is tender and sweet, and not at all mushy or soggy!

easiest way to clean and cut corn on the cob

Tips for how to boil corn:

    • Do you know the easiest way to shuck corn? Cut the bottom of the corn off where it connects and pull up from that end to remove the husk. I swear it’s easier!
    • Try adding a tablespoon of granulated sugar and juice from one lemon to the boiling water. It may sound odd but I tried it and it really brings out the sweet corn flavor!
    • Some folks prefer to add milk and butter to the boiling water. I have tried that method too, and it’s also delicious.
    • Once your corn is cooked, feel free to jazz it up with additional fixings as desired. I personally love butter, salt, and pepper on mine. You could make the dressing for zesty Mexican street corn and serve it that way too.
    • Uncooked corn stays fresh up to 3 days stored in the fridge, and once cooked can last 3-5 days when refrigerated.

pot with boiling corn

how to boil corn in boiling water

holding boiled corn on the cob


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Boiled Corn on the Cob

yield: 4 SERVINGS

prep time: 15 MINUTES

cook time: 11 MINUTES

total time: 26 MINUTES

Boiling corn is a cinch, and the result is a simple yet delicious side dish all will love.

Ingredients

Directions

1

Fill a large pot about 3/4 full of water on the stove.

2

Heat the water to boiling. If adding sugar and lemon juice, stir that in as the water starts to heat up. Add the corn to the pot once boiling.

3

Turn off the heat, cover the pot with a lid, and let the corn cook for 11-12 minutes.

4

Remove the corn from the water and top with butter and salt as desired to serve. Enjoy!

Brought to you by Hip2Save.

holding boiled corn on the cob with butter

We can never get enough corn on the cob!

The method of adding lemon juice and a little granulated sugar to the boiling water brought out the flavors and was SO YUMMY. I love that corn is always an inexpensive yet tasty side dish that can be easily prepared for weekend BBQ gathering  or casually during the week to pair with burgers, chicken, or ribs!


Make this delicious summer corn salad using your cooked corn!


Lina has a Bachelor's Degree from Northern Arizona University with 10 years of blogging and photography experience having work featured in Today.com, Martha Stewart, Country Living, Fox News, Buzzfeed, and HGTV.


Join The Discussion

Comments 26

  1. Barney

    It’s easier to just microwave with husks on when only doing a few ears. About 7 minutes for an ear. Husks come off super easy!

    • Erin

      Yup! I do them in the microwave if I’m doing just a few but I usually shuck them first and it takes just a couple minutes. If I’m cooking more than four, I use the Instant Pot.

    • Maggie

      I soak it in some water for a few minutes, but it’s done to perfection in 4 minutes in the microwave, due to the steam.

    • Kathleen

      Some of us don’t have a microwave, so we appreciate alternative ways of cooking than just microwave instructions 🤷‍♀️

  2. LA

    If you buy your corn from a local farm stand, ask them how long to cook it. Our local corn is a ‘sugar enhanced’ variety (vs many grocery stores ‘super sweet’ varieties) and only needs to boil 2 min and it’s done!

  3. Jo Ann

    Best way to make corn on the the cob is on the grill. Just peel off outer husk (leave pale green part on) and soak in a tub of water for 30 minutes. Pop them on the grill with your burgers or whatever and they’re delicious in 15 minutes, without heating up the house at all.

    • Kathleen

      Grilling gives a delicious caramelized flavor!

  4. Pam

    I’ve used the sugar/lemon juice method for boiling corn for a long time…corn comes out perfect every single time!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing Pam! I liked it also- yum!

  5. Sue

    I use instant pot to cook corn on the cob for 4 minute (one cup of water, corn on the steam rack), and let it release pressure on its own. It tastes better than boil in water.

    • Kathleen

      We steam ours in the Instant Pot also! So good!

  6. Diane

    I remove the silks but leave the husk intact then I rinse them under running water to make sure they are clean. Put a pat of butter cover with the husk wrap in foil and cook in the oven for 20 minutes with whatever else you are cooking in the oven.

  7. Wren

    I will totally try this method with the lemon juice or will also try the milk/sugar. I’ve had microwaved corn and didn’t think it was as good. 💁‍♀️ Thank you!

  8. Lana

    Husk the corn and put in a covered casserole dish with a few tablespoons of water. Microwave for six minutes and it’s perfect every time.

  9. Jackie

    I have always boiled them in plain water. What is the ratio of the milk/sugar? I might try that one. For the lemon one can you use a squirt of the concentrated kind? Can you use concentrated lime? I am soooooo trying this! Thanks Lina

    • Ashley

      I add about a quarter stick butter and one cup milk to my boiling water. Excellent flavor!

  10. silvgoddess

    I don’t have lemons but do have limes. Is it similar to use juice of one lime?

    • jean

      yes. i’ve used limes when i had no lemons. It makes such a difference adding the citrus!!

  11. Rhoda

    I also make my corn with the lemon juice + sugar. It’s always delicious!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing Rhoda – SO YUM!

  12. Sheila

    Recipe I found years ago. 1/4-1/2 cup sugar add corn to water and boil 8 minutes. Perfect every time.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing!

  13. Tammy Soik

    I either bake them at 350 degrees in the oven or my smoker/grill for about 30 minutes. Don’t disturb the husk before hand. When ready, peel back the husk. The silk and husk will come right off.

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Thanks for sharing your tips Tammy!

  14. Marty Gaston

    Thanks for sharing! I use the milk/sugar method…wonderful!! Here’s a tip for buttering your corn…place a pat of butter on a slice of bread or hamburger bun and roll the corn over the butter…easy peasy!!

    • Lina D (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Thanks Marty! Love that tip!

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