This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.
Knowing how to grill corn in the husk is a simple summer staple every home chef should have under their belt. It will come in handy for backyard barbecues, summer cookouts, and when you’re simply craving juicy corn with the perfect char. Get ready to enjoy the best grilled corn in less than an hour!
What You’ll Need to Grill Corn
- Fresh corn in their husks – we used 6 corn cobs, but adjust to the amount of people you’re serving
- Large pot or bucket
- Grill (we use Primo Ceramic Grills)
How to Pick the Best Ears of Corn at the Grocery Store
When shopping for fresh ears of corn in the grocery store, there are a few things to keep in mind to make sure you’re going home with the freshest corn your grocery store or local farmers market has to offer.
- Shop for corn during peak corn season. Corn is in season (in the United States) between June and late September. If you’re shopping for corn outside of these summer months, you’re more likely to find less than optimal corn on the grocery store shelves. During these cooler seasons, we recommend shopping for frozen corn kernels instead – frozen corn is picked during peak season and will always be sweet and delicious!
- Check the husks for holes: When you see holes at the top of the husk, that is an indication that the ear of corn is potentially contaminated with insects. When possible, skip over these cobs of corn.
- Avoid loose husks. If the husks are loose or not tightly wrapped around the corn, this is a sign that the corn cob isn’t as fresh as a tightly wrapped corn cob.
- Check the color. Fresh corn will have a vibrant, green husk and silk strands that are white or yellow. If the husks or silk strands are browning or black in places, this is an indication the corn isn’t as fresh as it once was.
- Inspect the corn kernels. Through the husk (don’t peel it back!), gently squeeze the ear of corn to check that the kernels feel plump and tender. If there are any spots on the ear of corn that feel like kernels are missing or overly soft, skip that one.
How to Grill Corn in the Husk
- Prep the corn. The first step is to remove and discard any dry or discolored husks from the corn, then cut off the excess on top using a pair of scissors. Carefully peel back the husks until 1″ from the bottom. Remove as much of the corn silk as you can, then re-cover the corn with the husk. Repeat this process with all of the corn.
- Soak the corn for 10 minutes. Place the corn in a large pot or bucket large enough to fit all of your corn and fill with cold water. Allow the corn to soak for 10 minutes or up to 8 hours.
- Grill the corn. Remove the corn from the bucket and shake off any excess water. Place the corn directly onto the hot grill grates (still covered by the husk) and grill for 15-20 minutes, turning the corn every 5 minutes for even cooking. Once ready, the corn should be tender, not mushy.
- Cool until easy to handle. Once ready, remove the corn from the grill and set aside to cool. Once cool enough to handle, remove the corn husk from each and discard.
- Serve. Dress up the sweet corn and serve as desired. Enjoy!
Soaking the corn husks in water has two important purposes. For starters, soaking the corn in water prevents the corn husks from burning or catching on fire. Secondly, the excess moisture helps steam the corn inside the husk and makes the corn kernels as juicy and plump as possible.
Yes, if you don’t have time to soak the corn husks in water or want to skip that step, shuck the corn completely, then place the corn directly on the grill “naked.” Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the corn is tender and has a little char.
This is likely caused by grilling corn for too long. If you keep the corn on the grill for too long, the sweet kernels will begin to dry out and become chewy. The goal is to have tender corn and remove it from the grill before it’s overdone. On our outdoor grill, the ideal cook time was about 15-20 minutes over medium heat.
Fresh sweet corn can be enjoyed as a simple summer side dish alongside your favorite vegan BBQ with a bit of vegan butter, fresh herbs, and a sprinkle of salt and black pepper to taste. Or, cut the corn from the cob and use it in a variety of different corn recipes. Below are some our favorite ways to use up cooked corn:
Snacks and Sides
- Avocado Corn Salad
- Buffalo Vegan Corn on the Cob with Ranch Dressing
- Mexican Street Corn Salad
- Esquites-Inspired Pasta Salad (Mexican Corn Salad)
Storage and Freezing Instructions
- How to store raw corn in the husk: If you’re not planning on cooking your corn within the first few hours of bringing it home, keep it in the refrigerator in the crisper drawer with the husks still intact. Many people instinctively peel the husk back to check that the ear of corn is fresh, but don’t do this! Doing so will dehydrate the corn and cause the kernels to lose their sweetness.
- How to store grilled corn: Leftover corn can be refrigerated for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
- How to freeze corn: Grilled corn can also be frozen both on the cob or as corn kernels cut from the cob. Before storing, allow the corn to cool completely to room temperature then transfer the corn to an airtight freezer bag or container. For optimal flavor retention, thaw and enjoy within 3 months.
More Basic Recipes You May Enjoy:
- How to Make the Best Hummus – Simple and delicious hummus made fresh at home.
- How to Boil Peanuts 3 Ways – Love peanuts? This recipe is for you!
- How to Make Peanut Sauce – This sauce is perfect for many recipes.
- How to Caramelize Onions without Oil – Super delicious caramelized onions without any oil!
- How to Make Avocado Toast – A simple and delicious way to start the day.
- How to Roast Kabocha Squash – This one is for squash lovers!
- How to Roast Red Peppers – Roasting red peppers is great for meal prep.
Disclaimer: This page may contain affiliate links, which simply means that we earn a commission if you purchase through those links, but your price remains the same. Thank you for supporting Sweet Simple Vegan!