Growing up in the Midwest, corn on the cob was always a staple of my diet, especially during the summer. Several times during the week, mom would place several ears of shucked corn into a pot of boiling water and, soon after, we would have delicious corn on the cob. For so much of my life, I naively believed that this was the best way to prepare corn on the cob.
But then I became a Grillaholic.
As a Grillaholic, you quickly realize that everything tastes better on the grill, and corn on the cob is no exception. The subtle smokiness added to corn on the cob by preparing it on the grill makes it much more flavorful. However, we know that mastering the art of perfectly grilling your corn on the cob, without it becoming dry and chewy, is not easy. So for those of you Grillaholics seeking to perfect your craft, or for those of you who are trying grilled corn on the cob for the first time, we will share three methods that can be used to get awesome grilled corn without fail.
Method 1: Grilling In The Husk
The first method of grilling corn on the cob is extremely simple, and will allow you to infuse barbecue smoke into your corn without drying it out. Because this method uses steam to heat your corn on the cob throughout, start by soaking your ears of corn (with husks still on!) in a pot of cold water for at least 15 minutes. While the corn is soaking, heat your grill to medium temperature (around 350 degrees F). Once the grill is heated and the corn has soaked for at least 15 minutes, remove the corn from the pot and shake off any excess water. With husks still on, place the ears of corn directly on the grill grates. Cook for 10-15 minutes, rotating frequently to ensure that the corn cooks evenly. Once finished (you can tell because the husk will be dark and charred), remove the corn from the grill. Make sure to use oven mitts or grill gloves as the corn will be HOT! While still warm, shuck the corn as you normally would, making sure to remove most of the silk. If any ashes from the charred husk make their way onto the corn, simply run the entire cob under warm water to clean it. Serve with butter and whatever seasoning you traditionally use!
Method 2: Grilling In Aluminum Foil
While not as simple as the first method, this method isn’t nearly as dirty, and will still result in the same deliciously grilled corn on the cob. As with the first method, your grill should be preheated to a medium heat (around 350 degrees F). Begin by shucking the corn completely, making sure to remove as much silk as possible. Place the naked ear of corn on a piece of aluminum foil. At this point, you have the option of coating the ear of corn with flavored butter, oil, and your favorite spices in order to enhance flavor during cooking, but it is completely optional. Next, whether you seasoned your corn or not, wrap each ear of corn individually in heavy duty aluminum foil. Place each wrapped ear of corn directly onto the grill grates. Cook for 10-15 minutes, rotating frequently. Once finished (it is admittedly a bit harder to tell, because the aluminum foil doesn’t char like the husk does), remove the corn from the grill and allow to cool. At this point, the corn can be served directly, just season to taste!
Method 3: Grilling Naked
This third and final method is our personal favorite. Unlike the previous two methods, this method allows the corn to come into direct contact with the grill grates, giving it, not only a smoky flavor, but a taste of something that came straight off of the grill. However, because of the direct contact with the grill grates, this method is also the one where the corn must be monitored the closest. Bring your grill to a medium heat (around 350 degrees F). Begin as you did in the second method, by completely shucking each ear of corn. This time, we recommend that you coat each naked ear of corn with a thin layer of butter or oil before grilling (make sure to save some extra to use during grilling). Once heated, place each naked ear of corn directly on the grill grates. Cooking will be much faster using this method, taking only 5-10 minutes. Be sure to rotate very frequently to prevent burning. After each rotation, thinly apply more butter or oil to each ear of corn to enhance flavor. Be careful not to apply too much oil, as dripping causes flare-ups, which will burn your corn and ruin its flavor. Monitor your corn closely. It will be finished cooking when SOME of the kernels are golden brown. If you wait until all of the kernels become golden brown, you will likely have overcooked the corn and it will be dry. Remove from the grill, season to taste, and enjoy!
No matter which of these methods you choose to employ, we know that you will find one that makes you rethink how you’ve been eating corn for your entire life. Grilling corn truly brings out flavors that boiling and steaming never will, and we hope that we are able to bring that revelation into your life. Make sure to follow us on Facebook and let us know which method worked out best for you and your family, and as always, cheers to being a Grillaholic.