Want some warm, crisp, juicy corn on the cob right away? Don’t want to boil out the vitamins? Got a microwave? Here’s how to prepare fresh corn in the shortest and easiest way!
Get some fresh-as-possible sweet corn (white or yellow). Try a grocer, a warehouse club, a farmers market, or even your own garden if you’ve been smart or lucky enough to grow your own. Just make sure each ear still has the husk around it.
- Fruits ripen by getting sweeter and softer. But corn, in which you’re actually eating a cluster of seeds, becomes firmer and starchy over time, and is therefore less desirable the longer it’s stored post harvesting. Buy only what you can eat within a few days and keep it refrigerated to slow down this process.
- If you have too much corn on hand after a harvest, cook and freeze it.
If you like your corn plain or simply buttered or seasoned, just microwave it in the husk:
Trim the corn. Trim the ends to make sure that the corn ears will fit in the microwave. Also remove any very loose or very dry leaves, or protruding long, dry silk, to reduce the chance of creating a fire.
Place one or two ears in the center of the microwave as is. More might work in a big microwave, but each ear should be near the center and separated from others for even exposure to the microwaves.
Microwave the corn. Try two minutes on high in an average 700 to 1000 watt microwave for one refrigerated ear, three minutes for two.
Alternatively, you may find that the corn requires 2-4 minutes per ear, or a total cook time of 6-8 minutes for 2 ears of corn.
Allow the corn to sit wrapped up for a minute or so to distribute its heat and continue to cook. The husk contains little water, so it will remain cool.
Check for doneness by peeling back the husk and feeling or even nibbling a few kernels to test the temperature and the springiness of the kernels. Lay the husk back down for more microwaving if necessary. The softened, weakened husk and corn silk will come off easily.
If the corn is scorched or mushy, it’s overcooked – use less time in the future. But you might have to overcook the small end of the ear to get the rest of the corn right.
Remove the husk and silk
. The corn ear and its dense, watery stalk will be hot after cooking, staying hot inside the husk. Peel the corn carefully so as to avoid burning yourself.
Roll in butter and season it (while hot) with salt and pepper if you like. Allow it to cool before eating
Eat the corn and enjoy. Microwaved corn is fresh and delicious; it can be eaten with your hands or using special corn cob tools.
Alternatively, you can remove the kernels for a side dish or to use in cooking. If doing this, avoid seasoning the kernels on the cob.
Adding flavor before microwaving
Add flavors. If you’d rather have a flavored corn ear, peel the corn and cook the flavors straight into it, as suggested in the following steps.
Shuck the corn. Pull the entire depth of leaves and corn under them off at once, as if peeling a banana rather than an onion. They’ll stay together for neat disposal. Not in a garbage disposal, they’re too fibrous – try the trash or compost. Leave the stem on for a handle, albeit one that will heat up when cooked, or tear it off with the husk.
Remove remaining silk. Pick it off, or rinse it off and pat or shake excess water from the corn.
Place the corn on a plate or in microwave-safe vessel and add flavors, or even toppings like shredded cheese. Arrange the ears in a single layer with space between the cobs for even cooking.
Liquid flavors like lemon or lime juice can go on a paper towel around the corn to allow a small amount to soak in across its surface.
Rake the kernels with a fork first to enhance absorption.
Cover the corn. You may want to cover the corn with a paper towel, plastic wrap, or a loose-fitting microwave safe lid to prevent drying. But if you cook it fast, and the kernels’ skins are intact, they should do the job.
Microwave. As with corn in the husk, one ear takes about two to four minutes on high and more take a little longer. Some microwaves might need as little as 90 seconds per ear
Quick and Easy
Soak the corn in the husks, in water for about 15 minutes before microwaving. Microwave on paper towels 3 minutes per ear.