How Long To Boil Corn


How long to boil corn? How do you make perfect corn on the cob?


Never boil your corn for any longer than 10 minutes. The best way to boil corn is for less than a minute and then let it seep in the covered hot water for 10 minutes. This process is detailed below.

That’s the quick answer to how long to boil corn, but see the chart below for additional boiling times for corn. We’ve also listed alternatives to boiling your corn on the cob. Underneath the table of how long to boil corn are step by step instructions on exactly how to boil corn.

Perfect corn on the cob involves fresh summer corn. For many years I was following my mother’s advice on how to make perfect corn on the cob every time. The simple recipe never failed me, but then we took a detour through the corn fields of Indiana on a past vacation to visit some friends. She served corn for dinner that was absolutely amazing. I wanted her recipe… turns out it was the same as mine!

How Long To Boil Corn

How Long To Boil Corn

How Long To Boil Corn:

Table of Boiling Times for Corn
Corn How Long To Cook Corn
Boil Corn on the Cob for  1-10 Minutes
Microwave Corn on the Cob for  4-6 Minutes
Steam Corn on the Cob for   15-20 Minutes
Bake Corn on the Cob for 30-40 Minutes
Grill Corn on the Cob for  20-30 Minutes
Boil Cut Corn (Fresh) for 4-8 minutes
Boil Canned Corn for  2-5 Minutes
Boil Frozen Corn for   4-5 Minutes

As with any vegetable, do NOT overcook or boil your corn too long. That’s a sure way to eliminate most of the vitamins (and produce a mushy, bland dinner)!

Note: We listed 1-10 minutes in the chart for the time to boil corn because many people like their corn almost raw and take it out of the water right after it boils… while others like it cooked longer until very soft. But, pretty much everyone agrees that corn boiled for any longer than 10 minutes is usually tough, and even sometimes dry and flavorless. As you can see, there are different schools of thought on how long to boil corn.

Regardless, what we recommend to make perfect corn on the cob is turning off the heat just after the corn boils. Detailed steps regarding how long to boil corn follow.

Steps to Boil Corn on the Cob

Steps to Boil Corn on the Cob:

  • 1) Fill a large pot about half full of water and bring to a boil. For details, see our FAQ on how to boil water.

  • 2) Husk your ears of corn. Use a damp kitchen towel to remove any stubborn hair.

  • 3) Add carefully the ears of corn to the boiling water. Use tongs or place the ears on a flexible cutting board that you can use to protect your hands and body from any splash that will occur as the ears of corn hit the boiling water.

  • 4) Return the water to a full rolling boil (this should take 3-5 minutes). After this happens, put a lid on the pot and turn off the heat, leaving the pot on the burner. Add a tablespoon of granulated sugar, if desired, to ensure that your boiled corn turns out as sweet as possible.

  • 5) Set the timer for 10 minutes. That’s it! Be sure to use tongs to remove the cooked corn on the cob from the pot when the timer rings (they will be hot!). So, corn doesn’t need to boil for long but can sit and wait in the covered pot while you prepare the rest of your dinner.
  • Most people like to roll their cooked corn on the cob into a stick of butter and then sprinkle with salt, but these ears should be sweet enough to eat straight from the pot!

    How Long To Boil Corn

    What You Can Do

    A great way to boil corn on the cob, and other fruits and vegetables, is to use a pot with a strainer insert and a lid. These pots are great to use because you can quickly submerge your corn on the cob all at once with less chance of getting burned and then just as easily remove your corn on the cob without having to fish around for each ear of boiled corn.

    Ever wonder how much corn is on a cob? Check here.

    To find out how long your boiled corn lasts, visit our how long does corn last page.

    That’s the answer to how long to boil corn and how to boil perfect corn on the cob. Hope you found our how long to boil corn instructions useful. Enjoy!

    To find out how long other foods are good for, please visit the Dairy, Drinks, Fruits, Grains, Proteins, Vegetables and Other sections of Eat By Date or use the search function below.

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