I recently shared my technique for grilling the perfect steak and with perfect steak I have always felt a perfect vegetable to go along with it is corn on the cob and of course a big juicy baked potato. The baked potato will be covered in a future post. The focus of today’s post is how to grill amazing corn on the cob.
The first thing that is needed is the corn. I will always purchase my corn on the cob from a local farmer with the roadside stand if I am able to. If not then the local grocery store will suffice. Purchase enough for your dinner and a few extra, everyone will want seconds or thirds. Just remember if you only have one grill to work with corn on the cob takes up a lot of real estate on the grill surface. If you are lucky enough to have more than one grill dedicate one of them just for corn.
Things you will need before you start:
- A 5 gallon bucket or a big cooler
- Fresh Water
- Corn on the Cob
- Charcoal or Propane depending on your grilling style.
- A good grilling tong or grabby thing like my kid calls it.
- A set of Ove Gloves or clean work gloves (these will be used for shucking the corn afterwards).
- Ove Gloves can be found by typing in ove gloves on Google or Amazon and look for this:
- Large platter or cookie sheet.
- Salt and Pepper
Step 1 – Take the bucket or large cooler and fill it with the Corn on the Cob, do not remove the husks.
My uncle who taught me this likes to peel back the husks and remove the silk and then put the husks back over the corn. I prefer to leave it all intact as I feel it holds more of the moisture inside which is important to the grilling process.
Fill the bucket or cooler with cold water after all the corn is in it. Put it in a shady place to sit for at least an hour, a few hours is better. Once or twice go out and dunk the corn to make sure all if it is soaking evenly.
Step 2 – Prepare your grill. If you are using charcoal load up your charcoal chimney.
If you are unsure what a charcoal chimney is it looks like this and is probably the best tool for charcoal grilling that was ever invented. I wrote a whole post covering the magnificent charcoal chimney. You can find that post by clicking this link.
I find that it takes about 30 minutes to get my coals nice and hot, you should wait until the coals at the top of your chimney look mostly white before you dump the coals onto your grill surface.
Be careful when dumping the coals, this is usually the step where I start dancing around on the deck because hot little ash and coals has found its way to my legs, feet, or arms. I grilling mit is highly recommended.
The amount of coals you use and how you spread them out on your grill is up to you and based on how many cobs of corn you are grilling. As a guideline if I am grilling two to six cobs I use half a chimney worth of coals and I always grill directly over the coals with the grilling surface about 8 inches above the highest coal in the pile. Once the coals are dumped out and positioned where you want them close the lid and let it heat up.
If grilling with a gas grill you can skip most of the above and just fire your burners up and close your lid and wait for it to get to a good starting temperature, I recommend at least 350 degrees.
Step 2.5 (Optional based on personal taste) – I like to toss a handful of damp wood chips on the coals at this point as well if you enjoy a nice smokey flavor to your corn. I will throw another handful on right before I put the corn on.
If grilling with a gas grill wrap a handful of damp wood chips in some tinfoil, poke some holes in it and place it on the grill as soon as you fire it up, give it plenty of time to heat up the wood chips and start them smoking before you put the corn on.
Step 3 – Once the grill is heated up to at least 350 degrees and had time for the grill surface to heat up retrieve your bucket or cooler of corn. Be prepared to move quickly, the quicker you are the less heat you will lose, just don’t forget that second handful of woodchips if you opted for that and get those cobs on the hot grill and shut the lid. You don’t need to dry them off or let the water drip out at all, the more moisture the better. Let them cook for 20 minutes. Open the lid and turn them over using the tongs or the Ove Gloves if you have those. Let them cook for another 20 minutes.
Step 4 – Get your platter or cookie sheet ready nearby. Pull the corn off the grill using your Ove Gloves or work gloves and shuck them right away if the rest of your food is ready. If you have a little time before the rest of your food is done leave them in the husks and the corn will stay nice and hot until you are ready to eat. Once they are off the grill, shucked, and on a platter bring them to the table and prepare to add the butter than salt and pepper to taste.
Step 5 – Enjoy the most juicy and flavorful corn you can imagine.
Step 1 to 5 paraphrased:
- Buy Corn
- Soak corn in water for 1 hour or more
- Start Grill
- Grill Corn 20 minutes
- Turn Corn
- Grill other side for 20 minutes
- Pull off grill and shuck
Hopefully you will find corn on the cob done this way as amazing as I do. If you are looking for the perfect main dish to go along with your corn try my technique for grilling juicy, crispy chicken by clicking here.
If you have any questions, comments, or ideas you want to share please feel free to contact me and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
The Broke Dad