Microwave corn on the cob (with or without shucking it) in just minutes with this fuss-free 2-step method! A quick and easy summer side dish!
For those who aren’t fans of microwave cooking, let me quickly redirect you to my methods of boiling, grilling, roasting, or using an Instant Pot to make corn on the cob. However, for those who love using their microwave for speed and want a method that requires no shucking, no washing up, and the least amount of time to cook the corn, keep reading!
For years, I dedicated my microwave only to reheating leftovers (and popcorn). When I realized it can be used for so much more – like microwave potato chips and baked potatoes in a fraction of the time – I was hooked! It turns out you can also use this handy kitchen tool to learn how to cook corn on the cob in the microwave!
If you thought boiling corn was simple, get ready to be blown away with this even simpler method of cooking corn on the cob in the microwave. Just pop the corn in your microwave, husk and all. Once microwaved, slice off the end and slide the corn right out of the husk.
Yes, it’s that simple to shuck the corn. Simple and NO washing up!
Once cooked, this microwave sweet corn on the cob is naturally sweet and juicy. Some say even tastier than boiled, though I think they’re pretty similar. It makes for a perfect last-minute or fuss-free side dish for BBQs, potlucks, dinner parties, and lazy-day meals!
What’s in This Post
How to Microwave Corn on the Cob
You can prepare this recipe for microwaving corn on the cob in just TWO fuss-free steps! First, refer to my post on boiled corn for top tips on choosing fresh corn.
Simply place the ears of corn (with the husks on!) in the microwave.
- For 1 cob: Microwave for 3 minutes on full power. If it’s a larger cob, it may take 4 minutes.
- For 2 cobs: Microwave for 5 ½- 6 minutes on full power.
- For 3 or 4 cobs: The general rule of thumb is to add 2 minutes of nuke time per additional ear of corn at this point. I.e., 8 minutes for 3 microwaved on high and 10 minutes for 4 cobs.
To ensure that the corn is fully cooked, you can check the internal temperature is around 160-170ºF/71-77ºC. Or peel back the husk slightly to visibly check. Note that the power level of your microwave can affect the cooking times.
Use a kitchen towel, oven mitt, or tongs to remove the corn from the microwave. Then slice off the bottom 1/2-inch from the cob and slide the corn from the husk and silk. It should come out easily.
If there are remaining silk hairs on the corn, wipe these away. Or hold the corn over an open flame for a few seconds, and they’ll burn right off.
Why Microwave Corn on the Cob in the Husk
Like when grilling corn on the cob, it’s best to cook corn in husk in microwave to create an environment to lock in the steam/moisture and juiciness. When you leave the husks, this stops the corn from drying out as it cooks.
Cooking corn on the cob in the microwave with the husk also makes it far easier to remove the husk afterward. It just slides off the corn!
Can I Microwave Corn Without The Husk?
It’s still possible to microwave corn without the husks, but it will need an extra step to recreate the “steamable” environment of the husk.
To do so, wrap the shucked corn in a couple of layers of damp paper towel and microwave it as usual. The corn steams within the paper towel and will stay wonderfully juicy.
You can enjoy the microwave corn on the cob with a simple butter and salt (& optionally black pepper) topping. Or add more flavor with compound butter (like herby butter or roasted garlic butter). Or even add various herbs, spices (like paprika, chili powder, red pepper flakes, or tajin), and a sprinkle of cheese.
Once “dressed” with your favorite of the above, enjoy the corn alongside practically any meal. I particularly like it when reheating leftover burgers, alongside pasta, and for simple meals with a protein, carb, and veggie combo. Leftovers make for a great addition to corn salads and pasta salads.
Make ahead/Store: Once prepared, you can store the cooled microwave corn on the cob for 3-5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
Freeze: Flash freeze the cobs, not touching, until solid. Then transfer them to a freezer-safe reusable bag and store for between 4-6 months.
How to Reheat corn on the cob in the microwave?
You can reheat the corn on the cob in a microwave covered with a damp paper towel and microwaved in 20-second intervals until warm.
Alternatively, throwing the corn in hot water (with a lid) for 2-3 minutes should do the trick.
More Vegetable Side Dishes
- The perfect sauteed asparagus
- Grilled cauliflower steaks
- 5-minute sautéed sugar snap peas
- Crispy fried squash
If you try this microwave corn on the cob recipe, I’d love to hear your thoughts/questions below. Also, I’d appreciate a recipe card rating below, and feel free to tag me in your recipe recreations on Instagram @Alphafoodie!
How to Microwave Corn on the Cob the BEST Way
- 1 corn on the cob
- Simply place the ears of corn (with the husks on!) in the microwave.• For 1 cob: Microwave for 3 minutes on full power. If it’s a larger cob, it may take 4 minutes.• For 2 cobs: Microwave for 5 ½- 6 minutes on full power.• For 3 or 4 cobs: The general rule of thumb is to add 2 minutes of nuke time per additional ear of corn at this point. I.e., 8 minutes for 3 microwaved on high and 10 minutes for 4 cobs.To ensure that the corn is fully cooked, you can check the internal temperature is around 160-170ºF/71-77Cº, or peel back the husk slightly to visibly check. Note that the power level of your microwave can affect how much time it takes.
- Use a kitchen towel, oven mitt, or tongs to remove them from the microwave. Then slice off the bottom 1/2 inch from the cob and slide the corn from the husk and silk. It should come out easily.If there are remaining silk hairs on the corn, wipe these away or hold the corn over an open flame for a few seconds, and they'll burn right off.
How to Microwave Corn Without the Husk
- Wrap the shucked corn in a couple of layers of damp paper towel and microwave it as written above, turning it halfway.
- Make ahead/Store: Once prepared, you can store the cooled microwave corn on the cob for 3-5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.Freeze: Flash freeze the cobs, not touching, until solid, then transfer to a freezer-safe bag and store for between 4-6 months.Reheat: You can reheat the corn on the cob in a microwave covered with a damp paper towel. Microwave in 20-second intervals until warm.Alternatively, throwing the corn in hot water (with a lid) for 2-3 minutes should do the trick.
- Use fresh corn: The fresher the corn, the sweeter and juicier it will be. Use organic where possible, too, for the most flavor.
- Cooking times may vary: Based on the model and power of your microwave, the size of the corn, and how well done you like your corn. I use a 1200-watt microwave, but even similar wattage may require some time tweaks.
- Be careful not to overcook it: Otherwise, the corn can become mushy. It may take a few experiments to get it right.
- It will be hot: Be careful when removing the corn from the microwave and squeezing away the husk, as it will be very hot!
- This is best for up to 4 ears of corn: As you can only really cook 3-4 ears maximum in one go, this method works best for smaller amounts. Only ever microwave a single layer of corn in your microwave.
- Can I microwave white corn? Yes, for the most part, yellow corn and white corn are fairly interchangeable. Plus, white corn is super sweet and tender.
- How to remove the kernels? The easiest method is to use a Bundt ban. Just place the corn in the hole of the pan and use a sharp knife to slice downwards (like a kebab) and strip away the kernels (which will fall straight into the pan for the least amount of mess).