Grilled corn on the cob bursts with sweet-and-savory flavor and takes just 10 minutes or less. Learn how to grill corn the easy way so it’s perfectly charred and juicy!

An overhead photo of 6 grilled corncobs on a serving platter with 2 lime halves.
Photo Credits: Ali Redmond

Grilled corn on the cob was one of my go-to summer snacks growing up in Egypt. Some street vendors specialized in the crispiest, fluffiest Falafel. Others sold ice-cold Hibiscus Tea on a sweltering day. Some set up right on the boardwalk by the beach and grilled fresh, raw corn directly over open flames–no fancy grills required. 

This grilled corn recipe captures that delicious BBQ flavor with a regular outdoor grill! I like to first remove the husk and cook the corn naked, which helps it get nice and charred. And for the same reason, I do not cover my corn in foil. I also love to keep the corn’s natural sweetness, so I don’t dull the flavor by boiling it first.

Even better flavor and so much quicker! You can leave it at that, but I love to balance the corn’s sweet flavor with zingy fresh lime juice and a pinch of spicy Aleppo pepper (or whatever red pepper flakes you have). Sweet, spicy and bright, you’ll want to make this grilled corn recipe all summer long! 

Table of Contents
  1. Ingredients to Make Grilled Corn on the Cob
    1. For the Grilled Corn
    2. For the Optional Seasonings
  2. Ingredient Spotlight
  3. How to Husk Corn
  4. How to Grill Corn on the Cob
  5. Should You Boil Corn Before Grilling?
  6. Tips for Buying the Best Corn
  7. How to Store Raw Corn
  8. How to Serve Grilled Corn
  9. How to Store Leftover Grilled Corn
  10. You'll Also Like: Easy Grilled Side Recipes
  11. Grilled Corn on the Cob Recipe
Ingredients for grilled corn on the cob including 5 ears of corn, a bottle of olive oil, and a plate containing 2 lemon halves and bowls of kosher salt and Aleppo pepper.

Ingredients to Make Grilled Corn on the Cob

You only need three things to make this grilled corn on the cob: corn, oil, and salt! You can dress it up how you like from there, but I’ve also included my favorite way to bring simple grilled corn to the next level. 

For the Grilled Corn

  • Corn: Look for bright green husks and slightly sticky light gold silks (not brown). 
  • Extra virgin olive oil: Doesn’t need to be your fanciest olive oil, but make sure it’s an extra virgin variety so it holds up the the grill’s high heat–any of the olive oils at our shop would be great. You can also use a high quality neutral oil if you prefer, like avocado or sunflower oil.
  • Kosher salt: Enhances the flavor.

For the Optional Seasonings

  • Lime juice: Adds a nice fresh zing. Lemon juice would also work.
  • Aleppo pepper: Adds a good kick (more below), but any chili flakes would be delicious. 
A close up of 4 corncobs being grilled on a grill.

Ingredient Spotlight

Aleppo pepper, from the ancient city of Aleppo in Syria, is a true gem of the Middle Eastern pantry. It’s one of the spices I reach for most often! Where chili flakes tend to just be in-your-face spicy, Aleppo pepper has a unique balance of mild heat and nuanced fruity notes. It’s the perfect balance for the corn’s sweetness, but I also love it on salads, meat marinades, grilled vegetables and more.

An overhead close up photo of 6 grilled corn on the cobs on a serving platter.

How to Husk Corn

To make grilled corn on the cob, you must first remove the corn’s husk and silk–the long, thin strands surrounding the kernels. This allows it to char more quickly and easily. Here’s how you do it:

  • Remove the outer leaves. Hold the corn cob firmly at the top with one hand. Use your other hand to peel away the outermost leaves of the corn husk, one layer at a time.
  • Remove the silk. Gently peel back the remaining leaves to expose the silk strands underneath. Grasp the silk at the top and pull it downward until you’ve removed it completely. A few strands here and there are okay–you don’t need to drive yourself crazy. An overhead photo of an ear of corn being shucked, next to 5 other ears of corn.
  • Trim the stem (optional). You can trim the top and bottom of the cob for a neat appearance, but this is just for show! Leave them on for a more rustic look. 

How to Grill Corn on the Cob

The first step to grill corn on the cob is to get your grill preheating while oyu husk the corn and remove the silks (white stringy bits, but it doesn’t need to be picture-perfect)–see my tips blow. From there:  

  • While your grill preheats, prep the corn. Brush the corn with a thin layer of olive oil. Once the grill is very hot, about 10 minutes, arrange the corn on the grates and cook until charred to your liking.
  • Turn. Turn the corn often to cook and char all sides. This should take about 10 minutes in total.A close up of 5 corncobs being grilled on a grill.
  • Season to your taste and serve. Remove the corn from the grill. If you’d like to add the optional lime and Aleppo pepper, immediately run a cut lime all over and season with a sprinkle of Aleppo pepper. Either way, finish with a pinch of salt and serve immediately. Enjoy! An overhead photo of 6 grilled corncobs on a serving platter with 2 lime halves. Next to this is a small bowl of Aleppo pepper.

Should You Boil Corn Before Grilling?

In short: you don’t need to boil corn before grilling. You also don’t need to soak or steam it!

Some grilled corn recipes boil the corn to avoid cooking the corn for too long and drying out the kernels. The secret? High heat! Charring raw corn quickly over high heat will ensure the kernels stay juicy and allow their natural flavors to shine.

Tips for Buying the Best Corn

Learning how to grill corn on the cob starts with the perfect ear of corn. Keep these tips in mind to select the freshest corn on the cob at the market:

  • Bright green husks: The freshest corn has bright green husks that feel slightly damp - not yellow or dry.
  • No holes: If you see any small brown holes, that's a sign of insects and should be avoided.
  • Firm throughout: When you gently squeeze the corn, it should be firm throughout the entire cob. There should be no soft softs or parts that clearly do not have corn kernels.
  • Light brown or gold top: The tassel (the corn silk peeking out at the top) should be light brown or gold and slightly sticky and smell sweet. If the tassel is dry, black, or mushy, choose a different piece of corn.
A close up photo of 4 grilled corncobs.

How to Store Raw Corn

Store corn on the cob at room temperature if you'll be cooking it the next day, or in the crisper of your fridge for up to 5 days. Leave the husks and silk on the corn until just before cooking.

How to Serve Grilled Corn

My favorite way to serve grilled corn is with a squeeze of fresh lime juice and a sprinkle of Aleppo pepper. The smoky charred kernels, heat from the Aleppo, and citrus all combine perfectly for a mouth-watering snack.

That said, the grilled corn on the cob's charring adds a smoky flavor to the sweet corn, which I love all on its own. You can leave it at that and serve as a simple side, perhaps drizzled with some nice extra virgin olive oil, flaky salt, and a grind of black pepper.

You can also top this grilled corn with feta cheese, a mixture of feta cheese and Greek yogurt, or even a lemony, garlicky handmade Aioli.

An overhead photo of 6 grilled corncobs on a serving platter with 2 lime halves. Next to this is a small bowl of Aleppo pepper and a bottle of beer.

How to Store Leftover Grilled Corn

The best grilled corn on the cob is enjoyed immediately while it’s still fresh and warm. If you do have leftovers, you can store them in the fridge for up to 3 days.

I don't recommend reheating grilled corn as it can get chewy and dry. Instead, remove it from the cob and enjoy it in salads or salsa. Give it a new life by turning it into this grilled corn salad. Or, use the charred corn kernels to add a depth of flavor to this Black Bean and Corn Salad, or Grilled Salmon with Mango Salsa.

You'll Also Like: Easy Grilled Side Recipes

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Add a Kick with Aleppo Pepper!

Aleppo pepper's complex slow burn and fruity notes are the perfect match for the corn's natural sweetness.

5 from 9 votes

Grilled Corn on the Cob

Suzy Karadsheh
An overhead photo of 6 grilled corncobs on a serving platter with 2 lime halves. Next to this is a small bowl of Aleppo pepper.
Grilled Corn on the Cob is an easy summer side that's ready in under 10 minutes. Serve it plain or with a little lime and a dash of chili flakes or Aleppo pepper. And you don't even need a grill! See notes and the recipe video for my stovetop version.
Cook – 10 minutes
Total – 10 minutes
Cuisine:
Mediterranean
Serves – 6 servings
Course:
Side Dish

Ingredients
  

For the Grilled Corn

Optional Seasonings

  • 1 lime, halved (optional)
  • Aleppo pepper (optional, or red pepper flakes)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your grill to high. Brush the corn with a thin layer of olive oil. Once the grill is very hot, about 10 minutes, arrange the corn on the grates and cook until charred to your liking.
  • Turn. Turn the corn often to cook and char all sides. This should take about 10 minutes in total.
  • Season to your taste and serve. Remove the corn from the grill. If you’d like to add the optional lime and Aleppo pepper, immediately run the cut lime all over and season with a sprinkle of Aleppo pepper. Either way, finish with a pinch of salt and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Video

Notes

  • Shop this recipe: Visit our shop to browse quality Mediterranean ingredients including the olive oil and Aleppo pepper used in this recipe.
  • Other cooking methods: You don’t need an outdoor grill to make grilled corn! 
    • On A Gas Stove: Place one ear of husked corn over the flames of your burner on medium-high heat. Use a pair of long, heat-safe tongs to turn occasionally until the corn is charred on all sides to your liking, about 4 to 5 minutes in total. As the corn cooks, it will pop and sizzle. That’s normal, but be sure to stand back for your safety.
    • On A Grill Pan: Preheat your grill pan to high. Once it’s very hot, about 5 minutes, arrange the corn on the pan, cooking in batches to avoid overcrowding. Turn the corn often to cook and char all sides. This should take about 10 minutes in total.
  • Leftovers: If you do have leftovers, you can store them in the fridge for up to 3 days. I don't recommend reheating corn, instead, you can shave it off the cob and use the kernels in something like this delicious black bean and corn salad.

Nutrition

Calories: 80.8kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 3gFat: 1.2gSaturated Fat: 0.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.4gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.4gTrans Fat: 0.01gSodium: 13.7mgPotassium: 254.4mgFiber: 2.1gSugar: 5.8gVitamin A: 173.9IUVitamin C: 9.4mgCalcium: 5.5mgIron: 0.5mg
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*This post has recently been updated with new information for readers’ benefit.

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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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Comments

  1. Sandie Marconi says:

    5 stars
    We made this corn, grilled on our grill; absolutely delicious. This recipe, with lime and Aleppo is surprisingly wonderful. So much better than the old butter and salt way. And, healthier! Thank you.

    1. Suzy says:

      So glad you enjoyed it, Sandie!

  2. Beth says:

    5 stars
    Yummy! We absolutely loved how our corn turned out! Such a hit here and very delicious. My family is excited to try the other two ways!

    1. Suzy says:

      Thanks, Beth!

  3. Jacqueline Meldrum says:

    5 stars
    I'd never thought to cooking it over a gas burning. I usually boil them or BBQ them. Great idea!

    1. Suzy says:

      Hope you give it a try!

  4. saif says:

    5 stars
    I tried once in a street food when they serve grilled corn. It was so delicious. Definitely going to follow this recipe

    1. Suzy says:

      Enjoy!

  5. Adrianne says:

    5 stars
    What a perfect side dish for so many recipes! I love how you are holding it right over the gas. That blue plate is beautiful also, thanks!

  6. Lima Ekram says:

    5 stars
    Just tried your recipe on the grill - sprinkled with red pepper flakes - it was wonderful!

    1. Suzy says:

      Wonderful, Lima. Thanks for giving it a go!

  7. Kate says:

    5 stars
    Gave this a try and the corn came out perfectly! Great flavor and great crunch!