Microwave Corn on the Cob Recipe

Steps For How To Microwave Corn On The Cob

microwaved corn on the cobs on a serving platter with butter, parsley, and salt and pepper

The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 6 mins
Total: 11 mins
Serving: 1
Yield: 1 corn on the cob
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
179 Calories
13g Fat
17g Carbs
3g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 179
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 13g 16%
Saturated Fat 7g 37%
Cholesterol 31mg 10%
Sodium 516mg 22%
Total Carbohydrate 17g 6%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 5mg 24%
Calcium 11mg 1%
Iron 0mg 3%
Potassium 185mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

While grilled summer sweet corn is delicious, what happens if you’re short on time or don’t have access to a grill? Luckily, using your microwave is a fast and easy way to cook corn on the cob in just a few minutes. While grilling corn adds smoky flavor, microwaving is a surefire way to achieve tender, perfectly cooked corn with little risk of overcooking.

Sweet corn is at its peak in late summer. In many states, you can find it at farm stands on the side of the road or at the farmers market, but grocery stores often carry locally grown corn when it’s in season. It makes a perfect side dish for burgers or anything you’d like to throw on the grill. You can also microwave corn and cut off the kernels to add to salads, soups, and more.

How to Microwave Corn on the Cob

First things first, leave the husk on your corn to steam the kernels, keeping them juicy and fresh. After just a few minutes in the microwave, break or cut the bottom of the cob off, then slip off the husks. Note, sweet corn comes in white and yellow varieties, and when cooked the kernels will turn a darker, more intense color. Season with dried spices, lather in an herby compound butter, or coat in a sticky-sweet glaze to take it to the next level—see the bottom of the recipe for fun flavor variations.

Making Multiple Servings

We don’t recommend this technique to serve a crowd, but you can feed the family by microwaving 4 ears of corn in under 10 minutes. To serve more than one person, simply add 2 minutes of cooking time per each additional ear of corn:

  • 6 minutes for 2 ears
  • 8 minutes for 3 ears
  • 10 minutes for 4 ears

“This recipe only takes a few minutes, and you’ll have perfectly cooked, juicy corn on the cob! They even taste great the next day, just microwave them for 30-60 seconds and you’re all set. This will definitely be my go-to corn on the cob recipe, especially because I don’t have a grill at home.” —Bahareh Niati

Microwave Corn on the Cob/Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 ear of corn, husk on

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste

  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper, more to taste

  • Finely chopped fresh herbs, such as basil, dill, cilantro, and parsley, for garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    corn cob and other ingredients for microwaved corn on the cob gathered

    Bahareh Niati / The Spruce Eats

  2. Place the husk-on corn in the microwave. Cook on high for 4 minutes. 

    corn cob with husk on a plate

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  3. Let cool for 30 seconds to a minute, then break or cut the bottom of the cob off. Pull back the husk and silk from corn. When cooked, the kernels will be plump, juicy and slightly darker in color.

    hands peeling husk off of microwaved corn cob

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  4. Slather with softened butter, then season with salt and pepper. Garnish with fresh herbs. Serve immediately.

    butter being spread on microwaved corn cob with parsley, pepper and salt in small bowls

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati


  • If you don’t plan to eat it the same day you bought it, corn can be stored loose in the refrigerator for one to two days. 
  • Cooked corn can be reheated. Remove the husk, wrap in foil and reheat for 5 to 10 minutes in a 350° oven. Alternatively, use a serrated knife to cut kernels from the cob and add corn to salads or serve as a side dish. Freezing is not advised.


  • When shopping for corn, look for large ears with green, fresh husks and silk. Corn is best eaten as soon as possible after it is harvested, so ask your grocer or local farmer when it was picked. 
  • Some ears of corn have insect damage at the top of the cob. It’s not harmful, and you can simply cut off that part of the cob once it’s cooked.


  • In grocery stores, sweet corn is often sold without the husk. If that’s what you can find, just reduce the cooking time to 3 minutes and 30 seconds.

Try these other topping ideas! Mash them together with a fork, then slather onto the warm corn. For more than 1 or 2 ears of corn, simply multiply the recipe by the number of ears you’re serving.

  • 1 tablespoon softened unsalted butter + 1 1/2 teaspoons white or yellow miso + 1 teaspoon minced chives or green onions
  • 1 tablespoon softened unsalted butter + 1 minced garlic clove + 1 teaspoon minced parsley + a pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon Greek yogurt + 1 tablespoon mayonnaise + 1 teaspoon minced dill + 1 teaspoon lemon zest + a pinch of kosher salt