Coupon Clipping Cook®

Make-Ahead Buttery Corn Off the Cob Side Dish

A super easy, comfort food corn-off-the-cob side dish with layers of butter that’s delicious all year round and can be prepared ahead of time.

Corn off the cob on plate

Sometimes the simplest recipes can turn out to be a hit at the dinner table, potlucks or as a weekday go-to dish.

I call those “less-is-more” recipes and this corn off the cob side dish is one of those.

I first served this corn off the cob side dish at a 4th of July get-together because I wasn’t sure if I had enough side dishes for everyone.

It’s the perfect make-ahead dish because the corn keeps its vibrant color, it doesn’t take a lot of room in the fridge, and all that needs to be done is to warm it up before serving.

It’s also great as an additional side dish to add to a menu if you’re not sure whether there is enough food for guests at dinner or if extra guests may be coming unannounced.

Corn off the cob on plate

This side dish is made with white and yellow ears of corn (or multi-yellow colored ears of corn would work well too).

The contrasting light and bright yellow colors add a festive look to the overall dish.

Did you know that when it comes to white vs. yellow corn, the color doesn’t necessarily mean that the corn is sweet or not?

The sweetness isn’t determined by the color of the corn kernels but instead it’s based on the type of corn.

Here’s an interesting article about the differences between white and yellow corn from the Kitchn that discusses this in more detail “What’s the Difference Between White and Yellow Corn -from the Kitchn“.

Boiling corn on the cob

In this recipe, the ears of corn are boiled in water that has white vinegar and sugar in it.

To my taste buds, vinegar and sugar brings out the flavor of the corn on the cob and also adds a subtle sweetness to it (and plus it’s the way that my grandmother always made corn on cob so I like to cook it that way too).

If the corn used in the recipe is already sweet and, or you don’t have white vinegar, this recipe should still taste delicious without adding these two ingredients.

TIP – One thing NOT to add to the boiling water is salt because it may make the corn tough.

After the cooked corn cools, it’s then cut off of the cob.  In the step-by-step instructions below, there are pictures showing 3 optional ways of cutting the corn off the cob.

Here’s a helpful article you may like from the Kitchn that discusses how to cut corn off the cob “3 Mess-Free Ways to Cut Corn Off the Cob – from the Kitchn“.

Cut corn off the cob

In this recipe, the corn is cut off of the cob in medium to large pieces (with rows of corn attached to one another) instead of single kernels.

The guests that I served this dish to loved how the pieces of corn were in big pieces.  It’s one of my favorite things about this dish too.

Cutting the corn in larger pieces adds a little something different to such a simple recipe.

Corn off the cob in bowl

Lastly, the corn is added to a covered baking dish in 3 layers each of cut corn, butter, salt and pepper.

It can be put in the oven at this point to warm up or stored in the refrigerator and warmed up before serving.

Here are more recipes with corn you may like “Grilled Corn with Gorgonzola Cheese and Basil“, “Eggplant Supper Soup with Corn on the Cob and Avocado” and “Grilled Corn with Goat Cheese and Olive Tapenade“.

TIPs on How to Pick a Good Ear of Corn

Corn on the Cob that is Already Shucked:

Sometimes the only corn available at the grocery store may already be “shucked” (husks and “silk” or “tassels” removed).

Shucked corn may be sold in a package with multiple ears of corn that are on a styrofoam tray wrapped with cellophane.

Or they may be loose and sold separately by the ear.

Either way, the kernels should be visible.

Look for corn on the cob with kernels that are bright, plump, firm and plentiful.

Try to avoid:

  • corn on the cob with missing kernels
  • kernels that are dried out (dimpled or slightly dented)
  • kernels that are mushy

The corn may be old and could be chewy and flavorless.

Corn on the Cob with the Husk on it:

When the corn is still in the husk, it’s best not to peel the husk back to look at the corn because this may affect the freshness, and cause the kernels to dry out.

Instead of peeling the husk back, check out the outside of the cob (husk, stem and tassel), and feel the kernels through the husk to check for freshness.

Look for:

  • a nice bright green husk that is tight to the cob and is slightly damp (well hydrated)
  • a stem at the bottom where the corn on the cob was removed from the stalk in the field, that is a light color
  • a tassel (corn silks coming out of the top of the husk) that is light brown or gold and is slightly sticky to the touch

Try to avoid:

  • husks with mildew on the outside
  • dried out husks
  • husks that are turning yellow
  • husks that are loose and falling off 
  • husks with brown holes on them (it may indicate there are insects)
  • a stem at the bottom of the ear of corn that is brown
  • a tassel that smells like mildew
  • a tassel that is dry, dark brown or soggy

Also, gently squeeze the ear of corn to feel the kernels through the husk feeling for kernels that are:

  • plump, firm and plentiful

Try to avoid ears of corn with:

  • missing kernels
  • soft spots or soft kernels

TIP – if the pile of corn on the cob in the grocery store has been picked over or there isn’t much left in stock, ask a store employee if they have anymore corn in the back that they can bring out.  If they do it’s great because you’ll get first pick!

Serve this delicious corn off the cob side dish year-round.

And leftovers (if there are any) freeze up nicely in serving-size zipper freezer bags.

Let’s check out the ingredients for this corn off the cob side dish.

Buttered Corn off the Cob

Ingredients – White and yellow ears of corn (or multi-yellow colored ears of corn), white vinegar, granulated sugar, water for boiling the ears of corn (about 1 quart of water per ear of corn), butter, salt and pepper

Equipment used for this recipe – An 8-quart tall pot and a 2-quart round glass baking dish with a lid (or foil can be used instead of the lid).

printable recipe with the measurements and instructions is located at the bottom of this post.

Here’s how to make it.

If making this dish before serving it, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Preparing the Corn on the Cob:

Remove the husks (shuck the corn) and silk strands from each ear of corn.

Rinse the corn on the cob.

If the tip of the ear of corn has brown or soft kernels, carefully cut that part off.

Boiling the Corn:

Hot water in pot on stove

In a large pot, add just enough water to cover the ears of corn (about 1 quart of water for each ear of corn).

For the 6 ears of corn in this recipe, I used an 8-quart pot that was filled a little over half full).

Bring the pot of water to a boil.

Add vinegar to hot water

While the water is warming up, add white vinegar and…

Add sugar to hot water

…granulated sugar.

TIP – When adding salt, sugar, spices (or other dry ingredients) to a pot of water, it’s best to add these ingredients before the water gets hot so that the steam from the water doesn’t “gum up” the dry ingredients when attempting to add them.

Add ear of corn in hot water

To the pot, using long tongs, carefully add each ear of corn.

Add ear of corn in hot water

Gently add the corn in the pot of water so that hot water doesn’t splash out.

Add corn on cob in water

While adding the ears of corn to the water, keep a close eye on the water level so that it doesn’t boil over the pot.

If the water level starts to get too close to the top of the pot, carefully use a large ladle to transfer some of the water out of the pot.

Add ear of corn in water

If needed, adjust the placement of the ears of corn so that each one of them is submerged in water.

Boil corn on the cob

If more water is needed in the pot, carefully add just enough to cover each ear of corn.

Lid on pot with corn

Cover the pot with a lid and turn the heat down to low.

Simmer the corn on low heat until the corn is just tender (about 8 to 10 minutes; may be less or more depending on the size of the ears of corn).

Be careful not to overcook the corn or it will be tough.

TIP – While the corn is cooking, keep an eye on the pot to make sure the water doesn’t boil over.  If the water in the pot starts to boil over the sides of the pot, carefully remove the pot from the heat and also remove the lid.

Boiling corn on the cob

After the corn is done cooking…

Remove ear of corn from pot

…using tongs, transfer each ear of corn from the pot onto a large plate in a single layer.

Remove ear of corn from pot

Let the ears of corn cool on the plate until they are cool enough to handle (about 8 to 10 minutes).

Cutting the Corn Off of the Cob:

Following are 3 optional ways to cut the corn off of the cob:

Cut corn off the cob

1. Corn on the Cob Laying Flat on a Cutting Board – lay the ear of corn flat on a cutting board vertically so that the top of the corn (the narrower end) is directly above the stem-end.

Carefully cut down the side of the cob to remove the kernels.

Try to cut the corn off the cob in medium to large pieces (they will likely break into smaller pieces when handling them but try to keep some of the rows of corn attached to one another if possible).

Cut corn off the cob

Then rotate the ear of corn so that the cut side of the cob lays flat on the cutting board.

Carefully continue cutting and rotating the corn until all of the kernels are cut off of the cob.

Cut corn off the cob

2. Corn on the Cob Sitting Upright on a Cutting Board – Stand the ear of corn upright on a cutting board by holding an end of the corn with one hand.

Cut corn off the cob

With the other hand, starting at the top end of the corn, away from your hand, carefully slice the corn off the cob (in medium to large size pieces if possible).

Cut corn off the cob

3. Corn on the Cob Standing Upright Using 2 Bowls – In the middle of a large bowl, lay a small bowl upside-down.

With your hand, hold the ear of corn upright while it rests on top of the small upside-down bowl.

Cut corn off the cob

With the other hand, starting at the top end of the corn, away from your hand, carefully slice the corn off the cob (in medium to large size pieces if possible).

Cut corn of the cob

The cut pieces of corn on the cob should fall into the larger bowl.

Layering the Corn Off the Cob in a Baking Dish:

Corn off the cob in bowl

For the First Layer – In a 2-quart round glass baking dish (or similar size oven-proof casserole dish), add a layer of 1/3 of the total amount of cut corn.

Cut the butter into small cubes and evenly place 1/3 of the total amount of butter on top of the cut corn.

Corn off the cob in bowl

On top of the corn, sprinkle ground black pepper and…

Corn off the cob in bowl

…salt.

Corn off the cob in bowl

For the Second Layer – In the baking dish, lay another layer of cut corn using half of the remaining corn, half of the remaining butter…

Corn off the cob in bowl

…pepper…

Corn off the cob in bowl

…and salt.

Corn off the cob in bowl

For the Third Layer – In the baking dish, add a layer of the remaining cut corn, cubes of butter, pepper and salt.

Corn off the cob in bowl

Next,

Corn off the cob in bowl

…cover the baking dish with a lid.

Corn off the cob in bowl

If Making this Dish Ahead of Time:

Store the covered baking dish in the refrigerator no longer than one day before serving.

About 30 minutes before serving, remove the baking dish from the refrigerator and set on the kitchen counter to bring the corn up to room temperature (about 10 minutes).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

And bake as follows.

If Making this Dish Before Serving:

Bake the corn in a preheated oven until it’s warmed through (about 15 to 20 minutes).

Corn off the cob on plate

Serve while warm right out of the baking dish (with a warning to guests that the dish is hot of course).

Corn off the cob on plate

And enjoy each and every…

Corn off the cob on plate

…fresh and delicious bite.

Corn off the cob on plate

Thank you so much for stopping by CCC!

More Side Dish Recipes You May Like:

Candied Yams with Pecans and Marshmallows

Sage Sausage Stuffing (Dressing)

Garlic and Rosemary Mashed Potatoes

Cherry, Pineapple and Mandarin Orange Ambrosia

Don’t miss a CCC recipe.  Subscribe to Coupon Clipping Cook and get an email each time we have a new post.  Here’s the link to subscribe to CCC.

Corn off the cob on plate

Make-Ahead Buttery Corn Off the Cob Side Dish

A super easy, comfort food corn-off-the-cob side dish with layers of butter that's delicious all year round and can be prepared ahead of time.
Print Pin
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Cooling time:: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Corn, Grilled Corn on the Cob, Vegetables
Servings: 5 Serves 5 to 6

Equipment

  • 8-quart tall pot
  • 2-quart round glass baking dish with lid (or similar size oven-proof casserole dish and foil)

Ingredients

  • 3 ears white corn on the cob (or multi-yellow colored corn on the cob) chucked and silk strands removed, rinsed
  • 3 ears yellow corn on the cob (or multi-yellow colored corn on the cob) chucked and silk strands removed, rinsed
  • Water (for boiling the corn on the cob) about 1-quart of water per ear of corn
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter cut in small cubes
  • 9 dashes ground black pepper or add to taste
  • 9 dashes salt or add to taste

Instructions

Boiling the Corn on the Cob:

  • In a large pot, add just enough water to cover the ears of corn. Bring the pot of water to a boil.
  • While the water is warming up, add white vinegar and sugar.
  • To the pot, using long tongs, carefully add each ear of corn. Gently add the corn in the pot of water so that hot water doesn't splash out.
  • While adding the ears of corn to the water, keep a close eye on the water level so that it doesn't boil over the pot.
    If the water level starts to get too close to the top of the pot, carefully use a large ladle to transfer some of the water out of the pot.
  • If needed, adjust the placement of the ears of corn so that each one of them is submerged in water. If more water is needed in the pot, carefully add just enough to cover each ear of corn.
  • Cover the pot with a lid and turn the heat down to low.
    Simmer the corn on low heat until the corn is just tender (about 8 to 10 minutes; may be less or more depending on the size of the ears of corn).
    Be careful not to overcook the corn or it will be tough.
  • After the corn is done cooking, using tongs, transfer each ear of corn from the pot onto a large plate in a single layer. Let the ears of corn cool on the plate until they are cool enough to handle (about 8 to 10 minutes).

Cutting the Corn Off of the Cob - 3 optional ways:

  • 1. Corn on the Cob Laying Flat on a Cutting Board - lay the ear of corn flat on a cutting board vertically so that the top of the corn (the narrower end) is directly above the stem-end. Carefully cut down the side of the cob to remove the kernels.
    Try to cut the corn off the cob in medium to large pieces (they will likely break into smaller pieces when handling them but try to keep some of the rows of corn attached to one another if possible).
    Then rotate the ear of corn so that the cut side of the cob lays flat on the cutting board. Carefully continue cutting and rotating the corn until all of the kernels are cut off of the cob.
  • 2. Corn on the Cob Sitting Upright on a Cutting Board - Stand the ear of corn upright on a cutting board by holding an end of the corn with one hand. With the other hand, starting at the top end of the corn, away from your hand, carefully slice the corn off the cob (in medium to large size pieces if possible).
  • 3. Corn on the Cob Standing Upright Using 2 Bowls - In the middle of a large bowl, lay a small bowl upside-down.
    With your hand, hold the ear of corn upright while it rests on top of the small upside-down bowl. With the other hand, starting at the top end of the corn, away from your hand, carefully slice the corn off the cob (in medium to large size pieces if possible).
    The cut pieces of corn on the cob should fall into the larger bowl.

Layering the Corn Off the Cob in a Baking Dish:

  • For the First Layer - In a 2-quart round glass baking dish (or similar size oven-proof casserole dish), add a layer of 1/3 of the total amount of cut corn. Evenly place 1/3 of the total amount of butter on top of the cut corn. On top of the corn, sprinkle ground black pepper and salt.
  • For the Second Layer - In the baking dish, lay another layer of cut corn using half of the remaining corn, half of the remaining butter, pepper and salt.
  • For the Third Layer - In the baking dish, add a layer of the remaining cut corn, cubes of butter, pepper and salt. Cover the baking dish with a lid.

If Making this Dish Ahead of Time:

  • Store the covered baking dish in the refrigerator no longer than one day before serving.
    About 30 minutes before serving, remove the baking dish from the refrigerator and set on the kitchen counter to bring the corn up to room temperature (about 10 minutes).
    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. And bake as follows.

If Making this Dish Before Serving:

  • Bake the corn in a preheated oven until it's warmed through (about 15 to 20 minutes). Serve while warm.

Notes

TIPS:

  1. When adding salt, sugar, spices (or other dry ingredients) to a pot of water, it's best to add these ingredients before the water gets hot so that the steam from the water doesn't "gum up" the dry ingredients when attempting to add them.
  2. When boiling corn on the cob, one thing NOT to add to the boiling water is salt because it may make the corn tough.
  3. While the corn is cooking, keep an eye on the pot to make sure the water doesn't boil over.  If the water in the pot starts to boil over the sides of the pot, carefully remove the pot from the heat and also remove the lid.
Our Recipe Disclaimer can be found at this link: "Disclaimers", also at the bottom of this website, and in the "About Section" of this website.
Copyright © 2011-2019 Nancy at Coupon Clipping Cook - All photography and content, in any form, on this site CouponClippingCook.com is copyright-protected.
Stay Connected!Get New Posts Delivered via Email - Click Here to Subscribe to Coupon Clipping Cook

Don’t Miss a Recipe!

Get new posts delivered via email:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

When you leave a comment on this Website, we collect your name, email, and IP address in order to assist with spam detection. For further details please refer to our Privacy Policy.  By checking the following box you consent to our data usage policy as outlined in our Privacy Policy found here.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.