How To Cut Corn Off the Cob – Fast, easy and clean!

Weekend warrior-ing as a kid on your grandparents’ farm definitely has its perks. In my case, becoming an expert in activities like cutting corn off the cob – no matter how times I tried to get out of the actual work back then – is one of those, um, “perks.”

The mountains of corn harvested from my grandmother’s garden are probably larger in my memories than they were in real life… But regardless of the actual number of truckloads there may, or may not, have been, “putting up corn” in the farmhouse yard was always a huge family affair.

We each had our stations and specified jobs. Grandma lined up tubs, bowls, bags, labels and every corn cutting tool imaginable so everything was ready to go. Oddly enough, no matter how many tools she provided, someone would invariably want a different tool with which to liberate the coveted kernels.

But Grandma was a smart… Ninja smart. Before you could jump up from your station to “go look” for another tool that you were sure would do the job even better, that tool would appear before you… along with a stern and knowing look from Grandma who assured you that it would do the job perfectly. {We could usually get away with murder as far as Grandma was concerned, but we also knew when not to push our luck. Leniency was reduced during “corn days” because she knew that once we left our station, it would be a while before we came back… Like, not until dinner time.}

It was all a little messy. It was all a little crazy. And it was all awesome… In hind sight. A weekend’s worth of work with the family meant freezers filled with zipper bags bulging with fresh, golden goodness that would fulfil our every corny whim until next season.

It’s been more years than I care to count since our last corn fest, and yet the memories still flood my mind today whenever I grab a bag of frozen corn at the market… I was fortunate enough to grow up thinking that growing it, putting it up, and grabbing it out of the big freezer in your basement was how everyone did it. I didn’t know that people actually bought frozen corn from the grocery store until I was in junior high school. {Yes, I know how odd that sounds. Some would call it sheltered. I consider it blessed.}

So here’s the deal: Cutting fresh corn off of the cob is not hard. Like anything else, the more you do it, the better you’ll get at it and the less “work” it’ll become. And, yes, what “they” say is true: It is worth the effort!

I’ve seen a lot of the How To videos online – all of which have great tips peppered throughout. But the best method for me appeared during a recent Corn Sauté recipe marathon. It was a “Lightbulb!” moment that instantly became the simplest, oh-so-obvious solution.

How To Cut Corn Off the Cob - Fast, easy and clean! |

Will kernels end up on your kitchen counter if you do it this way? Probably a few here and there. Like anything else in life, it can get a little messy if you’re not careful. It’s all part of the process.

But, I’ve found that doing it this way is fairly quick and easy, it keeps the projectile kernels at bay, and I don’t have a bunch of big bowls and pans to hand wash when I’m done, so it’s a winner in my book! {Grandma would be so proud!}


Here’s what you need:

  • A dinner plate
  • A sharp chef’s knife (if you prefer, shorter blades work, too, as long as they’re sharp )
  • Corn on the cob, shucked, de-silked and rinsed (if needed)

Here’s what you do:

  • Hold the corn cob with both hands and snap it in half — you’ll find that it’s much easier to control than a full cob!
  • Place the flat “snapped” end on the plate, hold the tip or stem-end of the cob with the fingertips of your non-dominant hand, and cut the kernels off the cob with your knife.
  • It works best to angle the knife straight down or very slightly away from the cob. If you angle the blade toward the cob, you’ll end up getting stuck and/or cutting a lot of the rough cob off with the kernels.
  • Keep turning the cob, cutting rows of corn off until you’ve gone all the way around the cob.
  • When you’ve cut all the kernels off, make sure to scrape the cob with the back of your knife (not the sharp blade side) to get all of the delicious corn “milk” and any remaining tender corn bits out of the cob and into your recipes.
  • Voilà! Now you can go cook up a corn storm!

How To Cut Corn Off the Cob - Fast, easy and clean! |

And because no one thing works for every one, here are a few more articles and videos with more creative corn ideas!

Easiest Way to Clean Corn on the Cob from We Are Not Foodies: This slick shortcut allows you to shuck the corn and remove the silks all at one time!

How to Cut Corn off the Cob from

3 Mess-Free Ways to Cut Corn off the Cob from The Kitchn

How To Cut Corn Kernels Off the Cob from Food & Wine Test Kitchen genius, Justin Chapple

How to Get Corn Off the Cob Using a Bundt Pan from Saveur’s Ben Mims

The Fastest, Easiest, Cleanest Way to Cut Corn Off the Cob from

Looking for more corn-spiration so you can enjoy all the delicious corn you just cut off the cobs? Here are some corn-tastic recipes and ideas for you!


What are some of your favorite corn recipes and tips? Let us know by commenting here on the blog! And make sure to hashtag #baconfatte or tag @baconfatte on FacebookPinterestInstagramTwitter, and Google+ when you try our tips and recipes. Thanks for visiting!

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