How to Grill Corn With No Foil

by Max Whitmore

Fresh, juicy, sweet corn is a summer treat.

Jupiterimages/ Images

Corn is in its peak growing season during the summer months and is a staple of backyard barbecues. Some cooks use foil to protect the kernels from the heat of the grill but you can also grill the corn in the husks or directly on the grill. Grilling the corn in the husks infuses the corn with an earthy flavor. Grilling the corn directly on the grill caramelizes the kernels and gives the corn a sweet-smoky flavor.

With the Husk

Pull off the dark green layers of corn husk, but leave the lighter green layers around the corn. Keep some of the outer husks to use as ties.

Put the ears in a large pot and cover with cold water. Let the ears soak for 15 to 20 minutes.

Combine the butter, salt and herbes de Province in a bowl. Thoroughly mix the ingredients together.

Remove one ear from the water and peel back the husk, like a banana skin. Remove the silk and rub 1 tbsp. of the herbed butter into the kernels.

Fold the husks back over the corn kernels. Tie the husks in place with one of the darker layers.

Put the prepared ears of corn on the grill. Allow the corn to cook for up to 20 minutes, turning often with the tongs. The corn is done when you can see the outline of the corn kernels imprinted in the husk.

Without the Husk

Remove the corn husks and silk, completely. Leave the stalk intact. You can also use prehusked corn.

Rub 1 tbsp. of the herbed butter into the corn kernels. Put the corn directly onto the grill.

Grill the corn for up to 10 minutes, turning often with the tongs. Some kernels will turn brown and you will hear popping and crackling noises


  • Store any excess herbed butter in the refrigerator, or use it to garnish the finished corn.


  • “The Cook's Illustrated Guide To Grilling And Barbecue”; Cook's Illustrated Magazine Editors; 2005
  • “On Cooking: A Textbook of Culinary Fundamentals (5th Edition)”; Sarah R. Labensky et al.; 2010

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/ Images

About the Author

Max Whitmore is a personal trainer with more than three years experience in individual and group fitness. Whitmore has a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from the University of Cincinnati, fitness certifications and dietetics training from Cincinnati State Technical and Community College. Whitmore has written for several online publishers.