Fresh corn on the cob is one of the easier vegetables to freeze as you don't need a lot of preparation. A few minutes of blanching the corn and you'll be able to freeze corn on the cob for use throughout the year. Sweet corn is the best to freeze as it retains its texture and flavor well. You can freeze fresh or cooked corn on the cob.
Preparing Fresh Corn on the Cob
Husk the corn before freezing, making sure to remove all of the silk and husks. Once you've husked the corn, thoroughly wash it to remove any remaining debris or silk from the corn.
Blanching Fresh Corn on the Cob
When freezing fresh corn on the cob -- as well as most other vegetables -- blanch them first. Blanching cooks the corn just enough to stop it from ripening further, keeping it fresh and delicious as long as possible. To blanch the corn, put the cobs in a steamer basket and place the basket in a pot of boiling water, then put the lid on the pot. Blanch corn on the cob for at least seven minutes and add two to four minutes for medium to large ears of corn.
The second part of blanching is cooling the corn so it doesn't continue cooking and ruin the taste and texture when frozen. To cool it, you need an ice bath. As soon as the time is up for the blanching in boiling water, place the corn in the ice bath, adding more cool water as needed, to immediately cool the corn on the cob. It should take equal amounts of time to cool as it did to boil.
Freezing Corn on the Cob
After blanching and cooling the fresh corn on the cob, drain the corn before freezing it to get rid of excess water. Place the corn in freezer-safe bags or containers and put them in your freezer.
When freezing cooked corn on the cob, make sure excess water or liquid is removed from the ears of corn and freeze as you would fresh corn on the cob. Because this corn has been fully cooked, it will lose some of the taste and texture quality. Cutting the kernels off cooked corn on the cob and storing them in freezer bags improves the taste slightly.
- University of Illinois Extension: Freezing Sweet Corn
- University of Minnesota Extension: Freezing Sweet Corn
- National Center for Home Food Preservation: Frequently Asked Freezing Questions
- National Center for Home Food Preservation: Freezing: Corn
- National Center for Home Food Preservation: Refrigerator/Freezer Storage Times
Melissa Hamilton began writing professionally in 2007. She has enjoyed cooking creatively in the kitchen from a young age. In addition to writing cooking articles for various publications, she currently works in the restaurant industry as a food and beverage trainer.