How to Husk Corn

Fresh corn from the farmer's market tastes delicious, but peeling the silk off of the corn can be a hassle. Follow the steps in this article to husk corn quickly and easily.


  1. 1
    Put a garbage can by your side to catch the husks, also known as shucks. If you have a lot of corn, spread out a blanket and make a large pile of husks. When you're done, you can pick up the corners of the blanket, gather the husks and toss them in your compost pile.
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    Grasp the corn at the midpoint of the cob with your non-dominant hand.
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    Grab the husks with your dominant hand at the top of the ear where you see silks (the brown, hairlike strands) sticking out.
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    Pull the husks down the cob with your dominant hand. Strip the husks away from the top of the cob to the base. Discard the husks in your garbage can or on your blanket.
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    Cut off the top portion of the cob where the kernels are not filled out. Also, cut any remaining part of the cornstalk off the bottom with a sharp knife. You may be able to snap off the top of the cob with your hand as you're pulling the shucks down as well.
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    Rinse the husked corn ears under a stream of cool water. The pressure from the water will help to remove remaining silk.
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    Put all the clean corn in a container after you husk it.
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  • If you plan to roast the corn, leave a single layer of the husk on (you should be able to see the kernels through the husk). A single layer protects the corn but lets in some smokiness. If you don't like the char on your grilled corn, leave more layers of husk on the cob.
  • If you have a suitable knife, you can slice through the ear at the base and peel the shucks towards the top.
  • Cook corn as soon as you can after picking it. The sooner it is cooked, the sweeter it will be. Conversely, the longer it sits after picking, the starchier it will be.


  • You may encounter corn earthworms, weevils or other pests while husking corn. While they look unpleasant, there is no need to discard the ear. Just cut away the damaged portion.

Things You'll Need

  • Fresh corn
  • Garbage can or blanket
  • Sharp knife

Article Info

Categories: Harvest and Storage