Grilled Corn with Basil Butter

With the arrival of sweet corn season, making Grilled Corn with Basil Butter is an absolute must!  It  takes next to nothing to make this delicious, impressive side dish…a grill, some fresh sweet corn on the cob, basil leaves and butter.

There is something so wonderful about the start of this season.  It reminds me of the farmer’s stands that my parents would drive us by in the outskirts of Toronto.  Along the side of the road would be these old-time stands filled with all of the fresh vegetables, herbs, fruit and berries that were grown by those vendors.  If corn was available, they’d also have a big pot of boiling water that was filled with fresh corn just waiting to serve to their customers.  We would sit at a picnic table and eat this unbelievably sweet corn that was slathered with butter and sprinkled with salt.

It is one of my most memorable food experiences and always makes me happy to think about.  When I made this grilled corn recipe, I was instantly transported back to this happy place!

The recipe calls for using shucked corn.  You can also leave the husks on, but pull them back so that the corn can grill nicely.  If you want to take the extra step to tie them with a piece of the husk, do so.  You can also try to soak the husks (even while attached to the corn) in a bowl of water.  This will lessen the chance of the husks catching fire.

Before you grill the corn, make the basil butter by adding the butter, basil and salt to a food processor and pulsing until combined.

Fire up a grill, and before putting the corn on, coat each cob in olive oil and sprinkle salt over.

Grill the corn until there are some charred kernels and the color has become bright yellow.  This won’t take more than 6-8 minutes.  Watch it so it doesn’t overcook and dry out.

Once the corn comes off the grill, slather it with the basil butter.  Sprinkle a little more salt over, if you like, and serve it right away.  I guarantee there won’t be any leftover corn!  There may be leftover basil butter so use it on steak, chicken, and even toast…it’s amazing!

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Grilled Corn with Basil Butter

Makes: 4-8 servings

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Grill Time: 6-8 minutes

Total Time: 13 minutes


Grilled Corn:

  • 8 ears of corn, shucked
  • Olive oil
  • Salt

Basil Butter:

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup basil, loosely packed and roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp sea salt


Preheat grill to medium hot. Roll corn in a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt. When grill is hot, add corn and close the lid. Rotate the corn a few times, until some of the kernels are blistered and the rest a bright and shiny yellow. This shouldn’t take longer than 8 minutes. Be careful not to overcook, or the corn will be dry.

Meanwhile, add the butter, basil, and salt to a food processor and pulse until combined. You may need to scrape down the sides once or twice. When the basil is finely chopped and the butter has a light green tint, it’s done.

When the corn comes off the grill, slather it with the basil butter. Sprinkle with a little more salt if desired. Eat immediately.

Chef’s Note:

Basil butter can be made ahead and extra basil butter will keep for about a week or two in the fridge. You can roll it into a log with plastic wrap and slice it off as you need it. It’s AMAZING on toast.


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