I have access to as much sweet corn as I want, so I would like to remove the kernels and store them in the freezer.

What is the most efficient (low time, high recovery) way to remove the kernels from the cob? I would prefer to get whole kernels if possible.

I have been using a paring knife, slicing down the sides of the cob onto a cutting board but I find that this slices through most of the kernels, leaving a good bit on the cob and allowing the liquid to escape.

2 Answers 2


What's wrong with letting the liquid escape? The liquid is good! When I freeze sweetcorn, I slice through just the outer part of the kernels, and then turn the knife sideways and scrape to release the rest of the delicious gooey liquid inside them... I'm not particularly fond of the flavor or texture of the cob-side anyway, and the creamy result can be packed and frozen with a minimal amount of air.

I highly recommend using a chef's knife instead of a paring knife though. A big cutting board and a bench scraper also come in handy. If you're doing a lot of corn at once, a baking sheet works well to catch the juice.

Growing up, we'd get a bunch of people together and do bushels of the stuff in an afternoon - cooking, icing, cutting, scraping, and packing simultaneously. With a bit of practice, you become quite fast at it.

But, if you're simply looking for a quick way to process the ears alone, there are specialized tools made for this job: search for corn creamer or corn cutter.

You could probably use a mandoline as well, provided you're able to adjust the depth of the blade. Frankly though, this seems cumbersome. Practice with the knife...


I have read that if you get a bundt pan (see image below) and stick the cob in the middle hole, and then cut the kernels off as you have been, the pan then catches them quite easily. how to get them off the cob without slicing, though, I really do not know.

A photograph of a bundt pan

  • The up-side of this is that it holds the end of the ear firmly and catches all the corn and juice. The down-side is that it can be a bit awkward. The (lift-out) center of an angel food cake pan also works for this, and sits flatter.
    – Shog9
    Aug 22, 2011 at 3:25
  • whoever fixed my entry so the image was here, thank you. i didn't know i could do that, or (to be honest) HOW to do that.
    – franko
    Aug 23, 2011 at 2:40

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