The Best Mess-Free Ways to Cut Corn off the Cob

Summer’s sweetest vegetable–the corn cob–is also one of its messiest. Eat the kernels straight from the cob and you’ll need several napkins and a yard of dental floss to clean yourself up. In an attempt to avoid the mess, you’ll be tempted to cut the kernels off the cob and onto your dinner plate, only to find your knife squirting kernels and corn nectar onto the shirts of the poor diners unlucky enough to be eating with you.

Cutting the kernels off the cobs while prepping the Corn & Vegetable Chowder or Summer Succotash is much easier than it may seem–plus, any wayward kernels will fly into the kitchen sink, not your best friend’s t-shirt. Set the cobs over a bowl and use a big knife in a sawing motion down the length of the cobs, cutting as close to the cob as possible. The bowl will catch the kernels so they don’t land all over your kitchen.

Simple solution or not, every food lover on the internet seems to have solved the flying kernel problem, if you’d like to experiment ’til you find the particular method that suits your fancy:

At the New York Times, Melissa Clark depends on the break-the-cob-in-half way of de-kerneling corn:

Meanwhile, over at Saveur, one editor swears by the Bundt Pan Method:

Turn that trick 90 degrees to get a handle on Food52’s technique, which is all about going horizontal:

Last but not least, Mario Batali engineers two bowls in a novel way that captures each kernel:

Do you have a foolproof corn-cutting technique? Will you try a fancy method or stick to simplicity?