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Making Corn Broth With Husks and Cobs

Victoria is a stay-at-home mom, author, educator, and blogger at Healthy at Home. She currently lives in Colorado with her family.


So, in the process of husking all of my corn the other day with my little boy, we had all sorts of vegetable leftovers. I didn't want to just throw it all away. I'm trying to teach my toddler about growing our own food, making our own food products, and making the best use of all of the products we have.

I'm about to write an article on using leftover food waste efficiently in your home to reduce waste and spending on groceries. I've been learning how to use everything in our home from lemon peels and orange peels, to banana peels, peach and cherry pits, and vegetable leftovers. Why not corn husks, cobs and silk? I truly hate throwing this kind of stuff away knowing that I could be using it for something productive here at the house. I really miss our chickens.

It was then that I read about how another person used every part of the corn plant for something useful. I wasn't able to find any recipes, and I certainly wasn't able to find a canning recipe, but that doesn't mean it wasn't possible. Just so you know, we're forging new ground here with corn broth. I love it!

My son got to learn how to use the silk to make corn silk spice (check out the article), how to make corn broth with the cobs and husks, and even how to make tamales with the leaves we were able to keep whole! I love that he's learning all of these great skills for providing for his family one day, and you wouldn't believe the sheer amount of wonderful smelling, amazing tasting corn broth we were able to make with just the husks and cobs of 16 corn cobs.

See how I made it super easily here!

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Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

5 min

3 hours

3 hours 5 min

About 23 pints of corn broth


  • husks from 8 corn cobs
  • 8 corn cobs


  1. Place 8 empty corn cobs into the bottom of a very large pot. I used my 16-quart water bath canner. You may want to split this recipe in two to get the most from your leftover corn parts if you don't have a humongous pot to cook in.
  2. Pile the husks on top. I actually saved the leaves that remained whole for tamales and used the pieces for my broth.
  3. Fill the pot to the brim with water. Salt your broth now if desired.
  4. Cover and boil on high heat for as long as you can. I think mine boiled for a couple hours before the next step.
  5. Go back, fish out your corn cobs and scrape the down with a knife or a spoon to get all of the remaining kernel pieces and milk out of the cobs. Drop everything back into the pot and continue boiling for another hour or so.
  6. I wanted to can my broth for longer storage, but you can freeze it if you'd prefer.
  7. So I set up my pressure canning station with empty pint canning jars, lids and rings, my canning kit, a couple towels and a ladle.
  8. Using a strainer and large bowl in the sink, I strained out as much broth as the bowl could hold, keeping the kernel pieces in the broth.
  9. If you're choosing to can your broth like I did, use your canning funnel to fill all of your jars to the neck with corn broth.
  10. Wipe all of the jar rims with a damp washcloth, and add clean lids and rings. Twist the rings only until you feel the slightest resistance.
  11. Load your jars into the pressure canner, but only 7 at a time. (My canner holds 9.)
  12. Fill the canner with 3 quarts of water, and lock the lid in place.
  13. Turn the heat on the stove to the setting below the highest. And wait for the pressure to build. It may take 10-20 minutes or so.
  14. When steam starts pouring steadily out of the vent, set your timer for 10 minutes. The lid lock will pop a couple of minutes in.
  15. When the timer goes off, add the rocker over the vent and wait until the rocker starts moving to do anything.
  16. When the rocker starts rocking back and forth, start your timer for 35 minutes.
  17. Turn the temperature on the stove down as far as you can without losing your rocking, around medium. If the rocker stops, you'll have to get it going again and then restart your timer.
  18. At the end of your time, turn the heat off and slide your pot off of the hot burner.
  19. Your pot needs a chance to release the pressure inside before you touch anything. When the lid lock drops, in another hour or so, then you can remove the rocker.
  20. But then you still need to wait another 10 minutes before removing the lid, facing away from you.
  21. Use your jar lifter to carefully remove your jars and place them on a towel to the side to cool for 24 hours. You will hear popping as your jars seal.
  22. You can now start processing the next bath. Make sure to have at least 3 quarts of water in your canner first though.
  23. If any of your jars do not seal, and the lid does not pop down, you will need to remove the lids and rings, rewipe down your jar rims, replace lids and rings with clean ones and reprocess them (or use them).
  24. You need at least 4 jars in your canner to have a full load. If you need to, you can can water to get your full load. Otherwise you can pop them in the fridge and use them within the week.
  25. Sealed jars will last you about a year.

I actually already used this incredibly healthy corn broth in my vegetable quinoa soup last night, and it really added some great flavor that was different than my traditional chicken broth, for a whole lot cheaper. I think I got almost 50 pints of homemade corn broth from those 16 cobs of corn, and I would have just thrown all of that away.

Essentially this is just vegetable broth made with organic corn, and therefore can be used anywhere that you would naturally use broth in a recipe. It can be substituted for beef, pork, chicken or veggie broth in any recipe, but is best in those recipes where a hint of corn taste would really jazz it up. So use this in your taco soup, vegetable soup, chili, and even to cook your chicken, rice or other grains. I've been told that this would also make an amazing corn soup or chowder.

© 2018 Victoria Van Ness

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