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These air fryer corn ribs are the perfect summer appetizers! Make corn cobs more fun in just 20 minutes with 6 ingredients.
Looking for a way to elevate an ear of corn? Try these air fryer corn ribs!
Corn ribs are corn cobs cut lengthwise, then seasoned and air fried until they curl up like ribs.
The only tricky part of this viral recipe is cutting the corn, so don’t miss out on the tips and tricks below to slice corn quarters safely and smoothly.
What Are Air Fryer Corn Ribs?
Corn ribs are corn cobs cut into quarters, then seasoned with a mixture of oil and spices. They remind me of street corn, which we all know never falls short on flavor.
You might be thinking, why cut a corn cob lengthwise and not just air fry it as is?
Learning this extra step is totally worth it, and you have nothing to worry about because I’ll share the safest and easiest way to slice corn.
The best thing about the resulting corn strips is as they cook, they will curl up and look like…*drum roll please*…ribs!
These corn ribs crisp up nicely in the air fryer, and because the cob is cut into quarters, it’s actually easier to smother the sweet and plump kernels with seasonings and oil.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Still on the fence about trying air fried corn ribs? It’s never too late to hop on this viral TikTok recipe because here are the best things about it:
- Fun Appetizers: Air fryer corn ribs are literally the best finger food because they’re easier to pick, dip, and eat. The only downside is you might forget how much you’ve been eating. 😅
- Elevated Corn Dish: Cutting the corn cob is tricky at first, but your hard work will pay off once you see the flavorful corn strips curl up into crispy and juicy “ribs.”
- Full Of Flavors: Because the corn cob is sliced, it’s easier to cover all the kernels with the recipe’s mixture of olive oil, liquid smoke, garlic powder, paprika, and salt. You can also customize the recipe with your favorite herbs, seasonings, and spices!
What Do Corn Ribs Taste Like?
Corn ribs taste sweet and savory thanks to the mixture of olive oil and seasonings. Every small kernel is big on flavor compared to cooking a whole cob, where some areas are left underseasoned.
You can modify this corn ribs air fryer recipe with your favorite spices, but garlic powder, paprika, and salt in liquid smoke and olive oil are just *chef’s kiss* when used on air fried corn riblets.
The hot circulating air enhances the “roasted” flavors, similar to street corn charred on a grill. 🤤
Air frying the corn ribs also gives them crispy edges and juicy kernels. The texture of the corn strips as they curl up like ribs really brings sweet corn to the next level.
Are Air Fried Corn Ribs Healthy?
But like street corn, air fried corn ribs do not offer a balanced meal on their own.
I recommend serving these delicious corn strips with healthy dishes. Because they’re filling, you can even replace your bread or pasta with corn ribs for a well-rounded meal.
Lastly, don’t forget to manage your portions responsibly, no matter how easy it is to munch on these tasty delights.
What Are The Benefits Of This Corn Ribs Air Fryer Recipe?
Whether you’re looking for a fun appetizer, getting bored of grilling a cob of corn, or craving street corn, these air fried corn ribs are perfect!
The only tricky part of this viral dish is cutting the corn into strips so they’ll curl up nicely like ribs when air fried. Other than that, you only need 6 simple ingredients, and they’re ready to be enjoyed in 20 minutes.
You can also customize their flavors, use additional seasonings, or serve them with delicious dipping sauces to make your air fryer corn ribs extra special.
The sky is the limit on the seasoning variations for these delicious corn riblets!
And if you have no air fryer, just visit the FAQ section for the oven method.
Ingredients For Air Fryer Corn Ribs
- Corn – I’ve chosen bi-color fresh corn cob for these corn ribs. The kernels are juicy and sweet, perfect for air frying and coating with oil and spices.
- Olive oil – Instead of butter, we’ll make these air fryer corn ribs a tad healthier with olive oil.
- Garlic powder – Garlic powder with sweet corn is just a match made in heaven.
- Paprika – Use as much as you want to give your seasoned corn ribs an extra kick.
- Salt – Balances the sweetness and makes the crispy and juicy corn ribs more savory.
- Liquid smoke – Replicate the aroma and taste of grilled street corn on your air fryer corn ribs using liquid smoke!
Tools Needed To Prepare Air Fryer Corn Ribs
- Knife for cutting the corn cobs into quarters
- Mixing bowl for mixing the blend of seasonings and oil
- Basting brush for coating the prepared corn pieces with the olive oil mixture
Ingredient Additions & Substitutions For Air Fryer Corn Ribs
We can never deny the romance between butter and corn, so you can always swap the olive oil in this recipe with melted butter. Just a word of warning: these buttery corn ribs are highly addictive! 🤣
These air fryer corn ribs remind me of Mexican street corn. And if you’re looking for salty and citrusy flavors with some kick on your sweet and juicy corn kernels, you’ll love these corn ribs with Tajin seasoning.
Thinking of grilled street corn made me realize these corn ribs could also be smothered with mayo. But for a twist, I recommend using Kewpie mayo because it’s creamy, sweet, and tangy and goes really well with paprika for a delicious sauce.
Thank me later!
How to Make Corn Ribs In The Air Fryer
Tools you need:
STEP 1: Gather the ingredients for your air fryer corn ribs. Remove the corn from their husks.
STEP 2: Slice off both ends of each corn, then wash them thoroughly.
STEP 3: Position the corn cob upright with its flat end against the chopping board. Push down the knife through the corn to cut it into quarters.
STEP 4: Combine olive oil, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and liquid smoke in a bowl.
STEP 5: Brush the corn quarters with the oil mixture, making sure that the kernels are evenly coated.
STEP 6: Arrange the corn in a single layer in the air fryer. Never overcrowd the air fryer basket to ensure perfectly cooked corn ribs.
STEP 7: Air fry for 10 minutes at 400°F or until the corn ribs are tender. The corn ribs are done once their edges are brown and crispy.
What To Serve With Air Fried Corn Ribs
You can serve these crispy and juicy corn ribs with sour cream or Greek yogurt as a dip. My friend also recommends whipped feta cheese for these corn ribs!
They’re even enjoyable with lime wedges, especially for summer. But if you want these air fryer corn ribs as your side dish, they’ll pair well with meats.
I’ve really enjoyed this trending dish, and if you’re the same, I’m sure you will love our collection of viral TikTok recipes.
Tips About Making Corn Ribs
For the perfect air fryer corn ribs every single time, keep these tips in mind:
- You can slice through the corn cobs however you like, but it’s easier to stand them upright because they can roll out when lying horizontally during the cutting process.
- Making sure there’s enough space among the corn ribs in the air fryer basket is crucial for perfectly crispy corn ribs. They should not be stacked over each other, and never overfill the air fryer basket!
- Adjust the cooking process until you get crispy, brown edges. I had the best results between 300°F to 400°F for 10 to 12 minutes.
How To Store Corn Ribs
Got leftovers? Here’s how to refrigerate and reheat these air fried corn ribs:
- Fridge: Store the corn ribs in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days. You can also keep the seasoned corn quarters in the fridge, and then air fry them the next day.
- Freezer: Honestly, I doubt that freezing and defrosting these corn ribs will be a good idea because of the resulting texture.
- Reheating: Just pop the corn ribs in the air fryer until warm and crispy. The sweet spot is usually around 4 minutes at 350°F!
How To Make Corn Ribs In The Air Fryer
To cook corn ribs in the air fryer, arrange them in a single layer on your air fryer basket. Make sure there’s a good space among them, then cook for 10 minutes at 400°F.
Some also say it helps to shake them every 5 minutes or flip them halfway through the cooking time.
In my experience, I didn’t need to do these with my air fryer, but you can always experiment with what works best with your appliance. 😊
What Is The Easiest Way To Cut Corn Into Ribs?
The easiest way to cut corn into ribs is by standing the cob upright and then slicing a sharp knife through it lengthwise. However, if you don’t mind mini corn ribs, you can cut the cob in the middle first, then slice off both ends so they’ll be flat.
Now that you have flat ends, it’s easier to position the corn vertically and cut the halves into quarters over a steady cutting board.
If you also find it hard to cut through the corn, just use a rocking motion with your knife instead of doing one straight cut.
Why Is It Called Corn Ribs?
Corn ribs are so-called because the corn quarters curl up and look like ribs when cooked. The slices of corn typically start to curl during the last half of the cooking time.
FAQ About Corn Ribs Air Fryer Recipe
Can corn go in an air fryer?
Absolutely! You can air fry corn, which is even more convenient than setting up a grill.
Can you put aluminum foil in an air fryer with corn?
Yes, you can use aluminum foil in an air fryer with corn. Just cut it to a size enough to cover the corn cobs.
How to cook corn ribs in the oven?
If you don’t have an air fryer, you can cook these delicious corn ribs in a preheated oven at 375ºF for 30 minutes. Arrange the pieces of corn on a lined baking sheet, and adjust the time until they’re charred to perfection.
- Gather the ingredients for your air fryer corn ribs. Remove the corn from their husks.
- Slice off both ends of each corn, then wash them thoroughly.
- Position the corn cob upright with its flat end against the chopping board. Push down the knife through the corn to cut it into quarters.
- Combine olive oil, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and liquid smoke in a bowl.
- Brush the corn quarters with the oil mixture, making sure that the kernels are evenly coated.
- Arrange the corn in a single layer in the air fryer. Never overcrowd the air fryer basket to ensure perfectly cooked corn ribs.
- Air fry for 10 minutes at 400°F or until the corn ribs are tender. The corn ribs are done once their edges are brown and crispy.
- Slice through the corn vertically. Otherwise, they can roll out when you cut them into quarters.
- Make sure you’re not stacking the corn ribs over each other in the air fryer basket, or they won’t crisp up nicely.
- You may need to extend the frying time or adjust the temperature of the air fryer, depending on your air fryer's strength. Once the kernels are popping, it’s a good time to take the corn ribs out.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 3Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 16mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g
* Please note that all nutrition information are just estimates. Values will vary among brands, so we encourage you to calculate these on your own for the most accurate results.
Craving for street corn or looking for something more fun than grilled corn? These viral TikTok air fryer corn ribs are perfect for you!
To cut the corn cob safely, slice off both ends first so they’ll be flat. Then, position the corn upright and cut it into quarters.
You can always do any alternative cutting method that works best for you because these finger foods shouldn’t cause you any fingers! 😅
Once you get the hang of quartering the corn cobs, the rest is easy.
Season them with whatever you like, and enjoy the delightful summer snack-slash-appetizer on their own or with your favorite sauce.
If you love these wacky and tasty air fryer corn riblets, here are other fun snack and appetizer ideas to try: