Air Fryer Corn Ribs are a new favorite appetizer and it’s no wonder with a recipe this delish!
This is the super trending corn ribs recipe that everyone is raving about! Sold all summer long at county fairs and festivals, corn riblets are a fun, crunchy snack that’s just as fun to make as they are to eat. Serve them with dipping sauce, or have them as is. Everyone is sure to enjoy this easy tasty appetizer that is just as much fun to make as it is to eat!
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What are Corn Ribs?
- Corn ribs are a fun and tasty appetizer, snack, or side dish!
- Corn ribs consist of one whole ear of corn that is split into 4 horizontal pieces. These pieces are seasoned and air fried in any kind of air fryer, like a Ninja or the Vortex.
- Homemade corn ribs are a new twist on the street food called Elote in Mexico, which are ears of corn grilled with the husk on. Once the corn is cooked inside, it’s heavily seasoned and then served with a sauce or dip!
- Corn riblets are smaller versions of corn on the cob, but as they cook in the air fryer, each section curls outward, making the crispy kernels easy to eat off the cob!
- This corn ribs recipe makes sweet or savory riblets with just a little time in the air fryer basket and a few seasonings, sauces, or dips!
- Make them Elote style! Before frying, brush the riblets with mayonnaise, Cotija cheese, and a pinch of ancho chile powder. Sprinkle with fresh cut cilantro and serve. Drizzle corn ribs with honey and sprinkle on Cotija cheese and orange zest and serve as a dessert!
What’s in Air Fryer Corn Ribs?
CORN: Fresh or frozen ears of corn that are shucked with the silks removed are used in this recipe. Be sure to let frozen ears thaw first so they are easier to cut. Brush cobs with butter and seasonings.
SEASONING: Try some of these tasty recipes like a tasty Jerk Seasoning, Italian Dressing Mix, or a pre-made taco seasoning or chili seasoning mix. Brush on some bbq sauce or dip corn ribs into Smoked Tomato Guacamole, or a bowl of Creamy Dill Dressing.
How to Cut Corn into Riblets
- Strip the husk and silk from each ear of corn.
- Lay each ear of corn on its side on a solid surface covered by a clean kitchen towel and, using a very sharp knife, cut off the first inch of the tip of the cob.
- Starting at the top end of the cob, slice the ear of corn in half. This might take some sawing back and forth and a little muscle, but it’s worth it!
- Cut the two halves in half again to make 4 pieces or cut each length in half to make 8 pieces.
PRO TIP – Break cob in two horizontally before slicing it vertically. This may make it easier to slice lengthwise. And use a kitchen towel or cloth to help press down on the knife when cutting corn lengthwise.
How to Air Fry Corn Ribs
After the prep is done, the rest is super easy:
- Cook seasoned corn ribs on high, as per the recipe below.
- Shake the basket halfway through.
- Serve immediately or chill and serve cold with a dip or dressing!
How to Store
Keep leftover corn ribs in a zippered bag up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Reheat corn riblets for 3 or 4 minutes in the air fryer on high power, or in the oven at 375˚F for 8-9 minutes, to crisp them up again.
Tasty Appetizers To Try!
- Bacon Wrapped Brussels Sprouts – so much flavor.
- Baked Zucchini Sticks – a delicious snack.
- Air Fryer Roasted Asparagus – as a side or appetizer.
- Chicken Wonton Cups – simple yet unique!
- Baked Corn Ribs – on oven recipe.
Air Fryer Corn Ribs
- 2 cobs corn shucked & silk removed
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil or butter
- 3 Tablespoons BBQ rub per recipe below or your favorite rub
- 1 Tablespoon cilantro or parsley, optional for garnish
- 1 ½ Tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
Mayo Dip (optional)
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 1 Tablespoon lime juice (juice of ½ a lime) or lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat air fryer to 400°F.
- Cut ends off of corn cobs so they can stand upright.
- Cut corn into 4 ribs*. Standing cob upright, cut in half lengthwise right down the center of the corn using a very sharp knife. Rock back and forth and push firmly to cut through. Cut each rib in half lengthwise again (either by standing up or lying the cob on the side). Rock back and forth and push firmly to cut through.
- In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil (or butter) and BBQ rub ingredients.
- Spread oil mixture on corn with a brush, coating the corn side of the corn rib (or spread butter mixture using a spatula or knife). Rub any extra oil mixture on the sides of the corn ribs.
- Place corn ribs in air fryer basket in a single layer. Cook for 10-15 minutes, or until corn is cooked, and corn ribs start to crisp and curl.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine Mayo Dip ingredients until well mixed.
- Sprinkle with cilantro if using and serve with Mayo Dip.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Bake on a parchment lined baking tray for 25-30 minutes or until corn is cooked, and corn ribs start to crisp and curl.
- If you’re in a bit of a rush, you can bake at 425°F for about 20 minutes, but they’ll curl up better if baked longer. Sprinkle with cilantro if using and serve.
- Preheat grill to medium-high.
- Place prepared corn ribs on the grill. After 8 minutes, flip and brush with your favorite BBQ sauce. Cook for 6-8 more minutes, or until corn is cooked, and corn ribs start to carmelize and curl.
- Brush with additional sauce if desired, sprinkle with cilantro if using and serve.
Cut ends off of corn cobs so that they are flat.
Break or cut each cob in half (crosswise).
Standing one piece of corn on the end, cut in half lengthwise right in the center of the corn using a very sharp knife. Rock back and forth and push firmly to cut through.
Cut each half in half lengthwise again (either by standing up or lying the cob on the side). Rock back and forth and push firmly to cut through. Each corn cob will create 8 corn ribs cutting this way. Pro Tip - use a knife longer than the length of the corn, and use a cloth to help press down on the knife. Alternatively, break corn in half before cutting lengthwise (creates 8 smaller corn ribs, per above). These corn ribs are best served immediately but will keep for a few days in a container in the refrigerator. Reheat in the air fryer at 370°F for 3-4 minutes or in the oven at 375°F for 8-9 minutes.
Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.