Home » Blog » Recipes » Air Fryer » Air Fryer Corn Ribs (Sweet and Buttery)

Air Fryer Corn Ribs (Sweet and Buttery)

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Read my disclosure policy.
Air fryer corn ribs are fun to eat! Corn is sliced, coated with butter & spices and air fried for a trendy Tik Tok favorite.
top view of air fryer corn riblets

Air fryer corn ribs are a delicious way to serve this classic summer veggie. Turn sweet corn into an appetizer, perfect for dipping into your favorite sauce! This trendy food became popular on Tik Tok and is a fun-to-eat snack bursting with flavor.

corn ribs on a plate with a dipping sauce

Corn ribs are a smaller version of corn on the cob. The ears are husked, and then the cobs are cut into strips. This means more plump kernels are exposed, so you can season it on all sides, adding flavor.

As the corn air fries, it curls up, giving this dish a cool and exciting look. The only tricky part of making this meal is slicing the ears, but don’t worry, I have a simple trick to help! These delicious corn riblets are sure to become a family favorite.

Don’t feel like slicing the corn into riblets? Use my recipe for air fryer corn for a simple recipe! And make sure to try air fryer zucchini chips, air fryer summer squash, or air fryer broccoli for more tasty recipes using fresh summer veggies.

Key Ingredients

For exact amounts needed see the recipe card below

Corn – Nothing beats fresh corn! If you have a local farm stand or market and it is in season, that is ideal for the best flavor.

Butter – Using butter on the pieces of corn makes them brown and crispy on the edges. Use butter that has been softened by leaving it out of the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Olive oil can be substituted.

Seasoning – I used basic seasoning of just paprika and garlic powder, with optional salt and fresh herbs like parsley or basil. See suggested seasoning variations below. 

labeled ingredient photo for air fryer corn ribs

How to Make

1. Cut the Corn into Quarters

This is the most challenging part of making this dish! First, remove the husks and all the silks. Then cut off the ends of each ear.

Corn cobs are tough, so I strongly recommend microwaving the ears for 2 minutes before cutting them. It is challenging (and potentially dangerous) to slice the cobs without softening them in the microwave. Let the ears cool for about 5 minutes before slicing.

Put the ear on a flat, stable surface, like a wooden cutting board. Stand it on end and cut it in half vertically using a very sharp knife. Be careful to keep your fingers out of the knife’s path! Then cut each half into a quarter, making 4 pieces per cob.

You can also cut each ear of corn in half horizontally and then cut the halves into ribs. This will make shorter ribs that are easier to slice.

slicing the corn
Slicing the corn
mixing the butter
Mixing the butter

2. Prepare the Butter

Put the butter in a bowl and mash it with a fork. Then add the paprika, garlic powder, and parsley and mix the spices in. Use a pastry brush or a spoon to coat the ribs with the butter mixture. 

coating the corn with butter
Buttered corn ribs
corn ribs in air fryer
Air frying the corn

3. Air Fry the Corn Ribs

Put the riblets in the air fryer basket in a single layer. You will probably only be able to fit 4-8 pieces, depending on the size of your basket.

Cook the seasoned corn ribs at 400 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, flipping them over after 5 minutes. The riblets are done when they are lightly charred and starting to curl.

Make Quick Dipping Sauce

I love to dip corn ribs into sauce. My favorite sauces for dipping air fryer corn ribs are tzatziki, whipped feta dip, or melted butter. If you want a quick, low-effort sauce combine 1/4 cup of mayonnaise with 1 tablespoon of your favorite BBQ sauce.

plate of corn ribs after air frying

Serving Ideas

Serve these as a side dish with dinner or as a fun snack. You still only eat the corn kernels, not the corn cobs! Garnish them with more fresh herbs and add lemon or lime wedges for drizzling.

Air fryer corn ribs have a sweet flavor that the added spices enhance. These are great with burgers or another grilled dinner as they are a perfect summertime dish.

Seasoning Variations

There are many great ways to spice up these air fryer corn ribs. Just change the spices mixed in with the butter for different flavors. Here are some favorites:

  • Elote (Mexican Street Corn) – Use 1 teaspoon chili powder or taco seasoning, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, and 1 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning. Then sprinkle Cotija cheese and drizzle lime juice on the cooked ribs.
  • Sweet – Use 1 tablespoon sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon for a sweet and delicious treat.
  • Jamaican – Mix 1/2 tablespoon of jerk seasoning with the butter.

How to Store

These are best when they are eaten right away. But if you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. To reheat, put them in the air fryer at 350 F for 3 minutes or microwave for 15 seconds. Another option is to cut the kernels off the riblets and use them in a salad or soup.

dipping corn ribs into sauce

Tips for Making the Best Corn Ribs

Be sure to check out the step by step instructions

  • Microwaving before slicing the ears softens the cob and makes cutting easier.
  • But still, be extremely careful when cutting it into fourths. Use a sharp knife, and do not rush through the cutting. If it isn’t working, cut the ears in half horizontally and make shorter ribs.
  • Fresh corn that is currently in season will be tastier.

Did You Make This? Leave a Star Rating!

top view of air fryer corn riblets
5 from 14 votes

Air Fryer Corn Ribs Recipe

Air fryer corn ribs are fun to eat! Corn is sliced, coated with butter & spices and air fried for a trendy Tik Tok favorite.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time27 mins
Servings: 4
Print Save Pin

Ingredients
 

  • 4 corn on the cob ears
  • 3 tablespoon butter softened
  • 2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt to taste
  • fresh parsley or basil optional

Optional Dipping Sauce

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon BBQ sauce

Instructions

  • Cut off the ends, remove the corn from the husk, and take off the silk. Rinse and clean each ear.
    4 corn on the cob ears
  • Microwave the ears for 2 minutes to soften them before slicing. Let them cool for 5 minutes after microwaving.
  • Use a sharp knife for slicing. Place the corn vertically and carefully cut it in half. Then cut the halves into quarters, creating four ribs from each ear.
  • If you find it difficult to cut the ears into ribs, cut them in half horizontally and then make 8 shorter ribs.
  • Mix butter, smoked paprika, garlic powder and fresh herbs in a small bowl. Mix it well to incorporate the spices throughout the butter.
    3 tablespoon butter, 2 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, fresh parsley or basil, salt to taste
  • Brush the corn ribs on all sides with the butter mixture. Use a silicone pastry brush or a spoon to spread it out.
  • Place the pieces of corn in the air fryer basket, making sure to keep them in a single layer.
  • Air fry the ribs at 400 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, flipping them after 5 minutes. They will be curled and lightly charred, and crisp when they are done.
  • Mix the mayonnaise and BBQ sauce in a small bowl for a quick dipping sauce. Other good dipping sauces are whipped feta dip, ranch dressing, or melted butter.
    1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon BBQ sauce

Notes

Tips:

Be extremely careful when cutting the ears into fourths, and watch your fingers. Use a sharp knife, and do not rush through the cutting. If it isn’t working, cut the ears in half horizontally and make shorter ribs.
 

Seasoning variations:

  • Elote (Mexican Street Corn) – Use 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, and 1 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning. Then sprinkle Cotija cheese on the cooked ribs.
  • Sweet – Use 1 tablespoon sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon for a sweet and delicious treat.
  • Jamaican – Mix 1/2 tablespoon of jerk seasoning with the butter.

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 158kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 82mg | Potassium: 277mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 923IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition facts are estimates.

Enjoy this recipe?Follow Family Friendly Foods on Facebook
dipping the corn ribs in sauce
By on July 27th, 2022

3 thoughts on “Air Fryer Corn Ribs (Sweet and Buttery)”

  1. It must have been wonderful to see you acknowledge this issue, it felt amazing. Thank you for giving such useful information that is often difficult to come by. I’ve signed up for your newsletter and will spread the word to my acquaintances. Son Goku Bomber Jacket

    Reply
  2. 5 stars
    It must have felt good to watch you recognize this problem, it must have been lovely. We appreciate you providing this important information, which is frequently hard to find drift boss

    Reply
  3. 5 stars
    I have tried many dishes with corn but the best is still breaded corn I guess it is quite fatty and I need a recipe to reduce the fat and still taste good cookie clicker. And the air fryer is a great choice!

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating