Inspired by the Tiktok trend, this Corn Riblets Recipe will change the way you enjoy corn! These long strips of corn are seasoned to perfection, crisped up, and tender, making for a great side dish of easy-to-eat corn.
This is one of those TikTok trends you should actually try. These seasoned corn ribs are one of the easiest ways to eat corn!
The ears of corn get cut up into smaller, long strips of corn, allowing for a perfect cook. The cooking process makes the edges of the corn curl into a slight C-shape, which resembles meat ribs, hence the name.
All you need is a very sharp knife, a few pieces of corn, and your favorite seasonings! It's the perfect side dish that cooks up in 10-15 minutes. These can be made in the air fryer, oven, or even in a pan, and can be seasoned to suit whatever dish you are preparing.
❤️Why we love this recipe
- Made with simple, fresh ingredients - When you have fresh, peak season corn, there's few things that we can think of that are better! Combine that with a few spices and kitchen staples, and you have yourself a tasty side dish!
- Great way to eat corn - The shape of the corn riblets make this supremely easy to enjoy. They're so much fun to eat. The shorter length allows the corn kernels to almost pop out of the corn cob while they cook, making it super easy to get every last piece without gnawing on the cob!
- Simple recipe - This delicious recipe is easy to make, and very tasty. The hardest part of this recipe is cutting the corn cobs, which can be a little tricky. As long as you have a sturdy knife and cutting board, you've got this!
- Customizable to suit different diet types- This dish can easily be made vegan, with a simple swap. But it's already vegetarian, and naturally gluten-free!
Here are the ingredients we used for the corn riblets. You can omit ingredients as you see fit. You can find full quantities and nutritional information in the recipe card.
- Fresh corn on the cob - You want sweet corn in peak season, if possible. These will be cut into 8 to 16 pieces. We prefer cutting them into smaller pieces as they are a bit safer to cut and easier to handle.
- Avocado oil - We like avocado oil because of its high smoke point and neutral flavor. Olive oil would also be a good choice.
- Lemon juice and zest - For a nice bright, acidic, and lemony taste.
- Dry rub blend - We used a mixture of red pepper flakes for heat (optional), a little smoked paprika for color and smokiness, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, kosher salt, and black pepper. You can adjust seasonings to your own personal preference. Our blend is a little spicy, with plenty of savory flavor.
- Parmesan cheese - Optional. Freshly grated on top at the end, it's delicious!
- Fresh parsley - Optional as a garnish.
- Measure out seasonings.
- Zest and juice the lemons.
- Chop parsley.
- Cut corn pieces. Make sure you have a perfectly flat, secured surface with a sturdy cutting board that won't move around. First, cut the corn in half, width-wise to make it easier to handle. Next, lay the flat side of the corn on the cutting board, and very carefully, from the top of the corn, cut down in half lengthwise. Go slow and steady when cutting the corn. Finally, cut each piece in half, lengthwise once more. One ear of corn can give you 8 small pieces. Use a light rocking back and forth motion when "sawing" into the corn to help stabilize it to ensure you cut the corn safely.
Step 1 - Coat the corn with oil and lemon juice
Grate lemon zest over the top of the corn, then drizzle with avocado oil and lemon juice.
Step 2 - Make the dry rub
In a separate bowl, combine kosher salt, black pepper, smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes.
Step 3 - Coat with seasonings.
Now, toss the corn ribs with the dry rub until evenly coated.
Step 4 - Air fry or bake
Now, it's time to roast the corn. Here are two common methods. We prefer the air fryer method as it's quick and easy!
- Air fryer corn ribs - Preheat the air fryer to 375°F. Place the corn in a single layer in an air fryer basket or trays. Bake for 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through.
- Oven roasted - Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and place corn in a single layer. Bake for 25-30 minutes, flipping halfway through, until tender and golden.
The corn is done when it is lightly golden brown or a bit charred, and the edges begin to curl up.
Step 5 - Garnish
Drizzle the corn with a bit more fresh lemon juice, then top with freshly grated parmesan cheese, parsley, and more seasonings as needed.
Step 6 - Enjoy!
✨Tips & safety
- Cut into smaller pieces - For less risk of accidents, we'd recommend following our method of cutting the corn into shorter pieces.
- Use a sharp chef's knife - Make sure you're using a large sharp knife to cut the corn pieces.
- Always secure your cutting board - Use a wet piece of paper towel underneath your cutting board to prevent it from sliding around. This goes for every day as well, but especially when cutting the corn.
- Gently "saw" or cut into the corn using a light rocking motion - This will help ensure you cut the corn safely. Go slow!
- Use in season corn if possible - When corn is in peak season, it tastes amazing, and will produce the best results.
✏️Substitutions & variations
The ingredients are pretty straightforward, but here are a few simple swaps you can make to make this dish suit your diet type, personal preferences, or ingredients you have on hand.
- Dairy free or vegan corn ribs - Use a dairy free or vegan parmesan cheese to make this dish dairy free or vegan friendly.
- No cheese - Don't like cheese? No problem, you can just leave it off.
- Spicy - Love spice? Add extra red pepper flakes, or a little cayenne pepper. We will say that the way we season
- Less spicy - You can omit the red pepper flakes entirely for a dish that's just savory.
- Swap lemon for lime - You can always swap lemon juice and zest for lime juice and zest.
- Herbed - You can always add more herbs! We love adding fresh basil, as it suits this flavor profile very well.
- Buttery - Finish the riblets off with some salted butter for even more delicious flavor!
- Add honey - For a touch of delicious sweetness, drizzle the corn with a little bit of honey when it's time to serve.
💭Frequently asked questions
Yes! To prepare the corn ribs on the stovetop, add 2 tablespoons of oil to a large skillet over medium-low heat, then add in the corn ribs. Don't season the corn ribs before adding to the skillet, the seasoning will stick to the corn better if added after.
Allow to gently cook through, flipping periodically to ensure the corn gets a more even browning. This should take around 20-25 minutes.
If needed, you can add liquid to the pan toward the end of cooking, and cover the skillet to steam the corn.
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Luckily, this recipe is pretty standard and you really don't need much to make it.
- You'll need a cutting board, and pick the sturdiest one you have. We love this chopping block and have a similar one at home.
- Make sure you have a very sharp knife to cut the corn. We use an 8-inch chef's knife from this awesome self-sharpening knife set we have.
- We love these baking sheets if making these in the oven.
- We prefer the air fryer method, since it gets nice and crispy while remaining juicy quickly. This is the air fryer we use.
- We use a microplane to finely grate the parmesan cheese, and zest the lemons.
🥣Storage & reheating
The corn is best enjoyed fresh, while it's nice and hot. However, it will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
To reheat on the stovetop, we'd recommend adding about a tablespoon of water and more oil or butter with the corn to your skillet over medium-low to medium heat, covered. Heat until warmed through.
In the microwave, heat in 15-second intervals on half power to avoid drying out the corn too much until the corn is warmed through.
In the air fryer or oven, bake at 350°F for 3-4 minutes in the air fryer, and around 10 minutes in the oven to warm through.
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Corn Ribs Recipe
- 2 cobs corn, cut into pieces
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- 1 medium lemon, juice and zest
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ - ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional and to taste)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- parsley, lemon juice, and parmesan cheese for garnish (optional)
- Preheat the air fryer to 375°F. First, cut the corn in half, width-wise to make it easier to handle. Next, lay the flat side of the corn on the cutting board, and very carefully, from the top of the corn, cut down in half lengthwise. Go slow and steady when cutting the corn. Finally, cut each piece in half, lengthwise once more. One ear of corn can give you 8 small pieces.
- Add the corn pieces to a plate, and then coat them with avocado oil, lemon zest, and lemon juice.
- Combine all dry seasonings, and sprinkle over top. Toss to combine and coat the corn pieces. Air fry for 10-15 minutes until golden brown and tender, flipping halfway through.
- Garnish with more lemon juice, fresh parsley, parmesan cheese, and more salt if desired. Enjoy!
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Season to taste, all seasonings added are optional.
- Please visit the body of this post for instructions on how to cook the corn ribs on the stovetop or in the oven.
- Garnishes are not included in the nutrition facts.