Spicy Corn Fritters

Zesty, spicy corn fritters, served with a sweet chili sauce. Step-by-step instructions with photos.

  • Yield: Makes approximately 16 fritters.

Ingredients

Dipping Sauce

  • 3/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons red chili pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced

Fritters

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 cups of corn kernels, (see steps for cutting corn from a cob) cut from 3 large cobs (or frozen corn, defrost and drain first)
  • 4 large scallions or green onions, finely sliced (about half a cup)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • Grapeseed, canola, or peanut oil (a high smoke point oil) for frying

Method

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1 Make the dipping sauce by combining all of the sauce ingredients into a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium high, let boil for 5-10 minutes or so, until the mixture becomes somewhat syrupy. Remove from heat and let cool. The sauce should continue to thicken as it cools. If it becomes too thick, you can add a little water to it to thin it out a bit.

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2 Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, ground coriander, and ground cumin in a medium bowl. Add egg, lemon juice and water. Stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until smooth. Add the corn, onions, and cilantro. Stir until just combined.

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3 Heat a large frying pan on medium high heat. Add enough oil to generously coat the bottom of the pan. When oil is hot (shimmering not smoking), spoon about 2 heaping tablespoons worth of fritter batter into the pan to form one fritter, patting it down with the back of the spoon as soon as it is in the pan. Work in batches. Leave about 1/2 inch between the fritters in the pan. Let cook about 2-3 minutes on each side, flipping the fritters when they are nicely browned on one side. When browned on the other side, remove the fritters to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the excess fat.

Add oil as needed to keep the bottom of the pan well coated. Note that the fritters will likely splatter a bit as you are cooking. So, either use a screen splatter guard, or wear long sleeved clothes while you cook.

Serve immediately with the sweet chili dipping sauce.

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Comments

  1. jonathan

    The Corn Fritter Diet? Finally, a diet I can live with.

    Sign me up :)

  2. Caroline

    Mmm, I wish I’d seen this before doing my weekly grocery shopping! Next week I’m going to make these as an accompaniment to broiled salmon with roasted tomato sauce.

  3. vanessa

    Thanks Elise, I guess it’s corn fritter time of year again!

  4. ScienceNerd

    On another note…
    You probably won’t die of pellagra on a diet of corn fritters. They have eggs which are rich in tryptophan which your body converts to niacin which prevents pellagra (a lack of niacin). So eat all the corn fritters you want.
    :) I plan to eat many, they sound yummy!

  5. Amy

    This looks like the perfect recipe for summer corn. Yum!

  6. Noah Oliphant

    Unbelievable recipe! My wife is a corn fanatic and I will be trying these very soon.

    Seriously… I tell her what’s for dinner and she always says : “Can we add corn to that?”

  7. Elise

    LOL, ScienceNerd. Completely forgot about the tryptophan factor. Okay, now we can eat them with complete abandon. :-)

  8. Nai

    Can I substitute baking soda for the powder? I doubt it but I don’t have any baking powder on hand but have everything else to make the recipe.

    Thanks!

  9. Jennifer Jeffrey

    I adore the corn fritters at E & O Trading Company, but I haven’t ever tried to make my own. Yours look amazing! Maybe I’ll have to give it a try…

  10. Mark

    I often use corn starch and baking soda instead of baking powder, last time I checked the baking powder container the three ingredients listed were corn starch, calcium somethingsomething, and sodium bicarbonate… I assume the calcium whatever isn’t too important :P

    I’m thinking this looks pretty easy to make in bulk, and I have an office pot luck coming up. Some stipulation in the details suggests I need to know the ethnicity of the food I make. Where would a corn fritter have originated? :)

    p.s. I’ve never posted here before but I love the blog; fantastic stuff, great food! Thanks so much.

  11. Hanane

    I love these, I made them for my family tonight and they were a hit! My dipping sauce did not thicken, any idea why?

    Thank you for this recipe. Will be making them again.

  12. lydia

    Ever since my ability to eat corn on the cob fell prey to a chipped tooth, I’ve been looking for ways to enjoy corn off the cob. These fritters look delicious.

  13. Katherine

    Mark, I think the cornstarch in the baking powder is added to prevent clumping. I know that’s why they use it in powdered sugar..

  14. Sarah

    You’re really frittering away, aren’t you! Sorry, I couldn’t resist! ;) I’m going to give these a whirl with the farm fresh corn I’m scoring tomorrow. Thanks, Elise.

  15. Kristina

    I picked up a good tip from either Cook’s Illustrated or Cook’s Country (can’t remember which), which called for some corn kernels cut from the cobs and some grated off the cobs, plus scraping the cobs with the back of a knife for good measure.

  16. Anuja

    I was wondering if the recipe would work if is baked instead of fried.. would anyone know?

  17. Christine

    You really got me with these, Elise. They are already saved to my recipe file and I’ll make them for my beach night crowd tomorrow. Thanks!

  18. Elizabeth

    Oh, yum! We made these tonight, and they were really delicious — and easy. Omitted the coriander and cilantro and added a dash of cayenne pepper — served ‘em with chicken with artichokes and mushrooms. Really, really, really nice.

  19. Deborah Dowd

    Where do you sign up for this diet? These fritters look great, and now I am going to have to try them (no frittering away the pounds on this diet, though!)

  20. barbara

    That’s my kinda diet Elise. I love corn fritters with salsa, guacamole and sour cream.

  21. Steph

    I made this 3 days ago and am making it again tonight…delicious and easy!

    My sauce didn’t thicken either but it didn’t really matter..the taste is yummy. However, I think I’ll make about half the amount…and since I didn’t have rice vinegar, I used a combo of apple cider and red wine vinegars…still yummy!!

  22. anna

    I made these last night, but wasn’t crazy about the sauce. They thickened to be like caramel and was sticky. The recepie looks better than it is.

  23. Sarah

    I wonder if there is a way to make these gluten-free (I have a daughter with Celiac Disease and she LOVES corn). Would substituting corn starch or potato starch flour for the regular flour work? I have a feeling rice flour wouldn’t bind well enough.

  24. Elise

    Hi Sarah – I think rice flour will work as a substitute. Reid’s Indonesian corn fritters (see link in recipe) use rice flour. You might also try a gluten-free flour mix. Bob’s Red Mill is makes an excellent gluten-free mix which we use.

    Hi Anna – You can add a little water to the sauce to make it less thick.

  25. Wendy

    Not sure exactly what my perfect diet would be but I’d certainly like some of these in it! They look so wonderfully crispy.

  26. Geoff

    These sound incredible….Except that I can’t go near Cumin. Knowing that Cumin and Corriander are likely to provide a taste combo, can anyone think of something that might work in lieu of Cumin? Thanks in Advance, and thanks to Elise – your blog is the bestest!

  27. Amber

    These were DELICIOUS. I made them for me and the fiance last night, and he loved them. One warning about the sauce … it didn’t look “syrupy” enough, so we kept boiling it down for another 3 to 4 minutes. What I didn’t realize is that it really thickens up once it sits for a while, and had to be really thinned down. My mistake, of course – but a warning to others who might take descriptions literally. LOVELY overall – will definitely make again.

  28. jill

    I made a gluten-free version of this:
    posted here
    but, I wish I had cilantro and onion. next time!!
    this was delicious, thanks!!!!

  29. Kate

    I made just the fritters over the weekend and served them as alongside gazpacho. It was delicious, a perfect combination. I might make them even spicier next time and serve with some guacamole!

  30. Stacy

    I made these fritters tonight. I’m now in love with a spicy corn fritter. Yummy!

  31. Dev

    I made these fritters last night and they were delicious! I realized too late that I did not have any scallions so I substituted some chopped red onions and it worked quite well. I think next time I will make it even spicier with some cayenne or chopped jalapeno peppers (my husband and I are South Asian so we love things spicy!). We ate these with sour cream rather than the sauce in the recipe.

  32. Lisa

    I laughed when I read the last posting – I made these last night as well – also no scallions, substituted onions – and I added a little jalapeno and cerrano chile. I used red corn instead of yellow from our garden. They were FANTASTIC – quite the hit. The sauce was great too – and so EASY to make. I think I will use it for other recipres…. Thanks!

  33. beth

    Made these, LOVED these. So fantastic, thanks for yet another great recipe.

  34. Amy

    Made these last weekend and they were just terrific! The frying is a bit labor intensive, but well worth the effort. I doubled the recipe, thinking we’d have some left over, but they were so good that our dinner guests devoured them all!

  35. Christine

    These were absolutely delicious! My husband wants me to add some chopped chile peppers to the fritters next time.

  36. Ingrid Blum

    These are ridiculously good corn fritters!

  37. Betsy

    Oh! These fritters make my family roar like lions! “we want more” is all I hear!

  38. Christy

    Is there a way to make these without the egg? What could be substituted?

    Thanks!

  39. Nabeela

    I made this today and we LOVED IT!! Thank you for posting this wonderful recipe.

  40. Katrina

    These fritters are great!! I served them with a mayo/lime juice & zest/garlic/red onion/pepper salsa. I use the low fat mayo and so it is pretty low in cals. This is also delicious on pork and as a substitute for tartar sauce on fish……

  41. Katrina

    Forgot to add that I also fried the corn fritters in PAM, for less calories yet. If you keep the lid on the frying pan, they don’t dry out at all and are wonderful without the grease!!!

  42. athina levesque

    These sound/look great. I plan on making them tomorrow night as a side with burgers. Can you suggest an alternative dipping sauce with these?

    If you have a favorite dipping sauce, use that. I don’t have one other than this one to recommend, but if you use a different sauce that you like, please do tell us about it. ~Elise

  43. athina levesque

    Elise, I was resistant to use your recipe for the dipping sauce, but then I thought, you’ve NEVER steered me wrong- with any recipe- so I went ahead and made the fritters tonight, with the suggested sauce…why would I ever doubt you? The sauce was delicious, and a wonderful compliment to the fritters.I can’t imagine another sauce working as well with them.Thanks again for another wonderful recipe!!

  44. Beth

    These are so delicious and the sauce is a perfect complement. I made large fritters and placed broiler salmon on top and the sauce over the fish. Seriously good stuff!

  45. SChristian

    This is one recipe which I’ve tried at different ocassions and has been a hit every single time. The sauce is delicious and a great compliment to the fritters.

  46. Andi

    Had these for lunch today and they were great, especially the dipping sauce. Subbed white wine vinegar b/c I was out of rice wine vinegar and red onion for scallions but still thought it tasted great, will def make these again, they’re so easy to whip up.

  47. Patricia

    Made this for dinner tonight, out of desperation, because the corn I bought 2 days ago was tasteless by the time I cooked it this afternoon. Went to your site which I have used before. They were a HUGE hit…the men in the family were especially happy. What would have been a corn on the cob disaster was turned into a delightful side to bbq spare ribs with all the trimmings. Thanks, Elise, you’re a dinner saver!

  48. joe

    Are you suppose to cook the corn first?

    No. ~Elise

  49. katie

    My roommate recently became vegetarian and she was having a hard time adjusting. I made these and she absolutely loved them. Thank you!

  50. Tara

    Mmm… I’ve just moved out on my own and started cooking. After epically failing at trying to make the chicken curry, I attempted these this afternoon. Soooo good and easy to cook! I love the sauce, too! Thanks!

  51. ohdonna

    Oh my! These were unbelievably wonderful!! Elise, I haven’t had one recipe from your site that hasn’t wowed me. My husband doesn’t even like cilantro and couldn’t stop eating them. I had to make some substitutions because I didn’t have everything on hand. Onions instead of scallions; no coriander, so I used extra cumin; corn was already cooked – leftover on the cob; white distilled vinegar instead of rice vinegar. Can’t wait to make it again with all the right ingredients!

  52. eredeti

    WOW! I just finished the dipping sauce and it is amazing! I only wish I had made more of it since I am taking these to a potluck tomorrow. If the fritters are anywhere close to being as tasty as the dipping sauce, I think I will need to double (or triple!) this recipe. Thanks so much Elise, I am so grateful I stumbled across your blog. So far all the recipes I have tried have worked perfectly and impressed both family and friends.

  53. Lauren Alexander

    Hi,

    I have made these two times now! My eight year old really loves them. She calls them corn burgers. YUM!

  54. Jess

    Made these as fritters and they were good, but the oil overpowered the fresh taste of the corn and it wasn’t quite was I was hoping for. So, I took the leftover batter and cooked it on a griddle into corn-pancakes. They turned out delicious! Lower fat, lighter texture, and the sweet chili sauce worked like maple syrup.

  55. Antony

    I had a bunch of leftover corn scraped off the cob and gave this recipe a try. They came out awesome: my roommate and my coworkers all agree!

    I made some of my own substitutions/changes:

    - leeks instead of scallions
    - added 1 teaspoon of cayenne
    - used refined safflower oil in a cast iron skillet. This combination is hot hot hot! I got a nice crust on the fritters within 1-2 minutes, which is great as I didn’t want the fritters to be soaking in the oil. I used a strainer as a pseudo splatter guard, but still got hit a couple of times with hot oil. Be careful!

    Finally, the sauce was so simple yet it got raves.

    Thanks Elise!

  56. Rosi

    Tried these several times now and they are fantastic. Just served them again on the weekend as an accompaniment to paella and everyone loved them. Had 3 requests for the recipe.

  57. JessicaD

    My husband says these are now in the ‘favourite dinners’ category. Used half rice flour since we had it on hand. Also used jalapeno in the dipping sauce, which was excellent. I had thought about just using some bottled sweet chilli sauce that we already had, but I’m glad I made the effort. Good to know we can use the chilli flakes when we don’t have jalapeno. I served these with golden-crusted brussels sprouts from 101 cookbooks and some harissa-spiced buttered couscous for a delicious meatless dinner. Tip on a quick defrost: turn on your kettle and pour the boiling water over the corn in a sieve.

  58. Lily

    We fried half, did half on the griddle, and the griddle worked very well! In case someone wants a guilt-free version. Even the pickiest kid liked these, but we did leave out the spice for their version.

  59. Stephanie

    Accidentally put twice as much flower in (thankfully I had enough of the other ingredients so i could double them) But they taste great! So far it’s taking a little longer to cook than listed for me (possibly didn’t have it on a high enough heat) But they are wonderful, as is the sauce!
    I’m not even finished cooking them, but I liked them so much I knew I needed to comment before I forgot!