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Air Fryer Corn Elote

Air Fryer Corn Elote is a favorite summertime side dish. It’s fresh and addictively flavorful. Sweet corn on the cob with cayenne, mayo, and salty cotija cheese. This Mexican street corn is crazy easy to make in the air fryer in just 15 minutes. It’s one of my most requested air fryer recipes.

High angle shot of 3 air fried corn on the cob.

Elote is a popular Mexican street food recipe. It is simply sweet ears of fresh corn that are grilled and then slathered with mayo and seasoned with Mexican spices, fresh cilantro, and salty cotija cheese.

It is loaded with flavors including sweet, spicy, tangy, and salty, making it an irresistible side dish.

Air Fryer Corn Elote is a simple take on Mexican street corn that is easy to make. I love that I can make this version in my air fryer any time. It is truly one of my favorite air fryer recipes as well as one of my favorite ways to cook corn on the cob.

This Air Fryer Eloteis an easy and delicious side for your next Mexican meal or cookout.

Ingredients you need

For the complete list of ingredients with quantities and detailed prep and cooking instructions, please see the recipe card that appears at the end of this post.

This easy Air Fryer Corn Elote has a short list of ingredients, but it’s big on flavor. Here’s what you need:

  • Corn on the cob—Use whole ears of sweet corn. I’ve included instructions to easily remove the husks from the corn by microwaving them briefly. If you have sweet corn that has already been husked, you can skip that step. You might want to add a minute or two on the the air frying time.
  • Olive oil—Brush olive oil onto the corn before air frying to help infuse the flavor of the garlic. You could substitute melted butter or spray oil here (just don’t use aerosol cooking spray oil if your air fryer has a nonstick basket.)
  • Garlic, cayenne pepper, and salt—For lots of flavor.
  • Mayonnaise—Mayo adds creaminess and helps the seasonings stick to the corn.
  • Cotija cheese—This dry, aged cheese is salty and sharp like Parmesan. You can substitute Parmesan if you like.
  • Cilantro—For a splash of color and fresh, herby flavor.

How to make it

For the complete list of ingredients with quantities and detailed prep and cooking instructions, please see the recipe card that appears at the end of this post.

This Air Fryer Corn Elote is an easy corn on the cob recipe! Here’s how:

  1. If you’re using ears of corn that are still in their husks, start by microwaving them briefly. Then cut off a bit a the stem end to allow you to easily slip the husk off.
  2. Mix the oil and garlic together and brush it onto the corn.
  3. Arrange the corn in the air fryer basket. Cook corn, flipping halfway through, until it brightens in color.
  4. Coat the corn with the mayonnaise, roll it in the cheese, and then add the cayenne and cilantro. Serve immediately. 
low angle shot of 3 ears of corn elote style.

WHAT TO SERVE IT WITH

This air fried corn makes an irresistible side dish to any barbecue meal, like ribs or steak. I also love it alongside classic Mexican dishes like Camarones a la Diabla, Camarones al Mojo de Ajo, Chicken Enchiladas, Chilaquiles, or Fish Tacos.

Add some Instant Pot Refried Beans from Scratch, Pickled Jalapenos, and Pickled Onions and you’re good to go.

 If you’re looking for more air fryer recipes with Mexican flavors, try Air Fryer Empanadas, Air Fryer Taquitos, or Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

Yield: Serves 4

Air Fryer Corn Elote

overhead shot of air fryer corn elote.

Air Fryer Corn on The Cob madeElote style is a favorite summertime side dish. It’s fresh and addictively flavorful with cayenne, mayo, and salty cotija cheese. This Mexican street cornis crazy easy to make in the air fryer in just 20 minutes.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 ears of corn, still in their husks
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Kosher salt
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup shredded cotija or Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro

Instructions

  1. Preheat the air fryer to 350°F for 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Microwave the corn in the husk for 5 minutes.
  3. Chop off ½-inch at the stem end of the corn and remove the husk.
  4. In a small bowl, stir tighter the oil and garlic. Brush the mixture onto the corn.
  5. Air fry the corn for 10 minutes, flipping halfway through, until it brightens in color.
  6. Remove the air-fried corn on the cob from the air fryer basket and coat it with the mayonnaise, season each cob with a pinch of salt, and then roll each cob in the cheese. Sprinkle on the cayenne and cilantro.
  7. Serve.

Notes

You may not be able to fit all 4 ears in your air fryer at once. If not, you can try cutting them in half in order to fit more, or cook in 2 batches.

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 292Total Fat 23gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 16gCholesterol 22mgSodium 400mgCarbohydrates 18gFiber 2gSugar 4gProtein 6g

Nutrient values are estimates only. Variations may occur due to product availability and manner of food preparation. Nutrition may vary based on methods of preparation, origin, freshness of ingredients, and other factors.

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pinterest pin for air fryer corn elote. Image is an overhead picture of the corn. Text says "air fryer corn elote."
By on May 22nd, 2022

ABOUT ROBIN DONOVAN

Hi, I’m Robin! I am a full-time food blogger, recipe developer, and cookbook author. I spend my days cooking, writing about, and photographing food.

I’m the author of more than 50 cookbooks, including Ramen for Beginners5 Ingredient Cooking for TwoSushi at HomeThe Baking Cookbook for Teens, and the bestselling Campfire Cuisine.

My food writing has also been featured in major print and online pubications including Cooking Light, Fitness, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle, and others. → More about Robin

3 thoughts on “Air Fryer Corn Elote”

  1. I found this recipe and had everything ready to make it, so tried it for dinner and it was delicious and so easy!

    Reply

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