Air fryer Caribbean roast corn on the cob

2.6.22 | Recipe by Renz

A Caribbean street food favorite, done with a twist. I'm showing you how to get delicious roasted corn (roast corn) made in the air fryer. Quick, and easy to share with your family without all the work.

Picture of three ears of corn with grilled edges on a brown cutting board.

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I am a corn lover. In fact, we Caribbean people are corn lovers and use them in all kinds of ways, so when corn season comes around I am in my glee.

Roast corn (roasted corn) is one of the ever-popular street foods you can find on just about any of the islands.

Fresh corn roasted over an open flame is the perfect marriage of sweet corn and grilled smoke. I just love biting in and getting that crunch on the outside and then the sweet corn juice popping out.

It is normally done on a gas or open charcoal grill outside but we all don't have that luxury, or just want something with a little less work.

This air fryer corn recipe gives allows you to have this treat without the work of smoke and can still have all the fixings.

A great snack option just like these crispy banana chips in the air fryer.


What is Caribbean-style roasted corn?

Roasted corn, Caribbean style, is basically roasting corn on an open flame.

This gets the kernels grilled to a crusty, ashy color, but the inside of the roasted corn kernels are still sweet and juicy.

This is a popular street food across all the islands.

Originally we don't have any extras with our roasted corn. Just served hot off the grill in a corn husk or paper towel. But don't be surprised now if you are offered additional seasonings to coat this deliciousness.

Can corn be roasted in the air fryer?

Yes, you can definitely air fry corn and get that roasted feel.

I remember when I first told my mom I was going to try it, she said "that is NOT going to work". As I mentioned, this Caribbean-style corn is usually done over an open flame. So she had no faith that I would be able to get the same thing in my electric gadget.

But I did!!

I was able to get varying levels of roast in there and the roasted corn flavor. From simple roasted to the dark roast by leaving it in there for longer periods.

The best corn to roast

The best type of corn to use to roast would be sweet corn. This is the juicy corn.

This is the vibrant yellow corn that at its freshest has a nice firm and plump kernels.

This type is what is popular and we commonly find it in supermarkets being sold.

We want to use fresh corn that we find in the fresh produce area.

We want to pick ones whose husks are bright and green and then it's tightly wrapped around the cob. Try to avoid those that may have brown holes as that usually means insects are in them.

Get more guidance on picking the perfect corn cobs from Audrey over at

Ingredients for roasted corn

This is a simple recipe for air fryer corn. There are no exact amounts. You are free to adjust the corn to the number of people you are serving or if you are like me, how much you want to eat.

Four ears of fresh corn with silk and husks on a white counter top.

  • Ears of corn
  • Butter (optional) - butter cooking spray and melted butter


How to make air fryer roasted corn

This is a great "set it and forget it" recipe.

Take your fresh corn and clean it of any silk or corn husk. These burn easily in the fryer. You can twist the corn ears in your hand and that will help to get the silk off.

An ear of corn cleaned of silk and husk.

Depending on the size of your air fryer basket, you can put the ear of corn cobs in as a whole piece or you can cut them up into smaller pieces.

If you want to use butter you can add butter here. Spray the corn with cooking spray all over. You do not have to use butter. See my notes below about the difference butter makes.

An airfryer basket with three cobs of corn in the basket.

Set the temperature to 390 degrees and time for 25 minutes.

Now let them roast.

Roasted corn finished in the air fryer basket.

About halfway through you can take a look just to see how roasted they are. You do not HAVE to rotate the corn cob, but it will not hurt if you do.

If you like very burnt corn then add more time to suit if, in the end, it is not as crispy as you like.

More butter can be added here along with additional seasonings of your choice.

What can I season roast corn with?

I know some people want some additional flavor.

If you have seen Mexican street corn anywhere, you know they add a set of additional flavors. I like my roast corn plain and simple, but if you want to add some of your favorite seasonings, here are some suggestions that you can sprinkle on:

You can take melted butter and season it up with your spices, then you can baste the corn with the butter mixture on the hot corn.

Close up of corn kernels showing the roasted edges.

How to tell when corn on the cob is done?

The corn kernels will be roasted dark in areas on the majority of the cob. The kernels would be dark-looking and crispy.

Also, use a skewer to poke the corn kernel, if it still feels tough then it needs a little more time.

How long to cook corn on the cob in the air fryer

Cooking time can vary depending on the air fryer and how well roasted you like your corn.

With testing, definitely needs to have 25 minutes of cook time to get that roasted look and taste.

Also depending on how fresh your corn is and how big the kernels are it might take a little longer to get all the way roasted.

If you want a really roasted corn that is dark, you can let the fryer go for an additional 8-10 minutes.

Can you wrap corn on the cob in foil and cook it in the air fryer?

You do not have to roast the corn in foil.

But if you like to you can add it to your basket or wrap the cobs.

When I did it with foil, I found that it took a little longer to roast.

Close up of roasted corn ends on a wooden board.

Can you put frozen corn in the air fryer?

I also tested this recipe using NIBS frozen corn, and it did not give me that delicious corn I was hoping for.

I assume as frozen, that the water did not allow them to get roasted well. I defrosted them first then followed the process but they did not get crispy.

I would avoid using frozen corn as the type used.

Maybe frozen fresh corn might be a better option.

What to eat with air fryer roasted corn?

This is the perfect side dish. I can eat this all by itself. But it's also great on your plate.

For memorial day I had it along with all my hotdogs and burgers and salad.

But if you want to make this a side dish for a fancy meal, pair this with some Guinness lamb stew, and okra and rice.


* Do not layer corn in the basket, it needs to be on one single layer so that the air can circulate properly.

* Cook times may vary depending on your brand of the fryer. It won't be less than 20 minutes to be cooked. Just add additional time as needed after that to get to the roast you like. I would do it in spurts of 8 - 10 minutes.

* You want to use butter. When I tested with butter on, it took longer for the roast to affect the kernels. I preferred without butter or adding seasoned butter after roasting.

Close up of a ear of roasted corn.

Here are some other corn dishes for you:

Corn soup
Boiled corn

And some that we include corn in the meal:

Conch soup
Baked fish in foil
Pastelle pie
Coo coo
Cow heel soup
Steam conch