These easy 20-minute corn nuggets are so good that you'll never want to go back to store-bought again! Made with just a few simple ingredients, they're crispy on the outside and perfectly moist on the inside. Serve them as a snack or side dish - either way, they're sure to be a hit!
⭐ Why this recipe works
Homemade corn nuggets are so easy to make for any level home cook!
All you need is a little bit of cornmeal, some flour, and some seasonings, and you're good to go. Just mix everything, form it into little nuggets, and fry them up.
These crunchy vegetarian nuggets are delicious and have a nice sweetness from the sugar and corn, while the eggs help bind everything together. The soft center is nice and moist from the shortening while providing a bit of richness.
The great thing about these corn nuggets is that you can customize the flavors. Make them spicy, savory, or even sweet. They're always a hit with family and friends, so make extra!
This recipe is very budget-friendly as it only calls for a few ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. Plus, corn is very affordable, so this is a great way to stretch your food budget. Serve them with dipping sauces or ketchup, and everyone will be happy.
Corn nuggets are perfect for parties or as an after-school snack for kids. They're bite-sized, easy to eat, and always a hit with kids and adults. Another great refreshing appetizer is my cucumber sandwich recipe.
🍽 Key Ingredients
Corn nuggets are easy to make using essential pantry ingredients. All you need is:
Corn: I use canned corn, but you use frozen, fresh, or creamed corn if you prefer, as it all tastes the same.
Flour: You'll want to use plain flour or all-purpose flour.
Eggs: The eggs help to bind everything together and make the nuggets nice and moist.
Oil: You'll need some oil for frying the nuggets. I prefer to use vegetable oil, but you can use any type of oil that you like.
Shortening: Shortening is a good choice with nuggets to give them moisture.
Cream and milk: For a creamier texture, use ⅔ milk and ⅓ cream, if you can. If you don't have cream, just use milk. Whole or semi-skimmed!
Sugar: The sugar helps to give the nuggets a nice sweetness.
Baking powder: This leavening agent helps the nuggets rise and become nice and fluffy.
Salt: Salt is a key ingredient in any recipe, and it helps to bring out the flavors of the other ingredients.
This recipe is very forgiving, so feel free to make substitutions as needed.
Butter is the perfect substitute for shortening.
You can use buttermilk in equal quantities if you don't have milk.
You can use whole wheat flour or gluten-free flour.
🔪 How to make corn nuggets
Corn nuggets are so delicious and easy to make that you'll be wishing you made more after tasting them. They take 5 minutes to prepare, 1 hour to rest, and 15 minutes to fry!
Whisk together the flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder in a medium bowl until well combined.
In another bowl, whisk the egg, milk, heavy cream, and shortening.
Now pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture and mix with a spatula or wooden spoon.
Fold the drained corn kernels into the batter.
Quick tip: wrap the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour for extra crispiness.
Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or large deep skillet until it reaches 360 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celcius).
Use an ice cream scoop to spoon the corn mixture into the oil. Cook for a minute or two until brown, then flip the nuggets to cook the other half until golden brown.
Remove the golden brown corn nuggets from the hot oil onto a paper towel-lined plate to remove the excess grease.
Serve immediately with your favorite dipping sauce.
💭 Cooking tips
No stick scoop
If you find the batter sticks to the spoon, dip it into the oil first before the corn mixture or use cooking spray, and it will slide right off into the hot oil.
Making big batches
If you're making a big batch of corn fritters, you'll need to cook in double or triple. To keep the cooked nuggets warm while the remaining corn mixture cooks, line a baking sheet and preheat an oven to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the corn nuggets on the lined baking sheet and keep them warm in the oven.
📖 Recipe variations
Corn nuggets are great for adding your favorite herbs and spices to the batter for a flavorful upgrade.
Cheesy corn nuggets
Make cheesy nuggets by adding ½ cup of shredded cheese to the corn batter. Mozzarella cheese, cheddar cheese, and Pepper jack are some great options.
Spicy corn nuggets
Give your nuggets a spicy kick by adding 1 chopped jalapeno and 1 teaspoon chili powder to the corn batter.
Herbed corn nuggets
If you have some fresh herbs on hand, these corn nuggets work well with chopped parsley, chives, and marjoram. 2 teaspoons is enough to give them a lovely herby flavor. Use half the amount if using dried herbs.
🥗 What to serve with corn nuggets
These corn nuggets are delicious, but they're also great with dipping sauces. Here are some of our favorites:
Apart from some delicious dipping sauces like honey mustard, BBQ, ranch dip, or spicy buffalo to dip those deep-fried corn nuggets into, they also go great served alongside some tasty lunch and dinner recipes.
This sloppy joes recipe is delicious, thick, and sweet - perfect for serving with crispy nuggets instead of fries.
Chicken tempura strips are an excellent option for any tear-n-dip party - and these strips are made with a crunchy batter coating, and the chicken is basted in tempura to keep them succulently juicy in the middle. Serve them with a side of corn nuggets and your favorite dipping.
Instant pot hot wings
If you like your food spicy, then give these 15-minute crispy hot wings a try, cooked in the instant pot for a healthier option than fried wings. Corn nuggets and hot wings are a match made in heaven!
These corn nuggets pair fantastic with some refreshing summer cocktails.
🙋 Frequently Asked Questions
What are corn nuggets?
Corn nuggets is a snack coming from the Southern United States as a variation of the popular corn fritter. While corn nuggets are typically deep-fried per this recipe instructions and it definitely taste crispier than corn fritters.
Why are my corn nuggets soggy?
If your nuggets are coming out soggy, likely, the oil isn't hot enough. To get that nice crispy coating, the nuggets need to be cooked in hot oil (360 degrees Fahrenheit/180 degrees Celcius).
Why do my corn fritters fall apart in the hot oil?
If your corn fritters are falling apart in the hot oil, the batter is likely too wet. Be sure to drain any excess liquid from the kernel corn before adding it to the batter, and be sure not to overmix the batter.
🧊 Storing and ♨️ reheating
Leftover corn nuggets can be stored in the fridge or the freezer for eating later on!
Fridge - Transfer the leftover nuggets to an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Freezer - Store the corn nuggets in a freezer-safe container or a freezer bag for up to 3 months.
Reheating - The best way to reheat these corn nuggets is in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes (15 minutes for frozen corn nuggets). You could also reheat them in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or until warmed through, but you won't get the crispy texture.
Other alternatives are fried in a hot skillet for 5 - 7 minutes with a drizzle of oil and also in the air fryer at 350F for 4 minutes until nice and crispy.
🍳 Related Recipes
If you like my easy corn nuggets recipe then you must try one my delicious recipes full of comforting ingredient.
👪 Serving size
This recipe yields about 24 corn nuggets, depending on the size of your scoop to make the nuggets. The recipe is easy to scale to cater for big parties or just for making a huge batch and freezing them for quick midweek meals.
Serve them as a snack with your favorite dipping sauce., appetizer, or side dish with the main course, and watch as everyone devours them in seconds! The crispy golden texture of corn nuggets is simply irresistible and easy to make!
Love this appetizer recipe? Please leave a 5-star 🌟rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page.
Try one of my comfort appetizer recipes for your next family meal! And if you have any questions, I'm here to help!
Corn Nuggets (Easy 20-Minute Snack)
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 2 eggs - beaten
- ¾ cup milk
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoon shortening
- 2 cans corn - rinsed and drained
- oil for frying
- Whisk together the flour, salt, sugar, and baking powder in a medium bowl until well combined.
- In another bowl, whisk the egg, milk, heavy cream, and shortening.
- Now pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture and mix with a spatula or wooden spoon.
- Fold the drained corn kernels into the batter. For better texture you can wrap the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or large deep skillet until it reaches 360 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celcius).
- Use an ice cream scoop to spoon the corn mixture into the oil. Cook for a minute or two until brown, then flip the nuggets to cook the other half until golden brown.
- Remove the golden brown corn nuggets from the hot oil onto a paper towel-lined plate to remove the excess grease.
- Serve immediately with your favorite dipping sauce.