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Thai Corn Fritters (Easy Tod Man Khao Pod Recipe)

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Thai corn fritters are crispy to absolute perfection, and you’ll want to make them over and over again. This easy tod man khao pod recipe comes together so quick and easy. These tasty snacks are gluten-free, vegan, perfect for finger food, as a side dish, or appetizer at any gathering.

Hand dipping Thai corn fritters into sweet chili sauce.

Serve these with my Thai sweet chili sauce, it’s the perfect sweet and spicy dipping companion that makes ’em completely addictive!

What is Thai corn fritters

Thai corn fritters, or tod man khao pod, are a popular street food snack in Thailand. Made with a batter of flour, red curry paste, and kaffir lime leaves, they’re sweet, salty, and spicy. The vegetarian-friendly patties are deep-fried in oil until they become crispy and golden.

Easy tod man khao pod recipe

These Thai corn fritters have that street-food level taste, just like tod mun pla. While Thai fish cakes are more stretchy and chewy on the inside, these fried corn snacks are more fluffy and crisp.

Top-down view of spicy corn fritters with sweet chili sauce, chili, and garlic.

Whip them up with classic ingredients often used in Thai cooking – red curry paste, kaffir lime leaves, egg, and crispy flour. Ice-cold water ensures the most crispy crust you’ve ever had!

To serve to kids, just half the amount of red chili paste, and they turn into a sweet and crunchy snack they can’t resist.

Bamboo dish with Thai corn fritters with sweet chili sauce and a hand holding a corn fritters over the sauce.

Enjoy ’em solo, dunk them into your favorite dipping sauce, serve as a snack or as the perfect appetizer.

Make the batter ahead, fry them up when ready. They’re so versatile and the perfect summer snack.

They’re gluten-free, incredibly addicting, and ridiculously easy to whip up.

Once you try them, you’ll find yourself making batch after batch. That’s how good they are!

5 More reasons to try sweet corn patties

  • Use up your leftover corn. Got any leftover sweet corn kernels? This is a tasty way to use it.
  • Pan-fry or deep-fry. Fancy healthy Thai corn fritters? Pan-fry or air-fry them! But if you’re all about that crispy goodness, stick to the recipe and deep-fry them to crispy golden perfection.
  • Freeze for later. Just like Thai fish cakes, you can freeze these for later, then deep-fry them straight from the freezer to get them all nice and crispy again.
  • Quick and easy. With simple ingredients and cooking methods, these come together in no time. Unlike some other recipes, the corn doesn’t have to be cooked, saving you time.
  • Low-cost. Every ingredient used in this Thai corn fritters recipe is budget-friendly.

Looking for more corn recipes? This Thai corn salad is super refreshing and perfect year round.

Ingredients

Ingredients can be sourced at Asian grocery stores and Asian markets.
The exact measurements are in the recipe card at the end of this post.


Top-down view of recipe ingredients; crispy flour, fish sauce, corn fritters, red curry paste, kaffir lime leaves, ice-cold water, and egg.
  • Sweet corn – Use fresh sweet corn, avoid using canned corn or frozen.
  • Kaffir lime leaves – These aromatic leaves are commonly used in Southeast Asian cuisine for their unique citrusy flavor and aroma. You can find them fresh or dried at Asian grocery stores, Asian markets, or at Amazon.
  • Red curry paste – Use my homemade curry paste or store-bought like Maesri or Mae Ploy brand.
  • Ice-cold water – This is crucial for the achieving a crispy crust.
  • Crispy flour – Use a crispy flour like cornstarch or rice flour.
  • Fish sauce – Often used in Thai cuisine for its salty and umami flavor. You can swap with salt, but the outcome will slightly differ in flavor.
  • Egg – Helps bind the batter and provides extra structure.

Cooking instructions

Make the corn dough

Instructional steps for making the corn dough.

1-2. In a large mixing bowl, combine crispy flour with corn.

3-4. Add fish sauce, strips of kaffir lime leaves, red curry paste, and egg. Thoroughly mix.

5. Slowly add ice-cold water while mixing.

Deep-fry the corn fritters

Instructional steps for deep-frying the corn fritters.

1. Grab no more than a spoonful of the corn dough mixture.

2. Gently let it slide into a large, hot oil-filled deep-frying pan.

3. After each scoop, rinse your spoon with water.

4. Deep-fry the corn fritters until crisp and golden, turning them occasionally.

5. Transfer to a colander or onto paper towels to drain excess oil. Serve and enjoy.

Tips for the best Thai fritters

  • Prep the batter ahead to save time. Mix up the batter before your guests arrive and pop it in the fridge. When you’re ready, just deep-fry. They’re best when served immediately after deep-frying, although they’ll remain crunchy for a while.
  • Adjust the spiciness. Adjust the amount of red chili paste to your liking.
  • Keep them small. Small fritters cook faster and will be crispier. Make sure not to overcrowd the pan!
  • Use a neutral oil. Use a neutral oil with high smoke point for deep-frying like vegetable oil, canola oil, or sunflower oil. Make sure the oil is hot and sizzling before dropping in the batter.
  • Keep ’em warm. Keep them warm in the oven while you’re whipping up more.

Kitchen tools

  • Cutting board and chef’s knife
  • Measuring spoons and cups
  • Paper towels or colander
  • Deep-frying pan
  • Mixing bowls
  • Whisk

How to serve

Serve Thai corn fritters with Thai sweet chili sauce or other condiments like this

These snacks pair great with spicy Thai salads like som tum Thai, a seafood salad like yum talay, or a refreshing yum nua.

You can also pair them with other appetizers like moo ping (grilled pork skewers) or hat yai fried chicken.

Garnishing options

Fresh herbs: Garnish with cilantro, green onions, or parsley for a pop of color and fresh flavor.

How to store and reheat

Allow the Thai sweet corn fritters to cool down to room temperature, and place them in an airtight container in the fridge. Consume within 2 days.

Freezing instructions: Place the cooled fritters in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze. Once frozen, transfer them to a freezer-safe bag or container. Freeze for up to two months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

Reheating instructions: Reheat the fritters in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) or pan-fry with little oil. Avoid the microwave.

Did you know?

Thai corn fritters come in many variations, some recipes might call for coconut milk, garlic, ginger, rice flour, and more. Many households have their unique recipe for this snack.

Frequently asked questions

Are Thai corn fritters healthy?

Thai corn fritters are made of healthy ingredients like sweet corn, red curry paste, and kaffir lime leaves. However, they’re deep-fried, so they are high in calories and fat. For a healthier version, pan-fry or use the air fryer.

Are Thai corn fritters gluten-free?

Yes, Thai corn fritters are gluten-free. Make sure to stick to the recipe and enjoy a gluten-free snack at home.

More Thai appetizer recipes you’ll love

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Thai Corn Fritters (Easy Tod Man Khao Pod Recipe)

Hand dipping Thai corn fritters into sweet chili sauce.
These Thai corn fritters are irresistibly crispy, perfectly spicy, and subtly sweet and salty.
Praew
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Cuisine Thai
Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Serving Size 20

Ingredients

  • 10.5 ounces corn fresh sweet corn
  • 1 tablespoon red curry paste
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce or salt
  • 1.5 cup crispy flour cornstarch / rice flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup ice cold water
  • 4 kaffir lime leaves cut into thin strips

Instructions

MAKE THE CORN BATTER

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine crispy flour with corn.
  • Add fish sauce, strips of kaffir lime leaves, red curry paste, and egg. Thoroughly mix.
  • Slowly add ice-cold water while mixing.

DEEP-FRY THE CORN FRITTERS

  • Grab no more than a spoonful of the corn dough mixture.
  • Gently let it slide into a large, hot oil-filled deep-frying pan.
  • After each scoop, rinse your spoon with water.
  • Deep-fry the corn fritters until crisp and golden, turning them occasionally.
  • Transfer to a colander or onto paper towels to drain excess oil. Serve and enjoy.

Notes

  • Use the nutrition card in this recipe as a guideline.
  • To serve to kids, just half the amount of red chili paste.
  • You can mix up the batter in advance and store it in the fridge. Deep-fry when you're ready.
  • Keep them small and use a neutral oil.
  • Use my homemade Thai red curry paste or opt for store-bought like Maesri or Mae Ploy brand.

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