What You Need To Know Before Trying To Make Corn Nuts From Canned Corn

Are you obsessed with Corn Nuts but have a serious DIY streak? In this case, you may want to try your hand at making corn nuts of your very own using ingredients from your own pantry. However, if you think that canned corn sitting on the shelf is the perfect accompaniment to homemade corn nuts, think again. As illustrated by the official Corn Nuts about us page, this salty snack is best known for "bringing crunch," which isn't always possible when you use canned varieties.

For instance, a recipe featured on Served from Scratch explicitly states not to use canned corn varieties. Doing so can eliminate the crunch factor from your homemade snack, which is why dried hominy is recommended specifically. For the uninitiated, hominy is white or yellow corn that has undergone nixtamalization, which entails placing kernels in lye to remove the outer shell (hull) and the inner seed (germ). It should be noted that the use of dried hominy is not necessarily a hard and fast rule, as another recipe recommends using canned hominy in its place.

Canned hominy and an air fryer: a perfect snacking combination

Lifehacker features its own recipe for homemade corn nuts that makes use of an air fryer to create the sought-after crunchy texture. This recipe also calls for nixtamalized kernels but recommends using canned hominy instead of dry. In this case, you'll need to prep the canned hominy so that it's as dry as you can possibly get it to ensure optimum crispness.

Begin by draining the can of hominy to get rid of excess moisture. Next, rinse the kernels and drain them a second time. To reduce moisture even further, preheat your air fryer to 400 degrees and deposit the hominy into the basket while preheating. This will ensure that the canned kernels are as dry as you can possibly get them. Once the appliance is finished heating up, you can add a splash of oil and shake the kernels around the basket to ensure they're fully covered. Corn nuts can remain in the air fryer for up to 22 minutes, but you should shake the basket a few times to ensure they cook uniformly. Once they've reached peak crunchiness, add your desired seasoning.

You may be wondering whether an air fryer is an essential component of homemade corn nuts. It's true that you can use other cooking methods, but you should consider which one will work the best.

Should you make corn nuts in an air fryer or oven?

Some corn nuts recipes recommend using an oven to make the snack, while others insist that an air fryer is the way to go. Both options can return tasty results. However, you will need to alter your approach depending on which cooking method you use.

The Served from Scratch recipe uses an oven and calls for dried hominy, not canned. As for oil, the recipe recommends peanut oil thanks to its high smoke point and delicious flavor. Kernels are deposited into a bowl, then coated with peanut oil and your desired mix of seasonings before being transferred to a baking sheet and placed in the oven. In contrast to this recipe, the Lifehacker instructions call for dried hominy and an air fryer.

While it may take a bit of experimentation to achieve the desired results, dried hominy is probably best for the oven. On the other hand, canned hominy is perfectly compatible with an air fryer. The goal is to create a pleasingly crunchy texture without overcooking the kernels, which ensures a wholesome, fun snack you can whip up at any time.