Recipes/ Snack

Bakwan Jagung – Indonesian Corn Fritters

01/09/2016 (Last Updated: 06/03/2020)

Let’s learn how to make Indonesian Corn Fritters! Known in Indonesian as bakwan jagung or perkedel jagung – they’re surprisingly easy to make with everyday ingredients. Packed with juicy corn kernels and zingy flavour from kaffir lime and ground spices, these Indonesian corn fritters are crispy, crunchy, and totally addictive! Includes three bonus delicious dipping sauce ideas. 

A stack of fried corn fritters known as bakwan jagung

Why We Love This Recipe

  • Bakwan jagung corn fritters are a beloved street snack in Indonesia, but they’re actually super easy to whip up at home.
  • This generous recipe will make enough Indonesian corn fritters to feed a horde of hungry foodies! Even better, any leftover corn fritters can be frozen and re-heated for another delicious fritter feast. 

Fried bakwan jagung on a tray

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Fried bakwan jagung on a tray

What are Bakwan Jagung?

Bakwan in English means vegetable fritter snack, while jagung means corn. Indonesian corn fritters are commonly sold by street vendors, who whip up and fry these tasty snacks on the street or at local food markets. 

Where Did Corn Fritters Originate?

This corn fritters recipe is from Indonesia, but the dish itself is said to originate from Native American cuisine.

 

What You’ll Need

 

How to Make Bakwan Jagung – Indonesian Recipe

  • Pop all those tasty ingredients except the water, eggs and oil in a big bowl,  then give them a quick stir. Next, make a well in the middle and crack in the eggs. Slowly start to mix, adding in water little by little until it’s mixed into a thin and runny batter. If it’s too thick, you won’t get that satisfying crunch, so thinner is definitely better.
  • Now heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok. You’ll know the oil is hot enough when bubbles appear around a toothpick dipped in the oil.
  • Drop a ladleful of batter into the hot oil (carefully!) and fry until the batter turns a mouth-watering golden brown, about 2-3 minutes each side. Feel free to deep-fry a few fritters at a time if you have the space.
  • When fritters are cooked, scoop them out of the oil and drain on a wire rack or paper towel.
  • Keep cooking until all the batter has been used up.
  • Don’t forget to serve hot and crispy with tomato sauce, chilli sauce or kecap manis.

Fried bakwan jagung on a tray

Tips

  • You can use fresh corn to make bakwan jagung – if so, just slice it straight off the cob and pop it into your batter. We actually used canned corn in this recipe to make it even quicker and easier to make. 
  • Peanut oil or canola oil are the best choice for deep frying corn fritters because of their high smoke points.  This helps the fritters cook faster and creates a seal to stop the oil soaking through the batter. 
  • Corn fritters can be served warm or at room temperature according to preference. 
  • Avoid overcrowding the pan when cooking. Give each fritter plenty of space in the pan to cook evenly. 

FAQs

What spices / seasonings (bumbu) in Indonesian corn fritters?

Indonesian style corn fritters include salt, pepper and sugar to taste, as well as ground turmeric, which gives these corn fritters their delicious golden colour. 

Are bakwan jagung healthy?

The secret to making healthy bakwan jagung is to let the oil come up to the perfect temperature before cooking. According to healthline.com this is because the hot oil forms a seal around the fritter, preventing the oil from seeping into the batter and helping the fritters steam from the inside out. 

Can you freeze/reheat corn fritters?

Yes, corn fritters can be frozen and reheated in a toaster or frying pan. If possible, avoid microwaving as this will make them loose their delicious crispy texture. 

Can you make corn fritters in advance?

Yes, you can make corn fritter batter up to two days in advance before cooking. 

Fried bakwan jagung on a tray

Variations & Substitutes

  • While jagung literally means ‘corn’ in Indonesian, there are actually a heap of different variations to the recipe, so feel free to experiment. Some of the more popular vegetarian ingredients are shredded cabbage, julienne carrots and green beans. For protein, why not try adding chicken (ayam) or prawns (udang/ebi)?

 

Dipping Sauce Ideas for Indonesian Corn Fritters

All that you need now are some tasty dipping sauces to go with your crispy fried bakwan jagung. Indonesians will happily dip away in tomato sauce or chilli sauce, but personally we think they’d be pretty amazing with a little drizzle of kecap manis (sweet sticky Indonesian soy sauce).

 

A stack of fried corn fritters known as bakwan jagung

 

More Spicy Indonesian Recipe Inspiration

Or check out our collections of exotic appetisers or tasty snacks.

 

★ Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating below!

 

Bakwan jagung on a tray with dipping sauce, garnished with kaffir lime leaves

Bakwan Jagung - Indonesian Corn Fritters

Let's learn how to make Indonesian Corn Fritters! Known in Indonesian as bakwan jagung or perkedel jagung - they're surprisingly easy to make with everyday ingredients. Packed with juicy corn kernels and zingy flavour from kaffir lime and ground spices, these Indonesian corn fritters are crispy, crunchy, and totally addictive! Includes three bonus delicious dipping sauce ideas. 
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Course: Snack
Cuisine: Indonesian
Servings: 20 fritters
Calories: 97kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $5

Equipment

  • Large frypan or deep fryer

Ingredients

  • 400 g corn kernels fresh or canned
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup rice flour
  • 10 shallots finely chopped
  • 3 - 5 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves finely chopped
  • 2 cabbage leaves thinly sliced
  • 2 spring onions thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • pinch salt, pepper & sugar to taste
  • 300 ml water
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil for frying, or more as required

Dipping sauce options:

  • 1 tbsp Tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp Chilli sauce
  • 1 tbsp Kecap manis

Instructions

  • Pop all those tasty ingredients in a big bowl except the water, eggs and oil, then give it a quick stir. Next, make a well in the middle and crack in the eggs. Slowly start to mix, adding in water little by little until it's mixed into a thin and runny batter. If it's too thick, you won't get that satisfying crunch, so thinner is definitely better.
  • Now heat up the oil in a large frying pan or wok. You’ll know the oil is hot enough when bubbles appear around a toothpick dipped in the oil.
  • Drop a ladleful of batter into the hot oil (carefully!) and fry until the batter turns a mouth-watering golden brown, about 2-3 minutes each side. Feel free to deep-fry a few fritters at a time if you have the space.
  • When fritters are cooked, scoop them out of the oil and drain on a wire rack or paper towel. Sprinkle with salt to taste.
  • Keep cooking until all the batter has been used up.
  • Serve hot and crispy with tomato sauce, chilli sauce or kecap manis.

Notes

Tips

  • You can use fresh corn to make bakwan jagung - if so, just slice it straight off the cob and pop it into your batter. We actually used canned corn in this recipe to make it even quicker and easier to make. 
  • Peanut oil or canola oil are the best choice for deep frying corn fritters because of their high smoke points.  This helps the fritters cook faster and creates a seal to stop the oil soaking through the batter. 
  • Corn fritters can be served warm or at room temperature according to preference. 
  • Avoid overcrowding the pan when cooking. Give each fritter plenty of space in the pan to cook evenly. 

 

FAQs

  • What spices / seasonings (bumbu) in Indonesian corn fritters? Indonesian style corn fritters include salt, pepper and sugar to taste, as well as ground turmeric, which gives these corn fritters their delicious golden colour. 
  • Are bakwan jagung healthy? The secret to making healthy bakwan jagung is to let the oil come up to the perfect temperature before cooking. According to healthline.com this is because the hot oil forms a seal around the fritter, preventing the oil from seeping into the batter and helping the fritters steam from the inside out. 
  • Can you freeze/reheat corn fritters? Yes, corn fritters can be frozen and reheated in a toaster or frying pan. If possible, avoid microwaving as this will make them loose their delicious crispy texture. 
  • Can you make corn fritters in advance? Yes, you can make corn fritter batter up to two days in advance before cooking. 
 

Variations & Substitutes

  • While jagung literally means 'corn' in Indonesian, there are actually a heap of different variations to the recipe, so feel free to experiment. Some of the more popular vegetarian ingredients are shredded cabbage, julienne carrots and green beans. For protein, why not try adding chicken (ayam) or prawns (udang/ebi)?

Nutrition

Calories: 97kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 78mg | Potassium: 110mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 69IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg
Hey hey – Did you make this recipe?We’d love it if you could give a star rating below ★★★★★ and show us your creations on Instagram! Snap a pic and tag @wandercooks / #Wandercooks

 

Where We Learned This Recipe

Despite the name, this recipe for Bakwan Jagung (Indonesian Corn Fritters) comes to you by way of a little detour through Kagoshima, Japan. The popular university town sees people flying in from all over the world to study, and we just happened to meet up with a group of awesome Indonesian expats while staying with one of our favourite airbnb hosts.

(Oh Yuko and Himari, how we miss you… and your amazing miso soup.)

We all caught up one night at an angklung lesson, and there were so many languages flying around the room my poor brain just couldn’t keep up. At one stage, I’m pretty sure I mixed Indonesian, Japanese and English words all together in one sentence! But apart from a few grins everyone thankfully understood. 😛

After the class we hit it off chatting with our new friend Bunda and ventured back to her apartment to cook up an Indonesian feast. There was spicy sambal telur (boiled eggs in hot chilli sauce), coto makassar (beef stew) fried tempeh (soybean cake) and a batch of these sweet and delicious bakwan jagung corn fritters.

Made from a mix of corn and vegetables in a runny corn flour batter, we cooked up the fritters on a tiny portable gas cooker a few at a time until crispy, crunchy and golden brown.

 

Bakwan Jagung Indonesian Corn Fritters - Crispy little morsels perfect when paired with sweet chilli sauce. The secret kicker: Kaffir lime leaf. So GOOD! | wandercooks.com

 

Bakwan Jagung – Indonesian Corn Fritters

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12 Comments

  • Reply
    melissa
    28/11/2016 at 8:51 pm

    5 stars
    I love these! I lived in SE Asia and now I’m forever jonesing for a food fix from the region – absolutely incredible flavors with just simple ingredients.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      30/11/2016 at 9:27 am

      I know it’s incredible isn’t it Melissa? Amazing what you can achieve with simple, natural ingredients, and almost nowhere does it better than SE Asia!

      • Reply
        John
        29/05/2019 at 11:04 am

        5 stars
        Can you please tell me what is meant by two cabbages? What kind, how large, maybe in terms of cups?

        • Reply
          Wandercooks
          06/06/2019 at 11:42 am

          Hi John, thanks for stopping by. It’s only two cabbage leaves, not whole cabbages. We used savoy cabbage, but you could also use wombok instead. It’s completely up to you! 🙂

  • Reply
    Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy
    28/11/2016 at 8:39 pm

    5 stars
    I don’t know much about Indonesian food, but what I have tried I have loved! I am going to have to try these next.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      30/11/2016 at 9:26 am

      There’s so much flavour and spice to explore in Indonesian Cuisine – happy foodie adventuring! 🙂

  • Reply
    valentina
    28/11/2016 at 3:20 pm

    5 stars
    What a delicious recipe — I’m a huge corn fan and these sound over-the-top! And your photographs are so beautiful!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      30/11/2016 at 9:26 am

      Cheers Valentina, glad you like them! 🙂

  • Reply
    Christina | Christina's Cucina
    28/11/2016 at 2:28 pm

    Oooh, I adore corn! These look and sound fabulous! Will have to give them a try! Thanks for the recipe!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      30/11/2016 at 9:25 am

      Us too Christina, always love it when there’s leftover corn you don’t need in a recipe – we’ll literally eat it by the spoonful. 😛

  • Reply
    Geoffrey @ Spoonabilities.com
    28/11/2016 at 12:54 pm

    These look delicious. I’ve never had these before. Must try!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      30/11/2016 at 9:24 am

      Thanks Geoffrey, get ready for the awesomeness! 😛

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