(all) joking aside
In all seriousness; being frank for a moment. Just flew in from Denver, huh? Your arms must be tired! Joking aside, how was your trip out here? I give my brother a hard time for the gangly way he runs, but all joking aside, he's quite a remarkable athlete.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
(all) joking asideand (all) kidding aside
being serious for a moment; in all seriousness. I know I laugh at him but, joking aside, he's a very clever scientist. I know I threatened to leave and go round the world, but, joking aside, I do need a vacation.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
ˌjoking aˈpart/aˈside(British English) used to show that you are now being serious after you have said something funny: No, but joking apart, do you think we should go and see if she’s OK?
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017