Fried Okra

Fried Okra is a dish that is very popular where I live. You might call fried okra a Southern staple, is a wonderful way to serve okra. I know you are going to love this Southern fried okra recipe, I will show you how to fry okra like a pro!

overhead view of fried okra on parchment paper

Okra is one of those things that normally is in the background of a dish. Now, with this crispy fried okra dish, you can make it the start of the show, the perfect appetizer.  

Why this recipe is the best fried okra recipe!

We start with raw okra, fresh okra has a delicious and unique flavor that isn’t matched in the frozen okra you buy. We cook this in small batches that are seasoned perfectly. Your okra will have a crispy coating that will make it the perfect side dish. This fried okra is a favorite food of my family.

What Exactly Does Okra Taste Like? 

Honestly, okra is in a world of its own when it comes to vegetables. It has a very distinct sweet grassy flavor. I know you don’t hear that description often and may put you off, but don’t let it. It is delicious in this crispy fried okra recipe.

To ease you a little bit, some people do compare the taste of okra to green beans or even eggplant. The thing that makes okra distinct is its slimy texture. But when it’s cooked it becomes crunchy and delicious!

2 Ways Can You Avoid Slimy Okra 

Okra is one of those vegetables that can be a little difficult to cook and get the texture that you want, or better yet want to avoid. Okra can seem a little slimy when it is cooked. 

There are two ways you can avoid this. 

  1. Soaking the Okra –If you soak the okra in white vinegar for about 30 minutes before you need to cook it, it helps cut down on the slimy texture. Just be sure to pat down the okra as best you can to cut down on the vinegar taste that can be leftover from soaking it.
  2. Less is More – It is said that if you cut the okra less, you avoid having more of the mucilage released which is what makes it slimy. The more cuts you make the more mucilage is exposed. So, if you want, cut the okra into larger pieces, and in return, the okra will be less slimy. If you happen to get some of the smaller pods you could fry those whole if you desire.

Try one or both of these methods to achieve the best results when it comes to making okra for any recipe. 

Top Tips For Producing Crispy Okra

Okra can tend to be a little bit tricky to cook. Let me tell you the best way to get the okra deliciously crispy.

The first tip is to use fresh okra. If you use frozen okra, it will have been exposed to more moisture and that is not what you want for frying vegetables. So, the fresher the better!

My second tip is to make sure to extensively dry the okra before anything! Leaving any moisture on the okra will give way for the slime to build up around the okra while cooking. Pat the okra down one, maybe two times to be sure that there is no water left on the freshly washed okra. 

My third dip, make sure your oil is hot enough! If the oil you are cooking the okra in is not hot enough, you will end up cooking it for longer to make sure it is done. You may want to use a deep-fry thermometer to make sure your oil is hot enough. When you cook the okra extra long, it will begin to absorb some of the oil into the breading, which will also cause a soggier piece of fried okra.

What is Fried Okra Made of?

Frying things is a lot easier than you think. You can make this pan fried okra with a lot of what you already have in your pantry. 

The key items you will need are in the list below:

  1. Okra
  2. Flour
  3. Salt
  4. Paprika
  5. Chili powder
  6. Garlic salt
  7. Onion
  8. Egg
  9. Cornmeal
  10. Vegetable oil
fried okra ingredients

How to Make Fried Okra

  1. Wash okra and cut it into 3/8 inch slices.
    cut pieces of okra in a bowl
  2. Place flour, paprika, chili powder, garlic salt, and onion salt in a small bowl.
    flour and seasonings for fried okra in a bowl
  3. In a large bowl stir flour and seasonings until well blended.
  4. Place sliced okra into the seasoned flour mixture and stir to coat the okra with flour.
  5. Beat two eggs in a medium bowl.
  6. Place the cornmeal in a shallow dish.
  7. Dip okra into the flour-coated okra into the egg mixture Stir to coat okra with egg wash.
    cornmeal breaded okra
  8. Drop wet okra into cornmeal. Toss to coat the okra with cornmeal mixture. Shake off excess.
  9. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat to 375 degrees.
  10. Place breaded okra in the hot oil in the skillet.
  11. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes on one side or until golden brown.
  12. Flip the okra with a slotted spoon to cook until browned on all sides.
  13. Remove the okra from the skillet and drain it on paper towels.
  14. Season it with salt while it is still warm.

Pan Fried Okra

Frying okra in a pan or skillet is the best way to get it crispy. And Southern fried okra needs to have a certain crispness in order to be just right. I hope you give this tasty side dish a try soon!

southern fried okra on parchment paper

Love fried vegetables? Try these recipes!

Check out more of my easy side dish recipes and the best vegetarian recipes on CopyKat!

overhead view of fried okra on parchment paper

Fried Okra

You can make crispy southern fried okra from scratch. 
4.67 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Fried Okra, Okra
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 205kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 pound okra
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon onion salt
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups cornmeal
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Wash okra and cut it into 3/8 inch slices.
  • Place flour, paprika, chili powder, garlic salt and onion salt in a small bowl.
  • Stir flour and seasonings until well blended.
  • Drop cut okra into the seasoned flour.
  • Beat two eggs in another bowl.
  • Drop flour coated okra into beaten eggs. Stir to coat okra with eggs.
  • Place cornmeal in another bowl.
  • Drop wet okra into cornmeal. Toss to coat the okra with cornmeal. Shake off excess cornmeal.
  • Heat a skillet with about ½-inch of vegetable oil over medium-high heat.
  • When the oil is heated to 375 degrees, place breaded okra in the skillet.
  • Cook the okra for 1 to 2 minutes on one side or until browned.
  • Rotate and flip the okra to cook until browned on all sides.
  • Remove the okra from skillet with a slotted spatula or spoon.
  • Drain the fried okra on paper towels.
  • Season it with salt while it is still warm.

Video

Equipment

Deep fryer

Nutrition

Calories: 205kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 707mg | Potassium: 348mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 685IU | Vitamin C: 17.4mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 2.3mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Eliza Crowe

    4 stars
    I grew up with fried okra (raw, pickled and any other way you can eat it is delish!!). I like to use cubed green tomatoes mixed in with the okra to get a tangy taste. Batter and fry them up together.

    • Artsynanna Soulsparkle

      I too am a senior citizen. I have used the No Salt substitution since 1996 and I love it! Salt is an additive that we have to always keep up with. Swelling of the extremities and the face can result along with many other health problems including fluid around the heart. I am not a nurse, just an old great-grandmother. I have noticed that, over the years, fast food has progressively acquired more and more salt and saturated fat. I think we all need to do something about that.

  2. Terry Wall

    I’m what most would call a senior citizen and am more aware these days of the salt content in so much food. Most of your seasonings are combined with salt. Couldn’t you get the same result by using garlic powder and onion powder instead of the combined salt seasoning? Your recipe starts and ends with salt and has these salt combined seasonings in the middle. It seems like a lot of salt to be consuming.

    • Stephanie

      So, salt does things chemically to food that powdered onion and powdered garlic cannot do. Salt helps to pull water out of food and in this case to make it more crispy. You can do what you say, absolutely. I won’t taste quite the same. It is important for you to follow your personal guidelines.

  3. Julia James

    This is a great recipe. I’m always looking for delicious and healthy options. I think more and more healthy and delicious is a tricky balance to find. I did find some amazing options on makefood.info and this is an awesome one as well!

  4. Lydia (The Perfect Pantry)

    That’s the great thing about CSA — you get introduced to new vegetables or things you probably wouldn’t buy in the store. And what a great idea to crowdsource your recipe!

    • stephaniemanley

      Lydia I get introduced to some things i have no idea what they are. My CSA apparently features a lot of heirloom varieties.

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