Southern Fried Okra

10 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Fried Okra made with buttermilk, flour, cornmeal, okra, and seasoning is savory, crispy, and fried to perfection in under 30 minutes!

Appetizers and sides are a major part of any party we throw around here, and this time we’re getting ready to serve Cole Slaw, Macaroni Salad, Potato Salad, and Baked Mac and Cheese!


Fried Okra is the PERFECT crispy, savory appetizer to serve at your next party. Made with okra that is soaked in buttermilk, then tossed in cornmeal and seasoning and fried until it’s golden brown. This okra recipe is a popular dish in the south, along with another favorite of mine, Sausage Balls.

If you’re looking for another recipe to fry while you have the oil hot, check out my Crispy Fried Calamari or Fried Cheese Curds!


Fried okra will last in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, but I recommend eating it right away, because it can lose some of its crispiness when stored.

If you want to make fried okra ahead of time, you can follow this recipe up until the flour and breading, then freeze the okra on a baking sheet for about an hour, until frozen. Then place in an airtight plastic bag and store for several months. When you’re ready, you can add the okra straight from the freezer to the fryer.


If the breading is falling off your southern fried okra, your oil may not be at the right temperature. Use a thermometer to make sure you are cooking at 350 degrees F.

Crispy Fried Okra



Okra has a bad reputation for having a slimy texture, especially if this is your first time making it, but when it’s made right this shouldn’t be the case at all. Try to find fresh okra, and the heat from the oil should cook all of the slime out of the pods.

You should also be sure to dry your okra very well before cooking it, the drier the less slimy, this is also why frozen okra has a tendency to be so slimy when cooked. The frozen okra defrosts and is so wet it goes straight to slimy.


  • You can trim the okra and cut it into pieces, or just fry the whole trimmed pod. When you trim the okra, you’re cutting off the stem and the tip to avoid the fibrous parts.
  • Add extra seasoning to the cornmeal like garlic, onion powder, or cayenne pepper for extra flavor or heat.
  • After frying, place the okra on a wire baking rack with paper towels under it to rest. This will allow excess oil to drain off, but keep the deep-fried okra from getting soggy while it sits.
  • I like to use a dutch oven to fry these but you can use a deep cast iron skillet if that’s what you have.
  • Some recipes use flour only, but a traditional southern fried okra recipe use a cornmeal-flour mixture.
  • Try to find pods that are on the smaller side, which are usually softer in texture.
  • Okra fries really quickly, it shouldn’t take longer than 3 minutes, so watch it closely.

Southern Fried Okra

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Fried Okra

Fried Okra made with buttermilk, flour, cornmeal, okra, and seasoning is savory, crispy, and fried to perfection in under 30 minutes!
Yield 10 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 20 okra trimmed and cut into 1/4" slices
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • vegetable oil for frying


  • In one bowl whisk the buttermilk and egg together and soak the okra pieces in it for 13 minutes.
  • In a second bowl whisk together the flour, cornmeal, salt and pepper, then set a large dutch oven to heat with 2" of oil to 350 degrees.
  • Drain the okra well, then dredge in the cornmeal mixture, remove excess breading and fry until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes.


Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.


Calories: 124kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 17mg | Sodium: 247mg | Potassium: 150mg | Fiber: 2g | Vitamin A: 205IU | Vitamin C: 5.5mg | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 1.3mg

Southern Cornmeal Fried Okra

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. Hi Sabrina,
    Tried these tonite! added cayenne flakes, garlic and onion to the flour and these little nuggets turned out soooo good! Thank you for creating and sharing this recipe!