A Spicy Perspective

Air Fryer Okra (Fries and Breaded!)

How to Air Fry Okra – Crunchy breaded fried okra or healthy okra fries are a snap to make (even from frozen!) with this easy air fryer recipe.

Healthy okra fries on a plate with platter of fried pieces in background.

Why We Love This Easy Air Fryer Recipe

Crispy, crunchy fried okra is a classic southern dish that’s always welcome at the table! The flavor of okra is mildly sweet and earthy, and pairs perfectly with rich and savory dipping sauces.

Air Fryer Okra is most definitely healthier than its deep-fried counterpart. Yet we’re showing you how to enjoy it 2 ways today, as breaded fried okra, or as lean clean okra fries without breading!

Either version takes just about 30 minutes to make, from start to finish. You can even use fresh or frozen okra for this recipe (but fresh works best for okra fries!)

Top down pieces of crunchy air fried okra.

Ingredients You Need

For breaded okra in the air fryer:

  • Okra – fresh or frozen, whole pods
  • Yellow cornmeal – not mix
  • All-purpose flour – or your fave gluten-free flour alternative
  • Spices – salt, garlic powder, smoked paprika, black pepper, or cayenne
  • Egg – a necessary binder to keep the breading on the okra
  • Milk – whole or low fat
  • Oil spray

For healthy okra fries without breading:

  • Fresh okra pods – or frozen
  • Spices – garlic powder, salt, and pepper
Fresh whole raw okra pieces, and bag of frozen whole okra.

How to Make Breaded Fried Okra in the Air Fryer

Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Set out two shallow bowls.

In one bowl, mix the cornmeal, flour, salt, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and pepper.

Spices, powder, and corn meal in a bowl.

Mix and set aside. In the second bowl whisk together the egg and milk.

Breading mixed in a bowl with fork.

Cut the tops off the okra pods. Then cut each pod into half-inch rounds.

When you get down to the thin tip of the okra pod, discard.

Chopped fresh okra on a cutting board.

Toss the chopped okra pieces into the egg mixture.

Raw pieces of okra in egg wash bowl.

Once you have about a cup of chopped okra in the egg mixture, toss well. Then drain off the egg mixture and toss the pieces into the cornmeal breading.

Mix well to coat.

Get the Complete (Printable) Air Fryer Okra Recipe Below. Enjoy!

Uncooked okra slices in breading.

Open the preheated air fryer, and shake the excess cornmeal off of the fried okra pieces. Place the breaded okra in the air fryer in a single layer. Fill the air fryer basket with as much okra as will cover the bottom of the basket. For super crispy breaded okra take care to not overcrowd the basket.

Spray oil spray over the breaded okra, then close and air fry for 5 to 6 minutes.

Battered pieces in the basket.

Open the air fryer basket, shake well, then spray the tops with oil spray again. Close and continue air frying for another 4 to 6 minutes, until the breading is firm and golden. 

Work and as many batches as necessary until all your okra is breaded in air fried. This is most likely two batches for a larger air fryer and 3 to 4 batches for a smaller air fryer.

Top down pieces of fried okra in air fryer basket.

How long do you air fry breaded okra?

Fresh okra will take 10 to 12 minutes of total cooking time per batch.

How long do you cook breaded frozen okra in the air fryer?

Frozen okra will need a little longer, 13 to 15 minutes per batch.

Bowl of crunchy breaded fried okra.

How to Make Healthy Air Fried Okra Fries

Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Cut the okra pod lengthwise into quarters, creating four long okra fries per pod.

Raw fresh okra sliced into sections on a cutting board.

Lightly spray the okra fries with oil spray, just enough to coat each fry. Place half the fries in the air fryer basket. Spread into an even layer.

Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper, then add just a small sprinkle of garlic powder over the top.

Raw slices of okra in fryer basket.

Close the air fryer and cook for 5 minutes. Then open and shake the basket.

Spread the okra fries out evenly again and continue frying for another 2 to 5 minutes.

Thin okra pieces in the air fryer.

How long do you air fry okra fries?

Fresh okra fries will take 7 to 10 minutes per batch.

How long does it take to cook frozen okra in an air fryer?

Frozen okra fries will take 9 to 12 minutes per batch. Repeat with as many batches as necessary, depending on the size of your air fryer.

Note: Fresh okra fries are definitely better than frozen okra fries!

Top down plate of healthy fries.

Serving Suggestions

Serve immediately, or keep the air-fried okra warm in a low-temperature oven or warming drawer.

Serve as-is for a snack or appetizer, or alongside southern main dishes. A few of our favorites are Grilled Pork Chops (with a Carolina BBQ sauce!), Cajun Chicken and Rice Casserole, and as an alternative to classic fries with Southern Comfort Dogs.

Enjoy crunchy fried okra with cool and creamy dipping sauces, like:

Plate of okra fries.

Frequently Asked Questions

What temperature should I air fry okra?

400°F is the ideal air fryer temperature for okra.

How long does it take to cook frozen okra in an air fryer?

Frozen breaded okra cooks for 13 to 15 minutes per batch.

Healthy okra fries take about 9 to 12 minutes. However, I do highly recommend using fresh okra for the fries.

Is air fryer okra with no breading healthy?

Yes it is! Okra fries without breading are gluten-free, eggless, and vegan.

How long does air-fried okra last?

They are crunchiest and tastiest when enjoyed freshly prepared. But they will keep well for up to 3 days in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

Reheat in the air fryer at 400°F for 3 or 4 minutes.

Hand dipping okra fries into aioli.

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Air Fryer Okra Recipe (Fries and Breaded!)

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Crunchy breaded fried okra or healthy okra fries are a snap to make (even from frozen!) with this easy air fryer recipe.
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

For Breaded Okra in Air Fryer –

For Healthy Okra Fries –

Instructions

For breaded fried okra in the air fryer:

  • Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Set out two shallow bowls.
  • In one bowl, mix the cornmeal, flour, salt, garlic powder, smoke paprika, and pepper. Mix and set aside. In the second bowl whisk together the egg and milk.
  • Cut the tops off the okra pods. Then cut each pod into half inch rounds. Toss the chopped okra pieces into the egg mixture. When you get down to the thin tip of the okra pod, discard.
  • Once you have about a cup of chopped okra in the egg mixture toss well. Then drain off the egg mixture and toss the pieces into the cornmeal breading. Mix well to coat.
  • Open the air fryer, and shake the excess cornmeal off of the fried okra pieces. Place the breaded okra in the air fryer in a single layer. Fill the air fryer basket with as much okra as will cover the bottom of the basket.
  • Spray oil spray over the breaded okra, then close and air fry for 5 to 6 minutes.
  • Open the air fryer basket, shake well, then spray the tops with oil spray again. Close and continue air frying for another 4 to 6 minutes, until the breading is firm and golden.
  • Work and as many batches as necessary until all your okra is breaded in air fried. This is most likely two batches for a larger air fryer and 3 to 4 batches for a smaller air fryer.
  • Fresh okra will take 10 to 12 minutes of total cooking time per batch. Frozen okra will need a little longer, 13 to 15 minutes per batch.

For healthy okra fries:

  • Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Cut the okra pod lengthwise into quarters, creating four long okra fries per pod.
  • Spray the okra fries with oil spray, just enough to coat each fry. Place half the fries in the air fryer basket. Spread into an even layer. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper, then add just a small sprinkle of garlic powder over the top. Close the air fryer and cook for 5 minutes. Then open and shake the basket. Spread the okra fries out evenly again and continue frying for another 2 to 5 minutes.
  • Fresh okra fries will take 7 to 10 minutes per batch. Frozen okra fries will take 9 to 12 minutes per batch. Repeat with as many batches as necessary, depending on the size of your air fryer. (Fresh okra fries are definitely better than frozen okra fries!)

Video

Notes

Serve as-is or with aioli for dipping. Serve immediately, or keep warm in a low temperature oven or warming drawer.

Nutrition

Serving: 3oz, Calories: 193kcal, Carbohydrates: 35g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 47mg, Sodium: 900mg, Potassium: 394mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 812IU, Vitamin C: 20mg, Calcium: 91mg, Iron: 2mg
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: American, Southern
Author: Sommer Collier

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One comment on “Air Fryer Okra (Fries and Breaded!)”

  1. great idea for a french fry swap, need to eat more greens too, so thank you!