Okra is a delicious side dish that is usually deep-fried. But now, with the rise of the air fryer, okra side dishes can be much healthier, and just as tasty! With only a few simple steps, you can make fried okra, without excess fats.
I’ve included a list of the best dipping sauces that complement this dish perfectly as well, and have even included a recipe for my favorite, so check it out!
Table of Contents
- What is frozen okra?
- Do I need to thaw frozen okra before cooking it in the air fryer?
- What types of frozen okra are there?
- Tips for air frying frozen okra
- Frozen Okra in the air fryer
- Frozen okra in the air fryer recipe
- Lemony Garlic Mayo recipe
- Quick, delicious, and healthy
What is frozen okra?
Okra is actually technically a fruit, which is naturally savory because it does not ripen or mature to a level of sweetness. The fruit likely originally came from Africa and is commonly used in many southeastern dishes, like gumbo or etouffee.
Okra pods have small seeds that are gelatinous, which are perfect for thickening soups and stews. Okra pods can be served pickled, or can also be served deep-fried, with a dipping sauce.
When deep-fried or pickled, the texture can sometimes be quite slimy. So if this isn’t for you, then you can prepare frozen okra in the air fryer to achieve a nice crispy texture!
Do I need to thaw frozen okra before cooking it in the air fryer?
No, you won’t need to thaw your frozen okra before you put it in the air fryer.
The easiest way to cook your okra from frozen is to pop it in the basket of the air fryer and then set the appliance to preheat.
This speeds up the thawing process. If you were to let the okra thaw naturally, there is a risk of losing the texture of okra compared to if you follow this method.
What types of frozen okra are there?
There are usually two types of frozen okra you can buy from your grocery store – regular, frozen, and frozen breaded okra.
Tips for air frying frozen okra
- You don’t even need to thaw the frozen okra, you can take it straight from the freezer and pop it in the air fryer!
- If you like a little kick of spice, I recommend adding some chili powder to the okra before air frying.
- If you are using frozen breaded okra, I recommend perhaps leaving it cook a little longer, upping the cooking time to 20 minutes. This will ensure you’ve got a super crispy breaded exterior. Yum!
Frozen Okra in the air fryer
- Prep time: 2 minutes
- Cooking time: 12 minutes
- Total time: 14 minutes
- 2 cups of frozen breaded or non-breaded okra
- 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil, or high smoking point oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp of chili powder (optional)
Frozen okra in the air fryer recipe
Time needed: 14 minutes.
How to cook frozen okra in the air fryer
- Mix ingredients
Taking your okra straight from the freezer, add all of your ingredients to a large mixing bowl and give them all a toss around so all of the okra is coated in seasoning.
- Add to basket
Add your okra to the basket of the air fryer so it is all in a single layer. This is important to ensure that you get that crispy exterior, which is particularly important if you’re using breaded okra. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may have to cook this in multiple batches.
Set your air fryer to preheat and let it preheat to 360 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes, or however long it takes.
Once the preheat is finished, give the basket a shake and let the it cook for a further 7 minutes.
Check on the okra and if it is looking crispy and slightly browned, then you know that your okra is ready.
- Serve and enjoy!
Serve immediately, either as a side dish, or within soups or salads, and enjoy!
As a fruit, okra is a healthy low-calorie food, which is a good source of dietary fiber, minerals, and vitamins. Okra contains soluble fiber, which promotes healthy cholesterol levels and contains insoluble fiber, promoting a healthy digestive tract.
If you are to deep-fry frozen okra, then this will of course add lots of fat. If you use your air fryer though, you’ll need little to no oil for this, resulting in very little change to the nutritional value of the healthy fruit!
If you’re using frozen breaded okra, then you might need to leave this in a little longer than regular frozen okra.
While the recipe for regular frozen okra is has a recommended total cooking time of 14 minutes, it may take up to 20 minutes to cook breaded okra from frozen, to get that perfect crispy exterior.
Air fryers, like other kitchen appliances have a huge variety of foods they can cook, but air fryers are unique in the type of food they’re perfect for preparing.
An air fryer is perfect for all foods that you would usually, deep fry, grill, microwave, or even cook in the oven.
Air fryers are great for grilled sandwiches, making bacon, sausages, cooking french fries, fish fingers, to name a small few!
The best part about using an air fryer is how much healthier they are than deep-frying. If you are cooking in an air fryer, you will use little to no oil, which – compared to deep frying – makes a huge difference!
If you don’t already have an air fryer, this is an investment you should definitely consider as it opens up a wealth of different foods you can cook at the touch of a button!
There are so many different dips that go really well with okra;
Ginger soy sauce
Lemony garlic mayo
Garlic chilli sauce
Spicy chipotle sauce
Smoky mayo sauce
My personal favorite dipping sauce for serving with air-fried okra is lemony garlic mayo for sure. Below I have included the easy recipe! This is super tasty and you may find yourself using this recipe for a number of other snacks.
Lemony Garlic Mayo recipe
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 ½tsp minced garlic
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 2 ½ lemons, juiced
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- pinch of sweet paprika
- 2 tsp zest of the lemon
How to Make
- Add the mayonnaise to a cup, followed by all the other ingredients
- Mix all of the ingredients together well and put in a serving dish
- Serve with the okra, and enjoy!
Quick, delicious, and healthy
Frozen okra is such a tasty and nutritious way to bulk up any meal. This air fryer method also takes the effort out of cooking, and results in deliciously cooked food at the touch of a button!
Let me know what you think in the comments!
By the way, here are other air fryer recipes on the blog: