Why do so many people turn up their noses when they hear the word okra? Growing up in the south, I ate okra as often as say someone in Georgia might eat a peach. Being someone who can at times gravitate to the extreme, I was also the kid who, when enjoying a bowl of Burgoo (am I getting too country for you now), used to pick out all of the okra to devour first. However, I find people from other parts of the country either have never heard of okra or have an unexplained aversion to it.

I introduced Kenya and Chloe to this exquisite green vegetable, a very good source of Vitamins A, C, and K, right when they started eating solid foods and now I've got two okra lovin' kids. We usually enjoy it prepared simply, steamed as a side dish, but when I made these okra fries and served them up with a little marinara sauce on the side for dipping, the kids looked at me like I truly had reinvented the wheel (and improved on it)! My 2 year old, Chloe, likes to pull the okra out of the crust and eat both parts separately (it is hilarious to watch) while the rest of us like to just dip and leave our "fries" intact. Crunchy on the outside, tender and sweet on the inside, these Okra "Fries" are delicious, a healthier alternative to real fries because there is no actual frying involved and a great way to get your family to eat one of my favorite veggies -- with no upturned noses!


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Okra Fries (Serves 4)

Prep Time: 10 mins Cook Time: 30 mins

nut free


  • 1 Lb Whole Okra
  • 1/3 Cup flour
  • 2 large eggs, whisked
  • 1 Tsp kosher salt
  • 1 Cup italian breadcrumbs or panko


1. Preheat oven to 400 F.

2. Make an “assembly line” by placing the flour in one bowl, the eggs in a second bowl, and the salt and breadcrumbs in a third.

3. Roll the okra in the flour and pat to remove excess flour.

4. Dip the flour-coated okra in the egg and then roll in the breadcrumbs. Dip in the egg again and roll into the breadcrumbs once more to double coat the okra.

5. Place okra on a cookie sheet sprayed or greased with olive oil. When all the coated okra is on the sheet, spray again to lightly coat.

6. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden.

7. Serve.

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Hi, I’m Catherine. Mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.

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  • MamaGigi

    My husband is from the south and LOVES fried Okra, but living in San Francisco I am so far from knowing how to do it...I'm going to surprise him with this this week! Thanks!

    leave a comment

  • Anna

    what if I want to use frozen okra, how do i go about that? Any other dishes/ideas with okra? I hear it has a lot of good benefits.

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    • Catherine

      For this recipe you should really use fresh okra. The kids love this too!


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  • Bridgett Yoches

    My parents are from the south so I love okra, especially fried :) but I have a hard time finding it fresh in Arizona. This recipe has put me on a hunt to find some fresh slimy okra!

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  • Lisa

    Okra is plentiful at our farmer's market right now and my oldest is always begging me to make some. I honestly rarely do because I just don't have that many good recipes using it. I will try this out after we hit up our local market this weekend.

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  • Makai

    I love okra! What's a good substitute for egg in this recipe? We've got egg allergies. Thanks!

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    • Catherine

      Sadly, you really need egg to adhere the breadcrumbs :(

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  • Allyson

    Sounds yummy! I love okra and so does my 2 year old! I've been going nuts with it at the farmer's market and can't wait to get more this week. It's a good pregnancy craving!

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  • Meg

    Can't wait to try this recipe as I have tons of okra in my garden and am running out of new ideas for it. Luckily my daughter will eat okra in any form!

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  • Monette

    I love okra! A lady told me at the farmer's market that I can grill them! I went ahead and sliced the top off and cut them in half, season with salt and pepper and drizzle it with olive oil then throw them on the grill and it was fantastic!

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    • Molly

      You can do that in the oven too. Also works well with asparagus.

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  • Kristina

    I grew up in the South too - LOVE okra - my hubby who is California born and bred has acquired a taste for it too - now to get my 19 month old to LOVE it as much as I do. Hopefully this recipe will do the trick...

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  • Stephanie

    Grew up eating okra breaded and fried in Wyoming! Now, with my own little one, I love any recipe that recreates my childhood favorites in a healthier way!

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  • Monica

    Tried the recipe today and my family loved it. To help ease the mess, we put the flour and the breadcrumbs in sandwich bags so my little one could just shake the okra in the bag. Worked great.

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  • Allison

    Is the okra whole? I am planning to make this tomorrow, but was wondering if it needed to be sliced or anything first. Tops cut off? Thanks so much.

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    • Catherine

      The okra is whole!

      leave a comment

  • Elena

    This seemed like a really great recipe! Except... I don't know if it's something with the okra I used, but it did not turn out well. I used Panko instead of breadcrumbs. Probably due to baking, the \"fries\" came out very chewy and hard to bite into. Next time around I'll just go with the breadcrumbs and the not-so-healthy way of cooking it by frying it. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

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