Fried Okra Recipe | Southern Recipes | PBS Food

This fried okra recipe is a Southern favorite from the "Vegetables" episode of Martha Stewart's Cooking School.

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  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1 pound okra, trimmed and sliced crosswise 1/2-inch thick
  • 1 quart vegetable oil
  • Lemon wedges, for serving
  • Hot sauce, for serving (optional)


  1. In a shallow dish, whisk together cornmeal, flour, salt, cayenne, and ground pepper; set aside. In a large shallow bowl, whisk together egg whites and 3 tablespoons cold water. Add okra, and toss to coat completely. Lift the okra from egg mixture, letting excess drain off; add to cornmeal mixture, and toss to coat evenly.
  2. In a deep 12-inch skillet or Dutch oven, heat oil to 375 degrees on a deep-fry thermometer. Carefully place half of the okra in the oil. Gently stir without disturbing coating. Cook until golden brown, 3 to 6 minutes; adjusting heat as needed to keep the oil temperature between 300 and 350 degrees. With a slotted spoon, transfer okra to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet to drain.
  3. Return oil to 375 degrees; repeat with remaining okra. Season with salt, and serve with lemon wedges and hot sauce, if desired.
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