Recipe: The Best Fried Okra

Recipe: The Best Fried Okra
The right batter is a key to bringing out the best in this favorite Southern dish. (contributed)

It doesn’t get much more Southern than fried okra. Last week I got a hankerin’ for some of the stuff, made some, and sat and ate it until I was about three pieces short of sick. It’s not exactly fresh okra season right now, so I bought a bag of frozen cut okra and used that. It wasn’t quite the same as fresh, but it was still excellent.

This particular recipe makes some of the best fried okra I’ve ever had. Using a box of Zatarain’s Seasoned Fish-Fri Southern Style is the trick. They do all the hard work for you and have all the spices and flavor right in the mix.

In the South, there are basically two ways to do fried okra. Honestly, I love them both – I don’t really have a favorite. This particular method is what I call the “piece” method using a deep fryer. This is where you coat individual pieces of okra in batter and deep fry them. The other method I call the “hash” method, which is where you combine the batter and okra together and cook it stove top in a cast iron skillet. That results in a more hash-like finished product. You’ll see the other method on Southern Bite later this spring.

The Best Fried Okra

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 35 minutes


  • 4 cups of cut okra
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 (12-ounce) box of Zatarain’s Seasoned Fish-Fri Southern Style


  1. Heat the oil in a deep fryer to around 360 degrees.
  2. Soak okra in buttermilk and then dredge in Fish-Fri to coat well. Shake off excess coating.
  3. Carefully add okra to the hot oil and cook until golden brown. (It will be necessary to fry the okra in batches.)
  4. Remove from oil, drain on paper towels and then serve immediately.

This recipe originally appeared on For more great recipes, visit the website or check out ”The Southern Bite Cookbook.”

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