Buttermilk Fried Okra

Fried okra is a summer staple in our house.

What do you do when your sweet, generous co-worker brings you two bags of fresh from the garden okra? You fry some! Then you pickle some. You even roast some. (recipes to come).

Try our Strawberry Shortcake!

Buttermilk Fried Okra

fresh okra pods diced on a wooden cutting board

Cut the okra, place it in a bowl and stir in the buttermilk to coat evenly. Place the buttermilk coated okra in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before tossing with the cornmeal.  Stir together the dry ingredients, then coat the okra in the cornmeal mixture. Easy-peasy, right?

It’s really simple and OH SO DELICIOUS!  Especially when it’s fresh from the garden. My mother taught me to just coat it in cornmeal and pan fry in a small amount of oil.  I love it this way but it’s not a “batter” type. This was the best-fried okra I have ever eaten.

Note: I keep buttermilk in my refrigerator at ALL TIMES. (for my homemade biscuits) If you don’t, just use the substitute. 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar added to 1 cup of milk and let stand 5 to 10 minutes.

fried okra on a paper towel-lined baking sheet

Fry the okra about 4 or 5 minutes and then transfer to a paper towel-lined sheet pan to drain.

buttermilk fried okra in a white bowl

You must try fried okra if you have never had it before.  This stuff is what the south is about people!

Check out our Southern Yellow Squash Casserole!

Southern Fried Okra Recipe

Buttermilk Fried Okra

Buttermilk fried okra is a Southern tradition. Crispy, crunchy and oh so delicious.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish, Vegetable
Cuisine: American
Keyword: buttermilk, fried, okra, southern
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 287kcal
Author: DSTR


  • 1 pound fresh okra cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising white cornmeal mix
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil for frying


  • Stir together okra and buttermilk in a large bowl. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Stir together cornmeal mix and next 3 ingredients in a separate large bowl.
  • Remove okra from buttermilk, in batches, using a slotted spoon.
  • Dredge in cornmeal mixture, and place in a wire-mesh strainer. Shake off excess.
  • Pour oil to a depth of 1 inch into a large, deep cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven; heat to 300°.
  • Fry okra, in batches, 4 minutes or until golden, turning once. Drain on paper towels.

Note: While frying the okra in batches you can keep the cooked okra warm by placing it in the warm oven.


    Calories: 287kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 1477mg | Potassium: 532mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1069IU | Vitamin C: 26mg | Calcium: 335mg | Iron: 4mg

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