Roasting okra in the oven is a delicious way to enjoy this nutritious summer vegetable. All you need is a few kitchen staples and 30 minutes for this end of summer classic.
Summer may be coming to an end, but okra season is still going strong. Okra--also known as lady's finger-- is a summer staple in the south, and the farmers markets here are currently overflowing with it!
This versatile vegetable is frequently used in gumbo, made into fried okra or sauteed with tomato and onion. You can even eat okra raw.
My favorite way to enjoy okra is by simply roasting it in the oven. By cooking okra at high heat the outside becomes crispy, while the inside of the okra remains crisp and intact.
You will love how quick and easy it is to prepare oven-roasted okra. All you need is a baking sheet or roasting pan and a few simple ingredients that you probably already have on hand.
Apart from fresh okra, we'll need a few pantry essentials:
Canola or vegetable oil: These oils work well for roasting because they have a high smoke point and neutral flavor.
Coarse salt: Also called kosher or sea salt, using a small amount emphasizes okra's natural flavors.
Black pepper: This simple ingredient is everything! Don't be afraid to add a heavy hand of freshly ground black pepper to your roasted okra instead of the recommend ¼ teaspoon.
Okra is a low-calorie and low-fat starchy vegetable. It's packed with important nutrients like Vitamin K, Vitamin A, folate and other B vitamins.
If you've made or eaten okra before, you may have noticed that the inside is prone to getting slimy.
This is because okra contains soluble fiber that breaks down into a sticky substance when cooked for a long period of time.
One cup of sliced okra provides 3 grams of fiber, which can help move you a little closer to the recommended daily intake of 25-34 grams of fiber per day for women and men under 50, respectively.
- Prep the okra by slicing off the top ½ inch of the vegetable. You do not need to slice off the pointy tip of the okra. In fact, this part gets extra crispy and delicious when roasted.
- Add a dash of cayenne pepper for spicy okra or sprinkle with cajun seasoning before roasting for added flavor.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use frozen okra?
Yes! Frozen sliced okra can be used instead of fresh okra in this recipe. You will need to cook frozen okra a few minutes longer to compensate.
Can I use olive oil?
Olive oil is not recommended for roasting because it has smoke point averaging below 400 degrees. Canola or vegetable oil are a good option for roasting.
This okra would also go so well thrown into BBQ tofu bowls!
Simple Oven Roasted Okra
- 1 pound okra
- 2 teaspoons canola or vegetable oil
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper or freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Using a sharp knife, slice off the top ½" of the okra.
- Layer okra evenly on a baking sheet or roasting pan. Drizzle okra with oil. Use clean hands or a spatula to evenly coat the okra with the oil. Sprinkle evenly with coarse salt and black pepper.
- Roast in 425-degree oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir the okra. Return to the oven and roast for 10 more minutes. The okra is done when slightly blackened but still crunchy.
- For bite-sized pieces of roasted okra, simply cut each okra pod in half before roasting. The cook time will remain the same.
- Can I use olive oil? Olive oil is not recommended for roasting because it has smoke point averaging below 400 degrees (3). Canola or vegetable oil are a good option for roasting.