These crispy polenta fries are the perfect savory snack. Serve them with your favorite dipping sauces for an easy appetizer or call it a light meal.
Need another easy appetizer? Try these simple caprese skewers.
Homemade polenta is a favorite around here, and I’m always looking for new polenta recipes. Enter air fryer polenta fries! Shaped like French fries, these snacks use less oil than potato fries, but like their counterparts, they remain a perfect accompaniment for hamburgers as well as being a perfect appetizer.
This is a great way to use leftover polenta.
Liquid: This recipe calls for water, but if you’re inclined, you can also use chicken, beef, or vegetable broth for a richer flavor.
Polenta: A coarsely ground cornmeal, this shelf stable product is great to keep on hand for last-minute meals. Yellow cornmeal is the most commonly available in the states, but white corn meal is perfectly acceptable.
Seasonings: While this recipe calls for red pepper flakes and black pepper for a spicy kick, the sky’s the limit when it comes to seasoning. Sprinkle with Italian seasonings, garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese for a little nod to Italy; use cajun seasoning, or sprinkle with salt and chili powder.
Making these Crispy Fries
Start by cooking the polenta. You’ll bring water to a boil, then add the dry polenta, cooking it until it becomes thick. Transfer hot polenta into a baking dish, spreading it evenly. Refrigerate until cooled and firm.
With the polenta still in the dish, cut it into 1/2″ strips. Carefully lift the strips out of the pan, and cut as needed to make 1/2″ sticks. Cut into desired lengths. Transfer cut fries to a plate or tray, coat with olive oil, and sprinkle with seasonings.
Place the seasoned fries in a single layer in the air fryer basket or air fryer tray (every model is different) and slide into the preheated air fryer. Cook for 15 minutes or until browned and crispy.
If you have leftover fries, transfer them to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to a week. To reheat, cook in the air fryer for 10-15 minutes at 300°F.
Yes you can! Place the cut and oiled fries in a single layer in a parchment paper lined baking dish or baking sheet and cook for 30-40 minutes in a 425°F oven. Cook until golden brown.
Sure! Polenta is often available pre-cooked at the grocery store. Using this saves a step, certainly. Carefully unwrap the polenta tube and cut the polenta lengthwise into 1/2″ sticks. Proceed with recipe as directed.
- 1 cup of polenta (coarse cornmeal)
- 3 cups of water
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Olive oil or avocado oil
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
- Bring water to a boil over high heat. While water is heating, combine the polenta, salt, and cumin.
- Pour the dry polenta into the boiling water in a steady stream, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium.
- Cook and stir for about 5 minutes or until the cornmeal thickens. It should be the consistency of thick oatmeal.
- Pour the cooked polenta into a well-oiled rectangular baking dish.
- Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
- Cut the firmed polenta into uniform 1/2" sticks.
- Brush the fries on all sides with olive oil (or use an olive oil spray) and sprinkle with seasonings.
- Heat air fryer to 300°F. Fry the polenta sticks for about 15 minutes or until nicely browned.
To cook these polenta fries in an oven, place the cut and oiled fries in a single layer in a parchment paper lined baking dish or baking sheet and cook for 30-40 minutes in a 425°F oven. Cook until golden brown.
While this recipe calls for red pepper flakes and black pepper for a spicy kick, the sky's the limit when it comes to seasoning. Sprinkle with Italian seasonings, garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese for a little nod to Italy; use cajun seasoning, or sprinkle with salt and chili powder.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 10 fries
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 232Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 14mgSodium: 676mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 2gSugar: 0gProtein: 3g