These crispy polenta fries are super delicious and they are the perfect finger food. This healthy snack is gluten-free, easy to make and plant-based. Enjoy with a creamy cashew garlic dip.
Crispy Polenta Fries – Baked or Air-Fried!
Crispy, hearty polenta fries with a creamy cashew garlic dip! Say what?! Yes, this is the perfect finger food recipe which is much healthier than most store-bought snacks. This gluten-free, plant-based snack is amazing for Netflix evenings or even as a side dish. If you love snacks, make sure to also check out these crispy onion bhaji, pakora, or air-fried oyster mushrooms.
It’s a very popular dish in Brazil and I really love it! These crispy polenta sticks are super easy to make, and you will have a hard time to stop eating them, haha! The recipe is inspired by tasty !
I enjoyed the polenta fries with a creamy cashew garlic dip, which tastes heavenly! It’s made with cashews (obviously), garlic, plant-based milk, and a couple of spices. You simply need to soak the cashews for a couple of hours, OR you can boil them for 20 minutes until they are soft.
Then you’ll just need to process all ingredients in a food processor or blender. I love using my small Ninja Food Processor for all kind of sauces and dips. It works especially great for small quantities, and the price was just $30 US.
How To Make Polenta Fries?
Making these polenta sticks is super easy! Check the full instructions in the recipe card below.
- All you need to do is cooking cornmeal in a pot with vegetable broth (with the addition of some spices and nutritional yeast flakes aka nooch).
- Then you’ll need to pour the mixture into a baking dish and let it cool for an hour.
- Meanwhile, you can prepare the breading and the cashew dip, but both takes only about 10 minutes.
- Once the polenta mixture is cold and firm, you’ll need to slice it into sticks/fries.
- I prefer to brush each slice with a little of oil and then coat it with the breading.
- Bake in the oven for about 40-45 minutes (425 °F/220 °C), or until golden brown. Flip after 25 minutes and spray with cooking spray.
Air Fryer Polenta Fries
First, spray the basket with oil, then spread a single layer of the fries, leaving space in between, and lightly spray them with oil, too. Air fry at 375 °F/190 °C for 15-20 minutes (based on their size and thickness) or until golden brown and crispy. Make sure to flip them halfway.
These Polenta Fries are:
- Plant-based (Vegan)
- Easy to make
- The perfect finger food
- Great snack or side dish
- Low in fat (if baked in the oven)
Baked, not deep-fried
These gluten-free polenta sticks will turn out crispy even when you bake them in the oven. The secret is to brush them with a little of oil (you only need a tiny bit) and bake them in the oven until they are golden brown and crispy!
If you don’t want to wait 45 minutes until they are crispy and don’t mind deep-fried food, you could also deep-fry them in oil. The method for air fryer polenta fries is mentioned above.
I made my own breading with oat flour (you can use gluten-free oats if you have celiac disease), nutritional yeast flakes, and a couple of spices. You can use Panko breadcrumbs instead of oats.
If you make this delicious snack, then please leave a comment below and let me know how it turned out! And if you even take a photo of it, then I would love to see it. You can DM it to me on Instagram. Don’t forget to tag me in your Insta caption + photo with @elavegan and use the hashtag #elavegan, and I will gladly check out your post. 🙂
If you love hearty snacks, definitely also check out the following recipes.
More Vegan Snacks
- Buffalo Chickpea Taquitos
- Vegan Grilled Cheese
- Oven Baked Potato Wedges
- Vegan Parmesan Fries
- Veggie Fritters
- Cauliflower Patties
- This recipe has a video for easy visual instructions (see below).
- Pour vegetable broth into a pot, add all spices, sea salt, and pepper and bring to a boil.
- Slowly add the cornmeal and whisk constantly to prevent lumps. Cook for about 5 minutes on low heat, then turn off the heat.
- Pour the polenta into a baking dish, lined with parchment paper. I used a 9-inch square pan. Put the pan into the fridge for about 1 hour to set.
- For the breading, simply put all ingredients into a small bowl and mix with a spoon.
- Remove the cold polenta from the pan and cut it into equally sized slices. Scroll up to see the step-by-step pictures. Preheat the oven to 425 °F (220 °C).
- Brush the polenta slices with a little vegetable oil and coat with the breading mixture.
- Bake in the oven for about 40-45 minutes or until golden brown. Flip after 25 minutes and spray with cooking spray.
- Enjoy with a dip of choice. Check the recipe notes for my garlic cashew dip recipe.
- Check the blog post for the air-fryer method.
- 2/3 cup cashews, soaked (100 g)
- 2/3 cup plant-based milk or water (160 ml)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Juice of 1 small lime
- 1/3 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp nutritional yeast flakes
- Sea salt & pepper to taste
- Recipe serves 4. Nutrition facts are for one serving.
Nutrition information is an estimate and has been calculated automatically
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