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Originally written by Kimberly Cripps , former SDSU Extension Family & Community Health Field Specialist, with contributions by Megan Erickson, former SDSU Extension Nutrition Field Specialist, and Hope Kleine, former SDSU Extension Health Education Field Specialist.

Pick it!

  • Fresh okra should be firm and brightly colored.
  • It can be stored, unwashed, in perforated plastic in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Once the ridges and tip start to turn dark, it should be discarded.
  • Okra also goes well with tomatoes, onions, corn, shellfish, and fish stock.

Try it!

  • Okra is most popularly prepared as gumbo, a Louisiana Creole dish. The juices in the okra help to thicken the sauce of the dish.
  • To make a light version of fried okra, slice the okra and season with some salt and pepper. Heat a frying pan over medium heat and coat with cooking spray and add okra. Turn okra in pan often with spoon or spatula, and cook until browned, about 10 minutes.
  • Serve with hot sauce or your favorite relish.

Like it! Okra with Corn and Tomatoes


  • 2 Tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ teaspoon each of thyme, red pepper flakes, basil
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
  • 3 large fresh ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • About 2 cups corn–fresh, frozen, or canned
  • 2 cups small (2-inch pods) okra pods, whole, or in ¼ inch thick rounds
  • ½ cup water or chicken stock
  • ¾-teaspoon salt
  • ¼-teaspoon pepper


  1. In a 10-inch iron skillet or heavy pan, heat olive oil, and add onions, bay leaves, thyme, basil, and red pepper flakes.
  2. Sauté and stir until onions are limp, add bell pepper, and continue cooking until onions are translucent.
  3. Add tomatoes, okra, water, salt, and pepper.
  4. Reduce heat to low, and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Add corn and cook 5 minutes longer.
  6. Taste, adjust seasoning if needed. Serve hot on a bed of rice or pasta if desired.

Yield: 6 servings

Nutrition Facts per Serving: Calories 130; Fat 5g; Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 310mg; Carbohydrates 18g; Sugar 6g; Fiber 4g; Protein 3g

Program Materials

Colorful fact sheets, recipe cards and educational videos provide educators and families with fun, engaging tools to enhance any dietary curriculum in a variety of settings.

Quick resources are available in the fact sheets below. Download the zipped folder to use the lesson plan, sampling instructions, recipes and display materials in your educational program.