Garlic Sautéed Okra

Garlic sauteed okra

The Spruce

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
89 Calories
7g Fat
6g Carbs
2g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 89
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 9%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 8mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 19mg 94%
Calcium 92mg 7%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 161mg 3%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Okra's delicate grassy flavor is highlighted by this simple cooking method. By cooking the pods whole, quickly, and without liquid, you avoid the factors that make it slimy, and you can enjoy its fabulous flavor, enhanced by a touch of garlic, without any of the odd texture that keeps many away from this delicious and nutritious vegetable.

Use smaller pods for our recipe, as the quick treatment cooks little pods well, while the really big ones tend to be a bit tough and fair better when chopped up and stewed. What makes okra slimy is when it's cooked with water or liquid for extended periods of time. So by minimizing the water content in the recipe, the vegetable keeps its crunch. Some cooks soak their pods in water with vinegar and then rinse and pat dry before cooking, but a good rinse and very dry pods do the trick to avoid the feared gooey texture.

There is no one way to cook okra; it all depends on personal taste. Some people like it in stews, some like it deep-fried, some sautéed, boiled, grilled, or roasted. Our recipe makes it quick and easy to enjoy it, totally crunchy and full of flavor.

Try other tasty and not-slimy recipes, like roasted okra or grilled okra.


Click Play to See This Simple Sauteed Okra with Garlic Recipe Come Together


  • 1 pound okra

  • Garnish:

    2 teaspoons cooking oil (olive, grapeseed, or other)

  • 1 clove clove garlic

  • Salt (to taste)

  • Optional:

    1 cup grape tomatoes

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Garlic Sautéed Okra recipe ingredients
    Garlic Sautéed Okra Ingredients . The Spruce
  2. Trim off and discard the stem ends of the okra pods. Rinse the trimmed pods, carefully pat them dry, and set them aside. Extra water in the cooking process can lead to the slick factor this okra recipe is designed to avoid, so the dryer the better.

    Garlic Sautéed Okra
    Trim and Discard Ends of Okra . The Spruce
  3. Peel the garlic clove, cut it in half lengthwise, and slice it crosswise as thinly as possible.

    Garlic Sautéed Okra recipe
    Peel and Cut Garlic . The Spruce
  4. Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the oil, swirl the pan to coat the bottom with the oil, and heat until the oil shimmers, about 30 seconds.

  5. Add the garlic and let it sizzle until it just starts to turn golden, about 1 minute.

    Garlic Sautéed Okra recipe
    Add Garlic to the Oil . The Spruce
  6. Add the okra, stir to coat it with oil, and combine it with the garlic. Cover and cook, shaking the pan frequently to move the okra pods around inside until the okra is starting to brown on the edges and is tender to the bite, about 8 minutes. 

    Garlic Sautéed Okra recipe
    Cook the Okra . The Spruce
  7. Transfer the okra to a serving platter or individual plates. Add the optional tomatoes if using and sprinkle with salt.

    Garlic Sautéed Okra recipe
    Serve the Okra . The Spruce
  8. Enjoy.

Is Okra Good for You?

Okra is packed with a lot of nutritional benefits. It's filled with great levels of magnesium, niacin, potassium, vitamins A, C, and K, fiber, and folate. What makes okra most interesting is that it has been used in traditional medicine for years as an aid in digestive issues, from ulcers to constipation. Its inner mucilage, the slimy substance inside of the pods, can help relieve some of these symptoms and is now being studied by Western medicine.

Additions and Substitutions for Delicious Okra

Here are a few of our favorite additions and substitutions:

  • Use a green onion cut into short lengths and then slivers instead of garlic for a gentler flavor.
  • Drizzle on a teaspoon of soy sauce or tamari instead of using salt.
  • Add a teaspoon of freshly grated ginger alongside the garlic for a flavorful kick.
  • Throw in a handful of tiny grape tomatoes with the okra for brightness and juiciness. Tomatoes have acid in them that keeps the slime in check.
  • Make an herby sauce by blending 1/2 cup of basil, 1/2 cup of cilantro, 1/2 cup of parsley, 1/4 cup of olive oil, 1/4 cup of lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Toss the cooked okra in it before serving.
  • Sprinkle on some freshly chopped mint before serving. The sweetness of mint is a particularly good match for the grassiness of okra.
  • Add 1/2 cup of raw unsalted cashews during the last minute on the stove.
  • Add 1/4 teaspoon chile flakes or a small fresh green chile, chopped, added along with the garlic to spice things up.
  • Add a simple spritz of fresh lemon juice before serving for a lovely brightness.
Article Sources
The Spruce Eats uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. United States, Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. FoodData Central, "Okra, raw." 1 April 2019.

  2. Ortaç, Deniz et al. “In vivo anti-ulcerogenic effect of okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) on ethanol-induced acute gastric mucosal lesions.” Pharmaceutical Biology vol. 56,1 (2018): 165-175. doi:10.1080/13880209.2018.1442481