Baked Smoked Okra Dip from For the Culture

Baked Smoked Okra Dip from For the Culture

Makes 5–6 Servings


  • 8 medium okra pods
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 small shallot, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (optional), preferably Duke’s
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce

  • 1/2 cup shredded whole-milk mozzarella
  • 3/4 cup shredded smoked gouda, divided
  • Paprika for sprinkling
  • Corn tortilla chips or toasted bread for serving


  1. Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 425°F. Have a 16-ounce ramekin or two 8-ounce ramekins at hand.

    Step 2

    Trim the tops off the okra and slice them in half lengthwise and then again in half widthwise. Set them aside.

    Step 3

    In a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the shallot and cook, stirring often, until soft but not brown, about 3 minutes. Stir in the pepper flakes, okra, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring often, until the okra just begins to soften and weep some of its slime, 3 or 4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.

    Step 4

    In a large bowl, mix the cream cheese, yogurt, mayonnaise (if using), hot sauce, mozzarella, 1/2 cup of the gouda, and salt and pepper to taste. Fold in the okra and shallots and transfer the mixture to the ramekin(s). Top with the remaining gouda, a splash of olive oil, and a sprinkling of paprika. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the top is a little crusty. Serve warm with chips or bread.

Reprinted with permission from For the Culture: Phenomenal Black Women and Femmes in Food, Interviews, Inspiration and Recipes by Klancy Miller. Order it from Now Serving bookstore here.

Jerrelle is an award-winning author, food stylist, food photographer, food writer and recipe developer. After receiving her Masters in Gastronomy at Boston University, she wrote her first cookbook Black Girl Baking which was nominated for a 2019 James Beard Award in the Baking Category. She now owns and operates her own food photography studio, EJC Studio, in downtown Dallas while contributing recipes to the NYTimes.


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