These Baked Polenta Fries With Thyme Honey are the best I have had. They are easy to make and are such a fun and unique snack or appetizer to serve friends and family especially in the summer months! Everyone will love snacking on these babies!
What Exactly IS Polenta?
Polenta is made from boiling cornmeal in water or another liquid. It is usually served as a hot porridge. It can also be cooled and solidified into a loaf that can be baked, fried, or grilled.
Why These Baked Polenta Fries Are “The Best”
If you’ve never had polenta, you wouldn’t know that it is very bland on its own. It CRAVES flavor! Serving bland polenta is like serving corn on the cob without salt or butter. Ehh, no thank you.
Fried polenta?! Yes please!
These polenta fries are (in MY opinion) the best because of how flavorful they are.
I used chicken stock instead of water. Plus threw in some Parmesan cheese, garlic, onion, butter, honey and some thyme! Oh and of course, SALT! So the flavor is definitely NOT lacking.
As for the texture, these fries are slightly crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. What else could you want?
What are polenta fries made of?
Polenta itself, is made from cornmeal and water.
Polenta FRIES could actually be made from the same two ingredients. That is, if you want a bland ‘corn stick’ instead of a flavorful fry.
To add some flavor, many recipes out there use stock or milk to make a creamier or more flavorful polenta.
You get the FRY SHAPE by allowing the polenta to cool and solidify into a large block. Then cut into fries and bake!
How Healthy Is Polenta?
Polenta is actually pretty good for you (depending how much cheese and butter you want to throw in!) Here are some Nutritional Benefits if you are interested. It is low in calories, gluten free, low in fat and rich in complex carbs.
What Is The ‘Right’ Polenta Consistency?
Here is a great video that shows a great consistency. You don’t want TOO think or TOO thick! If you cannot pour it, it is too thick! If it is soupy, it is too thin!
Polenta will thicken as time goes on so keep this in mind! Pour the polenta into your casserole dish right away so you can smooth it out nicely before it solidifies.
Use Leftover Polenta
If you have leftover polenta that has solidified, you could always cut them into long sticks and fry them up.
Other Fun Appetizers:
Here are some items I used for this recipe! You can get them off of Amazon!
Pin the image below to save this recipe!
Baked Polenta Fries With Thyme Honey
- 4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
- 1/2 Cup Minced Yellow Onions
- 4 Cups Stock ((Chicken or Vegetable))
- 1 Cup Yellow Cornmeal ((Polenta))
- 1 1/4 Tsp. Salt
- 1 Tsp. Onion Powder
- 3/4 Tsp. Garlic Powder
- 2 Tbsp Honey
- 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese
- To a large pot, add your butter and onions and allow to simmer over medium-low heat making sure not to burn the butter or onions.
- After about 3-5 minutes, add your stock and bring to a boil. Once boiling, WHISK in polenta slowly until fully incorporated. Make sure all lumps are broken down.
- Turn heat to medium-low and add in the onion powder, garlic powder, honey and salt. It will take some time to thicken so stir every 5 minutes or so. You do not want the polenta to stick to the bottom of the pan so use a flat wooden spoon to scrape the bottom every so often.
- In the meantime, grease a casserole dish including the sides. You can spray it with oil or use butter.
- After about 25-30 minutes, or when the polenta has thickened to a loose pudding consistency, turn off heat and add in your Parmesan cheese.
- Quickly pour your polenta into your casserole dish smoothing with the spoon. Make sure your polenta is evenly distributed in the dish.
- Allow to cool and set in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours (or overnight).
- Spray an area on your counter with cooking spray or lay down parchment paper. Then turn entire dish upside down onto the counter. It should slip right out.
- Using a pizza cutter or large knife, cut your polenta rectangle in HALf lengthwise. Then cut into individual fries. (I was able to get 26 fries, 2 rows of 13, that are about 3/4″wide.) See photo to get a better idea.
- Bake at 425 degrees F on the middle rack for 20 minutes (or until golden brown on the bottom) then flip each fry over and bake another 5-7 minutes. I suggest using tongs to flip!!
- When light browned on both sides, remove and grate some fresh Parmesan cheese over top and garnish with thyme leaves. Serve with warm marina sauce on the side for dipping.