A crispy outside and a creamy inside, this Baked Polenta Fries with Cajun Aioli recipe is the perfect comfort food snack or appetizer. Gluten-free with vegan option.
Back when I first went gluten-free, I clung to corn tortilla chips. It was as if they were the only good thing left in a gluten-free world.
As I soon learned, there was still a whole wide world full of good food.
That's where polenta comes in.
Polenta Fries Ingredients
It also makes for one snackable fry. Crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside!
Whip up a batch with the most basic ingredients (cornmeal, water, salt, and pepper). To add extra flavor, these polenta fries are flavored with chicken or veggie broth, thyme, and nutritional yeast.
What is nutritional yeast? It is a dairy-free savory seasoning often used for it's nutty, cheesy flavor. Plus, it's loaded with B vitamins and fortified with B12. A win-win in my book.
Dunk those polenta fries into this spicy cajun aioli. Or use a dipping sauce of your choice!
Want more spicy dinner inspiration? This healthy Cajun chicken pasta looks delicious!
More Appetizer Recipes
Baked Polenta Fries with Cajun Aioli
- 2 cups organic chicken broth or vegetable broth
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk or milk of choice
- 1 ½ cups polenta or cornmeal 254g
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter or vegan butter
- ½ cup nutritional yeast (I use Bragg's) 105g
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive oil for brushing
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise or vegenaise
- 1 teaspoon homemade or store-bought cajun seasoning
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- squeeze of lemon
- Grease and line an 8x8 pan with parchment paper, with two sides overhanging to use as handles. In a large saucepan, bring chicken (or veggie) broth and milk to a boil. Once boiling, turn heat down to medium. Slowly add polenta into saucepan, whisking constantly. Reduce heat immediately to medium-low or low, continuing to whisk almost constantly until thick and creamy, about 7-8 minutes. You'll want a lower heat that keeps it from splattering.
- Remove from heat and add butter, nutritional yeast, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine. Transfer to prepared pan. Press polenta into an even layer and smooth top with a spatula. An extra piece of parchment is helpful in pressing polenta into pan.
- Refrigerate for two hours or overnight. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Gently lift out slab of polenta using parchment handles and transfer to cutting board. Slice polenta into 18 (4 x 1-inch) strips and place onto a greased baking sheet. Brush each strip with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
- Bake for 15 minutes, carefully flip over strips, and bake for about 10 to 15 minutes more or until crispy and browned on the edges.
- While the polenta fries are baking, combine the Cajun Aioli ingredients in a small bowl. Stir to combine. Refrigerate until ready to serve with polenta fries.