Crunchy Breaded Fried Pickles in an Air Fryer Recipe

Crunchy Breaded Fried Pickles in an Air Fryer Recipe

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Crunchy Breaded Fried Pickles in an Air Fryer Recipe
4.4 - 9 vote[s]

There is no denying that fried food is very tasty. Fried pickles is a funny dish that is a favorite in Southern areas of the United States. The origins of this quirky snack or appetizer are interesting with a few different characters laying claim to having created the fried pickle recipe.

The first theory is that a French fried pickle recipe was published as early as 1962 for the Food Editors Conference in New York.

Another story, which seems to be a popular one, originated in Atkins, Arkansas in 1963. Bernell “Fatman” Austin owned the Duchess Drive-In that sat directly across the road from the Atkins Pickle Plant. Bernell was inspired to create a fried pickle recipe using Atkins Pickles. This version of the fried pickle is only available once a year at the annual Picklefest held in May in Atkins. The treat is known as Fatman’s Original Fried Dill Pickles. All money earned goes to charities and scholarships. The recipe is still a family secret.

The last version is that a cook at the Hollywood Café in Mississippi was running out of fried catfish and needed to come up with something else to feed the already crowded restaurant. Apparently, he grabbed a giant jar of dill pickles, coated them in catfish batter, deep fried them, and served them. They were an instant hit. That was in 1969.

In 1997 three high school pals brought the southern fried pickle to the Minnesota State Fair, calling them the “Preferred Pickle.” They were so popular that the same three friends began mass producing them under KWF Foods. They are sold in bulk to the food service industry.

One thing that seems to be similar in the original recipes is that the pickle slices or spears were coated in what looks like pancake batter. In fact, one of the first recipes was for sweet pickle chips dunked in pancake batter and dropped into a deep fryer. These were heavy and reportedly way too sweet.

A healthier and more savory take on fried pickles involves a lighter batter or a simple breading that comes out crispy on dill pickle slices. They are cooked quickly at a high temperature in an air fryer without all that oil. These can be served with a variety of dipping sauces. The recipes here are for two different versions of fried pickles with 2 dipping sauce suggestions. Not interested in making a dipping sauce? Fried pickles are often served with simply ketchup, Russian dressing, or ranch dip that are all available pre-made.

The Pickle and Timing Matter

When shopping for pickles, try to find lacto-fermented, vinegar free, dill pickles. These will always be in the refrigerated section of the market. Naturally fermented pickles are super crisp and will hold up in the air fryer quite well. They are also good for you because the natural fermentation process produces beneficial probiotics that your gut will thank you for. Pickles cured in vinegar can be a little too mushy for air frying. Don’t fret if you can’t find these special pickles, as not all grocery stores carry them.

Be aware that it is important to keep an eye on the pickles when air frying them at high temperatures. The crisper plate in my air fryer retains heat so well that my pickles only took 5 minutes to crisp up at 390°F. The timing might be longer in a basket or on a rack. Speaking of a rack, feel free to layer the pickles in the fryer using a rack that sits above the basket or plate.

Breaded Air Fryer Pickle Spears

Ingredients:

  • 4 large dill pickles, cut into spears
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 whole egg + 1 TBS water
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 TBS cornmeal
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • Olive oil spray

Total time:18 minPrep time:10 min – Cook time:8 min – Serves:2 people
Author:

Directions:

1. Drain the pickle spears on paper towels and set aside.

2. Set up 3 shallow bowls. Place the flour in the first. Place the egg and water in the second and whisk to combine. Place the bread crumbs, cornmeal, oregano, salt, and pepper in the third bowl and mix up with a fork to combine.

3. Take the basket or crisper plate out of the air fryer and spray it with a little olive oil. Preheat the air fryer to 390°F.

4. Working in batches, coat the pickles with flour, then egg, then bread crumbs. Place them in a single layer in the basket or on the plate. Give them a light spray of oil. Put these in the air fryer and cook until the coating is golden brown and crispy, approximately 6 to 10 minutes. Keep an eye on these, as they can cook quickly.

5. Serve immediately with napkins and a dipping sauce. Sauce recipes follow.

Well Seasoned and Battered Air Fryer Pickle Chips

Air fryer pickle chips

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dill pickle slices (rounds)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/2 cup whole buttermilk
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil

Total time: 18 minPrep time: 10 min – Cook time: 8 min – Serves: 2 people

Directions:

1. Drain the pickle chips on paper towels and set aside.

2. Set up 3 shallow bowls. Place the flour, paprika, garlic powder, pepper, and cayenne in the first and mix well to combine. Place the egg and buttermilk in the second and whisk to combine. Then, add 1/4 cup of the seasoned flour mixture to the egg and buttermilk and whisk again until smooth. Place the bread crumbs, salt, and olive oil in the third bowl and mix well with a fork to coat the breadcrumbs with oil.

3. Take the basket or crisper plate out of the air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 390°F.

4. Working in batches, coat the pickles with flour, then egg batter, then bread crumbs. Place them in a single layer in the basket or on the plate. Put these in the air fryer and cook until the coating is golden brown and crunchy, approximately 6 to 10 minutes. Keep an eye on these, as they can cook quickly.

5. Serve immediately with napkins and a dipping sauce. Sauce recipes follow.

Dipping Sauces

Green Goddess Dipping Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 of a ripe avocado
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt or sour cream
  • 2 TBS mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh flat leaf parsley or cilantro leaves
  • 2 TBS minced scallions or 1 TBS minced chives

Total time: 10 minPrep time: 10 min – Serves: 2 people

Directions:

1. In a food processor, pulse the avocado until almost smooth. Add the sour cream, mayonnaise, salt, and pepper and process until creamy. Fold in the minced parsley or cilantro and scallions or chives.

2. Place in a serving bowl and cover. Chill the dip in the refrigerator until ready to serve with pickles.

Spicy Dipping Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 TBS prepared chili sauce
  • 1-1/2 tsps fresh lemon juice
  • 1 scallion, minced
  • 1 tsp Creole or Cajun seasoning blend
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 4 to 6 good dashes of Tabasco or sriracha

Total time: 10 minPrep time: 10 min – Serves: 2 people

Directions:

1. In a blender or processor, place all of the ingredients and pulse until everything is well combined.

2. Pour into a serving bowl and cover. Chill the dip in the refrigerator until ready to serve with pickles.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *