Fried polenta is a sinfully easy dish to make and a surprisingly delicious one to eat. The topping ideas for fried polenta are countless as it is neutral and acts as a sponge of tastes, so whatever you decide to top it with will be the right decision. So what are the best fried polenta toppings?
Cheese, fried vegetables, pizza topping, prosciutto and peppers, lettuce and arugula, chicken, sausage, caramelized onions, tomatoes and shrimp, garlic and parmesan, beef patty and BBQ sauce, ricotta, crème Fraiche and bacon, rice, goat cheese and honey, salsa and cheese, spinach and garlic are some of the best-fried polenta toppings.
Fried polenta is excellent yet, sadly, underrated food, primarily because lack of ideas on what to top it with. Ironically enough, the fried polenta topping ideas are countless and very creative. In a matter of minutes, you can have a delicious meal or snack with as little kitchen chaos as possible.
In the following paragraphs, I will list the 25 best-fried polenta toppings, vegan, vegetarian, and meaty, and I will give you a tip or two on how to fry polenta without sticking.
What Can You Put on Top of Fried Polenta?
Since fried polenta is of such taste and texture that makes it is highly adaptable to any topping, you can top it with several things to make it more elegant, rich, rustic, or fun. Fried polenta fits right in with many combinations, as long as you are creative and aren’t afraid to experiment.
Mushrooms and Basil
Fried mushrooms and basil have always been known as the perfect couple. Sizzle the mushrooms with salt and pepper and throw some basil, dry or fresh. They will release a delicious gravy-like juice that will sink into the polenta giving it that recognizable mushroom flavor with the herbal basil touch.
Yes, it is that simple. The grated cheese over your fried polenta will melt and penetrate all nukes and crannies, making your polenta delightfully cheesy and even creamier. If you aren’t in the mood to get creative and think about what you want, go with simplicity, and you won’t regret it.
Sizzle some peppers, onions, carrots, and corn, and spice things up with a few drops of soy sauce. You’ll have a tasty topping for your fried polenta in just a few minutes.
Just like pizza topping goes on almost any base, fried polenta goes with almost any topping, so it is no wonder that pizza topping and fried polenta pair up perfectly. Prepare for a meaty and cheesy polenta; sauce it up and enjoy.
Prosciutto and Green Peppers
In just under a minute, you’ll have an elegant meal. Slice the pepper and throw it over the prosciutto strips, to add texture, freshness, and color.
Fresh Lettuce and Arugula
Fresh lettuce and arugula go with almost everything as a salad, and as a topping, they mash perfectly with fried polenta. Chop them finely and put them on your fried polenta. Top everything with balsamic crème; there you have it, another tasty, easy, simple, and fresh meal.
Grilled Chicken Strips
The natural juices of the grilled chicken will give your fried polenta a nice chicken and meaty flavor, with a recognizable smoky grill aroma. The texture of the chicken matches the softness of the fried polenta, with the whole combination resembling chicken and mashed potatoes- perfection.
Pulled pork is, in itself, pure magic. The creamy interior of the polenta, combined with the soft and flavorful pork, will result in a rustic yet refined meal. Add on top of your fried polenta, and you’ll make yourself one of the most enjoyable meals ever.
Salsa Sauce and Cheese
Salsa goes excellent as a topping to many bases enriching and reviving all the dormant flavors you never knew existed. This combination will actively excite your palate and stimulate your creativity even more.
Whether sunny side up, scrambled, or soft boiled, eggs enrich your fried polenta and make it much tastier. The sunny-side-up eggs will let the yolk spill all over your polenta, the scrambled eggs will mash into the polenta texture, and the soft-boiled eggs combine the first two. Whichever you choose will be the right decision.
The irresistible greasy juices from the freshly fried sausages will get inside the polenta and make it taste like heaven. The smoky sausage smell and flavor will go incredibly well with the fried polenta.
Soft, juicy, and almost meaty, the caramelized onion will add texture, aroma, and edge to your fried polenta. Add some of the sauce where the onions are caramelized, and enjoy the fantastic combination.
Tomatoes and Shrimp
Grill a few cherry tomatoes and top your fried polenta with them, along with some steamed and buttery shrimp. Seemingly, the three flavors combined don’t mash well, but in practice, prepare to learn quite the opposite.
Garlic and Parmesan
The garlic and parmesan will give a Mediterranean note to your fried polenta. Sizzle the garlic with olive oil and sprinkle some parmesan over it. Let the parmesan melt and smear the mixture over the polenta; you’ll get a finger-licking result.
Whether bacon strips or bacon bits, you can’t go wrong with bacon. Sprinkle the bacon bits or lay the bacon strips and let the fried polenta soak all the smokiness and greasiness of the meaty topping.
Beef Patty and BBQ Sauce
Have you ever heard of polenta burgers? Well, they exist, and they are excellent. Place your grilled beef patty on your fried polenta and sprinkle some BBQ sauce over it; you can also make things more interesting with chopped scallions.
Olives and Almonds
Blend olives and almonds into a grainy mixture and spread it over your fried polenta. This is a simple and incredibly elegant solution, and it will take you a minute to make it.
As simple as it gets, spreading ricotta over your fried polenta will add creaminess, freshness, and a whole other dimension to your meal. An excellent solution for breakfast of a between-meal snack.
Crème Fraiche and Bacon
You cannot go wrong with this combination. The slightly tangy crème Fraiche, combined with the rich-flavored bacon, will turn our polenta into a feast for the palate and the eyes.
A bit more time-consuming than the previous ideas, fried polenta topped with fried rice is definitely worth the extra time. Add whatever you want to your rice, though I’d recommend maze and peas. Top your fried polenta with a ball of delicious rice and let it delight you.
Goat Cheese and Honey
A bit unusual combination, but it works. The distinctive smell of the goat cheese will add character to the fried polenta, and the honey will balance everything out nicely, amplifying and dimming the flavors simultaneously.
Since we talked about pizza polenta, why not talk about pasta polenta too? Bolognese-topped fried polenta just makes sense. The juices from the sauce mash up with the soft and tame polenta, creating an incredibly compatible combination.
Fried Puree with Garlic
Spinach puree with garlic is always a winning combination. The neutralness of the polenta comes perfectly into play with the sharpness of the spinach and garlic duo. Combined with this creamy and edgy topping, fried polenta comes to life in ways you never imagined it could.
Tuna and fried polenta are great buddies completing each other perfectly. What the polenta lacks, which is edge and character, the tuna has plenty of, and the fried polenta makes up for the expressive features of the tuna, toning them a bit down.
Can Polenta Be Pan Fried?
Yes, polenta can be pan-fried and pretty simple too. The trick is not to use oil but butter to prevent the polenta from sticking and falling apart. The extra butter fat will stabilize the polenta and help it retain its structure.
Can You Fry Pre-Cooked Polenta?
Yes, you can fry pre-cooked polenta. Cut the polenta into medium-thick slices and fry them in a mixture of melted butter and olive oil to prevent it from falling apart.
How Do You Fry Polenta Without Sticking?
The main factor in non-sticky polenta is a non-stick pan, and the second factor is the oil. Use a pan similar to those for pancakes or crepes- Teflon, granite, or cast iron pans work best. Use butter or olive oil to fry the polenta or a mixture of that two.