How To Fry Peppers (Step-By-Step Instructions for 3 Methods)

Have you been dying to do something new with your peppers? Have you considered frying them?

Peppers can be fried in a deep fryer, in a pan on the stove, or in an air fryer. Start by cutting the pepper into rings, pat them dry, and use the same method you would to bread onion rings – dredge the rings in flour, dip them into beaten egg, and bread with spiced panko. Fried peppers are deliciously crispy and juicy and make a great snack!

Keep reading to learn three ways to make incredible fried peppers!

Can you fry peppers?

What’s all the hubbub about?

You can fry peppers. Fried peppers are crispy and juicy at the same time. They’re a great side dish and the perfect snack to take to game-day!

Peppers are over 90% water. The burst of juicy flavors combined with the crispy coating is bound to make you smile – and grab another one!

Frying peppers might be a couple steps above making boxed mac and cheese, but we still believe anyone can do it with the right attitude. And what better way to bask in your accomplishment than to share it with friends?

Is it healthy to fry peppers?

So long as you don’t eat fried peppers every day, you should be good to go.

It is not healthy to fry peppers. Oily food can strain your digestive system, act as a laxative, encourage acne, mess up your gut bacteria, and increase your risk of heart disease. That being said, if you consume in moderation then you probably won’t run into these issues. Plus they’re good for your mental health!

It’s not exactly healthy to fry peppers. However, diets have the ability to really damage self esteem – so writing them off altogether may not be your best bet.

In all, moderation is key. Enjoy fried peppers on occasion because they’ll make you happy – which is healthy! But don’t eat them every day, because that isn’t healthy.

Can you fry peppers without oil?

While fried foods most likely conjure up the mental image of fast food fryer vats full of fries and chicken nuggets, not all frying methods require gallons of oil.

You can fry peppers without oil in an air fryer!

While not technically fried, the air fryer operates similarly to an convection oven and circulates air around the wire rack or basket that holds the food. This means the breaded peppers will cook and get crispy like they would in an oven without the oil.

How to prep and bread peppers before frying

First off, let’s get these peppers ready to go!

To prep and bread peppers before frying, you: dip them in egg, then flour, then egg again, and finally panko. Keep one hand for the egg and the other for the flour and panko. This isn’t the time for moderation – you want your peppers to be thoroughly breaded!

You need three shallow bowls: one for flour, one for eggs, and one for a panko mix.

Admittedly this video isn’t about frying peppers, but it has some great tips on how to set up and use your breading station!

Your panko mix can include any spices you want. Some of our favorites include:

  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Paprika
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Chili powder

Remember the golden rule: keep one hand dry and one hand wet! 

AKA, one hand for the egg and the other hand for the flour and panko.

You’re going to start off by dipping your cut peppers in the eggs. Then head over to the flour. Repeat in the eggs again, finally landing in the panko.

Unless you're working with small peppers, you'll want to cut them into rings or slices before breading.

You want your peppers to be heavily breaded. Don’t skimp out! The fate of these bad boys depends on your willingness to commit to the breading process.

If it seems like you’re going to run out of flour or panko, we repeat, do not skimp out! Just refill the bowl. You’ll thank us later.

Ideally you’d put the breaded pepper slices on a wire rack. If you don’t have a rack, you can opt for parchment paper since it won’t stick. 

Wash your hands well after breading since you were working with raw eggs. Safety should always be your top priority in the kitchen.

How to fry peppers in a deep fryer

The deep fryer is probably what comes to mind first when you think about fried peppers.

To fry peppers in a deep fryer, heat your oil to 375°F. Slowly lower your peppers into the oil in a frying basket. Carefully turn them over with tongs after 3 minutes. After another 3 minutes, lift the basket out of the oil and place the peppers on a plate with a couple layers of paper towels.

Vat fryers are good for frying peppers because of their size and temperature control options.

You need a deep pot for this technique, unless you own a literal deep fryer (in which case you likely already know how to use it!). Woks will also do the trick.

Leave a few inches of room between the oil and the top of the pot. We hate to break it to you, but one little bottle of olive oil isn’t going to cut it this time around.

Pro tip: Olive oil shouldn’t be your go-to anyway. Olive oil has too low of a smoke point. Opt for avocado oil, sunflower oil, or grapeseed oil instead (among others).

Now it’s go-time. Heat your oil to a piping 375 degrees F. 

Place your peppers in a frying basket. Slowly lower the basket of peppers into the hot oil.

Carefully turn your peppers once with tongs at the 3 minute mark. If they’re not crispy enough, leave them in longer. Careful not to burn them though!

Lift up your frying basket and remove your peppers, placing them on a plate with a few layers of paper towels to remove excess oil. Let them cool a bit before serving, but the sooner the better!

Another note: you might be worried about getting splashed with oil. Wearing clothes you don’t care about isn’t a bad idea!

But take comfort in the fact that breaded food splashes much less than other kinds of food. Most of the splashing is due to water content coming in contact with the oil, whereas the breading has soaked up most of the moisture.

How to fry peppers in a pan on the oven

Frying peppers in a pan on the stove is many people’s go-to method.

To fry peppers in a pan on the oven, fill a deep pan with about an inch of oil. Heat the oil on medium-high heat. Place your peppers in the pan and fry them for a couple of minutes on each side. Take them out and put them on a plate that has a few layers of paper towels on it.

Panfrying your peppers is easily and more accessible than the other methods since it doesn't require specialized equipment.

Panfrying peppers is simpler than using a deep fryer. Some may argue that the peppers don’t get as crispy, but if you do it right then they should be similar!

Fill a deep pan with an inch or so of oil. Again, your typical cooking oil probably won’t make the cut, and you should use an oil with a high smoke point.

Heat the oil up on medium-high. Flick a tiny bit of water in the oil, and if it sizzles, it’s hot enough! 

Throw (rather, carefully place) those babies in the pan. They shouldn’t take very long – a few minutes on each side and you’re all set!

How to fry peppers in an air fryer

If you have an air fryer, you’re in for a treat!

To fry peppers in an air fryer, set your air fryer to 400°F and fry the peppers for 4 minutes on each side. Be sure that none of your peppers are overlapping because that would result in soggy peppers! Remove the peppers from the air fryer and place them on a plate that has a layer of paper towels on it.

If you have an air fryer, you're well on your way to healthier fried peppers!

Some people like to preheat their air fryers, but we don’t think it’s necessary.

Place your peppers in a rack on the air fryer, and don’t worry if you have to do a few rounds. It’s better to leave space between them than it is to have soggy peppers!

Set your air fryer to 400°F and fry those babies for 4 minutes per side. Add an additional minute if they aren’t crispy enough.

Between the simplicity and lack of oil, air fryers are becoming a household staple for a reason!