Crispy Baked Polenta Sticks with Ranch Dip

  • Prep-time: / Ready In:
  • Makes 32 sticks + 1¾ cups dip
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Seasoned polenta sticks are rolled in bread crumbs and baked to crispy perfection for a deliciously dip-friendly snack. This recipe includes instructions for an easy homemade vegan Ranch Dip, but you can also substitute warmed marinara sauce to keep things easy. This recipe makes for a great Thanksgiving appetizer or a tasty midday treat to tide you over until dinner time.


  • 2 cups unsweetened, unflavored plant-based milk
  • 1 cup dry polenta
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
  • 4½ teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1½ teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
  • 1 12-oz. package soft silken tofu (or 1 15-oz. can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained)
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley (or ½ teaspoon dried parsley)
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill (or ½ teaspoon dried dill weed)
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh chives (or ½ teaspoon dried chives)


  • In a medium saucepan bring milk and 2 cups water to boiling. Gradually whisk in polenta. Reduce heat to low; cook 25 minutes or until thick and creamy, stirring frequently. Add in nutritional yeast, flaxseed meal, 3 teaspoons white wine vinegar, the lemon juice, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon sea salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper; mix well. Cook and stir 3 minutes more.
  • On a baking sheet spread polenta mixture into an 8×6-inch rectangle that is ½ inch thick. Let cool 5 minutes. Cover and chill for at least 1 and up to 12 hours.
  • For Ranch Dip, in a blender combine the tofu, onion powder, and the remaining 1½ teaspoons each garlic powder and vinegar. Cover and blend until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and pulse to combine. Transfer dip to a bowl and stir in parsley, dill, and chives. Chill 1 hour before serving.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Slice chilled polenta in half lengthwise to make two long rectangles. Slice crosswise to divide each rectangle into 16 half-inch-thick sticks, for a total of 32 sticks.
  • Place bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Dredge polenta sticks in crumbs until well coated. Arrange sticks on a baking sheet, spacing them at least ½ inch apart. Bake 20 minutes or until polenta sticks are crispy. Serve right away with Ranch Dip.

Comments (14)

(5 from 6 votes)

Recipe Rating

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Ours were nice and crisp on the outside but surprisingly soft on the inside. I wonder if others found this too or did we use a less appropriate grind of cornmeal.


Did I do something wrong? chilled for 12 hours in casserole dish as mixture was pourable. Still moist, cannot cut into sticks.

Chava Cohen

Can these be prepared in advance and baked or heated up later?

Marge Teilhaber

1 cup dry polenta = 1C coarse cornmeal Is that correct?

Glenn A.

That's the equivalency I always use when making polenta with yellow cornmeal. Works for me. Just make sure your liquid to dry ratios are good. Usually a 3:1 will do. I never use p/b milk for polenta. Don't like the consistency. Lo-So Veggie broth with some seasoning or a combo of seasoned broth w/water, about half and half, is what I use. Whisk vigorously when adding the polenta or cornmeal to keep from clumping. Stir as needed. Or use an emersion blender, if you have one, at the end of the cook. It makes the batch super creamy without any milk needed.

Janet Schaab

Can anyone give air fryer instructions for these?


When is the tofu or beans added to the recipe?


Sorry… in the dip.


Step 3.


I just read the recipe and was thinking the same thing... a lot of the recipes here are confusing where diverse components are lumped together. I wish they would simply separate different facets of the recipe into clear sections with headings, like... "polenta sticks" then "dip".


Read Step 3


Wondering about adding some cheese?


Recipes here are plant-based only. There is a No-cheese recipe here on the website if that is what you are looking for. Search No Cheese

Kristen stead

These are amazing! I made them just as described, what a fantastic side dish or snack! My husband had thirds!

About the Author

Headshot of Darshana Thacker

About the Author

Darshana Thacker Wendel

Darshana Thacker Wendel is a whole-food, plant-based chef and former culinary projects manager for Forks Over Knives. A graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute, she is the author of Forks Over Knives: Flavor! She created the recipes for Forks Over Knives Family and was a lead recipe contributor to the New York Times bestseller The Forks Over Knives Plan. Her recipes have been published in The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health, and LA Yoga magazine online. Visit and follow her on Instagram for more.
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