Have you ever tried making homemade french fries before? They are the BEST! I was a little intimidated the first time I tried making these (15 years ago), and I have made a few mishaps over the years. I'll share all of my tips for making the best homemade fries.
These are not healthy, although I'll give a few ways to make these healthier. Personally, if I'm going to make french fries, I go all out. Like, let's deep fry those bad boys!
- Potatoes: I prefer to use golden, Yukon, or any white potatoes. Sweet potatoes are also an option.
- Oil for frying: I go into more detail below, but I recommend an oil meant for frying foods because it has a high smoke point.
- Salt: I prefer flaked salt or sea salt.
- Optional: You can add some freshly grated parmesan, rosemary, or truffle oil to take these up a notch.
Tips and Tricks
- Cut the fries into the right thickness. Peel and cut into semi-thin fries. You don't want them to be too thin that they overcook and you don't want them to be too thick where they are soggy.
- Use a high rimmed pot. Once upon a time, I made the mistake of trying to fry potatoes in a small pot. The oil boiled over once I added the potatoes (because they have moisture), and I set my stove on fire. If you ever encounter something similar, do not add water! Just smother the fire with a large pot lid.
- Fill the pot no more than a quarter with oil. This gives you ¾ of the pot empty which is a safe amount for frying.
- Do not leave the oil unattended. Never fry any type of food without being present. The oil can catch on fire.
- Prepare a plate with a paper towel on top. The paper towel helps absorb some of the residual oil.
- Add the fries when the oil is ready. You can test the oil by dipping part of the fry in the oil. If the oil starts to bubble, then the oil is ready.
- Use a frying spatula. When removing the french fries from the oil, a frying spatula helps to drain the fries from the oil prior to placing them on the plate.
- Don't add too many sliced potatoes into the oil all at once. It's better to cook the potatoes in small batches. The fries are done when they are golden brown and float to the top.
- Don't mix the french fries frequently while they are frying. This tends to cause the fries to break apart. I mix my fries once halfway through the frying process.
- Salt the fries immediately after removed from the oil. I like to use Moldon's flake salt.
Which Oil is Best for French Fries?
My general answer is to use whatever oil you normally like to use for frying. I've tried 4 different oils and compare them below:
- Vegetable Oil / Canola Oil - Both of these oils make similar tasting french fries. The french fry is heavier in taste and less crispy.
- Sunflower Oil - This makes a lighter tasting french fry, kind of like the way Inn-N-Out fries taste. The fries are also a little more crispy.
- Coconut Oil - This is a "healthier-ish" option, however, you need to be careful to not exceed the smoke point of the oil. So, you will need to cook the fries on a lower heat and for a longer period. These fries have an aftertaste that some people love and some people do not. The fries are heavier in taste.
- Fractionated Coconut Oil - There is no heavy aftertaste like with regular coconut oil. These are heavier in taste as well.
How To Make Fries Healthier
If you are concerned about the effects of deep-frying on your health, then choose one of the alternatives below. I especially love the baking option!
Air Fryer Option
Place cut fries into the air fryer basket. Spray preferred oil on fries. Cook. Salt and enjoy it!
Place parchment paper on the cookie sheet. Mix potatoes in melted butter, coconut oil, or olive oil. Place on a cookie sheet without overcrowding. Cook at 425F on the top rack until starting to brown. Flip fries carefully. Continue to cook until the desired doneness.
Other Things To Consider
If you find that the potatoes start to turn a different color while they are waiting to be fried, you can rest the potatoes in water. However, before careful right before they go into the hot oil. I strain them for a few minutes prior to cooking them. The water and hot oil do not mix!
I've tried substituting sweet potatoes for regular potatoes, and I prefer the sweet potatoes baked.
Are French Fries Gluten-Free?
Yes, french fries are gluten-free if they are made with potatoes, oil, and salt like this recipe. Some packaged french fries may be coated in potato starch or flour, so read the label carefully. However, when making french fries at home, it's easy to ensure the recipe is only using the required ingredients.
Are French Fries Vegan?
Yes, french fries are vegan if they are made from potatoes and fried in an oil that's not made from an animal.
What Do the French Call French Fries?
The French call french fries pommes frites, meaning fried potatoes. If the fries are cut thinly, they are called allumettes.