Crispy Sweet Potato Fries satisfies that fast food urge and makes having french fries at home possible – not to mention much healthier by being oven-fried or air fried. It’s that same salty crunch without being a dangerously addictive food.Jump to Recipe
SATIETY & PALATABILITY
French fries are often the perfect side dish. There’s no way around it. They’re crunchy, salty, fun to dip, and soft on the inside. On the downside though, French fries are a hyper-palatable food. Hyper meaning excessive and palatable meaning pleasurable. These types of foods are generally processed and high in fats and sugars. Which just means that they are so very satisfying. They’re addictive, to say the least. In these same ranks with French fries include pizza, doughnuts, and bagels (oh my!). Yup, my mouth is watering.
Plain potatoes on the other hand are not on this list. Because potatoes on their own are, well…bland. Re: not addicting. But what plain potatoes lack for being excessively pleasurable, they make up for being highly satiating. That is to say that they will fill you up for longer with the lowest amount of calories and fat.
The takeaway then is that frying potatoes and adding salt and oil to the mix is what makes them so addicting. Which is a no-brainer. You can fry just about anything and make it addicting. So, the question then, is can we have our cake and eat it too? I’m up for the challenge.
One of the best things about French fries is that they can contrast many things really well. Whether it’s a salad, a sandwich, or burgers. They give a salty crunch to a healthy fresh dish and are a staple to many other meals. That being said, for a side dish that has proven its need and has us hooked – I think it’s imperative to be able to make these at home.
What’s also nice is having several methods of being able to make these. This leads to flexibility, and flexibility in a diet is always a positive thing. Making crispy French fries at home that aren’t deep-fried is possible too. Eliminating the oil from deep frying – they become a lot less addicting in the bad way (oil) and a lot more addicting in a good way (vegetables). I love to make these at home and have tons of different condiments to dip them in, like ketchup, bbq sauce, ranch, or honey mustard.
CRISPY SWEET POTATO FRIES
This recipe gives two directions. One for cooking the French fries in an air fryer and another for cooking them in the oven. Soaking the fries beforehand for both methods is absolutely necessary. I used to skip this step, but to get the crunch of French fries the starch needs to be removed so that they become rigid and don’t wind up soggy. So, don’t skip this step or you won’t get that crunch you’re after.
Immediately following soaking the fries, they need to be dried so that again, they don’t end up soft and limp. They can quickly just get towel dried after soaking. After this very important two-step process, you can season the fries however you like. And depending on what works for you, they can get air-fried or baked. Personally, I might actually like the baked method better!
This same technique can obviously work for regular potatoes as well. For that, I recommend using russet potatoes. I like using sea salt on my fries because of the larger flakes of salt – I think they tend to give more flavor. To mix things up you can also season the fries as garlic fries with minced garlic, parsley, and parmesan or you can do cajun fries! With sweet potato fries, in particular, cinnamon sugar can be a really fun twist.
REHEATING & STORING
These fries will keep cut and uncooked in a sealed container in the refrigerator or the freezer. After cooking, bake them in the oven at 400 to reheat.
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Crispy Sweet Potato Fries
- 3 large sweet potatoes
- 2 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
Prep the sweet potatoes by slicing into match sticks: cut the potato in quarters lengthwise, then slice each quarter into
Soak in cold water for an hour or for 20 minutes minimum. This helps remove the starches from the potato so they get crispy.
Drain potatoes and thoroughly dry.
Season with sea salt, pepper, and olive oil and toss together using your hands.
TO AIR FRY
Some air fryers you can stack the fries and they won’t become soggy. If yours does not work like this, work in batches.
Cook the fries in the air fryer at 400 for 10-12 minutes.
Season again with salt after baking if desired.
TO OVEN FRY
Preheat the oven to 425. If you have a convectional bake setting on your oven, use this.
Set French fries out on a foil lined baking sheet sprayed with nonstick spray. Its okay if they overlap, but spread them out as much as possible.
Bake French fries for 20 minutes or until golden and crispy.
Season again with salt after baking if desired.
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