French fries are one of those things that are kind of tough to make at home – especially if you don’t have or want to use a deep fryer, it’s hard to get them nice and crispy in the oven. While these fries aren’t necessarily exactly the same as deep fried restaurant style ones, they are still really good and crispy. And with a lot less fat!
I love sweet potato fries – the little bit of extra flavor and sweetness really makes them seem like a treat. But if you want to stick to regular potatoes, this technique works fine with them, too:
Slice your potato into thin strips – try to make them about a quarter of an inch thick, and try to keep them all roughly similar in size – they get much crispier and cook more evenly if you keep them pretty thin. I don’t bother peeling them because I think the skin adds a nice touch (and I’m lazy, which is always a factor) but you can peel them if you want to.
Grease a cookie sheet, piece of aluminum foil, or one of those pizza pan cookie sheets with the holes in it (like this) – don’t use a silicone baking liner for this one because it won’t let them get as crispy (also you’re not supposed to put them under the broiler). Sprinkle them with a bit of salt – aside from greasing the pan a bit, you don’t need to add any oil to these. If you want more flavor you can add lots of different seasonings – pepper, mustard powder, chili powder, curry, garlic – you name it, really.
Bake your fries for about 20 minutes at 450 degrees – just until they are softened and cooked through. Remove them from the oven and preheat the broiler on high for a few minutes. Stick the cookie sheet under the broiler for about 3-5 minutes, then stir the fries a bit, and broil them for another 3-5 minutes, until they are starting to blacken like in my photos – they look like they might be a bit burnt, but they actually taste great! (Don’t let them turn into solid black lumps of coal or anything though, that’s not going to be tasty)
Remove from the oven and serve while they are still nice and warm. Quick, easy, and healthy – just the way we like it. I love that this recipe is nutritionally the same as eating a plain baked potato, but it feels so much more decadent!
Crispy Baked French Fries
- 1 large sweet potato or 2 medium russet potatoes washed and sliced into 1/4 inch strips
- Salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Lightly grease a cookie sheet, piece of aluminum foil, or pizza baking pan, and spread the potato strips out in an even layer. Sprinkle lightly with salt or whatever other seasoning you’d like. Bake for about 20 minutes, until softened and cooked through. Remove from oven.
- Preheat broiler on high. Return potatoes to oven and broil for about 3-5 minutes, then stir (this is to make sure they all cook evenly – most broilers aren’t as wide as a cookie sheet), and broil for another 3-5 minutes, until just starting to blacken and crisp. Serve immediately.