Healthier oven baked fries made from scratch. These fries are properly seasoned, then baked in the oven until crispy from the outside, and soft and fluffy from the inside. They are much healthier than deep-fried fries as they’re baked with just a fraction of the oil that you’d normally use and they’re definitely cheaper than store-bought frozen fries.
I don’t know anyone who does not LOVE crispy fries. I remember going to Mcdonald’s when I was younger just for the fries. The perfect fries must be crispy from the outside (but not tough) and fluffy from the inside with a strong potato flavor, they must be well-seasoned, and served hot.
So if you achieve these 3 things, you’ll end up with the perfect fries.
First, let me tell you how deep-fried french fries are made:
French fries are peeled, soaked in cold vinegar water, then they’re blanched and twice-fried in hot oil. The double frying method means that the first time the fries are fried at a lower temperature to make sure that the potatoes are cooked through from the inside, and then they are fried again at a higher temperature to brown and crisp up. The fries are then drained to get rid of the excess oil, seasoned, and then served hot.
Not so simple, but definitely doable if you really want to try and make them at home. Established food authority Kenji Lopez-Alt at Serious Eats wrote an excellent blog post about making the perfect deep-fried french fries, so check it out if you would like to try and make your own deep-fried fries at home.
But in this post, I will show you how to make healthier super simple oven-baked fries, because let’s get real. Not many of us deep fry at home, and we all want something that is easy, quick, healthy, and not too chefy (although chef style fries are awesome!).
How to Make the Perfect Oven Baked Fries
This recipe is a straight forward recipe, but the first thing that you need to think about is what kind of potatoes to use. My advice to you is to avoid waxy and red-skin potatoes as these do not work for fries. Go for Russets (Idaho) potatoes if you’re in the US, Maris Piper or King Edwards if you’re in the UK.
What You’ll Need
- Potatoes – high starch potatoes.
- Seasonings – use any seasonings that you like. I usually go for my homemade French Fry seasoning, or if I don’t have it and I’m in a hurry then I go for smoked paprika, garlic granules, salt, and pepper.
- Olive oil – for best flavor and crispiness.
Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F (160°C/320°F fan).
You can choose to either peel your potatoes, or leave the skin on. I like to leave the skin on as it gives a lovely rustic look and feel, and it’s also easier not to peel the potatoes! Scrub off any dirt and rinse the potatoes.
Step 1. Using a sharp knife, or a mandoline, cut the potatoes into 1/2 inch thick fries. Mcdonald’s fries are 1/4 inch thick, but I found that thicker fries turn out better when baked in the oven so I just do 1/2 inch. Try to cut them into equal slices as much as possible so they cook evenly, but they don’t have to be perfect. If you choose to cut into wedges, then go for it as the method remains the same.
Step 2. I don’t soak in water, so I go ahead and season the potatoes with any seasonings that I’m used, and drizzle with olive oil.
Step 3. Using my hands, I distribute the seasonings so that the potatoes are well coated then I scatter them on a baking pan. You can use parchment for easier wash up if you like.
Step 4. Bake in the oven on the medium rack for 30-35 minutes. I flip the fries every 10-15 minutes for even cooking until they’re done.
As I mentioned above, I usually go for my homemade French fry seasoning, but if i’m out and I don’t have time to make it then I choose really simple seasonings. Smoked paprika and garlic granules are probably my favorite. Sometimes I just do Italian seasoning for that lovely herby flavor. You can also use curry powder, turmeric, chili powder, piri piri salt, cajun seasoning, you name it!
My Dad loves just salt and maybe a tiny bit of ground black pepper, so if you want to keep things plain then do that.
Sometimes I make myself a large bowl of these oven baked fries, season them with flaky sea salt with vegan mayo and/or ketchup on the side. But you can serve them with Air Fryer hamburgers, or Instant Pot burgers, grilled chicken wraps, fish sticks, or crispy breaded chicken breast.
Fries go so well with everything, and anything!
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I hope that you love every recipe that you make! – Diana x
Oven Baked Fries
- Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F (160°C/320°F fan).
- In a large bowl, toss the potato slices with the seasonings, salt, and oil until the potatoes are evenly coated.
- Then lay the potatoes on a baking tray, try to leave some space between the slices so they don't overlap.
- Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes, or until the fries are crispy enough. Flipping the fries every 10 minutes so they're evenly cooked.
- I recommend using high starch potatoes such as russets (Idaho), Maris Piper, and King Edward. Avoid starchy and red-skin potatoes.
- Slice the potatoes into 1/2 inch thick fries using a sharp knife or a mandoline.
- I recommend using olive oil for the best flavor and crispiness.
- More seasoning options: Go for Italian seasoning for that lovely herby flavor. You can also use curry powder, turmeric, chili powder, piri piri salt, cajun seasoning, jerk seasoning, shawarma seasoning, or keep things simple and just season with salt.