How to Make Crispy Sweet Potato Fries

Updated on March 17, 2016
vespawoolf profile image

Vespa's recipes have appeared in "Midwest Living" & "Taste of Home" magazines. She belongs to "Cook's Recipe Testers" for Cooks Illustrated.

Crispy Sweet Potato Fries
Crispy Sweet Potato Fries | Source

Crispy Sweet Potato Fries Recipe

Whether salted or seasoned, smothered in ketchup or Peruvian Aji Sauce, nothing satisfies like crispy, savory sweet potato fries. Although a steady diet of fried food isn't healthy, the advantage of frying foods at home is the ability to choose a healthier cooking oil. Many restaurants reuse frying oil until it becomes a thick, toxic soup. Click here if you'd like to learn more about saturated fats vs. unsaturated fats and smoke points: How to Choose Healthy & Tasty Cooking Oils.

And what about the health benefits of sweet potatoes? Sweet potatoes are loaded with Vitamin A, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and several trace minerals: selenium, zinc, and copper. They are also contain quite a bit of protein, making them a healthier choice over regular French fries.

The higher moisture content of sweet potatoes, though, means soggy rather than crispy fries. So what's the secret to crispy but tender sweet potato fries? Soaking, dusting and refrying. But first be sure to review the tips for safer deep frying technique, below.


Tips

  • Follow safety precautions when deep frying. Wear a heavy apron and long-sleeved shirt. Equip your kitchen with a fire extinguisher.
  • Choose a deep, heavy skillet.
  • A long handled, slotted spoon and deep frying thermometer are important tools for safe deep frying.
  • A mandoline uniformly cuts potatoes and veggies, especially handy when julienning sweet potatoes for fries.
  • Try peanut oil or canola oil for frying. See How to Choose Healthy & Tasty Cooking Oils for more options.
  • Pour oil into a cold pan, leaving two inches of head room in case the oil bubbles over.
  • Be careful not to overcrowd the pan. We fry sweet potato fries in 3 batches.
  • The key to crispy sweet potato fries: soaking, dusting with cornstarch and refrying.
  • It's best not to reuse frying oil. Allow the oil to cool before disposing of it.


Click here for a fry cutting photo tutorial:

How to Make Crispy Homemade French Fries


4.1 stars from 15 ratings of Crispy Sweet Potato Fries

Crispy Homemade Sweet Potato Fries

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 10 min
Ready in: 40 min
Yields: 6 servings
cut sweet potatoes in matchsticks
cut sweet potatoes in matchsticks
soak for at least 30 minutes
soak for at least 30 minutes
drain and dry
drain and dry
double fry for crispy fries
double fry for crispy fries

Ingredients

  • 4 sweet potatoes sliced in matchsticks
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1-32 ounce bottle (1 liter) vegetable oil, for frying
  • kosher salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • paprika, cumin and granulated garlic, for sprinkling (optional)

Instructions

  1. Slice sweet potatoes into matchsticks, about 1/4 inch thickness
  2. Soak sweet potato sticks in cold water for 30 minutes to 8 hours. If you don't have time to soak, just rinse and and pat dry.
  3. Pour two inches of vegetable oil into medium skillet or electric fryer. Preheat oil to 350 Fahrenheit.
  4. Pat potato sticks dry and dust with cornstarch. You'll need to fry them in several batches. Flash fry the first time for about 2 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
  5. Heat oil to 375 Fahrenheit. Refry potatoes, in batches, until golden and crispy. This will take about 5 minutes per batch.
  6. Drain fries on paper towels and sprinkle with salt and optional seasonings.
  7. Serve sweet potato fries immediately.
  8. Dip fries in Peruvian Aji Sauce, mayonnaise or ketchup.
Orange & Purple Sweet Potatoes
Orange & Purple Sweet Potatoes | Source

Why soak sweet potatoes before frying?

Sweet potatoes have higher water content than baking potatoes, which makes for soggy fries. Soaking sweet potato matchsticks in water leaches away the starch and allows more water to escape the potatoes during frying.

Another benefit of soaking? Acrylamide is a substance that forms in fried carbohydrate-rich foods and has been shown to cause cancer. Soaking potatoes before frying reduces acrylamides by up to 48%!

Although a true sweet potato, Peruvian purples (see photo) are starchier, less sweet and nuttier in flavor than their orange counterparts. They also make extra crispy sweet potato fries!

Sweet Potato Fries & Peruvian Aji Sauce
Sweet Potato Fries & Peruvian Aji Sauce | Source

Questions & Answers

    Comments

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    • everythingdazzles profile image

      Janelle 

      18 months ago from Houston

      yum! I love anything with sweet potatoes. Especially in Korean food.

    • bodylevive profile image

      BODYLEVIVE 

      19 months ago from Alabama, USA

      Great demo, I love sweet potatoes and I make the fries all the time. My family loves them. Thank you and be blessed.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      4 years ago from Peru, South America

      Carb Diva, I'm glad your daughter will benefit from this recipe. Sweet potato fries are not only delicious. They also have beta carotene and other vitamins not found in regular potatoes. Thanks for your comment!

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 

      4 years ago from Washington State, USA

      My daughter loves sweet potato fries, and I've never had (much) success in making them for her. My attempts have always resulted in something rather limp and wimpy. Thanks for a great hub. Will try soon.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Yes, DDE, and they're full of beta carotene, something I can't say about regular French fries!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Sweet potato fries looks so delicious and so easy to make

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      GetitScene, how interesting that paprika is one of your favorite spices. It's a big export crop here in Peru. Enjoy the sweet potato fries and thanks for your comment.

    • GetitScene profile image

      Dale Anderson 

      5 years ago from The High Seas

      Personally, sweet potatoes are not my favorite but my wife loves them so I guess I'll be making these for her. Great job including paprika, by the way. It's my favorite spice and I look for an excuse to include it in everything.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      ThelmaAlberts, I'm glad this recipe brings back sweet memories. Thank you and have a great week!

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 

      5 years ago from Germany

      Oh, my! This was my childhood fries snack. It was a very long time ago now. Thanks for reminding me this healthy sweet potato fries my mother used to fry. Happy Easter! Voted up and shared.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      pstraubie, sweet potato fries are so delicious and offer health benefits we don't get from regular French fries. We usually use canola or corn oil, but there are other oils you can use. Check out my Hub on Choosing a Healthy Cooking Oil if you'd like more information. Thanks for coming by. I hope your grandsons enjoy them!

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      5 years ago from sunny Florida

      These look so good. I have only eaten them in a restaurant. Is there a particular oil that complements the flavor best?

      My grandsons like these so I am anxious to try them

      Every time I come here, I leave HUNGRY…

      Thanks for sharing

      Angels are on the way ps

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Kalmiya, the soaking step helps to eliminate some of the starches in the sweet potatoes. Oven baking is healthier, but of course the fries won't be as crispy as when fried. Dusting fries with cornstarch will help make them a little crisper, though. I'm glad you have access to great sweet potato fries! Thanks for your comment.

    • Kalmiya profile image

      Kalmiya 

      5 years ago from North America

      Sweet potato fries are great! There's a place down the street from us that makes amazing sweet potato fries and I have them every time. I've been trying to make them at home just baking them in the oven but I didn't realize I should soak the sweet potato in water first. I'll try again. Thanks for this great tip!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Vacation Trip, I'm glad this recipe appeals to you. Thanks for the votes and comment!

    • Vacation Trip profile image

      Susan 

      5 years ago from India

      Wow.. This is simply mouth watering. Voted up and thanks for sharing.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      CrisSp, I also love these sweet potato fries for their crispy texture and nutritiousness. I appreciate the vote, pin and share!

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 

      5 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      Love sweet potato fries and this looks so delish! Gotta bookmark this one too. Nice photos and again, great tips.

      Absolutely voting up, pinning and sharing!

      Thanks.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Thank you for your kind words, DeborahNeyens! I prefer sweet potato fries over regular French fries. I appreciate your visit.

    • DeborahNeyens profile image

      Deborah Neyens 

      5 years ago from Iowa

      Your recipe hubs are always so wonderfully done with beautiful pictures. Excellent tip on soaking the potatoes first. Thanks!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Au fait, thanks so much for the votes and share! These are delicious fries and so much healthier than the average fry. Have a great day.

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 

      5 years ago from North Texas

      These fries look so delicious and I know sweet potatoes are so nutritious and good for you! I'm bookmarking this recipe because I think this is something my daughter would like too.

      Voted you UP, interesting and awesome, gave you 5 stars, and I'm going to share this hub with my followers!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      How interesting! Here in Peru we call sweet potatoes "camote", very similar. It must come from the Latin word? Fries dusted with sugar sounds delicious! Here's the link for Peruvian aji sauce: http://vespawoolf.hubpages.com/hub/Peruvian-Sauce-... It's easy to make and very delicious! I hope it becomes one of your go-to recipes. Thank you for the vote and comment!

    • profile image

      tattuwurn 

      5 years ago

      I love sweet potatoes! Here in the Philippines we call them "kamote". We do chips here too, but as you may know our penchant for anything sweet, we usually sprinkle the chips with sugar.

      But one time we also dusted it with cheese powder and it was good too.

      What is a Peruvian Aji sauce made of? Can you share its recipe, if you don't mind? Thanks. Voted up. :D

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Purl3agony, thanks for taking the time to comment!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Glimmer Twin Fan, sweet potatoes are at their peak right now in the US so enjoy them! Thanks so much for the share and pin!

    • purl3agony profile image

      Donna Herron 

      5 years ago from USA

      This recipe sounds wonderful!! Thanks!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Claudia Mitchell 

      5 years ago

      Wow these look terrific Vespa! Will definitely be making these soon! Shared and pinned.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Divacratus, the double fry method is for crispiness. Since sweet potatoes are higher in water content than other types of potatoes, they tend to be soggy when fried. The double fry helps crisp them up even more. I'm glad you found this recipe! The method really does work. Thank you for coming by.

    • divacratus profile image

      Kalpana Iyer 

      5 years ago from India

      This was really interesting. I have a doubt regarding this recipe. Do you have to fry each batch of potatoes two times? You mentioned flash frying it for two minutes or so. Why is this done? My aunt did follow a similar recipe to make fries and it came out crispy but I forgot the reason for frying them two times over. This was the recipe I was looking for! Thanks so much. Voted Up and Awesome :)

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      DebbyBruck, that is interesting data on reducing acrylamides. A steady diet of fried foods isn't healthy, anyway, but we do fry every once in a while and sweet potato fries are one of our favorites. It's nice to see you again!

    • Debby Bruck profile image

      Debby Bruck 

      5 years ago

      Hi Vespa - I love sweet potatoes. Enjoyed the tips on soaking, which I would do with white potatoes, as well. This was news to me: "Soaking potatoes before frying reduces acrylamides by up to 48%" Everything you make looks yummy.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Om Paramapoonya, sweet potato fries are definitely a flavorful choice! And sweet potatoes are so nutritious, too. Thank you for taking the time to comment.

    • Om Paramapoonya profile image

      Om Paramapoonya 

      5 years ago

      Lovely! I'd choose sweet potato fries over regular French fries any time. They just taste a lot better to me, even when they are soggy. Thanks a lot for the recipe and tips.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Keepyouinstitches, I'm so glad up plan to try these fries. The three steps make the sweet potatoes so much crispier. Enjoy and thank you for taking the time to comment!

    • keepyouinstitches profile image

      Erica J 

      5 years ago from Seattle, WA

      I have to try this! I have been choosing sweet potato fries over plain fries when I eat out lately and have been thinking about making them myself. Now I know how to do it, thanks!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Minababe, enjoy the fries and thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Rebeccamealey, the olive oil, butter and lemon sounds delicious! I also enjoy seasoning fries, whether oven baked or fried. It complements their flavor so well. Thank you for coming by!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Suzanne, sweet potatoes are such a nice way to get more Vitamin A into our diets. This fried version, although not as healthy as baked, is not for a treat now and then. Enjoy and thanks so much for the comment, votes and pin! Have a great weekend.

    • profile image

      minababe 

      5 years ago

      Great recipe-- definitely going to try this!

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 

      5 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      This sounds like a great way to fix sweet potato fries. I have been brushing mine with a mixture of olive oil, a little butter and lemon juice, and baking them. Then I turn on the broiler for just a few minutes to make them crispier. I sprinkle them with a little sea salt, sugar and cayenne pepper. Thanks for sharing this.

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 

      5 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Hi vespa,

      What a lovely idea that I have never done. Sweet potatoes are not something I have used or eaten much here but I used to love them when living in New Zealand. These sound great and if fries can be healthy then these are the healthy option for sure!! Love the tips and in-depth info on this "spud" down to the best oils to use and why pre soak the potatoes. Love to try this with your sauce!

      Thanks for another great recipe VU, Interesting, Awesome, Useful, Shared and Pinned!!!!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Triciajean, thanks so much for the publishing tip! It would be amazing to have my own cookbook. I try to include sweet potatoes in our diet on a regular basis since they're so full of Vitamin A. Thanks so much for your support!

    • triciajean profile image

      Patricia Lapidus 

      5 years ago from Bantam, CT

      Thanks for a yummy recipe, vespawoolf. I learned to love sweet potatoes when I lived on The Farm in Tennessee. The Farm is an intentional community originally founded by spiritual hippies. They continue to publish cook books. If you decide to create one, the Book Publishing Company on The Farm would be good outlet for you. Voted up.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Carol, fall and winter is peak season for sweet potatoes, so these fries are an inexpensive and delicious way to enjoy seasonal produce. Enjoy and thanks for your comment!

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      5 years ago from Arizona

      sounds delicious and this is a definite going to make. Thanks for sharing and great photos.

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Billybuc, they're even healthier when baked in the oven, but Iike to fry them up when we have guests. Thank you for taking the time to comment and I hope you have a great weekend, too!

    • vespawoolf profile imageAUTHOR

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Michele Travis, please feel free to print this recipe out and put it in your cookbook. Enjoy! Thank you for coming by.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      We started eating these about a year ago instead of regular french fries. Love them! Thanks for the tips, and I hope you have a great weekend.

    • Michele Travis profile image

      Michele Travis 

      5 years ago from U.S.A. Ohio

      That looks wonderful and very yummy. Do you mind if I print this out and put it in my cookbook? I would love to keep it there.

      Thanks

      Voted up!

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