Baked French Fries
These Baked French Fries are crispy on the edges, soft and fluffy in the center, and deliciously addicting! These homemade French fries are proof that there’s no frying needed to make the best fries at home.
I can’t think of much that’s more comforting and delicious than a pile of crispy French fries, hot from the oven. If you’re like me and can’t resist a perfect French fry, then this recipe is for you.
We’ve talked about Air Fryer French Fries, Baked Sweet Potato Fries and even Air Fryer Zucchini Fries, so it’s about time I shared my recipe for classic baked French fries! My family loves fries, and they go crazy for these oven baked French fries.
These fries are:
- easy to make.
- perfectly crispy.
- healthier than fried fries.
- sure to disappear quickly!
A fast food favorite that you an easily make at home? And they’re healthier, too? Yes please!
If you’ve ever wondered if it’s possible to make crispy French fries in the oven, the answer is a definitive YES. With just a few simple tricks up your sleeve, you’ll be making delicious homemade fries that will have everyone reaching for “just one more.” I’m sharing all of my best tips below, so that you can satisfy your French fry cravings from the comforts of your own home. Now let’s make some fries!
The Best Baked French Fries
Through lots of recipe testing (many, many batches of French fries have been consumed over here for your benefit!), I’ve found that a few key tips will ensure that your baked French fries turn out perfectly crispy and delicious.
- Keep the skins on. For the best French fries, don’t peel the potatoes. The potato skins add texture that helps the fries to become extra crispy in the oven.
- Cut them thin. Thin is the way to go when you’re craving crispy homemade fries. I cut mine 3/8-inch thick (yes, I measured!).
- Dry the fries well. Moisture is the enemy of crispiness. Use paper towels or a clean kitchen towel to pat the fries completely dry before placing them on the baking sheet.
- Use enough oil. Also for maximum crispiness. I’ve found 1 tablespoon of oil per medium russet potato to be the perfect amount.
- Season generously. To replicate the flavor of French fries from my favorite fast food restaurant, I usually season them with only salt. Kosher salt, sea salt and regular table salt all work well. For more seasoning ideas, see the section below on recipe variations.
- Don’t crowd the pan. Leaving a bit of room in between each fry allows air to circulate around them as they cook, which crisps up the edges. If the fries are crowded together on the pan, they may turn out soggy rather than crispy.
- Bake at 425° F. Baking fries at a high temperature makes them deliciously golden brown and crispy. I don’t bake higher than 425° F because most parchment papers aren’t safe above that temperature, and the parchment is essential to prevent the fries from sticking to the pan.
- Bake until crispy. I’ve found that the fries can look done, but not be quite crispy yet. I usually bake mine for a full 27-30 minutes, until the edges are browned and crisp. If you cut your fries thicker, they will take longer to bake.
Soaking Potatoes for Fries
Is it necessary to soak potatoes for fries? Yes and no. I tested this recipe a number of times, both with and without soaking. I found that soaking the cut potatoes in cold water for 15 minutes resulted in slightly crispier baked French fries. However, unsoaked fries were still decently crispy. My advice? Soak if you have the time because it does help to make the crispiest baked fries. If you’re short on time, you can skip the soak and your oven fries will still be delicious.
What Kind of Potato Makes the Best French Fries?
I tested this recipe with both russet potatoes and Yukon gold potatoes and my family and I much preferred the fries made with russet potatoes. The fries made with russet potatoes were crispier on the outside, fluffier in the center, and had that classic French fry flavor that we all love.
How to Make French Fries
Making homemade French fries is so incredibly easy! Here is an overview of the recipe steps. Find the full printable recipe with ingredient amounts and instructions in the recipe card below.
- Scrub the potatoes. Use a vegetable brush to gently scrub away any dirt from the skins, since we won’t be peeling the potatoes.
- Cut the potatoes into 3/8-inch thick French fries.
- Soak in cold water for 15 minutes.
- Dry the fries well with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels. Place them on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Drizzle olive oil over the potatoes. Sprinkle them with salt. Toss to evenly coat the fries.
- Arrange the fries in a single layer on the pan with a bit of room in between each one.
- Bake at 425° F for 25-30 minutes, until they are golden brown and crispy. You do not need to flip the fries during the bake time. I’ve found that flipping isn’t necessary and can cause the fries to break.
How to Cut French Fries
Follow these steps to easily cut potatoes into fry shapes:
- Use a sharp chef’s knife to slice off a 3/8-inch thick slice from one side of the potato so that the potato has a flat base to rest on.
- With the flat base down on the cutting board, cut the potato into 3/8-inch thick slices.
- Cut the slices into 3/8-inch thick fries.
- Salt & Pepper: Season fries with coarse sea salt and black pepper.
- Garlic Parmesan Fries: Toss fries with salt and garlic powder before baking. Then sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese when fries are hot from the oven.
- Herb: Sprinkle on dried Italian seasoning or dried oregano before cooking. Or, sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley or chives after baking.
- Cajun Fries: Toss fries with Cajun seasoning before baking.
- Truffle Fries: Drizzle fries with truffle oil, to taste, after baking. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
- To Double: This recipe serves 2 generously or makes 4 smaller servings. To make a double recipe, you’ll need to use 2 large baking sheets. Rotate the pans in the oven halfway through the baking time. You may need to increase the baking time a bit since fries won’t crisp up as much while they are on the bottom pan in the oven.
Homemade French fries are an easy side dish for many favorite meals:
- Burgers: Try them with Black Bean Burgers or my flavorful Turkey Burger Recipe.
- Sandwiches: Sloppy Joes, Instant Pot BBQ Chicken and Instant Pot Pulled Pork are always a hit!
- Chicken: My family loves these fries with Baked Chicken Tenders, Air Fryer Chicken Tenders and Air Fryer Fried Chicken.
- Steak: Enjoy them with this easy Air Fryer Steak or Steak Kabobs.
Now, grab a couple of potatoes, get yourself into the kitchen, and bake up a batch of these easy homemade French fries. Then watch them disappear, as fast as can be!
Baked French Fries
- 2 russet potatoes, skins on
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, or canola oil
- ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Scrub the potatoes and pat them dry. Slice into 3/8-inch thick French fries by first slicing potatoes into 3/8-inch thick slices and then cutting each slice into 3/8-inch thick fries.
- Place the fries into a bowl, fill with cold water to cover the fries, and let soak for 15 minutes.*
- Preheat oven to 425° F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Take the fries out of the water and dry them very well with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
- Drizzle the olive oil over the potatoes and sprinkle with the salt. Toss to evenly coat the potatoes with the oil and salt.
- Arrange the potatoes in a single layer on the pan with a bit of room in between each French fry. This helps them to crisp up as they cook.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown and crispy.
- If you are short on time, you can skip the soaking step. The fries will be slightly less crispy but still very delicious.