Crispy Sweet Potato Fries


Makes: a pile | Prep 15 minutes | Cook 20-25 minutes

  • 2 large-ish organic Japanese sweet potatoes — long and thin is better than short and fat
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • salt
  1. Preheat the oven to 450F. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper, then place a wire rack on top of the parchment.
  2. Wash the sweet potatoes and scrub the skins to remove dirt, but don’t peel them. Poke each potato a few times with the tip of a paring knife, then loosely wrap each still-wet-from-the-washing potato in a paper towel and place in the microwave. Nuke for 8-9 minutes, until they’re tender to a gentle squeeze.
  3. Allow the sweet potatoes to cool enough to handle; you can cheat by plopping them in the fridge. Worth noting: I nuked a bunch of spuds in advance, then stored them in the fridge until I was ready to make fries. That works, too, if you need to divide your kitchen time – or if you just want to be prepared for a sweet potato fry emergency.
  4. When you can handle the potatoes without burning yourself, cut them into strips that are 1/8 to 1/4 inch wide. You want them pretty thin, but not like shoestring fries. I wanted to make my fries look pretty by cutting the strips the entire length of the potato, but the shorter ones got crispier, so if you don’t care about aesthetics, cut the potato in half crosswise before you start making the strips. (If you need some help visualizing how to cut fries, this video is pretty good, but his fries are way too wide for our recipe,. Make yours about half as thick and wide as his – and don’t peel your sweet potatoes!) Worth noting: As you cut the sweet potato, the strips might break. I know they don’t look as lovely, but that’s actually a good sign. It means the microwave did its job drying out the potato.
  5. Place your fries in a large bowl, pour in 1 1/2 tablespoons of the melted coconut oil, and use a rubber spatula to gently toss the fries with the coconut oil. Transfer the fries to the wire rack, arrange in a single layer, and sprinkle generously with salt.
  6. Slide the pan into the oven and bake 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, lightly brush the tops of the fries with the remaining coconut oil, and return to the oven for 5-10 minutes. This is where you need to pay attention! The fries need to bake long enough for the sugars to caramelize, but not so long they burn.
  7. Remove from the oven and try not to burn your fingers while you sample them directly from the wire rack. Sprinkle with additional salt if you find that satisfrying.
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