Homemade French Fries

These Homemade French Fries are just like the Belgian frites you’ll find on the streets of Brussels. You’ll forget all about takeout with these crispy fries hot out of the fryer!

A tray of crispy fried french fries with tomato ketchup in the center for dipping.

Did you know that French fries aren’t actually…French? They originated as a street food in Belgium. In the winter, ice cream trucks and stands transform into fry joints that serve out hot, hearty fries wrapped in parchment and with different dipping sauces.  Brilliance, right?  We can all get fat and happy while learning valuable life lessons from the people of Belgium on making the most of what you have.

In their homeland, Belgian fries are called frites, and are a popular street food there just like their liege waffles. And their popularity has spread around the world, with French fries being a favorite side at nearly every restaurant.

Pinterest Graphic of French Fries for Homemade French Fries

How to Make Homemade French Fries

The Best Kinds of Potatoes for French Fries

I recommend using russet potatoes for homemade French fries. They tend to be bigger, and are high in starch and low in moisture. This makes your fries crisp and fluffy.

  • Begin by washing two pounds of russet potatoes. You can also peel them, but it’s not necessary.
  • Cut the potatoes into matchsticks between 1/2″ and 3/4″ thick.
  • Place the potatoes in a large bowl and cover them with cold water. Soak them for at least 1 hour, or up to 12 hours. Refrigerate if you plan to soak the potatoes for more than an hour.
Raw potatoes, cut into matchsticks and ready for frying.
  • When you are ready to fry, pour at least 3-4″ of oil into the bottom of a pot that’s 3 quarts or larger. Place a cooling rack over a baking tray to set the fries on.
  • Using a fry thermometer to monitor the temperature, heat the oil to 325°.
  • Drain the water off of the fries. Pat them with paper towels or a clean kitchen towel to remove excess water, which can cause the oil to pop during frying.
  • With a slotted metal spoon or skimmer, carefully place some of the potatoes in the oil. You want there to be a full layer, but don’t completely fill the pot.
  • Gently stir the french fries to prevent them from sticking together.
  • Fry the potato sticks for 3-4 minutes. They should still be pale and slightly firm when you poke them with a fork.
  • Repeat this step until all of the French fries are cooked, allowing the oil to reheat to 325° between batches.
Homemade French Fries after the first fry, ready to be chilled and fried again.
  • Use the metal spoon or skimmer to remove the potatoes to the cooling rack.
  • Place the fries in the refrigerator until thoroughly chilled, about an hour.
  • When you are ready to fry for the second time, reheat the oil in the pan to 425°.
  • Place the fries back in the oil for another 4-5 minutes. They should be a deep golden color, with a crisp exterior when you remove them back to the cooling rack.
  • Sprinkle the French fries with salt and serve right away.
A tray of freshly fried homemade French fries, sprinkled with coarse sea salt.

How do You Make Crispy French Fries From Scratch?

There are several steps and techniques that insure homemade French fries with a crisp, golden exterior and a soft, melt-in-your-mouth inside.

  • First, don’t skip soaking the potatoes after they’ve been cut. There’s more info on the how and why below!
  • The double frying method is the best way to get crispy fries. The first time at a lower temperature cooks them through for soft inside. After they’ve chilled, the second fry in hotter oil creates the crackly outside.
  • Eat the fries as soon as they’re cool enough to touch. This really is the best fry you’ll ever have–steaming hot from the fryer.

Should Potato Fries Soaked Before Frying?

Soaking your French fries before frying helps remove extra starch and moisture from the french fries, which keeps them from sticking together and allows them to develop a crispier exterior.

French fries should be soaked in cold water for at least one hour after peeling (if you plan to do this) and cutting. If you are going to let them sit longer than 1 hour, place them in the refrigerator.

You can also soak the fries overnight, but don’t let them sit in the refrigerator longer than that. The structure of the potato will start to break down and your fries will become mushy.

A tray of freshly fried homemade French fries, sprinkled with coarse sea salt.

Recipe Notes and Tips

  • For frying, you can use any neutral oil with a high smoke point. This includes vegetable, soy, canola, or peanut oil. Avoid olive oil as it has a low smoke temperature, which can be a fire hazard.
  • Set out all of your tools and trays/racks, etc. before you heat your oil. This helps the frying process go more smoothly, without any rushing around to prevent fries from burning.
  • While I recommend keeping your stovetop on medium to medium-low heat after your oil has reached the desired temperature, you may need to adjust for your particular burner. Burner size, gas vs. electric burner, etc. all can affect the temperature of the oil
  • Always use metal utensils when frying, and use extreme caution. Hot oil will burn quickly and badly, so make sure to take the necessary precautions to avoid an accident.
  • I recommend mixing fine and coarse grain salt. Make sure to sprinkle it on right away so that it sticks to the hot oil on the outside of the potatoes.
  • Serve your fries with ketchup and/or aioli for dipping sauces.
A tray of crispy fried french fries with tomato ketchup in the center for dipping.

Useful Tools for Frying

As an Amazon Associate, Good Things Baking Co. earns from qualifying purchases.

In this post, I’ve detailed how to fry in a pot on your stovetop without a deep fryer. Here are a few tools that may be helpful for frying on your stovetop:

Other Recipes You May Enjoy:

Glazed Yeast Donuts
Swiss Cheese Pull from a French Onion & Steak Puff Pastry Pie
A sourdough crust pizza topped with mozzarella, slices of salami and pepperoni, and fresh basil leaves.
Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon

Belgium // Fries // Frites


  • Author: Rebecca Neidhart
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes, divided
  • Chilling time: 2-12 hours
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 3-15 hours
  • Yield: 34 servings 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 large russet potatoes
  • 78 cups of frying oil (canola, vegetable, peanut, or coconut)
  • Sea salt

Instructions

Begin by washing two pounds of russet potatoes. You can also peel them, but it’s not necessary. Cut the potatoes into matchsticks between 1/2″ and 3/4″ thick.

Place the potatoes in a large bowl and cover them with cold water. Soak them for at least 1 hour, or up to 12 hours. Refrigerate if you plan to soak the potatoes for more than an hour.

When you are ready to fry, pour at least 3-4″ of oil into the bottom of a pot that’s 3 quarts or larger. Place a cooling rack over a baking tray to set the fries on.Using a fry thermometer to monitor the temperature, heat the oil to 325°.

Drain the water off of the fries. Pat them with paper towels or a clean kitchen towel to remove excess water, which can cause the oil to pop during frying.

With a slotted metal spoon or skimmer, carefully place some of the potatoes in the oil. You want there to be a full layer, but don’t completely fill the pot. Gently stir the french fries a few times to prevent them from sticking together.

Fry the potato sticks for 3-4 minutes. They should still be pale and slightly firm when you poke them with a fork. Repeat this step until all of the French fries are cooked, allowing the oil to reheat to 325° between batches.

Use the metal spoon or skimmer to remove the potatoes to the cooling rack. Place the fries in the refrigerator until thoroughly chilled, about an hour.

When you are ready to fry for the second time, reheat the oil in the pan to 425°. Place the fries back in the oil for another 4-5 minutes. They should be a deep golden color, with a crisp exterior when you remove them back to the cooling rack.

Sprinkle the French fries with salt and serve right away.

  • Category: Appetizers and Sides
  • Method: Frying
  • Cuisine: American European

Keywords: homemade french fries, crispy french fries

Share This Recipe With The World!

Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on print
Print
Share on email
Email

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating

Scroll to Top
Rebecca Instagram

Follow Me On Instagram!

I post luscious food photos and new recipes on a weekly basis.