Ellie Krieger's Crispy Oven Fries recipe. / Renee Comet
Add zing to spuds with variations on the basic recipe:
Old Bay Crispy Oven Fries. After baking the potatoes, sprinkle with 1½ tsps. Old Bay Seasoning (or creole seasoning) instead of salt.
Parmesan Crispy Oven Fries. After tossing with oil, sprinkle ¼ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese onto the potatoes and toss to coat evenly. Bake as directed.
Garlic and Herb Crispy Oven Fries. After tossing with the oil, sprinkle with ¾ tsp. granulated garlic and ½ tsp. salt and toss to coat evenly. After baking, toss with 2 Tbs. finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley and 1 Tb. finely chopped fresh chives.
It may be an occupational hazard of being a nutritionist, but folks often ask me to reveal my favorite indulgence. The answer is easy: french fries. It is the one food I literally cannot stop eating when it is in front of me. Their crisp, salty, potato-iness is lip-smackingly irresistible.
When I splurge on fries, I take solace in the fact that potatoes are nutrient- and fiber-rich, with a medium spud having roughly the same amount of vitamin C as a cup of blueberries and more than twice the potassium of a medium banana. Still, I certainly don’t need all the oil and calories that comes with frying them.
Luckily, I have found a way to satisfy my french fry cravings healthfully. By tossing cut potatoes with a touch of healthy oil and baking them in a hot oven, you get that classic crisp-outside, tender-inside potato experience without the downsides. They are delicious with a simple sprinkle of salt or spiced up with a variety of seasonings.
These “fries” are healthy enough to be in regular rotation at my house, but I never make too many at once, because, I confess, I can’t stop eating these, either.
Crispy Oven Fries
• Cooking spray
• 3 large Russet potatoes, skin on
• 2 Tbs. canola oil
• Salt to taste
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
Cut the potatoes into ¼-inch-thick matchsticks. Place the potatoes into a large bowl, add the oil and toss to coat. Spread the potatoes on the baking sheet in a single layer. (Use a second baking sheet, if necessary, to avoid layering.)
Bake until golden brown and crispy, 35 to 40 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
Yield: 4 servings
Per serving (¾ cup): 280 calories, 50g carbohydrates, 6g protein, 7g fat (.5g saturated), 4g fiber, 0mg cholesterol, 15mg sodium
Contributing editor and registered dietitian Ellie Krieger is best known as the host of Food Network’s Healthy Appetite. Her most recent cookbook is Comfort Food Fix: Feel Good Favorites Made Healthy.