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Proper Preparation & Cooking Of French Fries

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This article is from the Idaho Potato Commission.

Putting Idaho® French Fries on your menu is one of the easiest ways to increase sales and improve profits. They’re quick to prepare and have a high value perception and low food cost. They’re popular all year round, any time of day or night, with customers of all ages.

Your customers love French fries, and with Idaho® Potatoes, you’re giving them the best, most consistent, fresh-cut fries available. The high solids content of Idaho® Potatoes ensures a distinct, mealy texture and hearty flavor. They also absorb less oil, producing crispier fries. The low moisture content means less shrinkage for improved yield and extended plate coverage. And, with proper storage temperatures, the low-sugar content of Idaho® Potatoes results in light golden fries, not dark fries like those other high-sugar potatoes yield. Not only will your customers think your fries are great, they'll know you're being awfully generous with them!

Menu Ideas:

“Plain” French fries are as popular today as ever, but increase your French fry sales and your bottom line by serving Idaho® French Fries with a variety of dips or toppings. Try salsa, blue cheese or ranch-style dip, pesto mayonnaise or honey mustard dip and turn an ordinary side into an exciting side or appetizer. Most toppings can be made “Healthy” by using low- or non-fat dairy products or oils.


For the best yield when serving hand-cut Idaho® French Fries, we recommend using U.S. grade No. 1 fresh Idaho® Potatoes, 7 - 15 ounce packed 90 to 70 count in 50 lb. cartons, or a 12 oz. and larger No. 2 potatoes packed in paper bags. Fresh, unpeeled potatoes for frying should be stored in a dark, cool area, preferably at 55°F. Do not refrigerate, as temperatures below 42°F cause potato starch to turn to sugar. Check the cutting blades, replace if jagged.

Great fries can be made from fresh Idaho® Potatoes by keeping the skin on to enhance the homemade appearance and flavor. Fries made from peeled potatoes should be chilled after cutting in cold water for 30 minutes to 2 hours before frying, to ensure maximum crispiness. To prevent darkening, add citrus acid or vinegar to the water solution. Spin dry before frying, to avoid water spattering and to reduce fat absorption.

Form of Potato

Average quantity needed
for 25 4-oz. servings

Cooking time in 360°F oil

Average yield from 4 lbs.

Whole, Unpeeled 1/4" Fries

10 1/4 lbs.

3 1/2 min.

2 lbs. 12 oz.

Jacket Fries (8 cut)

9 1/4 lbs.

3 1/2 min.

2 lbs. 10 oz.

Shoestring Fries

9 1/2 lbs.

3 min.

3 lbs.

Round Sliced Fries

15 1/4 lbs.

3 1/2 min.

1 lb. 10 oz

The Idaho® Potato Commission recommends that fresh fries be blanched. Many operators have found they get a crispier finished fry by blanching potatoes in hot oil to pre-cook fries before peak periods and then finishing them in a final fry before serving. Fries are completely cooked during the blanching stage where a lower temperature is recommended to allow the potato to cook slowly without becoming golden brown. After blanching, allow fries to cool to room temperature or, preferably, refrigerate fries in uncovered containers before the final fry to a golden brown.

Idaho® Fry Tips:

  • Overfilling the fry basket can result in limp fries, excess color variation and stuck together fries.
  • Store raw potatoes at 55°F. Too cold a temperature will result in sugar streaking or fries that look golden but are not thoroughly cooked.
  • To ensure proper fry color, make sure oil temperature is correct and not too hot, fries are left in oil for correct amount of time, and oil is not too old or dirty.





Potato Form

Oil Temps.


Oil Temps.


1/4" Fries


3 min.


2 - 2 1/2 min.

Jacket Fries (8 cut)


5 min.


4 min



1 3/4 - 2 min.


1 1/2 min.

Round Slices 1/8"


4 min.


3 min.

If you have questions or comments write to: Comments & Questions

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