Sweet Potato Fries

I know, I know, sweet potato fries are like, so, last summer, but hey, what can I say except it takes my little sheltered, homebody self a while to catch on to food trends. We’ve been eating these babies right and left for the last month or so and I can honestly say that every living soul in my home, five boys and a girl at last count, loves ’em.

Sweet and spicy (not hot, just flavorful), these healthier, baked fries are perfect with just about anything, although we’ve served them lately with these wraps and some grilled pork chops to rave reviews. Speaking of food trends, grilling outside in sub-zero temperatures and freezing winds is really “in” right now, didn’t you know?

You might question the little bit of sugar called for in the recipe since sweet potatoes are already, well, sweet. Trust me, the sugar works – it helps caramelize and brown the outside edges of the potatoes and combined with the salt and other spices, you are left with a tender sweet potato fry infused with a sweet and smoky flavor.

Preheating the baking sheets helps the fries crisp up around the edges since they sizzle on first contact with the smoking hot pan. Sure, they stay a bit softer and less crispy than a traditional fry cooked in hot oil, but if baked for just the right amount of time, they still manage to retain a delightful crunch around the edges with a sweet, velvety center. Betcha can’t eat just one.

One Year Ago: Tomato Bisque Soup
Two Years Ago: Toasted Orzo with Peas and Parmesan
Three Years Ago: Buttermilk Banana Bread

Sweet Potato Fries

Yield: Serves 6 as a side dish

Sweet Potato Fries

Note: the purpose of the sugar is to help caramelize and brown the outside edges of the potatoes. Combined with the salt and other spices, you are left with a tender sweet potato fry infused with a sweet and smoky flavor. Preheating the baking sheets also helps the outer edges get a nice little crunch.


  • 3 large sweet potatoes or yams
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place two rimmed baking sheets in the oven while it preheats and while you prepare the potatoes (about 10 minutes). Peel the potatoes and slice the potatoes into about 1/4- to 1/2-inch strips or wedges. Try to keep most of the pieces the same size so they bake evenly.
  2. Place the potato strips/wedges in a ziploc bag or bowl. Toss the potatoes with the oil. Add the seasonings and mix until the potatoes are evenly coated.
  3. Carefully remove the hot baking sheets from the oven and divide the potatoes evenly among the two sheets, taking care the potatoes are not touching so they have plenty of room for the air circulate to circulate and bake evenly. Also, try to leave any excess oil in the bag or bowl so the potatoes don’t get too soggy while they bake.
  4. Bake the potatoes for about 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through, if desired, until they are tender and well-browned. Serve immediately.

Recipe Source: Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

51 Responses to Sweet Potato Fries

  1. Colleen says:

    This recipe sounds great. I wanted to know if I could bake these on parchment paper? Thanks


  2. Brylie says:

    Aunt Mel–Your fries are the best we just had them tonight and loved them! We also tried Heather’s fry sauce, it was the best try it!! { I said that to everyone just so you know } we ate them with Sloppy Joes that was so good! Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Brylie! You are the cutest girl ever. Thanks for leaving a comment to let me know! Come visit me again so you can make me some delicious food!

  3. Andrea says:

    Oh yeah these were great. My husband told me to write you a real thank you letter for changing our culinary life, and he’ll kiss it with mint chapstick to which you can hold up to your cheek. Is he weird or what!! Haha. But seriously, these were fantastic. Merci!

  4. Amy says:

    I’m excited to try these! I love sweet potatoes. However, I’m wondering if you can add weights for things like sweet potatoes – there’s such variation in sweet potatoes. The ones at Costco are smaller than the size of my hand, and the ones at the local store are the size of my head! (I’m barely exaggerating on that one…and I sure hope you don’t mean that size for ‘large’ or I’m going to need to buy a cleaver! Haha 🙂

  5. Erin says:

    Looks good! Have you ever tried sprinkling them with a mixture of 1 Tablespoon brown sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon black pepper? It’s SO good…especially dipped in sriracha flavored mayo!

  6. Beth Wadsworth says:

    Finally. I have tried 4 different “best ever sweet potato fries” recipes. These are finally ‘the best!” I have tried the secret ingredient of corn starch and it didn’t work. The sugar really did! I think it is confusing as regular potato french fries get crispier the longer they cook and sweet potatoes get floppier the longer they cook. We were in a hurry and at 12 minutes they were tender yet not floppy but not quite crispy either. I turned on the broiler for a couple of minutes while watching constantly and parts of the fries did have some crisp to them. The flavoring was just right too. We may try a fuzz more sugar next time just to see how it turns out. Thanks for a great recipe…and word to the wise folks, DON’T COOK SWEET POTATO FRIES FOR 30 MINUTES!

  7. Kim Williams says:

    Just made these tonight and they are AMAZING! Made the sauce to go with them that somebody in the comments suggested 3T BBQ sauce, 3T Mayo, and 1 tsp lemon juice! WOW!

  8. Meredith says:

    We think these are hands down the best sweet potato fries. Thank you Mel!

  9. Deb says:

    These are delicious. I made one change after seeing a similar recipe on Bobby Deen’s new show (the one where he healthifies Paula Deen’s recipes) and I sliced the sweet potato into chips using the food processor rather than cutting them into fries. They took awhile to cook – more like 30 mins than 15 – but totally worth it. Even my kids were wolfing them down 🙂

  10. Lisa says:

    We’ve made these twice in the last week and find them delicious and addictive. The spice combination is wonderful. Thanks, Mel!

  11. queenann says:

    I made these tonight. The two pans in one oven thing didn’t work well for me. I suspect my oven is terrible. I left out the oregano (not my favorite) and ACCIDENTALLY forgot the garlic powder. Still, there were very good. Two children ate them, and one child declared them his favorite kind of fries but wouldn’t eat any. Hmm.


  12. Kristina says:

    I am pregnant and just ordered sweet potato fries for dinner tonight. They were so delicious. I came home and knew I needed my own recipe. I hopped on your site with my fingers crossed. Low and behold, you came through for me!! Apparently sweet potatoes are considered a pregnancy superfood! Thanks Mel!!!

  13. Holly Andersen says:

    I’m the only one in the house that would touch a sweet potato. Not anymore! Thanks!

  14. Emily says:

    hi mel! i made these for my family last week and they were wonderful. thank you for another great recipe. i’ll be posting the link on my blog.

  15. Carmin says:

    Wow! These were to die for. I now know how I want to use the entire 10 lbs of yams I just picked up.

  16. This recipe is absolute perfection! These are the sweet potato fries I’ve been looking for! Thanks so much, Mel!

  17. Cara says:

    These were wonderful! The spices added the perfect touch and they mixed well together. Another tasty recipe we will enjoying….thank you 🙂

  18. Cammee says:

    I love sweet potatoes cooked anyway, as long as there are no marshmallows near them! I love sweet potato fries and I can’t wait to try this recipe.

  19. Jenn says:

    I made these tonight for my family…i have never done much with sweet potatoes so I thought is give it a try. My family loved the flavor but they weren’t as crunchy as we wouldve liked. I wanted to know if you put both pans in the same oven at the same time? Or did you cook them in separate ovens? I cooked them in the same oven and thought maybe that’s why they weren’t as crunchy.

    • Mel says:

      Hi Jenn – yes, I put the pans in the oven at the same time and rotate them about halfway. Baked fries are hard to get super crunchy – mine stay soft in the center with a slightly crispy outer shell. You may need to try baking them longer to see if that helps them crisp up a little more.

  20. Rachel Bradley says:

    I made these tonight and they were delish! My favorite way to eat sweet potatoes so far. 2 out of 3 kids wouldn’t eat them, sadly. But my husband, who usually dislikes sweet potatoes, went back for more and finished the pan up. I was leery about the cumin and chili powder, but it was just the thing to make them sweet and smoky.
    One tip for the gal who had trouble cutting the taters would be to buy smaller ones. Get 6 small ones instead of 3 large and they are easier to handle.

  21. Stacie says:

    I just saw the post from Heather S. above, so I’ll try her sauce and see how it goes! If you have any other suggestions for a sauce, I would love to hear!

  22. Stacie says:

    You wouldn’t happen to have a fry sauce recipe for this deliciousness would you?! For some reason I want to say that you are from Utah, which would mean you know what fry sauce actually is 🙂

    • Mel says:

      Hi Stacie – I agree that Heather’s sauce suggestion looks great! I love fry sauce but don’t have a great recipe to share. Perhaps I should make that my next project!

  23. grace says:

    i’ve never been bothered by being completely and totally out of style when it comes to clothes, so the fact that sweet potato fries are a bit last season doesn’t matter to me at all. delicious, and far superior to white potato fries!

  24. I’m SO glad you posted this! A long time ago, I used to make sweet potato fries by just chopping sweet potatoes, tossing in a random amount of oil and roasting at whatever temperature I felt like that day. They were always perfect. Then, I started thinking about how I was making them. I started obsessing over the details of temperature, time, oil amount and I lost my touch! The fries were either soggy or burnt. Overcooked or raw in the middle. Awful. I’ve been searching for a perfect recipe to teach me how to regain my touch! Thanks 🙂

  25. Rebecca B says:

    OMG! I am so stupid! I have been making these forever w/o the sugar. I never understood why they called for sugar. Duh! I never understood why they didn’t crisp up. Duh! Thanks for shedding the light on the sugar.

  26. Joan says:


  27. i could really use some of these right now! studying at 1:40 am really works up an appetite!

  28. Natalie says:

    I can’t wait to try these. I think the sugar will be just the thing to make them crispy. Mine have always turned out a bit floppy. I’m excited to try the sauce Heather S. posted. It sounds like this sauce they have at The Blue Lemon (cute little restaurant I love in my hometown.) This is exciting…

  29. Janell says:

    Yum! I love sweet potato fries, and am interested to see how they taste with the cumin and chili powder (I’m sure delicious). I’ve only made the frozen kind, and my kids weren’t fans. So hopefully this will convert them!

  30. BriAnn says:

    These look so yummy. Totally will be making these, and Heather, that sounds like a very yummy dipping sauce! Going to have to try that too!

  31. Mel, those look like the perfect sweet potato fries! Crispy, light and full of flavor. Last time I tried to make sweet potato fries, it was a soggy disaster, but I will definitely be getting back on the horse and trying these soon! Thanks for sharing your wonderful recipe.

  32. briarrose says:

    Yummy…I do love sweet potato fries.

  33. Heather S. says:

    A yummy dipping sauce to go with it is
    3 T. bbq sauce
    3 T. mayonnaise
    1 tsp. lemon juice

    So yummy!

  34. Lauren says:

    we love sweet potato fries but is there any easy way to cut them?? we have done it with a knife and fry cutter and they are so hard to do, and the last time we made them my husband cut his hand open! I would love some advice

    • Mel says:

      Hi Lauren, yikes, sorry to hear about your husband’s sweet potato injury. I don’t have any really big secrets, except that after I peel the potatoes, I cut them in half lengthwise so they have a long flat side. I lay the flat side on the cutting board while I cut the potatoes into strips/wedges – that way it’s not rolling all over the place while I cut them.

  35. Sara says:

    Sweet potato fries are my favorite and I’m always looking for new recipes for them. Can’t wait to try these.

  36. Tari says:

    I think I will definitely be making some of these this week! We tried to find sweet potato fries in our freezer section of the grocery store and didn’t have any luck. Plus I’m sure the homemade version is much better! Thanks for sharing!

  37. I LOVE sweet potato fries! I’m so happy that you found them in your little part of the world.

  38. Kim in MD says:

    One word- YUM! I love sweet potato fries, but have never been able to get them crispy. The sugar is genious! These are on my “must try” list for sure…thanks, Melanie! 🙂

  39. I would like to invite you to join in on a RECIPE LINKY PARTY on my blog!


    “Made it on Monday” is a WEEKLY RECIPE link party.
    So you can join in as often as you like.

    I hope to see your recipes soon. 🙂

  40. We love sweet potato fries — this combination sounds delicious.

  41. Liz K. says:

    These look fantastic. My kids really like sweet potato fries. Yours looks much crispier then the ones I have made. I love the idea of preheating the pan I bet that helps them get super crispy.

  42. Krysta Lyn says:

    We LOVE sweet potato fries in our house! Even my husband who claims to hate sweet potatoes gobbles them up. I am going to try your recipe and method of heating up the pan….that is a great idea!

  43. Wow, these look wonderful! I have tried sweet potato fries before but they never got really crispy – the sugar makes total sense, I will be trying these soon. Thanks!

  44. jackie says:

    Yummy!! I get sweet potatoe fries when we go out but have yet to make them. My boys love anything that looks like “fries” so I bet they would eat these up!!!

Leave a Reply

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