Spicy Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries that are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, and all kinds of tasty! Oh, and did I say, all kinds of good for you? Yeah, that too!

Spicy Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries that are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, and all kinds of tasty! Oh, and did I say, all kinds of good for you? Yeah, that too!

If you’ve ever tried to make oven baked sweet potato fries from scratch, then you’re no stranger to the fact that it can be really hard to get those sweet potatoes to crisp up when baking them in the oven, as opposed to throwing them, a handful at a time, into a bath of blazing hot oil. Hard, but not impossible… 

While it may be tough to beat the deep fryer, there is definitely a way to obtain decently crispy and positively yummy oven baked sweet potato fries. Granted, it requires a bit of time, effort and planning ahead, but it’s totally worth it, I swear!  

All you need to do is follow a few basic rules. And once you get the hang of it, there really is nothing no it, you’ll see.  

Care to give it a try? Let’s go… 

Sweet potatoes on a wooden cutting board

Making great sweet potato fries actually starts at the store… Sweet potatoes tend to come in all kinds of shapes and sizes and more often then not, let’s admit it, they tend to be a little oddly shaped. If you’re going to dice or puree your tubers, looks or size actually don’t really matter.

But for making fries? You’re gonna want to be a little picky! Be sure to select potatoes that are as evenly shaped as possible. Not too big nor too small, just nice and plump, slightly longer than they are wide, and definitely not twisted. This fussy selection process will make your life so much easier down the road… 

Sweet Potatoes Strips on a wooden cutting board

Once you’ve carefully selected your sweet potatoes, you’re gonna want to clean them well, remove their ends if necessary and then cut them into long and uniform sticks, about 1/4″ thick.

Uniformity is very important, as this is what will ensure that your potatoes bake evenly and at the same time; also, the long thin strips will make for crispier fries

The Sweet Potato Strips are getting a water bath

Place the potato strips in a bowl and fill it with cold water. Let the potatoes soak in the cold water for at least a half hour, or even up to the following day, but no longer than 24 hours. If soaking for more than a few hours, be sure to place the bowl in the fridge. 

Soaking the potatoes will draw some of the excess starch out of the potatoes, which will also help in making your fries crispier. 

Patting dry the sweet potato strips with a clean tea towel

When ready to bake your fries, place a large baking sheet in the oven and turn the oven on to 475°F. Drain the potato strips, rinse them well and then pat them really dry with a clean tea towel. 

It’s imperative that you dry your potatoes real well for the oil to adhere to them. Oil and water they just don’t mix! Plus, well, again: the less moisture we leave behind, the crispier the fry will be!

Adding avocado oil to the sweet potato strips

Put the potatoes into a clean, dry bowl and drizzle them with the avocado oil; Toss until all the strips are evenly coated.

Adding the spice mixture to the sweet potato strips

In a separate bowl, combine the corn starch, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, paprika, ground pepper and red pepper flakes (if using) and mix with a small whisk until thoroughly combined. Sprinkle over the oil-coated potato strips…  

The cornstarch is pretty much the secret ingredient that will give your fries a nice crispy shell on the exterior. Notice that we didn’t add salt to this spice mix? It’s totally intentional. We don’t want to be adding any salt just yet, it would only help in bringing some moisture out and make the fries more soggy… wait until the very end and then you can sprinkle some all over the finished fries. Like you normally would if you had thrown the fries in the fryer… 

Sweet potato strips all coated up and ready for the baking sheet

Toss your potato strips real thoroughly, until every single one of them is evenly coated with the starch/spice mixture.

Sweet potato fries ready to hit the oven

Now carefully take the pan out of the oven and decrease the temperature to 450°F. Carefully line the pan with parchment paper and on it, carefully arrange the potato strips in a single layer, making sure that they don’t touch or overlap. Did I say carefully? Be careful. That pan is hot!

Using a hot baking sheet is another factor that will, you guessed it, greatly help in getting those potato strips to crisp up… As for the parchment paper, it will totally prevent your potatoes from sticking to the pan. Lastly, arranging the potatoes in a single layer, and making sure that they do not touch so air can circulate freely around each strip is absolutely crucial to the success of the operation. If you pile them up, your fries will unquestionably get soggy. 

Flipping the sweet potato fries with kitchen tongs halfway through baking

Bake the potatoes for 15 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven and flip each fry individually with a pair of kitchen tongs. Again make sure that the fries remain in a single layer and do not touch or overlap.

Resume baking for 10-15 more minutes, or until the fries start to crisp up and take a nice golden coloration. Feel free to flip the fries once again and to return them to the oven for a few more minutes if you feel they could use a bit more baking time.

When cooked to your liking, remove the fries from the oven and sprinkle them generously with salt, then let them cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with chopped green onions or parsley, if desired.

Oh, and just FYI… my 30 second foolproof vegan mayo is killer with those fries. You should totally give that combo a try! 

Spicy Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries that are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, and all kinds of tasty! Oh, and did I say, all kinds of good for you? Yeah, that too!

Spicy Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Soaking time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Spicy Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries that are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, and all kinds of tasty! Oh, and did I say, all kinds of good for you? Yeah, that too!
Servings: 4

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Clean your sweet potatoes well, remove the ends if necessary and cut them into long, thin and uniform strips, about 1/4" thick.
  • Place the potato strips in a bowl and fill it with cold water. Let the potatoes soak in the cold water for at least a half hour, but no longer than 24 hours. If soaking for more than a few hours, be sure to place the bowl in the fridge.
  • When ready to bake your fries, place a large baking sheet in the oven and turn the oven on to 475°F.
  • Drain the potato strips, rinse them well and then pat them really dry with a clean tea towel. Put the potatoes into a clean, dry bowl and drizzle them with the avocado oil; Toss until all the strips are evenly coated.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the corn starch, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, paprika, ground pepper and red pepper flakes (if using) and mix with a small whisk until thoroughly combined.
  • Sprinkle over the oil-coated potato strips and then toss until all the strips are evenly coated with the spice mixture.
  • Carefully take the pan out of the oven and decrease the temperature to 450°F.
  • Carefully line the pan with parchment paper and on it, carefully arrange the potato strips in a single layer, making sure that they don't touch or overlap. Did I say carefully? Be careful. That pan is hot!
  • Bake the potatoes for 15 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven and flip each fry individually with a pair of kitchen tongs. Again make sure that the fries are in a single layer and do not touch or overlap.
  • Resume baking for 10-15 more minutes, or until the fries start to crisp up and take a nice golden coloration. Feel free to flip the fries once again and to return them to the oven for a few more minutes if you feel they could use a bit more baking time.
  • When cooked to your liking, remove the fries from the oven and sprinkle with salt, then let them cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before serving. Garnish with chopped green onions or parsley, if desired.

Nutrition

Calories: 329kcal, Carbohydrates: 53g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 130mg, Potassium: 848mg, Fiber: 8g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 32375IU, Vitamin C: 5.4mg, Calcium: 68mg, Iron: 1.7mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Author: Sonia! The Healthy Foodie

If you’ve tried this recipe, please take a minute to rate the recipe and let me know how things went for you in the comments below. It’s always such a pleasure to hear from you!

You can also FOLLOW ME on PINTEREST, FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM and TWITTER for more delicious, healthy recipes!