Craving Curly Fries? Make Them Yourself!
Have spiralizer, will make curly fries.
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Most people I know who have a spiralizer on the shelf have it for Whole30- or Paleo-related reasons — myself included. There’s really no other way to zoodle, right? But long after your diet shifts, you can embrace the real reason to keep that spiralizer on hand: curly fries.
Sure, you can attempt to make curly fries without a spiralizer, but … why? The whole point of curly fries is the utterly delightful shape. You want them as springy and curly as kitchen technology will allow. My weapon of choice is a Paderno World Cuisine 3-Blade Vegetable Slicer, but choices abound — from this $12 handheld curl cutter to an attachment for your KitchenAid® Stand Mixer.
But it’s not just the shape that makes a curly fry a curly fry. Unlike regular fries, which are basically potatoes and salt, curly fries are almost universally doused in a range of spices — think garlic powder, onion powder, or paprika — which give them their signature taste (and, often, color). The flavors aren’t required, but they are expected.
The best curly fries, IMHO, are fried in oil, but I don’t always have the emotional bandwidth for all that deep frying. In which case, you can bake them (pro tip: line your baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean up).
In fact, with spiralizer in hand, there’s very little you can’t transform into an Arby’s-esque treat.
I love a good Food52 recipe, and this one does not disappoint. This is a pretty classic fried curly fry, from the russet potatoes to the flour coating seasoned with salt, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, and paprika. Yes, these are deep fried in canola oil, and yes, they’re supposed to taste like Arby’s.
Curly Sweet Potato Fries Recipe
In another copycat Arby’s recipe, using my beloved Paderno Spiralizer, sweet potatoes give it an extra orange color. These are baked in a single layer with just a hint of olive oil.
Curly Fries with Horseradish Mustard
In this recipe, from Table for Two, the flavor is in the horseradish-mustard dip, not the curly fries themselves.
Crispy Rosemary Baked Curly Fries
These relatively spare curly fries are seasoned just with minced rosemary and sea salt before baking, which is Tasty Thin’s workaround for keeping these truly Whole30 compliant. (She calls them “spiralized potatoes” rather than “fries”).
Crispy Garlic Curly Fries
With Salt and Wit’s baked curly fries get a healthy dose of garlic — a whole head! — and are meant to be served not with ketchup but your favorite marinara.
Oven Baked Curly Cheese Fries
Gluten Free Homestead wants you to add aged cheddar cheese and scallions to your fries — and I wholeheartedly agree.
Baked Truffle Curly Fries
This recipe from Veggies Don’t Bite reminds us that curly fries are vegan — and that truffle salt makes almost everything better.
Healthy Oil-Free Baked Curly Fries
This recipe from The Bigman’s World takes “healthy” to another level by baking instead of frying and skipping the vegetable oil completely.
Air Fried Curly Fries with Bacon Chive Dip
Susan at The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen feels the same as I do about all that oil. “Deep frying at home leaves your house smelling like oil for days and a greasy mess everywhere,” she writes. Her solution? Trade the deep fryer for an air fryer. All it requires is 1 tablespoon of olive oil. The Greek yogurt-based dip is an extra bonus.
Homemade Air Fryer Cajun Curly French Fries
Chili Pepper Madness also relies on an air fryer. He uses his signature Homemade Cajun Seasoning blend to keep things true to his name — crazy spicy. (The secret? Ghost Pepper Powder.)
Sweet Potato Curly Fries With Chipotle Lime Aioli
Another baked curly fry recipe from With Salt and Wit, this one using sweet potatoes and pairing them with a deliciously spicy, yogurt-based “aioli.”
Sweet Potato Curly Fries With Yogurt, Sriracha, And Cilantro
A somewhat similar side dish, from My Name Is Yeh, kicks it up a notch with a global flavor profile, inspired by a squash recipe in Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook, Plenty More. Plus, it’s gorgeous.
Curly Parsnip Fries
Move over sweet potatoes, there’s a new root vegetable in town, ready for spiralizing: parsnips. Primal Palate keeps it pretty simple: These are baked, with just a touch of salt (we prefer larger kosher salt flakes) and garlic powder to taste.
Crispy Plantain Curly Fries
In this recipe from What Great Grandma Ate, starchy plantains get the spiralized potato treatment — and they're delicious.
Spicy Roasted Carrot Fries
Honestly, anything you can spiralize can then be fried or baked and dipped in something yummy — even carrots.
Baked Parmesan Zucchini Curly Fries
Your favorite zoodles, just … different. “This healthy recipe combines two bar food favorites—fried zucchini and curly fries—into one tempting package,” writes Robin Bashinsky at Eating Well. The fries get an extra crunch from the parmesan-Panko breading.