It’s time to stop buying bags of sweet potato fries from the freezer section of your grocery store.
OK, I get it. When it comes to french fries, you’re more inclined to siding with sweet potatoes because their much “healthier” than the standard white potato. Let’s take just a second to think about this – if you’re serving sweet potato fries for the higher nutritional content, then why on earth would you purchase a frozen bag that is not only overpriced, but also heavily filled with preservatives and unnatural ingredients?
I understand that convenience is a necessity, especially once the school year gets back into the swing of things. But I also understand the importance of feeding your body, and your loved ones, food that actually benefits your health as opposed to food that will only leave you feeling groggy, grumpy, and…hungry again in a few hours.
If there’s one thing you can change about your grocery shopping, it’d be just this simple:
Rule Number 7: Stay clear of the center aisles in your super market.
Try to only shop on the outside perimeter of your grocery store. Processed food items tend to fill the center aisles, where fresh food often lines the walls. If you stick to the edges of the store, you’ll be most likely to end up with real food in your cart.
Check out the book Food Rules by Michael Pollan. It’s a clever little book about the simplicity of eating well and the joy that food brings to ones life. A review of the book states, “Food Rules has prompted a national discussion that is helping to change the way Americans approach their eating. A beautiful book to cherish and share, Food Rules guides us with humor, joy, and common sense toward a happier, healthier relationship to food”.
So with that being said, stop buying the frozen bags of sweet potato fries. Stop frying your sweet potatoes in fatty oil. Stop drenching them in butter, packing them with brown sugar, and dipping them in a sugary icing. Be simple and use bold flavors. You won’t regret it.
Sweet potatoes are one of the most healthy vegetables in the world. One serving contains more beta carotene and vitamin A than 23 cups of broccoli! They also are very high in fiber and are strong sources of antioxidants. So eat up folks – these homemade sweet potato fries will leave you wondering why you ever bought the frozen bag in the first place.
Here’s what you’ll need:
2 large sweet potatoes
1 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of lime zest
2 teaspoons of kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and bring a large pot of water to a boil. Scrub your potatoes to clean the skin, and place them in the boiling water for about 15 minutes. I like to pre-cook my potatoes before baking in order to ensure soft centers and crisp edges in the oven.
Carefully remove the potatoes from the boiling water and allow them to cool for a few minutes. I use a clean dish towel to hold onto the potatoes when slicing them.
Slice each potato in half, lengthwise, and then thinly slice them into half moons.
Toss your potato slices with a tablespoon or so of olive oil on a foil-lined baking sheet, and then prepare the seasoning.
Finely zest a lime and mix the zest together in a small dish with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper.
Sprinkle the seasoning over the oiled potatoes and toss with your fingers to ensure that every slice is evenly coated.
Bake the potatoes for 20-25 minutes, turning the slices over one time after about 10 minutes in the oven.
Once the potatoes are done baking, they should be soft in the center but crisp around the edges with a little golden brown color shining through.
Sprinkle the hot fries with fresh cilantro for some extra southwestern flare – and a bit of snazzy color!
These fries (or chips) are full of flavor – the sweetness from the potatoes is complimented so well by the spice of the cayenne pepper. I love the citrusy pop from the lime zest against the boldness of the other strong flavors. I love serving these fries with almost anything. They pair fabulously with burgers, sandwiches, wraps, and more. As always, be creative!
One other thing – these fries will only set you back about 55 calories per serving (this recipe will yield about 6). If you fried up the standard frozen bag of sweet potato fries, you’d not only be feeding your body dangerous preservatives, but you’d also be consuming an average of 200 calories per serving. No thank you!
Eat up, be smart, and have fun!