If you were beginning to think that actually crispy Keto French fries were an impossible dream, you owe it to yourself to try this new keto fries recipe. People are going nuts over it.
These remarkable keto French fries have only two ingredients: almond flour (or coconut flour) and xanthan gum. Oh, and hot water. That’s it. You mix a simple dough, roll it out, and slice into fry-shaped sticks. Fry them up and you’re good to go.
The creative recipe comes from Heavenly Fan, a Youtube channel run by a London chef that specializes in beautiful vegan keto recipes. Fan, the chef, explains she stumbled upon the recipe in error, after trying (and failing) to come up with a dough for a good keto pasta. But in a moment of inspiration she asked, “What if I fry the dough? Would it turn into something? … It turned into the most beautiful fries!”
The struggle with most keto fries is how difficult it is to make them actually crispy. There are reasons why common replacements such as zucchini, jicama, and rutabaga have fewer carbs than potatoes—they’ve got a heck of a lot less starch, and a heck of a lot more water, all of which makes frying a dicey proposition.
The fact is that even real French fries, made with potatoes, are extremely difficult to make properly. Take it from me, a guy that used to oversee a restaurant group that patiently cut, rinsed, soaked, rinsed again, poached, chilled, and (finally) fried hundreds of thousands of orders of French fries, all by hand. Mess up any one of those steps and you’re likely to end up with soggy or gummy or burnt fries.
So, while I was a bit skeptical, I worked up a batch myself, and I was pretty pleased with the result. The fries were fairly crispy, definitely crispier than a rutabaga is ever likely to be, and had an acceptably neutral flavor. It would have been absolutely impossible to guess that they were made almost entirely of almond flour—I didn’t perceive even a hint of almond flavor. Could I have fooled an unsuspecting guest into thinking they were real homemade fries? It’s not impossible. My wife, not a low-carb eater, was also a fan. She also enjoyed the fries heartily, and she didn’t have the excuse of largely living a fry-less existence to whet her appetite.
I also shared my keto fries with the two particularly tough little critics that happen to live with me. One (aged 5) gave the new fries an immediate thumbs down, the other (aged 8) gave them a “thumbs medium” – “they’re okay but I like regular French fries more.” I suppose I agree with her assessment—they’re not quite as good as the original item—but I was much more enthusiastic about the result. The kiddo was blasé enough to stop at just one fry, whereas I demolished the platter in about a minute. I’ll be happy to make these again.
I tried one version of the recipe: with almond flour. The video also offers a coconut flour recipe, but having previously regretted a Fathead pizza dough I made once with distinct notes of coconut, I stuck with the almond version. I shallow-fried my fries, using plenty of oil in a pan. Fan recommends using olive oil. Peanut oil is traditionally thought of as the best oil for fries, but that might not be the healthiest option. Any non-vegan readers lucky enough to have beef tallow on hand are really in the money.
Fan also suggests oven-baking in lieu of frying, although that seems likely to result in a less satisfyingly crispy fry. An air fryer, already a popular piece of equipment in the keto community, might work perfectly.
We monitor more than a few corners of the low-carb internet community, and every once in a while a single recipe or idea explodes in all of them simultaneously. Last year, that idea was chaffles, the simple keto waffle that became an overnight keto phenomenon. In the past week, this Youtube video, with the unassuming name “How to make keto French fries,” blew up in similar fashion. One wonders how the low-carb hivemind will adopt and adapt this winning recipe in the coming weeks.
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