Crispy Air-Fryer Fries on a table in a Studio
(Scott Suchman for The Washington Post/food styling by Lisa Cherkasky for The Washington Post)
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Crispy Air-Fryer Fries

If you love french fries but don’t love deep-frying, air-fryer (or oven-baked) fries are for you. This straightforward recipe uses just 2 tablespoons of oil to achieve crispy, light brown potatoes. Russet potatoes, which are lower in starch, are ideal here.

From staff writer G. Daniela Galarza.


measuring cup
Servings: 2-4 Makes about 4 cups of fries
  • 2 pounds russet potatoes (about 2 large), scrubbed or peeled
  • 2 tablespoons peanut, grapeseed or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt, plus more as needed


Time Icon Active: 10 mins| Total: 25 mins
  1. Step 1

    Cut the potatoes into sticks about 3/8-inch thick. Place them in a bowl and cover with very cold water, using your hands to swish them around. Allow the cut potatoes to soak for at least 30 minutes, or refrigerate and soak up to overnight. Drain well, then dry very well with a dish towel.

  2. Step 2

    Preheat an air-fryer, with the rack or basket inserted, to 425 degrees. (See NOTES.)

  3. Step 3

    In a large bowl, toss the dried potato sticks, oil and salt until well-coated. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you will need to air fry the potatoes in two or three batches. For each batch, spread potato sticks in an even layer in the air-fryer basket. Avoid stacking fries for best results; it’s okay if they touch. Air-fry until browned and crisp, 10 to 15 minutes. Serve with additional salt, if desired.

  4. Step 4


  5. Step 5

    If you want to ensure extra-crispy fries, you can use a trick from “The Flavor Equation,” by Nik Sharma: In a medium saucepan over high heat, combine 2 pounds russet potatoes cut into 3/8-inch thick sticks, 4 cups water, 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 2 large lemons), 1 teaspoon fine salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda and bring to a rolling boil. Cook until tender but still firm, about 2 minutes. (Par-cooking the potatoes in this solution helps them release excess starch, forces the starch to coat the surface of each fry, and ensures a soft and creamy interior.) Carefully drain, then air-fry as directed below until light brown and crisp.

  6. Step 6

    These french fries also may be made in an oven: Slice and oil the potatoes as directed below. Position oven racks in the lower third and upper third of the oven; and preheat to 425 degrees. Lightly grease two large, rimmed baking sheets, and divide the potatoes between the baking sheets, spreading them in a single layer. Roast the potatoes until browned all over, tossing with a spatula halfway through cooking, 30 to 40 minutes.

  7. Step 7

    If your air fryer only goes to 400 degrees, you may need to add another minute or so of cooking time.

Nutritional Facts

Per serving

  • Calories


  • Carbohydrates

    40 g

  • Fat

    7 g

  • Fiber

    5 g

  • Protein

    5 g

  • Saturated Fat

    1 g

  • Sodium

    309 mg

  • Sugar

    2 g

This analysis is an estimate based on available ingredients and this preparation. It should not substitute for a dietitian’s or nutritionist’s advice.

From staff writer G. Daniela Galarza.

Tested by G. Daniela Galarza and Ann Maloney

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