Today, I will show you how to reheat french fries to revive their extra-crispy texture. Because let’s be honest; eating cold fries should be a sin! We’ll take a look at four easy methods you can try at home using appliances you already have. Their quick, effective, and at the very least will give you piping-hot snacks again!
And if you want to learn more delicious ways to reheat different kinds of food, start with my popular guide on How To Reheat Chicken Wings and How To Reheat Leftover Pizza.
Can You Really Reheat French Fries?
We all know that the best fries are freshly fried. The second best are those that have been cooked, cooled, and reheated again with a little extra care.
But most of you may wonder if reheating french fries is even possible. The truth is, it absolutely is! With this guide, you’ll discover four quick and easy methods for reheating your old french fries and making sure they taste as good as newly cooked ones.
I’ll show you how to reheat leftover french fries in the oven, stovetop, microwave, and air fryer. So keep reading to find out which method is the best way to reheat them right for you.
Why Do French Fries Go Soggy?
Have you ever wondered why leftover french fries go soggy in the first place? The answer may actually help you understand what you can do with your homemade fries or fast food fries to keep them crispy for a while and how to revive their crisp nature.
French fries should be crispy to some degree. If they aren’t crispy, they aren’t French fries. Instead, they’re something else like British chips or South African “slap chips.” Both of these are fried but not crispy.
When french fries are left out to cool, the starches inside the potato start to secrete moisture. Naturally, when the moisture comes into contact with the crispy exterior, it starts softening and eventually makes the fry soft, mushy, and limp.
The same happens when you store french fries in any area with a very high temperature or moisture content. This can be in a fridge, a humid environment, or in direct sunlight.
How To Reheat French Fries To Make Them Crispy Again
So, now that you understand what makes them soggy in the first place, can you guess what needs to happen to re-crisp them?
It’s easy! The goal is to remove the excess moisture that just built up on the surface area of the fries.
The best way to reheat leftover french fries is with techniques that use dry heat. That would mainly include the oven and air fryer.
There are other methods you can try, but the texture of the fries will not be as crispy (if at all) as they used to be.
Reheating French Fries In The Oven
As I’ve mentioned, reheating leftover fries in the oven is the best way to make them crispy again. The dry heat of the oven will only remove moisture, not add any during the process.
Now, that being said, if you don’t bake them at the correct temperature and for the correct amount of time, you could be left with rock-hard fries that have completely burnt or dried out.
How To Reheat French Fries
To start, preheat the oven to 425˚F (220˚C). You have to use high heat, otherwise, the fries will dry out completely instead of simply crisping on the outside.
While the oven is preheating, place the leftover fries on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Make sure they are all in a single layer and that they don’t overlap. They should also not touch, if that’s possible.
Place the french fries inside the heated oven and leave them to reheat for 8-10 minutes.
Give them a toss and leave them again for another 4 minutes or so. They should be crispy (not dried out) when they are removed.
Serve the fries immediately with salt to prevent them from becoming soggy again.
How To Reheat Fries In the Air Fryer
Now, while the oven is the most popular reheating method, reheating leftover fries in the air fryer does a much better job. The only reason it’s not higher on this list is that not everybody has an air fryer.
If you do, definitely give this appliance a go before the oven. It works much more quickly than a traditional oven, will give you uber-crispy fries thanks to the air fryer technology, and ultimately uses less electricity.
To start, preheat the air fryer on the “air fry” setting at 425˚F (220˚C). If you can pre-set a timer, do so for 6 minutes.
When the air fryer is heated, add the leftover french fries to the air fryer basket and leave them to preheat. At the 3-minute mark, give them a toss to properly distribute the hot air so they cook evenly and crisp on all sides.
When the time has elapsed, check their crispiness and either serve them immediately or heat them a little longer.
The biggest challenge when air frying leftover fries with this method is to not overload the air fryer basket but to put them in an even layer. Otherwise, this could make them reheat and re-crisp unevenly.
Reheating Fries In A Deep-Fryer
Deep frying is a good option but there are a couple of reasons I don’t like to do it.
First, you need to set up the deep-fryer again. The cleaning process takes a while, is very messy, and honestly, is not worth the effort for simply reheating the fries.
Secondly, it’s a wet cooking method. While it does an excellent job at crisping leftover fries the first time, it’s not always effective for mushy fries. At the very least, you have to ensure you use the perfect temperature for the perfect amount of time.
If you don’t, you may just end up with still-soggy, overcooked, limp fries.
To start, preheat the oil to 425˚F (220˚C). Once heated (check the temperature), add the fries and leave them to crisp up for 5-8 minutes.
This may take longer depending on the amount you’ve added.
Once cooked, remove the crispy fries from the fryer and drain them on a paper towel. You have to serve these immediately because the excess oil on the fries makes them soggy quickly.
How To Reheat French Fries In Microwave
This is another way to reheat fries, but if you don’t mind limp, soggy fries and simply want them reheated, you can obviously use the leftovers in the microwave.
Just know that you will NEVER be able to make crispy fries in a microwave. No matter what anyone says!
To reheat fries in a microwave, place them in a microwave-safe bowl or plate at high heat for one or two minutes. Feel if they are hot enough but be careful not to burn the food or yourself.
Once they are heated, place them on a paper towel-lined plate to remove any excess oil or moisture that may have built up. Finally, serve them immediately.
How to Serve Reheated French Fries
Serving your reheated leftover French fries with your favorite dipping sauce or condiment is a great way to enjoy them. Ranch dressing, ketchup, honey mustard sauce, and other sauces can all be used to enhance the flavor of your fries.
Adding a sprinkle of salt, parmesan cheese, and some freshly chopped herbs like parsley or chives also helps to bring out the flavor of reheated fries. If you’re feeling adventurous, you could even try adding other spices and herbs for additional flavor depth.
Finally, don’t forget to enjoy your delicious freshly reheated French fries! Whether you’re eating them alone or with a delicious dipping sauce or condiment, these crispy fried potatoes are sure to hit the spot. Enjoy!
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