Dirty Fries are a real hunger-stopper dish that can be eaten as a complete meal, as a side dish, at home on the grill, or cooked on a campfire grill. These delicious dirty fries are made with just five ingredients that can be enjoyed with your favorite toppings right out of the foil packets!
The toppings and different cheese options are fun to experiment with, and the best part is taking the first bite of these hot steamy fries, covered in oozing melted cheese, bacon bits, and onions, or whichever other toppings you have decided to try. They develop a little bit of smokey flavor from the grill (or campfire) and take ordinary fries to the next level.
- Dirty Fries is an easy dish made with only five ingredients.
- This recipe is ideal for cookouts, game nights, and summer camping trips.
- Enjoy these Dirty Fries as a comfort food meal or add them as a side dish to grilled meat, hamburgers, or hot dogs.
- Packaged frozen French fries – If French fries are not available then you can make your own fries from fresh potatoes. Sweet potatoes, butternut, parsnips, and even carrots can be cut into thin strips to make dirty fries.
- Butter – Melted. I’ve used salted butter for this dish but you can use unsalted butter to reduce the sodium in the meal. The melted butter gets drizzled over the fries and provides flavor and also helps them to crisp up within the foil.
- American cheese – Sliced. You can also use brie, camembert, blue cheese, cheddar, and mozzarella as alternatives.
- Bacon – Use bacon bits or crumbled bacon.
- Green onions – Sliced. Spring onions, chopped peppers, banana peppers, or yellow bell pepper can be used instead of green onions or combined as a delicious garnish.
- Cheeses like brie, camembert, blue cheese, cheddar cheese, and mozzarella are all great alternative options for this dish. Not only can you substitute one of these cheeses, but you can also combine two or more, depending on how rich or different you want your dish to be. These other cheeses melt well over the fries too.
- I like the texture and taste of thin long French fries that are conveniently frozen for a quick result in preparing and cooking. However, if French fries are not available in the stores, then you can make your own fries from fresh potatoes. Just be sure to cut them into thin, slender lengths to replicate French fries.
- Sweet potatoes, butternut, parsnips, and even carrots can be cut into thin strips to make dirty fries.
- Use vegan cheese and butter, as well as imitation bacon to make this dish vegan.
- To make these fries low-fat, consider using leaner meat, such as lean bacon as well as low-fat cheese.
- Season these dirty fries with cajun seasoning, black pepper, or salt.
How to Make Dirty Fries
PREP: Add the frozen French fries to a mixing bowl and pour the melted butter over the fries. Toss the fries so that they are well coated in melted butter. Divide the French fries into four equal portions and place each portion on a separate square of foil (about 12-inch squares).
Fold the foil around the fries into a packet or boat but leave a gap at the top for steam to release while cooking.
PRO TIP: Make sure to leave a gap at the top of the foil packets so that the steam can escape. This will help the frozen French fries to become crispy instead of steaming and becoming soggy.
COOK: Add the foil packets with frozen French fries to a baking sheet or baking tray and cook the fries over indirect heat on a grill or campfire grate for about 20 minutes. The fries can be cooked for longer depending on how crispy you want them to be.
Remove the fries from the heat, open the foil packets and add two slices of cheese per foil packet over the cooked French fries. Close the packets and continue to cook in the baking dish until the cheese is melted.
GARNISH AND SERVE: Remove the fries with melted cheese from the heat and open the foil packets. Garnish the homemade dirty fries with chopped green onions and bacon bits and serve right out of the foil packets.
- Slicing up the onions and cutting bacon bits in advance is best if you want to take dirty fries on the go.
- If you don’t have bacon bits and are using cooked bacon slices, use scissors to cut the bacon instead of a knife. In this instance, use streaky bacon as it is thinner and crispier than other cuts of bacon and will crumble well.
- Sauces such as ketchup or ranch sauce can be added as condiments to these dirty fries. Mayonnaise is another delicious option.
- Add some of your favorite spices, such as smoked paprika or cajun.
- For best cooking results, keep one side of the grill on high heat and place the foil packets on the adjacent grill.
Despite the term, French fries are not French at all! Historians claim that potatoes were fried in the late 1600s in Belgium! (And having sampled Belgium french fries, I must say they definitely know what they’re doing!)
Dirty fries are always best eaten immediately just like regular fries but if you do need to store leftovers then they can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 days. You can reheat these fries in the microwave for no more than 5 to 7 minutes or until heated sufficiently.
Yes, you can. Cooked potato or parboiled potato freezes very well. This suits homemade fries for this dirty fries recipe.
Once again, use an airtight container to put your prepared fries into the freezer. Freeze for up to 3 months. To warm up, take the fries out of your container with no thawing and put them straight into the oven. Only add your sauces and drizzles once the fries are fully heated through.
When taking your dirty fries on the go, it’s helpful to have already sliced the onions and crumbled the bacon ahead of time.
- 26 oz. package frozen french fries
- 2 tablespoons salted butter melted
- 8 slices American cheese
- ½-1 cup bacon bits or crumbled bacon
- ½- 1 cup sliced green onions
- In a medium bowl, toss together frozen french fries and melted butter.
- Divide the french fries between four 12-inch square sheets of aluminum foil.
- Fold the aluminum foil up and around the french fries to create a packet or boat – leaving just a small bit open at the top to allow steam to escape.
- Place foil packets over indirect heat on a grill or campfire grate and cook for about 20 minutes, until fries are crispy and beginning to brown (you can cook longer or to desired crispness.
- Open each foil packet and cover french fries with two slices of American cheese.
- Close the packets back up and return to the grill (indirect heat) until the cheese is melted.
- Top with bacon and green onions and serve hot, right out of the foil packets.