This is the Ultimate Chili Cheese Fries Recipe! Crispy potatoes are covered in chili, melted cheese and your favourite fixings.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Russet potatoes – you could also try making this recipe with sweet potato or another kind of potato of your choice.
- Olive oil – or another neutral cooking oil such as avocado or canola oil.
- Salt & pepper – to taste.
- Ground chicken or turkey – you can also use ground beef, but it will increase the calorie count.
- Olive oil – see substitution notes above.
- Yellow onion – red onion, white onion or shallots can be used instead.
- Celery – carrot would also be good or you can leave this out altogether.
- Green pepper – swap out for another colour bell pepper of your choice. For a spicier option, use green chilies.
- Chili powder – use a combination of cumin, paprika and cayenne in a pinch.
- Cumin – coriander or extra chili powder is the best substitute here.
- Coriander – use cumin instead.
- Salt & pepper – to taste.
- Sriracha – use any hot sauce of your choice. You can leave this out altogether if you’re not a big fan of spice.
- Crushed tomatoes – canned diced tomatoes would work if they’re all you have on hand. San Marzano tomatoes usually have a bit more flavour.
- Tomato – fresh or jarred salsa or pico de gallo can be used instead.
- Shredded cheddar and mozzarella – or any other cheese blend of your choice.
- Green onions – diced chives or red onions would also be good.
- Sour cream – use non-fat sour cream for a healthier option.
How to make chili cheese fries
- Cook the fries.
- Make the chili.
- Ladle the chili over top of the fries.
- Add on your chosen toppings.
- Serve and enjoy!
What goes with chili cheese fries?
There really isn't a limit to the toppings for chili cheese fries! Add whatever you would normally use to garnish a bowl of chili or a plate of nachos.
Here are a few ideas:
- Sour cream
- Chopped onions or sliced green onions
- Diced tomatoes
- Diced avocado
- Black beans
- Jalapeno or banana pepper slices
- Corn chips or crushed tortilla chips
In case there are a few lonely French fries that aren't covered with toppings, you might want to have something ready to dip them in. Put out bowls filled with sauces for dipping like salsa, ranch dressing, and maybe even guacamole or mango salsa.
Frequently Asked Questions
This fantastic comfort food dish features homemade oven baked French fries with hearty homemade chili and two types of cheese on top. The dish would be complete right there, but it gets even better! After the fries are smothered in cheese, you pile them high with as many delicious chili toppings as you can handle! I usually add diced tomatoes, green onion and sour cream on top of my chili cheese fries.
Chili cheese fries are thought to have been invented either by a man named Don A. Jenkins in Texas or a fry cook named Austin Ruse at a Dairy Queen in Missouri. Either way, they originated in the US!
This chili cheese fries recipe has 317 calories per serving. Keep in mind that the calorie count will vary based on what toppings you add on.
Storing and reheating
Any leftover chili should be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator and used within 5 days.
You can reheat the chili in a pot on the stovetop or in the microwave for a few minutes. Enjoy it as is, or make a fresh batch of chili cheese fries!
You can also revive the fries by placing them back in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes at 350° Fahrenheit– just watch them closely to make sure they don't overcook when you're reheating them.
Freezing the chili
You can freeze the chili in an airtight container or Ziploc bag for up to 4 months. Unfortunately, the fries cannot be frozen and reused, so make sure you eat them fresh. Before placing the chili into a container, make sure it’s cooled to room temperature. This helps to prevent ice crystals from forming on top.
You can then reheat the chili from frozen for around 8 minutes in the microwave, stirring a few times throughout. Alternatively, you can let the chili defrost in the fridge overnight before reheating as normal. Serve on its own or with fresh fries!
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Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on packing this recipe up for lunch.
- I get all my grass-fed beef from Butcher Box.
Ultimate Chili Cheese Fries Recipe
- 2 Russet potatoes
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 lb Ground chicken or turkey
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 2 stalks celery finely chopped
- Half green pepper finely chopped
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp Sriracha
- 1 cup crushed tomatoes
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tomato seeded and diced
- Shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheese
- green onions chopped
- sour cream
- Anything else you may want such as hot peppers, salsa, olives, pickles, lettuce, etc.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Using a mandoline or a very sharp knife, slice potatoes so that they are as thin as possible–think McDonald's style french fries!
- Toss potatoes in olive oil, salt and pepper, and then spread on baking sheets. You can cook up to four baking sheets at a time so don't be afraid to leave some space on sheets so fries don't become overcrowded. Bake 20 minutes, flipping fries halfway through.
- Cook chili while fries are in oven by heating olive oil, adding meat and veggies, adding spices, then tomatoes and water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 min.
- Chili and fries should be finished at the same time. Change oven settings from bake to broil.
- Plate fries by stacking them on top of each other on oven-safe plates. Ladle chili overtop, then sprinkle cheese and place in oven for about 2-3 min until cheese is melted.
- Finish with your favourite toppings, and serve right away while the cheese is melted and hot!