Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries

4 from 1 vote
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A super easy air fryer sweet potato fries recipe featuring perfectly cooked fries that are crispy on the outside, tender inside, and enhanced with a savory spice mix. It requires less oil than deep frying and tastes so good! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Air fryer sweet potato fries on a tray

Since I got my air fryer, I rarely turn on my big oven anymore. Especially in the summer when my kitchen is super hot, even with the AC on. When you cook with an air fryer, you can cook a dish really fast and the air fryer doesn’t heat up the room too much. Today I want to introduce another one of my favorite recipes – air fryer sweet potato fries. 

When cooked in the air fryer, these sweet potato fries will crisp up nicely on the outside and the inside will be tender and sweet. The oil required is much less than for deep-frying, and the cooking process is less messy. I like to spice up my sweet potato fries with a mixture of Chinese chili flakes and a pinch of five spice powder. They balance with the sweetness of the sweet potato and make the dish extra appetizing!

Sweet potato fries in air fryer basket
Air fryer sweet potato fries close up

The best sweet potato for air fryer sweet potatoes fries

The Beauregard sweet potato, the most common sweet potato in the US, is the best one for air fryer sweet potato fries. It has a reddish skin and its flesh is orange. When you visit a grocery store in the US, you might also come across Jewel sweet potatoes. They look similar to the Beauregard type, but with a copper colored skin and pale orange flesh. Even though I like the taste of this sweet potato, I found their texture a bit too dry for air fryer sweet potato fries.

Also, I do not recommend using Asian sweet potatoes. Even though I love Japanese sweet potatoes (the ones with red skin and white-ish flesh) when it’s baked, the mouth feel is way too dry when air fried.

Jewel sweet potatoes

How to make air fryer sweet potato fries

Making sweet potato fries is super easy. 

  1. Toss the sweet potato with oil and the spice mix in a bowl
  2. Spread the fries out in the air fryer basket
  3. Air fry at 350°F (176°C) for 8 to 10 minutes
  4. Flip and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes
Beauregard and Jewel sweet potatoes
Air fryer sweet potato fries served with ketchup and mayo

Cooking tips

Leave the skin on

Leaving the skin on will help the sweet potatoes keep their shape and make the texture even crispier. Not to mention that the skin part of the sweet potato contains even more nutrients than the flesh does. 

How to cut the sweet potatoes

My favorite way to cut perfect evenly sized fries is to slice off the pointed ends of the sweet potatoes. Then slice them into 1/2” (1 cm) thick pieces, and then into sticks.

Sweet potatoes shrink quite a bit, so I usually keep my fries on the slightly thicker end so they keep their shape once cooked. You can cut them thinner too if you like skinnier fries. But remember, sweet potato fries will always be a bit softer than potato fries. When you cut them too thin, the fries might be floppy once they’re cooked.

Use generous amounts of oil 

By a generous amount, I mean that 1 tablespoon of oil is plenty for 1 big sweet potato. Halfway through the cooking, you should check on them and spray a bit more oil onto them if needed. Sweet potato fries require a bit more oil to crisp up properly and the inside to remain moist during cooking.

Adjust cooking time accordingly

Depending on the type of air fryer you use, you might find that the cooking time varies slightly. I use a Cuisinart Air Fryer Toaster Oven currently. It is quite powerful and sometimes it needs less time. When you’re using an air fryer recipe, always check on your food a few times during cooking, and slightly adjust the cooking time according to the best results in your situation.

Sweet potato fries in air fryer basket

Afterthoughts

I’ve cooked a lot of air fryer sweet potato fries and I’ve tried out all kinds of temperature settings. I found that higher temperatures like 400°F (200°C) are too high. The sweet potato fries will char too quickly and the inside will be a bit dry. Low temperatures such as 300°F (148°C) are too low for the fries to crisp up.

I found that 350°F (176°C) is a sweet spot, where there is enough time for the inside to cook to develop the sweet taste, and the outside to crisp up. 

Again, when you’re cooking with an air fryer, always observe and see what cooking temperature and time works best for you. 

More air fryer recipes

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A super easy air fryer sweet potato fries recipe featuring perfectly cooked fries that are crispy on the outside, tender inside, and enhanced with a savory spice mix. It requires less oil than deep frying and tastes so good! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries

4 from 1 vote
A super easy air fryer sweet potato fries recipe featuring perfectly cooked fries that are crispy on the outside, tender inside, and enhanced with a savory spice mix. It requires less oil than deep frying and tastes so good! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}
Author: Maggie Zhu
Course: Side
Cuisine: Chinese Fusion
Keyword: comfort food
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 big (1 lb / 450 g) sweet potato , sliced to 1/2” (1 cm) thick sticks
  • Oil spray (or olive oil)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon five spice powder

Serving options

  • Mayonnaise
  • Ketchup
  • Sriracha

Instructions

  • Place the sweet potatoes in a large mixing bowl. Toss with olive oil, salt, black pepper, chili flakes, and five spice.
  • Spread the sweet potato slices in the air fryer basket without overlapping (cook in batches if needed). Cook at 350°F (176°C) for 8 to 10 minutes, until the top starts to char lightly. Take out the basket and flip the fries (you can simply shake the basket if you’re feeling lazy). If the surface of the sweet potato looks dry, spray it with a bit more oil. Continue air frying for another 2 to 3 minutes, until the fries turn golden brown.
  • If you’ve made the fries in batches, you can now return all the fries to the basket (it’s fine if they overlap) and reheat for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve hot as an appetizer or side with the sauce(s) of your choice.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 123kcal, Carbohydrates: 23.6g, Protein: 2.3g, Fat: 2.5g, Saturated Fat: 0.3g, Sodium: 332mg, Potassium: 541mg, Fiber: 3.8g, Sugar: 7.4g, Calcium: 5mg, Iron: 4mg
Did You Make This Recipe?Don’t forget the last step! Leave a comment below, and tag me @OmnivoresCookbook and #OmnivoresCookbook on Instagram!

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Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Marianne says:

    Do you line the basket with parchment paper while “frying”. Looks great❤️

    • Maggie Zhu says:

      My air fryer comes with the basket with a bottom tray.
      I usually only line the tray with parchment to catch the grease. If I do not want to clean up, I would line the tray and simply cook the ingredients in the tray.
      Lining the basket would block the air flow from the bottom. That being said, if you’re not making too big a batch and will flip the fries in between, I think lining the basket with parchment paper is OK.

  2. Valerie says:

    4 stars
    This sounds great! When I think about it, one of my favorite spices is 5 spice powder. Just the tiniest bit makes a huge difference in flavor. I’ll definitely be testing these out in my AF with that dip. Thank you, Maggie for all the great recipes.

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