How To Make Chili Cheese Fries

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How To Make This Chili Cheese Fries Recipe

How to make Chili Cheese Fries

The big thing about figuring out how to make chili cheese fries is simply time management. Basically, you will need to have several things going at once which can get hectic if you arent great with time management.

However, you also could have some things prepped beforehand like chop veggies or make your chili in a slow cooker, as I will explain below.

What Type Of Fries To Use

You can use whatever type of fries you like. If you like store-bought, frozen fries, go for it! They will work for this recipe.

In general, I recommend thicker cut fries. Those will hold the chili much better than thin shoe-string potato fries. If that matters to you, use something like steak fries.

If you are making your own fries, slice the potato into slices about 1/2 an inch thick. If you have a mandolin that allows you to control the size, that will work great! You want nice, even slices.

If you slice the potatoes unevenly, the fries wont cook at a consistent temperature. The smaller, thinner fries will cook first which may result in some burnt fries.

If you are slicing by hand you will likely end up with some uneven slices. It happens to me every time! Try to separate the smaller slices into a separate batch. Cook them separate from the others. This will help ensure consistency.

What Toppings Are Best For Chili Cheese Fries

Many homemade chili recipes involve chunks of meat swimming in a rich stew. This makes sense when youre eating it out of a bowl, but isnt as successful when ladling it over fries, as it becomes a soggy mess very quickly. Instead, I make a quick and thick stovetop chili. I let the ground beef brown on one side for flavor, then break it up so that no large chunks remain. I also prefer black beans to kidney beans because theyre smaller.

When thinking about cheese, I weighed the pros and cons of topping the fries with grated cheddar or a cheese sauce. In the end, I decided why not both? I took another cue from building sheet pan nachos and topped the base layer with a layer of melted cheese. It provides flavor plus a bit of insurance to help the fries from getting soggy. After the chili comes a generous drizzle of a rich cheese sauce for that ultimate ooey-gooey factor. Its really the best of both worlds.

When it comes to toppings, I stick to the traditional chili toppings, but you can really go all out. Some ideas are as follows:

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Chili Cheese Fries Topping Ideas

Like nachos and veggie burgers, these fries are best with plenty of toppings. I like mine with sliced serranos, cherry tomatoes, cilantro, and red onion, but your options dont end there. Try adding a dollop of cashew sour cream, sliced green onions, diced avocado, or pickled jalapeños. A scoop of pico de gallo would be delicious too.

Let me know what variations you try!

How Do I Make My Fries Crispy

Chili Cheese Fries Made Guilt

Im going to let you in on the secret to crispy homemade french fries: soaking! If youve never soaked fries before making them, I highly, highly recommend you try it out. Soaking the fries helps remove extra starch that makes potatoes stick together and lose their crispnesssomething that is important regardless of your cooking method, but particularly important when you are making oven fries.

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Copycat Chilis Texas Cheese Fries

Chilis Texas Cheese Fries are steak fries seasoned with cheese and other delicious ingredients. These loaded cheese fries are the perfect crispy and savory snack that you can make right in your own home!

If youve ever ordered Texas Cheese Fries from Chilis then you know how amazing they are! They are the perfect snack or appetizer and they are really filling so you could eat them as your main dish, too!

If you love a baked potato and you love nachos then you are going to love these.

How To Make Chili Cheese Fries Step By Step

Step 1: Bake the Fries

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper then add the French fries in an even layer. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring halfway through to ensure even baking.

Step 2: Brown the meat

In the meantime, add the ground beef and onion to a large skillet over medium heat. Crumble the beef and cook until browned, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and salt to the pan and cook for about 2 minutes or until the garlic becomes fragrant.

Step 3: Simmer

Stir in the tomato paste, Rotel, and kidney beans and reduce the heat to medium-low. Let it simmer for 15 minutes or until it has thickened.

Step 4: Prepare the cheese sauce

While the chili is simmering, prepare the cheese sauce by melting the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour until it starts to turn a light brown color. Stir in the onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, pepper, and salt.

Step 5: Whisk the cheese sauce

Gradually pour in the heavy cream, whisking constantly. Continue to whisk until the sauce starts to thicken. Add cheese to the pan one cup at a time. Allow it to fully melt before adding another cup. Once all the cheese has been added to the pan, continue to whisk until fully melted then remove the pan from the heat.

Step 6: Assemble and serve

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Tips To Make This More Homemade:

  • Swap the frozen french fries with roasted potato wedges: wash and slice 4 baking potatoes into wedges, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and bake at 425 for about 25 minutes or until the wedges are tender. Then proceed with the rest of the recipe!
  • Use leftover homemade chili! About 2 cups of homemade chili can be substituted for the canned variety SO much more flavor, too!

How To Make Sonic Chili Cheese Fries


Before you discard your old peanut oil from your turkey fryer try making some sonic chili cheese fries ! This side snack starts off by fresh sliced potatoes soaked in water for about a hour or frozen seasoned battered French fries . If your using frozen fries like I used please be carful and make sure theres no ice clogs in the fries this could cause fryer to boil over which can cause a fire. Start off by heating the oil if your not going to strain the oil , heat to about 325-350. Place frozen fries in a basket drop basket slowly into the hot oil for crispier fries leave fo about 6-8 min. After frying let fries drain for a few then dump into a clean aluminum baking pan. If you have Traeger place a whole big can of hormel bean less chili on the rack with temp set on 250 and the chili can lid opened 95% all the way around but still attached cracked open 1/4 inch. Let the chili heat for about 8 -10 min or desired temp. When the chili hits desired temp remove from Traeger. Take a aluminum pie pan fill with deep fried fries then pour chili over the fries then top with cheese of your choice this video I used Mexican four cheese blend. Place on Traeger that is still on and running at 250 degrees for 6-8 min serve and enjoy!

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How To Make Cheese Sauce For Fries Easy

Cheese sauce for cheese fries and nachos recipe.Chop 2 cups of american cheese while you wait.Continue to whisk the mixture until it is thick and bubbly, 3 to 4 minutes.Cut a small hole at the corner with sharp scissors at an angle.

Cut up your ingredients and have ready to go in the pan.Drizzle the sauce over the hot fries.For a smooth creamy texture use a wire wisk and stir in a figure eight.Gather all the ingredients ahead of time because the sauce comes together really quickly.

Great cheese sauce especially on fries or used as nacho dip!Heres how cheese sauce without flour is done.How to make cheese sauce for fries take a non stick pan, put it on the stove and light the stove at medium flame, let the pan heat.How to make cheese sauce:

How to make mac and cheese sauce.How to make the cheese sauce.I was originally going to top the fries with shredded cheese and melt it in the oven, but chose to make a cheese sauce last minute.If the prepared mustard is too stong shake in a bit of mustard.

If you have any leftover sauce, pour it in a small bowl to use as a dipping sauce for the fries.If youre using it over air fryer roasted broccoli, you can make this.Instant cheese sauce for cheese fries.Kenji is the former culinary director for serious eats and a current culinary consultant for the site.

Repeat this with the mayonnaise.Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.Season with salt and pepper.Set aside and let steep for 30 minutes.

Roasted Potato Wedge Recipe

The base for these chili cheese fries is my Roasted Potato Wedge recipe. They are perfect alone, let alone topped with chili and cheese! Most of the ingredients you probably have on hand, so grab some potatoes and get started. This recipe can be done in four simple steps cut, soak, season, and roast.

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What Are Chili Cheese Fries Made Of

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, you will pile them high with as many delicious chili toppings as you can handle! I usually add diced tomatoes, green onion, and sour cream on the top of my chili cheese fries.

Chili Cheese Friesfor Dinner

Vegan Chili Cheese Fries

These chili cheese fries taste decadent: but theyre actually lighter than most recipes. In fact, you can get away with calling them dinner. Heres why:

  • The fries are just potatoes and olive oil. This is part of a healthy diet!
  • The chili is vegetarian and made of mostly vegetables. Black beans, corn, quinoa, tomatoes, onions: all healthy, good-for-you ingredients! You can choose a meaty chili if you like, which will make this recipe heavier and more caloric.
  • The cheese sauce is minimal. Many cheese sauces pack in loads of cheese. This recipe has just enough. If youd like to go even more minimal, simply sprinkle with a few handfuls of cheddar cheese and pop it in the broiler to melt the cheese.

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What Type Of Cheese To Use

You can use any cheese you like. The best part of making this homemade is you can avoid a fake cheese sauce! Many of the restaurant versions are made with cheese that comes from a can.

I like to use cheddar cheese. I buy the cheese in block form and grate myself. Trust me, it makes a difference. If you have ever made my Southern Soul Food Mac and Cheese you have heard me discuss the difference in pre-shredded cheese that comes in a bag and cheese that you have to grate.

Pre-shredded cheese is coated with potato starch and chemical preservatives to keep it fresh longer. The potato starch adds a waxy coating to the cheese, so it wont melt as well. And you dont really need the chemical preservatives.

Other cheeses that will work well:

  • Mozzarella
  • Pepperjack
  • White Cheddar

Chili Cheese Fries Ingredients

  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 1 15-ounce can of tomato sauce
  • ¼ can of water use the tomato sauce can to measure
  • ½ of a 15 ounce can of petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
  • 2-ounce can of green chilies
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1½ cups heavy whipping cream
  • 3 cups of extra sharp cheddar
  • 2 cups of shredded pepper jack
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon of onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of chili powder

You Will Also Need:

  • 1 bag of frozen French fries
  • jalapeños and green onions for garnish

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Campfire Chili Cheese Fries Tin Foil Dinner

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If anyone would make chili cheese fries on the BBQ, I swear, it would be me. Yes. On the BBQ. In tinfoil. You are welcome for this crazy addition to your junk food cooking repertoire.

To be fair, its not that bad for you, if you buy a healthy chili, low fat cheese and some non-oil laden fries. Im serious. In the grand scheme of junk, this aint that bad.

Fine, its not that healthy either, but hey, we were camping!

Ever since I had this idea, my son and Mr Magpie have been pestering me non-stop to make them and honestly, can you blame them? I dont ever make chili cheese fries at home. Its like when we are camping its no holds barred. Junkier food is allowed and dessert happens more often then it doesnt.

Cutting A Potato Wedge

How to Make Chili Cheese Fries!

Cut the potato in half lengthwise. Then cut each half into quarters, making 8 wedges per potato. If you have an extremely large potato you can cut the wedges smaller, but make sure that the cut size is relatively consistent so you dont affect the cooking time. If your wedges are uneven, it is highly probable that they will cook unevenly as well.

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Chili Texas Cheese Fries

30 Minute Chili with No Beans Recipe

  • 1.5lbground beef
  • 3/4cupyellow onion diced
  • 2tspsalt
  • 10ozdiced tomatoes undrained omit 1/3 cup broth if using tomatoes

Simple Yellow Cheese Dip

  • 12ozAmerican cheeseshredded
  • 4oz Pepper Jackshredded
  • 1cupmilk
  • 5lbsFrench friesfrozen


  • 1cupred onionchopped
  • 1 cupjalapenosliced
  • 1cuppickled jalapenos
  • 1cupColby Jackshredded

Making The Easy Cheese Sauce

The genius part of this chili cheese fries recipe? The easy cheese sauce! Most cheese sauces require you to make a roux by heat flour and butter together first to give the sauce a thick body. But weve created an even easier spin that requires two main ingredients: milk and cheese!

  • This 2-ingredient sauce has a slightly lighter texture than most. Its not as thick because it doesnt use flour. This also makes it gluten-free!
  • Use whole milk. This makes for the richest, creamiest body.

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The Best Chili Cheese Fries Variations

There are loads of chili cheese fries variations to try. Swap out regular fries for sweet potato fries or jicama fries. Or make your chili with a different type of meat like turkey, chicken, or pork, or leave out the meat for a completely vegetarian chili.

You can add in different types of beans or leave the beans out if you prefer. Try a mix of different cheeses like mozzarella, Jack, or Colby. Even a cheese sauce would be great on chili cheese fries!

Chili Cheese Fries Recipe Ingredients

Vegan Chili Cheese Fries #food #vegan

As you can probably tell from the name, this classic dish consists of three main components:

  • Chili
  • Cheese
  • And fries
  • Well start with #1: the chili! Typically, chili cheese fries are smothered in beef chili. In my vegan version, I make homemade chili with plant-based ground meat instead. I love its hearty texture and smoky, spicy flavor in this recipe, but if you prefer, you can substitute regular veggie chili. My Easy Vegetarian Chili would be great here!

    Next up: the cheese! Shredded cheese and cheese sauce are both common toppings for classic chili cheese fries. Here, I go the sauce route, loading up my fries with my go-to vegan cheese sauce. Its oozy, gooey, and positively cheesy! You wont believe its made with plant-based ingredients like sweet potatoes, cashews, and nutritional yeast.

    Tip: if you have any leftover sauce, spoon it over a baked potato, or make vegan mac and cheese!

    Last but not least: the fries! Because I make the chili and cheese sauce from scratch, I use store bought frozen fries as the base of this recipe. That way, once the sauce and the chili are ready, it just takes a few minutes to assemble everything.

    Spread a layer of fries in a large bowl, on a baking sheet, or on a plate. Top them with spoonfuls of the cheese sauce, followed by scoops of the chili. Drizzle more sauce on top. Finish the fries with your desired fixings, and enjoy!

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    How To Serve Loaded Chili Cheese Fries

    The great thing about this chili cheese fries recipe is the versatility. Whether you make this recipe for a game day appetizer or as a main course, it will be well received!

    To serve as an appetizer , I have included instructions in the recipe card for serving directly from the baking pan. To serve as a main dish or side dish, there are also instructions for assembling on individual plates.

    What Are Chili Texas Cheese Fries

    Essentially, chili Texas cheese fries are smothered fries, loaded with all kinds of topping goodness like cheese, onions, jalapenos, etc. There are variations into the meat source, though. Some recipes for chili cheese fries call for bacon and other toppings like green onion and sour cream, whereas others have ground beef chili or a chili made with beef stew meat.

    Most of the Texas chili cheese fries variations I have tried were no bean chili varieties. This includes the Texas cheese chili fries on the Big Orange menu which I have modeled my homemade chili cheese fries after.

    Also, many versions of Texas style chili do not seem to have a heavy tomato base as you often find in other chili.

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