20 Ways To Season Frozen Sweet Potato Fries To Perfection

No matter the price, we never have a problem paying an upcharge for sweet potato fries. These orange-hued sticks contain more complex flavors than conventional fries — especially when coated in delicious seasonings and served with a dipping sauce. You can even satisfy your sweet potato fry cravings at home by picking up a frozen bag from the grocery store.

Of course, transforming frozen sweet potato fries into the crispy, delicious delights we know and love is fairly easy. However, finding a seasoning that enhances the inherent qualities of this tuber can be a bit more difficult.

To save you both time and effort, we've compiled a highlight reel of superb seasonings to consider using on sweet potato fries. Provided you cook them correctly (in an air fryer or conventional oven), you'll end up with a pile of sweet potato fries guaranteed to excite your taste buds. Here are 20 ways to season frozen sweet potato fries to perfection.

Bring a smooth heat with smoked paprika

Smoked paprika is one of the more commonly found seasonings on spice racks — and a great way to dress up sweet potato fries. But there's a difference between smoked and regular paprika; and while both have warm, earthy notes, the smoked variety is the better choice for sweet potato fries.

The peppers are smoked over wood (often oak) with the so-named variety, creating complex undertones that are held up in the pepper's oils. Consequently, the additional flavor notes of whatever wood was used when making smoked paprika will be infused into sweet potato fries, as well. Since the seasoning's sharpness and barbecue-like flavor are bound to subdue some of the root vegetable's sweetness, don't hesitate when reaching for smoked paprika to season a batch of oven-baked sweet potato fries.

Various chili powders add piquant flavors

Chili powder might seem like a one-size-fits-all label, but there are numerous variations available to make the ideal sweet potato fry seasoning. In fact, mixing chili powders with different heat levels can give your side dish a spicy depth it might otherwise lack.

Mild ancho chili powder has more smoky notes than piquant ones, which creates a sweet potato fry essentially designed for dipping in mayonnaise or ketchup. If you're after a drier heat, warm things up with a dried cayenne. Then, pair that dry-hot powder with an Aleppo pepper powder (or one with a similar floral or fruity finish).

Additionally, the best type of dipping sauce largely depends on the heat levels of your chili powder. Generally speaking, though, a cooling dip such as an aioli is the best choice since it'll have enough heat on its own.

Pour out a packet of taco seasoning

Taco seasoning is the sort of ingredient we always have in our pantry because you can use it for so many different recipes (like adding it to a bubbling crock of chili). With that in mind, tossing taco seasoning over sweet potato fries before cooking is a great way to impart more flavor.

You can use a premade packet, of course, or make a taco seasoning blend at home. Making it is as simple as tossing the ingredients — including warming spices such as cumin and paprika — into a bowl and shaking everything together. Depending on your preference, you can tweak the heat levels with some crushed red pepper or dried oregano.

Either way, the best way to eat taco-seasoned sweet potato fries is with a side of guacamole. The creamy spread subdues any overwhelming spiciness and makes for a well-rounded Tex-Mex bite.

Upgrade your salt game with seasoned salt

Seasoned salt is essentially salt ... with a little zing. While many different companies produce seasoned salt, one of the most popular brands on the market is Lawry's. Like similar seasoned salt brands, its product features salt, sugar, onion, and garlic. In other words, Lawry's (and other seasoned salt varieties) has a good mashup of sweet and savory flavors to take your sweet potato fries to the next level.

Now, whether you use a store-bought version of seasoned salt or make your own, the key is working with a product that's very salt-forward (as its name suggests). Additionally, since seasoned salt hits numerous flavor notes, you don't necessarily have to pair it with a dipping sauce. Then again, it is a fry. So if you need a condiment to dip it in, you can't go wrong with ketchup.

Add an oniony kick to with onion salt

Onion salt is an ingredient that some — but not all — people have in their spice cabinet. After all, you're more likely to have onion powder, which has a more concentrated onion flavor. But while onion powder contains dried and pulverized alliums and nothing else, onion salt offers a more diverse profile because it's mixed with table salt — making it the better choice to season frozen sweet potato fries to perfection.

More than that, the salt component allows the seasoning to flow freely from the container without caking. This reduces the risk of biting into a clump of onion powder on your sweet potato fries (which is as unpleasant as it sounds). Additionally, ranch dressing can be a great dipping companion to onion salt-covered sweet potato fries because the onion flavor carries over well from fry to dip.

Elevate sweet potato fries with truffle oil

Truffle oil has had a bit of a rise and fall in the 21st century. While a myriad of truffle oils and truffle-infused food items remain available, the fact that truffle oil doesn't contain any real truffles has put a damper on many people's enthusiasm for the product. Then again, although the fervor has largely faded, you can still use truffle oil to enhance frozen sweet potato fries.

You'll want to abstain from pouring truffle oil on until after the fries have cooked to decrease the risk of degrading the oil's earthy profile. Additionally, a little goes a long way, so start with a small drizzle of oil (and add more to taste).

You can also pair truffle oil with Italian and French seasonings (like oregano and thyme) on sweet potato fries, or sprinkle a layer of Parmesan for complementary umami flavors. Additionally, truffles don't work well with many dips, so oil-tossed sweet potato fries should be eaten as is.

Integrate herbaceous flavors with Italian seasoning

Italian seasoning is one of those catch-all seasonings that you can add to virtually anything. It's a staple for eggs when plain salt and pepper don't cut it, for example, and can take your focaccia to the next level. Typically, Italian seasoning is all about herbaceous greens like thyme, marjoram, oregano, parsley, and basil. These herbs work well with the starchiness of the potato and add herbaceous complexity to an otherwise one-note sweet potato fry batch.

You can add the Italian seasoning to your fries before you toss them in the oven. Since the herbs are dried, you won't have to worry about them going up in flames when you crank up the heat of your oven. Also, if your spice blend omits sage, we recommend adding a few crushed leaves for a subtle minty undertone.

Complement the sweetness with coconut sugar

Most people likely reach for savory seasonings when looking to enhance frozen sweet potato fries. But a sprinkle of sweet seasoning can help pull out the sweet potato's delicious caramel notes we all know and love — and coconut sugar is a great option when looking to do so. Coconut sugar will add to the fries' inherent sweetness, and it pairs well with other seasonings such as cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg.

You can toss your fries with coconut sugar before sliding them into the oven or air fryer. Just be sure to line your sheet pan or basket with parchment paper to prevent sugar from sticking to the bottom. This makes cleaning up drastically easier, as well, while ensuring your sweet potato fries don't come out with burnt pools of sugar at the bottom.

Make it gourmet with minced garlic and rosemary

Garlic powder can only do so much — which is why we often opt for fresh cloves over the dehydrated seasoning. Since fresh garlic and rosemary are an absolutely divine pairing for traditional fries, it's no wonder the combo works well with sweet potato fries, too. Using fresh garlic and rosemary is one of many ways to add more flavor to sweet potatoes – and fries are no exception.

It may be more tedious than grabbing dried rosemary and garlic powder from the cabinet, but it's well worth the effort. Additionally, both garlic and rosemary are prone to overcooking, so it's best to add the minced cloves and rosemary sprigs to your fries about halfway through cooking. You can also dip these sweet potato fries in ketchup, though we prefer them sans a side sauce.

Stick with the classic salt and pepper combo

Understandably, salt and pepper isn't the most exciting prospect for seasoning sweet potato fries. But when you're working in a rather bare kitchen? The classic duo does the trick.

Now, since it's harder to over-season food with kosher salt because the flakes aren't as small as table-salt crystals — and, thus, not as salty-tasting — opt for kosher salt for sweet potato fries. Additionally, there are many different types of peppercorns (and ways to use them), so the best ground pepper for your frozen sweet potato fries comes down to the type of flavor you're trying to impart.

If you like a raw, harsh pepper flavor, black peppercorns are the way to go. But if you're working with fragrant herbs like rosemary and thyme, try turning to white peppercorns for an earthy, herbaceous flavor that will excite your taste buds.

Experiment with cinnamon

Cinnamon may be on the sweeter end of things, but it still belongs in the running for best sweet potato fry seasoning. This warming spice will make your frozen fries more welcoming and pairs well with a diverse set of spices — including cayenne, ancho chili powder, and curry powder — for a well-rounded boost of flavor.

Try playing with different types of cinnamon to find one that best suits your recipe. Cassia is the variety most Americans are familiar with, and it has a mildly sweet and spicy flavor. But Ceylon cinnamon has a more floral flavor to it and sticks to the sweeter end of the spectrum. If you're adding a sprinkle of coconut sugar to your cinnamon-coated sweet potato fries, as well, you'll want to go with the latter.

Pair cumin and coriander for complementary flavors

Cumin and coriander are often looped together because they're used in tandem in numerous dishes. Ground cumin is delectably nutty and has a savory, warming quality, while coriander is essentially cumin's foil with its lemony, bright, and subtly sweet flavors. The two perfectly complement one another for a two-ingredient spice blend that can amplify a range of dishes, including frozen sweet potato fries.

However, while cumin and coriander are great when paired together, neither offers anything salty. If you're looking to round out the seasoning, try adding a sprinkle of kosher salt along with the cumin and coriander. These sweet potato fries pair well with umami-rich ketchup, as well, though you can serve them with a side of taco or enchilada sauce for a taco fry twist.

Swap plain garlic for black garlic

Black garlic is a unique seasoning that very few people have in their pantries. The fermentation process tames the pungent garlic flavor and brings out unique sweet and sour notes; some even detect smoky undercurrents. Black garlic is a great complement to sweet potato fries, then, because it has several flavorful components that other seasonings lack.

Your frozen sweet potatoes will taste fantastic when paired with the strong balsamic, molasses, and anise-like notes of black garlic. You can purchase whole black garlic from an Asian market (if there's one near you) or try to find the powdered version at the store. Since black garlic tends to be quite sticky, it's best to make a paste out of the fresh variety with other savory and smoky ingredients like paprika and cayenne. Toss your fries in the mixture before placing the tray in the oven or air fryer, and be amazed by the results.

Use za'atar for a unique flair

No spice has seen a heyday quite like za'atar. This Southwestern Asian and Northern African spice blend is a flavorful upgrade to classic Italian seasoning blends. Za'atar includes Syrian oregano, sumac, and thyme — which add a woody element to the mix — and incorporates an ingredient not found in other spice mixes: toasted sesame seeds. The seeds provide the fatty reprieve that your starchy sweet potato fries are likely craving.

Toss frozen sweet potato fries with za'atar and olive oil to create a crispy and flavorful coating after cooking. Additionally, the best dipping sauce for za'atar sweet potato fries is tahini. It's also made with sesame seeds, so it provides a similar fatty undertone that meshes well with the starchy fry.

Get hot and spicy with Cajun seasoning

There are tons of Cajun seasonings on the market, particularly if you live in or near Louisiana, where the mix was initially popularized. Most Cajun mixes include a mashup of black pepper, cayenne, onion powder, paprika, and garlic powder, though some variations loop in spicy mustard powder, cumin, or chili peppers. In short? The various flavors are a great choice for sweet potato fries.

You can make baked Cajun sweet potato fries by coating the spuds in a layer of Cajun seasoning (plus any additional warming spices you might want). The spice blend tends to have a ton of umami and spicy notes, so Cajun-seasoned sweet potato fries are great when paired with a milder dip, like mayo.

Tajín brings a burst of citrus

Tajín is a unique seasoning that offers a relatively unique flavor in the world of seasoning: citrus. The classic version of this seasoning is made with chili powder, dehydrated lime juice, citric acid, and sea salt, which gives it a distinct pop and tingle on the tongue. This seasoning can distract from the overwhelming starchiness of the tuber, as well, which makes it an excellent match for sweet potatoes.

You can add Tajín directly to your fries before cooking them. However, we recommend adding a hearty sprinkle on top right before serving your fries, too, so the lime flavor remains prevalent for your taste buds. While a spicy aioli is a great pairing for this seasoning, these fries also pair nicely with fatty guacamole.

Channel Indian flavors using curry powder

A common misconception surrounding curry powder is that it's a standardized spice. In reality, the true origins of curry powder indicate it can be a blend of many seasonings. Furthermore, what curry powder is made with tends to vary in different parts of the world. While the exact recipe is undefined, a basic curry powder often starts with turmeric (which gives the spice its yellow-orange hue), black pepper, cinnamon, and aromatics — all of which work well on sweet potato fries

Curry powder is an excellent pairing for sweet potato fries because the warming spices add depth to the starch. Toss your fries in curry powder before cooking for the best results. You can also try different curry powder blends and find one that works best for your taste buds.

Add a sprinkle of Trader Joe's ketchup seasoning

Trader Joe's Ketchup Flavored Sprinkle seasoning is made for anyone who wants to take a bottle of the classic condiment and dehydrate it into an easy-to-store powder — the type that can be sprinkled anywhere ketchup is used. With Trader Joe's Ketchup Flavored Sprinkle, there's no reason to worry about a glob of ketchup sliding out from underneath your burger — or finding the condiment to dip your sweet potato fries into.

The brand's seasoning has all the ingredients needed for a classic fry experience: tomato powder, sugar, vinegar powder, salt, onion powder, and garlic powder. Additionally, this seasoning works best when sprinkled on sweet potato fries after cooking. This will result in the most unadulterated flavor possible (and you can leave the actual ketchup in the fridge).

Sprinkle some Chinese five-spice for balanced heat

Chinese five-spice powder is a unique seasoning. While many American eaters may not be familiar with it, they probably know its individual components: cinnamon, cloves, fennel seeds, star anise, and peppercorns (white or Sichuan). The anise and fennel elucidate bitter undertones, which are met with the sweet reprieve of the cinnamon and the cloves. It's a bit of an unconventional mashup for sweet potato fries, but we can assure you it tastes pretty darn good.

Since the only thing Chinese five-spice is really missing is something smoky and salty, consider incorporating kosher salt and paprika, as well. We wouldn't recommend serving Chinese five-spice-seasoned sweet potato fries with any dipping sauce, either, as the blend hits all the flavor bases just fine. 

Smoked salt adds smoky notes

Smoked salt is a simple ingredient, but it can transform your sweet potato fries into something new and delightful. In fact, if you're not a fan of the herbaceous or fruity undertones of various chili powders, this upgraded salt variety provides similar smoky notes. The salt crystals are cold smoked to infuse a wood flavor that ranges from mild hickory to a more complex mesquite flavor — any of which can elevate frozen sweet potato fries.

Beyond the smoky aspect, this ingredient also satisfies the fry's craving for something salty. Add the salt to your sweet potato fries before cooking and enjoy its delicious, subtly woody flavor. You can pair smoked salt sweet potato fries with any dipping sauce you'd use for plain salt, as well.

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