How to Make French Fries Healthier

making french fries healthier

This popular snack and comfort food gets healthier!

There are several foods that autistic individuals are drawn to and even crave with French fries at the top of the list. However, this “can’t live without” vegetable when fried, roasted, grilled or fried at high temperatures creates acrylamides a toxic human carcinogen that is detrimental to the brain. Given autism is a neurological disorder, these fried vegetables inhibit normal brain function resulting in adversely impacting the forward growth and development of the autistic individual.

Here is what you can do to minimize the toxic affects and hopefully transition the individual to more healthy food choices. Try substituting foods that will have similar tastes and textures. In the meantime, follow the destarching and baking instructions below. This is not a quick process, but isn’t the health of you and your loved one worth the time?

This method should be used with high starch vegetables (beans, peas, corn etc) which are usually root vegetables (yams, potatoes, beets, jicama, etc )

Destarching reduces the toxic human carcinogen acrylamides    by 23% by washing, 35% by soaking 30 minutes and 48% by soaking 2 hours.

Below is how to destarch before beginning the cooking process:

  1. Using a vegetable brush and clean water with a few drops of Clorox or vegetable cleaner, scrub the outside of the vegetables,
  2. cut in strips so they resemble French fries,
  3. as you are cutting the strips, place them in a bowl of ice water,
  4. soak in the ice water for twenty (30) minutes,
  5. scoop the vegetables out of this water making sure to leave all this water behind,
  6. put the vegetables in another bowl of clean ice water,
  7. refrigerate for 2 hours making sure the vegetables are covered with cold water,
  8. remove from refrigerator and pat dry,
  9. vegetables are now ready to bake or fry; baking is my recommendation as it is healthier and any acrylamides produced will be half those created by frying provided the baking temperature is less than what you would use in frying.

Cooking:

  1. Put cut vegetables in boiling water (approximately 170 degrees),
  2. blanch for 3-4 minutes,
  3. remove from water, towel dry and cool for 30 minutes,
  4. spray a baking sheet with a nonstick spray,
  5. at this point some people will put in a bag with corn starch and coat to get extra crispy, but this coating will add to the level of acrylamides which has been  reduced in the destarching process,
  6. place cut vegetables on the sheet in a single layer,
  7. drizzle lightly with olive oil, grape seed oil or coconut oil,
  8. toss with your hands to make sure well coated,
  9. bake at 300 degrees for approximately 2 minutes (very lightly brown, pale),
  10. remove from oven, cool 30 minutes,
  11. put in the freezer for one (1) hour
  12. if you are not going to finish cooking at this point, put in freezer bags to finish cooking later,
  13. if you are going to finish cooking, bake at 375 degrees until the desired browning is attained, approximately 4-5 minutes,
  14. to assist your body with breaking down the remaining carbs, starches and sugars, toss with pureed garlic and onion, fresh ground rosemary and finely chopped Italian parsley
  15. Enjoy without ketchup as it has added sugar and would undermine all your efforts to produce this healthy snack.

For more details on why it is important to destarch, read our post: “How to remove starch from vegetables”

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

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  1. […] There are a few more steps to getting that perfect baked vegetable French fry; crispy out side and soft inside.  Check out our blog post: “How to make French fries healthier.” […]