Can You Freeze Raw Potatoes For French Fries? (Why You Shouldn’t)

Image of French fries kept in a plate

We all have bought ready frozen French fries for a quick meal. But if you have a bunch of potatoes to use up, you might wonder if there’s any way you can freeze raw potatoes for French Fries.

You can’t freeze raw potatoes for French fries as they don’t freeze well if they’re uncooked or aren’t partially cooked. Raw potatoes will turn brown on thawing, and their texture and flavor will degrade. Blanching, boiling, or half-frying the potatoes will stop the frozen potatoes from spoiling.

It’s always easy to have certain foods frozen because it saves time and reduces waste. Potatoes being a fresh vegetable, tend to go bad quickly, and French fries from scratch take a lifetime to make. Let’s find out more about what causes raw potatoes to spoil when frozen and how you can efficiently freeze potatoes for French fries.

Can You Freeze Fresh Potatoes For French Fries?

Although you can freeze fresh potatoes for French fries, you shouldn’t.

Your beautiful ready to fry potato French fry cuts will turn brown and black once you thaw them after freezing.

Even if they don’t change color – which they most likely will if they are raw – they will change in texture and taste due to the enzyme action and water content.

Why Shouldn’t You Freeze Raw Potatoes?

It doesn’t matter if you are freezing potatoes for French fries or something else. You should avoid freezing them raw and fresh.

Potatoes contain quite a bit of water content. They turn out mushy and sometimes grainy when you freeze and thaw them.

An enzyme action causes raw potatoes to turn black after freezing them. After you take them out of the freezer, they’re never the same again.

Fresh fruits and vegetables contain enzymes that cause food deterioration. Freezing them slows down the enzyme activity but doesn’t stop it.

To stop the enzyme activity before freezing, it’s necessary to cook or blanch the potatoes partially.

Can You Freeze Raw Sweet Potatoes For French Fries?

Sweet potatoes get affected the same way as regular potatoes. The results after freezing them will be the same.

Sweet potatoes also contain significant water content and turn mushy and watery after freezing them. They also turn brown a lot faster and will discolor from freezer burn and thawing.

Sweet potatoes are pretty hard when raw but often cook faster and softer than regular potatoes. So when the fibers are triggered due to extreme temperature changes, the texture gets spoiled.

Freezing sweet potatoes raw can also degrade the taste and lead to unpleasant results.

If you want to freeze sweet potatoes for French fries, make sure they are at least partially cooked.

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How To Freeze Potatoes For French Fries?

French fries on a table

You can use a few methods to freeze regular and sweet potatoes for French fries. They will not be entirely raw or fresh, but you can keep them pretty close to that freshness.

Here are some of the techniques.

1. Blanching

After rinsing your cut-up raw potatoes, drain them. Get a bowl with boiling water ready and blanch the potatoes for 3 to 5 minutes.

The potatoes will cook very slightly but just enough to stop the enzyme activity and change the texture so that they cook well and don’t turn black after freezing.

2. Partial Boiling

Blanching works well, but you can go a step further and boil the raw potato French fry cut-ups for 3 to 4 minutes on the stove or in the microwave.

It partially cooks it, helping with the enzyme activity texture, and preserves the taste. The method also makes your cooking process much quicker for later use because the French fries will be partially cooked.

3. Partial Frying

Instead of boiling the French fries, you can partially fry them for about 3 to 4 minutes (depending on thickness). For very thin cuts, fry for 2 to 3 minutes or less.

The potatoes get relatively cooked and gain the same benefits as blanching and boiling to preserve taste, save the texture, and prevent discoloration.

Note: After blanching and boiling, you may want to place the potatoes into another bowl of cold water to stop the cooking process. Spread them out on a kitchen towel after removing them and pat them dry. Once they are entirely cooled, freeze them. For partially frying, immediately remove the fries onto a paper towel to drain, spread them out to cool off faster, and pat them dry with a paper towel to remove oil.

How To Place Raw Potatoes For French Fries In The Freezer?

While we now understand that we shouldn’t freeze fresh, raw potatoes because they spoil that way, you can partially cook the French fry cuts and then place them in the freezer. Here’s how…

After blanching, boiling, frying, allow them to cool completely. Then place them in Ziploc baggies, remove the air, seal them and place them flat in the freezer.

Alternatively, you can spread the potato fries out in a tray without overlapping and then freeze them for 30 minutes to an hour.

Remove them, toss them in freezer bags or containers, and put them back into the freezer. That way, they won’t stick to each other.

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Should You Fry Frozen Raw Potatoes?

Once your potatoes are frozen to use for French fries, you can take them out at any time and fry them.

You can fry them from frozen because they are already partially cooked and quickly get done. Slowly place 4 to 5 at a time in the oil. Fry them for 5 to 7 minutes or until done (depending on the thickness).

Additionally, you can leave them out for a few minutes before frying. Remember to keep your oil well heated before placing frozen potatoes into it, reducing the temperature.

Once your potatoes are in the oil, turn the temperature down to medium.

That prevents the fries from burning outside without heating through well-enough in the middle.