Mc Donald's Classic French Fries (Copycat)

"My recipe for retro McDonald's french fries is timely and tedious, so if you can tough it, carry on! This is authentic to the original beef tallow fried potatoes until 1990, when tallow was switched out for shortening. Today, a shortening/vegetable oil blend is used."
photo by frostingnfettuccine photo by frostingnfettuccine
photo by frostingnfettuccine
photo by frostingnfettuccine photo by frostingnfettuccine
photo by frostingnfettuccine photo by frostingnfettuccine
photo by The Spice Guru photo by The Spice Guru
photo by The Spice Guru photo by The Spice Guru
Ready In:
2hrs 25mins




  • MIX the BRINE in a 3 quart pot with an accompanying lid.
  • PEEL 4 medium russet potatoes; CUT potatoes into 1/4" shoestrings (try to make them as uniform as possible; I use an adjustable-blade French-fry cutter).
  • PLACE cut potatoes into the brine container; SEAL and refrigerate for at least 2 hours; BRING pot with brine and potatoes to a full boil; BOIL for 1 1/2-2 minutes; DRAIN and rinse potatoes under cold water; BLOT potatoes as dry as possible.
  • PLACE potatoes side-by-side into freezer bags without touching, and without crowding; SEAL bags and freeze flat in refrigerator for at least 2 hours (just make sure fries are frozen solid).
  • FILL deep-fryer with proper amount of beef tallow (or oil/shortening blend), to manufacturer's recommended amount; HEAT fryer in gradual increments to 375°F.
  • PLACE 1/2 of the potatoes at a time into elevated deep-frying basket; GENTLY lower basket into hot fat.
  • FRY for about 2 minutes but PAY ATTENTION TO THE COLOR -- potato color should be light golden brown with just slightly darker ends (see photo, and pull a french fry with tongs to test doneness if necessary); ELEVATE fry basket and shake to drain excess fat; SECURE basket and let drain for 30 seconds.
  • TRANSFER fries into colander placed in sink; REPEAT with remaining potatoes.
  • SEASON french fries lightly with fine flake sea salt while tossing (eat immediately, or keep warmed for a limited time in a 170°F oven).
  • SERVE french fries with your favorite condiment and ENJOY!

Questions & Replies

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  1. XEYN8988
    ooh I have made french fries thousand times but this is the best
  2. Eve Prikryl
    This recipe is totally inaccurate. McDonald’s has never boiled their fries. I was a manager when we used beef tallow for fries and pies. The fries came frozen. They were blanched in beef tallow at the factory before they were frozen, then fried again at the store in 330 degree oil for 3 minutes and 10 seconds if I recall correctly. When the beef tallow was replaced with soybean oil, the factory soaked them in a solution of beef broth, salt and sugar before blanching them in soybean oil. They were then frozen, fried at the store the same way in soybean oil. The salt used at the store was fine grained (popcorn) salt, sprinkled on immediately after they were cooked.
  3. Charmaine D.
    This recipe may be ok with crinkle cut fries or thicker fries...but shoestring cut potatoes are really not meant to be deep fried...they are way too thin cut and get very hard once they cool off, they become very hard in just the time it takes to eat them! French fries are meant to be slightly crispy on the outside, and tender on the inside, not thin and chewy, or hard.
  4. docatdantobin
    I was a Training Manager for McDonald's when the switch was made. What people didn't know was that the frozen fries were coated with beef tallow and fried in vegetable oil. Within a few months some nutritionist checked and found the beef tallow in the fries. They stopped and that was that. The fries never stayed as crispy or tasted as good after. BTW-note how gourmet restaurants now advertise fries cooked in natural fats.
  5. Collette L.
    I must say that I shall try your recipes, once in a while I get the urge for their fries, however, I am wondering how you get the ....... beef to deep fry the fries, I'Ve never heard of this before and wonder if available in traditional grocery stores. Hope someone comes across my question to find supplier ? I was once told by my Gastroenterologist that they soak their fries in Milk Thats what keeps them so fair colored. He said go read the ingredients, which I did at the time but I am curious enough to refresh my memory if its true or a tall tale


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