Not Quite McDonald’s

September 15, 2007 at 1:44 pm 15 comments

Carrots fresh from the field 

French fries are a “red alert” food for me.  I love ’em and they, in return, love my thighs.  This is one love affair I’d be more than happy to see break up.  With 542 calories and 26 grams of fat, it would take an average weight person 45 minutes of jogging to work off just the calories from a large order of McDonald’s fries.  Who knows how long it would take to burn off all those grams of fat… 

Now, while they may not be quite as tasty, my carrot fries in the following recipe, which yields about the equivalent of a large order, only have about 150 calories and no fat.  Not to mention gobs of vitamin A and other nutrients! 

Carrot Tops Carrot Bottoms

Now, I’m not gonna lie to you…these aren’t nearly as, um, addictive as McDonald’s version.  Really, what baked food can truly compare to its fried counterpart, except maybe the baked eggplant parmesan recipe I shared awhile back?  That being said, carrot fries are very similar to sweet potato fries – what they lack in crispy salty carb-overload, they more than make up for in a savory sweet refreshing change of pace.  

I like to serve mine up in a paper cone rolled from a triangle of parchment or wax paper.  It’s a fun presentation that gets kids’ attention.  If you don’t particularly like mint, try another fresh herb like oregano or thyme.   

Carrots Cut into Fry Size

Inspired by watching Healthy Flavors on PBS

1 lb. carrots
Canola oil cooking spray
Coarse sea salt
Fresh mint

Preheat the oven to 400 F. 

Scrub the carrots well but don’t peel them.  Trim off the tops and bottoms.  Cut carrots in half lengthwise and place flat side down to cut into thin strips (you could also use a “crinkle” cutter gadget at this point to make them look like crinkle cut fries). 

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place carrots on it.  Spray generously with canola cooking spray and sprinkle with salt.  Toss to coat and spread out into a single layer.  Bake in oven until brown on the edges. 

Chop fresh mint and toss with hot fries before serving.

(serves 2-3)

Carrot Fries with Fresh Mint


Entry filed under: Purely Vegetables, Recipes.

Good For What Ails Ya’ Hot Shots

15 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Andy  |  September 16, 2007 at 8:01 pm

    I gotta say .. These look fantastic! I was not sure when i started reading but your picture at the end has me sold.

  • 2. Jennie  |  September 17, 2007 at 6:24 am

    So, do you think I should put pictures of the finished product at the beginning? I’ve debated this with myself before… Well, whatever the formula, I’m glad you like the “fries”. 🙂

  • 3. Andy  |  September 17, 2007 at 10:36 pm

    I don’t know. I just recently started putting final photos 1st on my blog but I sure don’t have any sort of formula figured out. 🙂

  • 4. Chrissy  |  September 21, 2007 at 2:13 pm

    Those look so yummy. *licks lips*

  • 5. Jennie  |  September 21, 2007 at 3:08 pm

    Thanks, Chrissy! They are!

  • 6. Kimberley  |  September 21, 2007 at 10:24 pm

    Just discovered your blog – the carrots look fantabulous – look forward to trying them. Now I am off to explore all your other entries!

  • 7. Jennie  |  September 21, 2007 at 11:04 pm

    Welcome, Kimberley! Yes, explore and enjoy! 🙂 There are lots of unusual ideas for fresh delicious produce on this site. When you try the carrots, let me know how they turn out.

  • 8. morgan  |  September 25, 2007 at 5:46 pm

    Got here via tastespotting. The fries do look good. I would second the idea about putting the finished product pictures first, though. I read a lot of food blogs and I think entries need the ‘hook’ of a finished product, like headline in an article.

  • 9. Jennie  |  September 25, 2007 at 6:09 pm

    Good point, Morgan! I might start switching it up, depending on how unusual/interesting the featured vegetable is versus how delicious the final dish looks. A “hook” is indeed needed! Thanks for stopping over from tastespotting. 🙂

  • 10. AddE  |  September 26, 2007 at 12:20 pm

    Do we know an approx time on how long it will take them to ‘brown’? I’d hate to keep checking on them (which requires opening my oven) or burn them.

  • 11. Addam  |  September 26, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    Do they go well with ketchup?

  • 12. Jennie  |  September 26, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    AddE – good question! I didn’t put a specific time because it really depends on how thin you cut the “fries”. But I would say you don’t need to check on them for at least 30 minutes. After that, checking every 7-10 minutes should be fine until you get them just the way you want.

  • 13. Addam  |  September 26, 2007 at 12:24 pm


  • 14. AddE  |  September 26, 2007 at 12:25 pm

    Thanks! I’ll give them a try 🙂

  • 15. Jennie  |  September 26, 2007 at 12:26 pm

    Addam –

    Well, D ate them with ketchup and seemd to like it. I’m not much of a ketchup fan so I couldn’t say for sure. I did think I would make a spicy lite mayo dip for them though the next time. For that, I just use Old Bay Seasoning, Cayenne Pepper, and finely minced garlic mixed into some store-bought lite mayo.


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