Perfect oil-free chips are simple – if you know the secret. Enjoy this healthy, guilt-free favorite in abundance.
I say potato, you say potato - I’m not calling the whole thing off.
We laugh a lot around here about the differences between ‘English-English’ and ‘American-English’. Seriously, there are some hilarious miscommunications. Dinner versus tea. Lunch versus dinner. And most certainly, fries (French fries, German fries, yes Americans use to call them German fries). American ‘fries’ are known elsewhere as chips. Chips (the kind from the bag) are known as crisps.
Fortunately, we’ve reached a common understanding around here regarding perfect roast potatoes. We call them chips. We roast them, and we don’t use oil. International incident avoided. Whew!
The great potato debate
Now that we have our terminology straightened out. How ‘perfect’ are those perfect oil-free chips? The potato debate continues to boil. I personally spent years avoiding potatoes, believing they were the perfect food to derail any of my weight loss and healthy eating goals. Little did I realize that it wasn’t the potato that was the problem – it was the method of cooking. Specifically, oil (deep fried even). That’s understandable.
Research (an opinion) abundance
There’s a lot about potatoes to read out there and like so many topics, conflicting views. After wading through the evidence and having a good look at the indisputable nutritional evidence (like the fact that they have zero fat /cholesterol), I land on the side of “potatoes are not bad for you", but should, like so many things in life, be consumed in moderation as my friends at the Food Revolution Network advocate.
Potato secrets revealed
The secret to perfect oil-free chips is a two-step prep. Start with a par-boil for 15 minutes until they are soft, but firm when you pierce them with a fork. To stop them from cooking, rinse them in cold water immediately. Next, dice them and cool for a few hours (or overnight). The cooling process allows them to firm up a bit and they come out better as a result. Believe me, we’ve tried every approach in our effort to discover the perfect chip. This one works and we are unabashed chip lovers.
Hot and high
In my chip experience, you need to pre-heat the oven high (4250F/2250C) and put your baking tray on the top rack. It’s a 15-minute bake. I follow a measurement rule of 1 ¼ medium sized potatoes (10 oz/280 gm) to reach 1 cup of chips (1 serving) per person. This depends on how thin you cut them of course. That’s a bit more than the 2 potatoes per 1 cup mash rule of thumb.
Don’t be shy about your potato usage. If you actually have some leftover they reheat nicely. Consider using leftover chips with salad cream for the ultimate roasted potato salad. You may want to be strategic about this can cook extra.
I try not to be regretful about the years I spent avoiding chips, not knowing I could achieve chip perfection without oil-frying. It makes life interesting to learn something that tilts your horizon in a tasty, guilt-free direction. That’s double interesting when it comes to plant-based eating. That’s a journey worth exploring with tasty and healthful rewards. Peace.Print
perfect oil-free chips
Make perfect oil-free chips in your oven and enjoy this healthy, guilt-free favorite in abundance.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes (add 1 hour cooling time)
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: On the Side
- Method: Stove top/Bake
- Cuisine: Plant-based
- Diet: Vegan
- 2 ½ pounds or 5 medium potatoes (10 oz/280 gm per person).
- ¼ tsp salt (a pinch).
- Wash and scrub the potatoes (you can peel if you prefer).
- Place the whole potatoes in a pan with cold water with a pinch of added salt and heat until you reach boiling. Turn the heat down and simmer until the potatoes can be pierced with a fork but are still quite firm – 15-20 minutes.
- Drain the potatoes immediately and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
- Dice the potatoes into bite-sized pieces and place them in the fridge (or freezer for a shorter period of time). It will take about 1 hour for them to cool in the fridge.
- Preheat the oven to 4500F (2250C).
- Arrange the chips on a baking tray and roast them on the top rack of the oven for 15 minutes or until they are browned.
- Serve and enjoy!
- Leftover chips can be foil-wrapped and reheated in the oven or pan fried (oil-free) with other vegetables or in a tofu scramble.
- Use extra chips to make an easy potato salad with celery, chives and salad cream.
- If you are boiling potatoes for another purpose, like mashed. Make extra, dice them and put them in the fridge for future chips. They will keep for 3-4 days in an air-tight container.
- Not using those leftovers chips? Don’t throw them out. Freeze them. Just bake like you would any frozen chip.
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