Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

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Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

The thing about being a mindful eater, about being aware of every single thing that you put into your face, for those of us who take the time to truly learn about food – is that it’s really hard to un-know what you discover as you dig deeper. While I truly believe that knowledge is power, if you allow it, that knowledge it can overpower and it can consume you. Back to that magical word you are probably sick of hearing from me, but here it is again. Balance. Aligning your knowledge and your intuition with the real world, being around other people, holidays and special occasions. It isn’t easy, but it’s totally possible.

As I continue on in school, the Nutritional Therapy Program with the NTA, I learn more and more every day. My eyes are opened and I can, in vulnerable times, find myself being fearful of food in a way that I never have before. Questioning food, where it is sourced from, the foods used in restaurants, etc., these have all been a very integrate part of my life these past 10 years, but now I truly feel like I am interrogating the wait staff at most restaurants. At times, I can see how dietary changes, strict protocols, elimination diets, etc – how they can breed disordered eating, if we aren’t careful. I know all of this will settle as I become more at comfortable with the new bits I am learning, but mostly I know I can always fall back into my old trusted way of knowing… that homemade is always better. When you make it yourself, you can always be certain you know what you are eating and you don’t have to fear the food you consume. When you want to veer off and indulge a little, you can do it without the guilt and without the worry.

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

This week, as I take on the Super Bowl, I encourage you to think out of the box, literally and make what you can, yourself. Swap in real foods and trust that updating a recipe to be a little bit healthier will likely be well-received by everyone else, if you are smart about it. This week, I am bringing you homemade, healthier, but still a little naughty, snacks, treats and bites. Because after all, a football party is not a football party without some good ‘ol fashioned finger food.

French fries of any and every kind, those are my true weakness. My Achilles heel. My Kryptonite.  Take away all the candy, cookies, cakes and breads, I don’t care, but don’t take my fries! We’ve spent a fair amount time in school discussing fats and oils and learning that most restaurants, when frying, are using hydrogenated or worse, trans fat oils. Unless a restaurant makes their fries in a high quality fat, suitable for high heat, these days I just have to pass. It’s not easy, but it’s also not worth it. I make my consessions where I can, but I am no longer willing to do so here.

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

Besides, homemade french fries are always a really great option, but an even better choice? Loaded fries. They are the perfect football food. Being a Buffalo girl most of my life, many football Sundays consisted of pizza and chicken wings. In fact so did most funerals, most birthdays and most other get togethers. Buffalonians don’t mess around. These fries are bringing just a few of my favorite things together for the perfect Super Bowl Sunday snack.

The best part, they are gluten-free and if you have paleo friends that eat a little dairy now and then, this works for them too! I opted for sweet potatoes rather than white potatoes, to cut down on the starch a little and since I personally do better with high quality raw, goat or sheep’s milk cheeses, I went that route. Feel free to grab your favorite cheddar or Monterey Jack and a regular cow’s milk blue cheese, you know what works for you. My vegetarian friends, I didn’t forget about you. you can simply skip the chicken and swap it for some cooked chickpeas.

Since veggies can be a hard sell, even carrot and celery sticks, don’t waste your time cutting them up and laying them out, they will be forgotten, instead I add them right to the tower of loaded fries. The celery brings a nice fresh crunch and the carrot ribbons are both a beautiful garnish and they taste great, too!

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

Options for the chicken, throw a couple breasts into the slow cooker, cook on high for 3 hours. You can also poach them in some water. Finally, in a pinch, just grab a nice rotisserie chicken from Whole Foods and cut up the breast meat. Use the rest for another meal. Again, my vegetarian friends, simple swap in some cooked chickpeas for the chicken, roughly chop them up, if you don’t want them rolling off and voila! Done and done.

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

[print_this]Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries {Gluten-Free, Primal with Vegetarian Option}

For the Fries:

  • 2 large organic sweet potatoes, about 2 lbs
  • 2 tablespoons high-heat appropriate oil, I recommend ghee, lard, duck fat, etc
  • salt and pepper
  • garlic powder

For the Chicken:

  • 2 cups shredded boneless, skinless chicken breast (free range, local, organic) or chickpeas for vegetarian option
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce, I prefer and recommend Frank’s Original
  • 1 tablespoon melted grass-fed butter or ghee
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed (optional)

Load them Up:

  • 1 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, Monterey Jack, etc), I used a raw goat milk cheddar
  • 1/3 cup crumbled gluten-free blue cheese, I used raw sheep’s milk Roquefort
  • 1 stalk celery, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, peeled, then peeled into large ribbons
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives or scallions
  • homemade blue cheese dressing, on the side (see below for my recipe)

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Line a large rimmed baking sheet, or two medium) with parchment paper. Peel the sweet potatoes and slice in half lengthwise. Cut into fry-shape pieces, continuing to slice lengthwise into wedges about 1/2” thick. Do your best to cut them to relatively the same thickness and size, so that they cook evenly.

Toss the fries with the oil, the garlic powder and a little salt and pepper. Arrange the fries in a single even layer on the parchment lined sheet(s), being mindful not to overlap or crowd the fries.

Bake for 10 minutes, flip them over and bake another 7-10, until they begin to brown and are slightly crispy on the edges.

While the fries are baking add the shredded chicken (or chickpeas), hot sauce, butter or ghee, garlic powder and celery seed, if using, to a medium bowl and toss well to combine.

Once the fries come out, arrange half the fries on an oven proof, plate, bowl, skillet or platter. Top with 1/2 the chicken, 1/2 the shredded cheese and 1/2 the crumbled blue cheese. Top with the remaining fries, the rest of the chicken and the rest of the cheeses. Place back into the oven for 5-7 minutes, or under the broiler for 2-4 minutes. Until the cheese is melty and a little bubbly.

Remove from the oven, top with the diced celery, chives and carrot ribbons. Serve with the blue cheese dressing on the side, or drizzle a little on top. Enjoy immediately. [/print_this]

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

[print_this] Blue Cheese Dressing:

  • 2-3 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (I used a raw sheep’s milk Roquefort)
  • 1/4 cup yogurt (I used goat’s milk)
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise (I went with homemade)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl, stir well to combine. Store any leftovers in a tightly sealed container in the fridge.

[/print_this]

Buffalo Style Loaded Sweet Potato Fries

3 Responses

  1. Get out of town with these! GAH! I’m dying. I could easily gobble up that whole tray. Love all the colors and fresh ingredients. #knowledgeispower

  2. Cathe says:

    totally know what I’m cooking this weekend – if I had seen it earlier I probably would have made this for dinner! thanks so much for sharing this…

  3. Girl, I love how you represent your Buffalo roots and even make it healthy while doing so!

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