The french fry may just be one of the most versatile sides out there. The savory side can complement more lowkey meals like sandwiches and fried fish or even elevated options such as steak, which the French love to do. Whether shoelace, crinkle, or waffle, the fry can really do it all.

With National French Fry Day coming up on July 12th, let’s look at the various fry cuts, toppings, and cooking methods you can experiment with to stand out from the crowd.

Toppings Galore

You can never go wrong with simple french fries garnished only with a sprinkling of salt. But in today’s increasingly digital world, where food trends are often driven by the latest viral social media post, fries alone may not always cut it. Toppings such as truffle oil, flecks of rosemary, grated Parmesan, and even the nacho medley of diced tomatoes, jalapenos, guacamole, sour cream, ground meat, and melted cheese are the latest hits — it pays to stay on top of trends.

Loaded fries are also in! Try out various loaded arrangements that pull inspiration from protein: skirt steak with a street corn twist; pulled pork with a BBQ sauce, pickled onions, and Sriracha mayo ensemble; or even a seafood blend with fried oysters, calamari, and clams, or crab topped with seafood seasoning and a mayo-based sauce. Go international with specials like Thai Disco Fries or Kimchi Fries, covered in the fermented good stuff.

Shoelace, Waffle, and Crinkle-Cut, Oh My!

There are more than a dozen different french fry cuts — bistro, steak, and shoelace, or the all-American quality of West Creek® Highway 40 crinkle-cut fries — that it can be hard to choose just one style. Consider offering guests a couple of options for the fry cut they’d prefer with their meals, but make sure to limit their options to only a few. This will prevent your guests from being overwhelmed with choice and your staff overwhelmed with too many various orders. Plus, only focusing on a few styles will save you time in the kitchen and cut down on overall manual labor costs.

Taste is Everything

Your french fry quality and taste all comes down to how it’s prepared. The fry oil you use will determine not only the initial taste, but also its aftertaste. Great fries are usually perfectly crunchy and feather-light, like West Creek Cracked Pepper & Sea Salt Fries — featuring high-quality batter for great crunch and longer hold times.

Consider using fry oils that have healthy properties, like Brilliance Premium Oils®. Made from American soybeans and plenish high oleic soybean oil, Brilliance Oils fry your food to crisp, golden-brown levels while maintaining health benefits — a boon for the health-conscious attitudes that are currently shaping the American food industry.

Working for the Weekend

National Fry Day actually falls on a Friday, so use the whole weekend as a marketing device for your frytastic offerings. Set up a fry bar for that weekend only, with toppings, sauces, and maybe even other fried sides, like onion rings or mozzarella sticks.

Run a small fry special, where kids under the age of 12 can order a fry platter for half off. Host a movie marathon showing the “Friday” series or “Friday the 13th,” and occasionally pause the film for trivia giveaways or a raffle benefiting your preferred charity. Fries are fun! Play up this new summer holiday, so the community can join in the festivities!

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