Steak Frites

Steak and Frites – a match made in culinary heaven! This classic dish may seem simple at first glance, with just a few ingredients, but achieving the perfect balance of flavors and textures takes some careful consideration. Stay with me as I present an easy-to-follow recipe for steak frites.

What is Steak Frites?

Thinly sliced and deep-fried to golden perfection, frites served alongside steak are a beloved dish in French cuisine. The beauty of the steak frites lies in its simplicity, making it a versatile and easy recipe to recreate in the comfort of your own home. To elevate your steak frites game, you can experiment with various types of sauces, extra seasonings, or whichever cut of steak is most readily available to you.

Which Potatoes Are Best for Steak Frites in America?

Choosing the right potatoes is crucial for achieving the perfect frites. The best potato varieties to use are Russet and Idaho potatoes. You can also use Yukon gold potatoes. Look for potatoes with high starch content and low moisture – this will ensure a crispy exterior and a soft, fluffy interior that pairs perfectly with your steak. Trust me, the extra effort in selecting the right potatoes is well worth it.

The Tools You’ll Need

  • Cast-iron pan
  • Pot (you can alternatively use a deep fryer)
  • Thermometer
  • Tongs
  • Paper towels
  • Bowl
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Slotted spoon
  • Peeler (optional)

The Ingredients You’ll Need

For the frites:

  • Potatoes
  • Salt
  • Oil

For the steak:

  • Steak butter (optional)
  • Steak (In this recipe, I use strip steak.)
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground pepper
  • Garlic
  • Rosemary

How to Make Steak Frites:

To ensure that both steak and frites are served hot at the same time, I recommend streamlining the cooking process by preparing all ingredients beforehand. If you desire to include butter in this dish, consider my recipe for compound butter for steak. It’s best to prepare this before tackling the steak frites recipe.

All ingredients for steak frites

Step 1: Prepare the Steak

At least 45 minutes before cooking, pat the steak dry with paper towels, then season on all sides with salt. Let the steak rest for a minimum of 45 minutes. In the meantime, begin preparing the frites.

Salted strip steak
Salted strip steak

Step 2: Peel and Slice the Potatoes

For this recipe, I recommend using large baking potatoes. Peel and wash the potatoes in cold water, then slice them up into pieces about 1/4-inch thick – it’s okay if they’re a little thicker.

Peeled and sliced potatoes
Peeled and sliced potatoes

Step 3: Soak Potatoes in Water

To make the frites less sticky and dark, soak the potatoes in water for a minimum of 15 minutes to remove excess starch. Now it’s time to get back to the steak.

Sliced potatoes in a bowl of water
Sliced potatoes in a bowl of water

Step 4: Preheat the Pan and Start Cooking the Steak

Preheat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for about 3-4 minutes to achieve the perfect sear. Once it’s hot, add a tablespoon of avocado oil and wait another minute to let it heat up. While waiting, season the steak with pepper and garlic powder. Once the oil is hot, gently place the steak in the pan, pressing it down lightly to ensure even contact with the surface.

Cook the steak for approximately 3-4 minutes on each side, and make sure to flip it every 1-2 minutes to achieve an evenly seared crust on both sides.

Meanwhile, you can continue preparing the frites.

strip steak cooked in a cast iron skillet
Strip steak cooked in a cast iron skillet

Step 5: Drain and Pat Dry the Potatoes

Drain the frites and pat dry with a paper towel.

frites dried with paper towels
Frites dried with paper towels

Step 6: Heat the Oil to 350 °F

Pour oil into a pot or deep fryer, heating it to a temperature of 350°F. When using a pot, ensure to measure the temperature accurately with a thermometer. This heating process generally takes approximately 10 minutes. While waiting for the oil to heat up, turn your attention back to cooking the steak.

Oil temperature over 350 degrees F

Note: If you don’t have a thermometer, you can still check if the oil is sufficient for cooking. Simply wait a few minutes and then partially immerse one fritter in the oil. If bubbles appear, the oil is ready for frying.

Fizzling bubbles as fries are immersed in hot oil
Fizzling bubbles as frites are immersed in hot oil

Step 7: Finish the Steak and Let it Rest

Check the internal temperature of the steak and remove it once it reaches the desired level of doneness. An important tip to remember: Take the steak off the heat when it’s 15-20°F below the desired doneness. Keep in mind that the steak will continue to cook as it rests, causing the temperature to increase by another 15-20°F.

If you have prepared steak butter, now is the perfect time to cut one or two discs and place them on top of the hot steak.

Compound steak butter on freshly cooked steak
Compound steak butter on freshly cooked steak

Step 8: Cook the Frites

Fry the sliced potatoes until they turn a beautiful golden color, which should take about 5 minutes. While frying, check them occasionally to ensure they reach the desired level of color and crispiness.

Note: Cooking time for the frites will depend on their thickness, the exact temperature of the oil, and your preference for crispiness and color.

Frites fried in oil in a pot
Frites fried in oil in a pot

Step 9: Place the Cooked Frites on a Paper Towel

Place the cooked frites onto a plate or in a bowl lined with paper towels to help absorb any excess oil.

Cooked fries on paper towel
Cooked fries on paper towel

Step 10: Season your Frites

Immediately after removing the frites from the pot or fryer, season them with salt. It is best to do this while the frites are still hot and moist from the fat so that the salt sticks better to them.

Step 11: Serve the Frites Along with the Steak

Transfer the steak and frites to a single plate or serving board.

frites with strip steak and compound butter
Frites with strip steak and compound butter

FAQs

Why soak potatoes for frites?

Soaking the potatoes in water helps to remove excess starch and moisture, making the frites less sticky and dark.

Which oil is best for steak frites?

The best oils for frying frites are refined peanut oil or extra virgin olive oil, although you can also use vegetable or avocado oil.

What is the best cut of beef for steak frites?

As an easy recipe, steak frites work well with whatever cut of meat you enjoy. Restaurants typically serve ribeye or New York strip, but I also recommend skirt steak, flank steak, filet mignon, porterhouse steak, or hanger steak for Steak Frites.

frites with strip steak and compound butter

Steak Frites Recipe

Adam Wojtow
Here's an easy and quick recipe for delicious frites, served with a juicy, crispy-crusted steak, all topped with a flavorful compound butter.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Resting Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, French
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Large potatoes (or 3 small)
  • Salt
  • Oil for frites I am using canola oil.
  • 1 tablespoon Oil for steak I am using refined avocado oil.
  • 2 12-ounce Strip Steaks
  • Pepper
  • Garlic powder

Instructions
 

  • Pat dry the steak and season it with salt. Let it rest for at least 45 minutes. During this time, start preparing the potatoes.
  • Peel, wash, and slice the large baking potatoes into pieces about 1/4-inch thick – it's okay if they're a little thicker. To remove excess starch, soak the sliced potatoes in water for at least 15 minutes.
  • Preheat a skillet over medium-high heat for about 4-5 minutes, add a tablespoon of avocado oil and let it heat up. Season the steak with pepper and garlic powder. Place the steak in the skillet, pressing lightly for even contact. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, flipping every 1-2 minutes.
  • Drain and pat dry the soaked potato slices. Next, pour oil into a pot or deep fryer and heat to 350°F. To check if the oil is ready, immerse a slice of potato and watch for bubbles.
  • Monitor the steak's internal temperature and remove when it's 15-20°F below the desired doneness. Place compound butter on the steak if using, and let it rest for around 10 minutes.
  • Fry the sliced potatoes until they turn golden, which should take about 5 minutes. Regularly check for desired color and crispiness. After frying, transfer the frites to a plate or bowl lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil. Immediately after frying, season the frites with salt while they are still hot and moist to ensure the salt adheres well.
  • Serve the steak and frites together on a plate or serving board.
Photo of author

Written by: Adam Wojtow

Adam Wojtow is a Polish entrepreneur and writer who founded Steak Revolution in 2020 because of his passion for steaks. Adam has been cooking steaks for over 5 years, so he understands well all aspects of steak, from the types of steaks and their cooking times to choosing the best cooking technique for any steak.