Sweet Potato Fries: Are They Really Any Better for You?

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Do you have sweet potato on the brain like we do? I've been eating them in every way possible this fall: Cut into wedges and roasted with spices; baked in foil and smothered with cinnamon and pecans; even blended up into smoothies! One my favorite treats is a piping hot batch of sweet potato fries. You've heard time and time again that sweet potatoes are full of good-for-you nutrients, but does that hold true when they're sliced up and fried? What do you think: Is there really that big of a difference between regular French fries and sweet potato fries? We're putting Ore Ida's Sweet Potato Fries and Golden Fries (regular French fries) head to head to find out the answer!

The Winner: It's a Tie!

First, let's check out the nutrition information for both spuds, from the Ore Ida website:
Golden Fries                                                                           
Serving Size: 84g
Servings Per Container: About 11
Amount Per Serving
Calories 130 Calories from Fat 30
  % Daily Value *
Total Fat 3.5g 5%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Trans Fat 0  
Cholesterol 0 0%
Sodium 290mg 13%
Potassium 390mg 10%
Total Carbohydrates 21g 7%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars <1g  
Protein 2g  
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 6%
Calcium 0%
Iron 2%
Sweet Potato Fries
Serving Size: 84g
Servings Per Container: About 6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 160 Calories from Fat 70
  % Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g 12%
Saturated Fat 0.5g 3%
Trans Fat 0  
Cholesterol 0 0%
Sodium 160mg 8%
Potassium 280mg 8%
Total Carbohydrates 21g 7%
Dietary Fiber 2g 10%
Sugars 6g  
Protein 1g  
Vitamin A 50%
Vitamin C 4%
Calcium 2%
Iron 4%
It looks like the sweet potato fries have 30 more calories than the regular fries per serving, as well as 4.5 more grams of fat. However, the sweet potato fries also have 50% more vitamin A than the regular fries, with 130 fewer mg of sodium. Also notice that both varieties of fries have the same amount of fiber (2 grams). Both potatoes and sweet potatoes get most of their fiber from the skin, which is often sliced off in commercially-prepared fries. With skin, sweet potatoes have just slightly more fiber than regular potatoes.

Want to make healthy sweet potato fries at home? Try this baked version!
Which do you prefer: Regular fries or sweet potato fries?

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CECELW 12/5/2020
I love sweet potatoes Report
REDROBIN47 12/5/2020
I love sweet potato fries. I don't eat them often but on occasion I do indulge. Report
ROBINRS 12/5/2020
I have never really been a fry person would rather just eat my potato baked. usually add maybe a bit of salt to the sweet potato and butter or sour cream to the regular potato. But am surprised to see that the nutrition difference of the fries is not real great. Report
MJ7DM33 12/5/2020
Good read! Thanks! Report
MAREE1953 12/5/2020
Love oven baked sweet potato fries AND baked pumpkin fries! With lots of pumpkin this year, I ventured out. Yum, yum!! Report
NEPTUNE1939 12/5/2020
ty Report
KITTYHAWK1949 12/5/2020
i like the sweet potatoes best. also like baked sweet potatoes with butter, salt and pepper Report
MWHIGGINS 8/14/2020
I love sweet potatoes! Report
NEPTUNE1939 8/14/2020
ty Report
CECTARR 8/14/2020
I love regular french fries. Personal taste never cared for sweet potatoes at all Report
Thanks! Report
I don’t think fries showcase the sweet potato’s delicious taste as well as simple roasted or grilled slices do! Report
EMGERBER 8/14/2020
Great comparison, thanks! Report
AZMOMXTWO 8/14/2020
thank you Report
MAREE1953 8/14/2020
I love plain roasted sweet potatoes, with skin. Just rub with olive oil, wrap in foil, place in covered roasting pan. Sweet juices at the bottom of the pan can be drizzled over slices. Just a few slices sweeten up any meal. Report
DMEYER4 8/14/2020
thanks Report
JANIEWWJD 8/14/2020
Awesome article. Report
ETHELMERZ 8/14/2020
Can’t handle the taste and mouth feel of sweet potatoes. But I don’t care if others eat them, it’s just another choice. And another fad. Report
GEORGE815 6/18/2020
Thanks Report
Both are French fries! Report
Thank you Report
thank you Report
As an occasional treat, i will continue to enjoy my sweet potato fries. Report
thanks for sharing Report
I have always wondered if the goodness is taken out in the cooking. Do they measure the nutritional values based on the raw vegetable or cooked? And it appears you are doing this from frozen sweet potatoes so does that affect the nutritional value? Report
Thanks Report
Thanks for sharing Report
One advantage for a number of people would be that they are not putting any ketchup (generally sweetened) or cheese on them. Don't slip up and add a bunch of butter either. I little cinnamon can be a good or your regulated serving size. You can alternately try some herbs so you can find combinations you like. Report
thanks Report
The title drew my eye, the concept made me wonder, the article informed me, and I enjoyed reading it. Thank you.

Regarding some of the snarky commenters:
Have you ever wondered why there are more critics who consider themselves experts but never actually produce useful product themselves, actually perform a complicated set of tasks, or perhaps mediate peace between real opponents in violent conflict?

Yea, neither have I.
That's why I stated plainly my comment and reasons for it. Try it, you'll like it. Truth, its what's for dinner. Report
I prefer the sweet potato, usually making them myself so no additives or sodium. My doc said can have sweet potatoes or Yukons, but to avoid the russets. Report
good to know this! Report
I prefer sweet potato fries but it depends on what I'm eating & the sauce neing served w/ them. I also like regular fries, esp big thick steak fries. Just wish more places offered non-starchy veggies instead w/ burgers or sandwiches. Some will let you sub out for salad or broccoli but many don't have healthier options. Report
Thanks Report
Like a good french fry Report
I much prefer regular fries, thank you for the info very interesting Report
Most of the time sweet potato fries come covered with sugar. Ick! Cut the potatoes and roast the chunks! Yum-O! Report
Very interesting! Thanks for sharing. Report
I wanted some sweet potato fries and these look yummy.... Report
I hate sweet potatoes no matter how they are fixed. I tried to eat them as fries or chips and I would rather skip it than eat. Report
Great info! Thanks! Report
I love sweet potato fries, but I bake them instead of frying. Report
Great information! Report
Thanks! Report
thanks Report
And everyone thinks sweet potatoes are healthier Report
WOW! And I thought I was doing something by putting them in the oven. Thank you for this information. Report
I love sweet potato fries over regular French fries, although both are good. I believe in everything in moderation. Report
Sweet potato fries. I rarely if ever order reg potato fries. This article has me rethinking my restaurant order Report