Awesome Dipping Sauces for Sweet Potato Fries (and Fry Recipe)

Cara Campbell
by Cara Campbell
4 people
50 min

Listen, I love sweet potato fries. SO much. And while of course, there's going to be a recipe for those here, this is actually an ode to another thing I love: dipping sauce for sweet potato fries. The most common is definitely the tried and true (and delicious) smoky chipotle dipping sauce. It's amazing, but there are many, many other combinations of interesting flavour to experiment with. So we're going to walk through (with video) how to create


your basic (base) sauce, and then talk about the flavor combinations you can use to build each different sauce. I'm so excited.

NINE different dipping sauces for sweet potato fries. I'm in heaven.
Make the Aioli for your Sweet Potato Fries


The aioli is going to serve as your base for *most* of these dipping sauces. And by the way, it's totally delicious and easy to make - you may never go back to mayo again.


What is Aioli?


Aioli can mean different things to different people, but I'm hear to tell you: it's the fancy gourmet word mayonnaise. For me, aioli is always a homemade version of mayo, but it doesn't necessarily have to be (see the shortcut versions below for making quick aioli). The other thing that has to be happening for me in aioli is different flavors - even if it's just garlic. Let's make it a little fancier than your traditional mayo no? Otherwise, what's the point?


Aioli is made by emulsifying egg, oil, and a little Dijon to help with that emulsification process. Basically, the trickiest part about making your own is making sure you add the oil incredibly slowly so the mixture thickens, rather than having all the ingredients sit on top of each other separately. It's the same idea of what happens with salad dressing.


We're using a neutral flavored oil here, but you can definitely use olive oil. Just keep in mind it will leave a distinct flavor behind, so make sure whatever you're combining it with is going to work. Also - aioli almost always contains raw garlic as flavoring. Again, we're not doing that here so we can have a blank slate for whatever other flavors we want.


What makes it the Best Dipping Sauce for Sweet Potato Fries?


Two things: the incredibly delicious base flavor, and versatility. This aioli is going to create the best base for your sweet potato dipping sauce, and I've provided lots of suggestions below. BUT you're going to then know how to create any kind of dip that your heart desires. If you can dream up the flavor combo, then you can do it here!


How to Make Aioli for Your Dipping Sauce


Let's do this together. I'm going to use my immersion blender. It literally takes 3.5 seconds to make your homemade aioli this way. You could also work with stand mixer, or hand beaters (although I haven't tried this yet). I do know you can whisk it by hand - it works, but it takes an incredibly long time (and arm strength, which lolz in my case).


If you're using a whisk in any fashion you absolutely have to add the oil super slowly. Almost a couple of drops at a time. If you add it too quickly, there's no going back. It won't all of a sudden thicken up for you. STAY STRONG.

LOOK HOW EASY THIS IS!!!



Best Dipping Sauce Combos:


Here we go - these are some of my favourite combinations. They all start with the basic aioli we just made, and then we build from there. I've separated them into three categories: gourmet (this is The Gourmet Bon Vivant, after all), sweet and spicy. In my ideal world, if we were having sweet potato fries as an appetizer, at least three of these sides would be an option for variety. If it's serving as a side dish, one would be totally fine.


Gourmet Sauces


  • Roasted Garlic & Parmesan: 1 cup of basic aioli + 1 bulb roasted garlic + ½ C grated parmesan
  • Truffle & Black Pepper: 1 cup basic aioli + 2 teaspoon truffle oil + 2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • Lemon and Dill: 1 cup basic aioli + juice of half a lemon + zest of one lemon + ¼ cup fresh dill
  • Rosemary: 1 cup basic aioli + 3 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh rosemary + 1 teaspoon black pepper


Sweet Sauces


  • Cranberry: 1 cup basic aioli + ½ cup burst cranberries (or ¼ cup cranberry sauce)
  • Toasted Marshmallow: The only one that doesn't start with aioli! ¼ cup heavy whipping cream + 10 toasted marshmallows + a blow torch for the top at the end (note, this one MUST be eaten warm. The marshmallows start to firm up as they cool. *I'm going to put the recipe for this in the actual recipe card, along with the aioli.*
  • Maple Cinnamon: 1 cup basic aioli + 3 tbsp. maple syrup + 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Spicy Sauces


  • Smoky Chipotle: 1 cup basic aioli + 1 chili pepper in adobo sauce (finely chopped), + 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder + juice of half a lime
  • Wasabi: 1 cup basic aioli + 1 tablespoon wasabi paste + 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar


And that's it! Other than the toasted marshmallow sauce, all you need to do is mix these ingredients together, and best dipping sauces ever are made!


FYI - in all of these sauces, feel free to experiment with the ratios. If you like a sweeter dip, then add more maple syrup. Craving spice? Throw another chipotle in there. These are really just guidelines to serve as inspiration to get you started.

How to Make Multiple Sauces from One Aioli Recipe


Ok, this may seem obvious, but I'm going to put it in here anyway. For the amount of aioli this basic recipe makes, I'm going to recommend you not try and split into more than three different sauces. That should leave about ⅓ cup for each of them. After that, you just need to roughly divide the other ingredients by three and you should be good to go.


The Hack for any Sweet Potato Dipping Sauce


The shortcut version (again, everything except the toasted marshmallow) is to replace the cup of aioli with a cup of your favourite mayo - and keep everything else the same. That's it! You're done!


Can the Sweet Potato Dipping Sauce be Made Ahead?


Yes, absolutely. In fact, the longer the flavors hang out together, the better it will be. You can definitely also make the aioli ahead of time, just make sure you store it in the fridge. It'll keep for about a week.


How to Make Sweet Potato Fries


Ok, now you have all these fabulous sweet potato fry dipping sauces, let's move on to the fries themselves. Baking sweet potato fries luckily isn't too difficult, but there's a couple things you can do to up your chances of crispy, crunchy exteriors with soft and creamy interiors.


Cutting the Sweet Potatoes


This is really important. We're going to cut the sweet potato fries as thin and skinny as we possibly can. This is going to allow us to cook them quickly and at a high heat - which is exactly what we need to get them crispy. No low and slow here.


Soaking


This is a really important part of any fry making process, sweet potato or not. Soaking the raw potatoes in cold water for at least an hour before they go in the oven draws out the starch, which is what causes them to go soggy in the middle and on the edges. Soaking helps the fries stay light and creamy on the inside, and crispy crunchy on the outsides. Don't skip this step, even if you're tempted (I am always temped to cut corners. And I am always burned for it).

Important: Once the fries are done soaking they also need to be as dry as humanly possible. I would suggest getting most of the excess water out with a dish towel, spreading them in an even layer on a cooling rack, and letting them air dry for at least 30 minutes (but the longer, the better).


Coating


If you've done the above steps right, we don't need much in terms of coating. We're going to use olive oil for the fat content, and cornstarch to give them a little bit of a crust. Oh, and salt, obviously. And that's it, we're not going to do anything else.

Baking


Like I mentioned before, we're going for high heat and a fast cooking time. 450F for 15 minutes should be perfect. If you've cut your fries to thick, this is not going to work. The insides will be raw and the outsides burnt.


Spread the fries evenly in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Use two if you have to. If we crowd the fries to much, they will start to steam, and they will never be crispy.

What to Serve


Sweet potato fries can be a great side to so many foods, or an awesome appetizer all on their own. Here's what I love pairing them with:


Bison Short Ribs


Simple and Flavorful Cilantro Chicken Soup with Lime


Classic Fish Sandwiches with Tartar Sauce


Chicken Bacon Ranch Burgers


Cast Iron Rib-Eye Steak with Blistered Grapes


Ok are we ready? Let's do this.

Awesome Dipping Sauces for Sweet Potato Fries (and Fry Recipe)
Recipe details
  • 4  people
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 30 Minutes Total time: 50 min
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Ingredients
For the Fries
  • 2 sweet potatoes peeled and cut into thin fries
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 C cornstarch
For the Aioli
  • 1+1 egg +egg yolk room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 C neutral flavored oil such as canola or vegetable
  • 1 teaspoon salt
For the Toasted Marshmallow Dip
  • 10 marshmallows
  • 1/4 C heavy cream
Instructions
Make the Sweet Potato Fries
Place your potatoes in a bowl of cold water. Allow to soak for at least an hour.
Drain the potatoes and dry them using clean tea towels. Spread them on a cooling rack for another hour until fully dry.
Preheat your oven to 450°F.
In a large bowl, combine potatoes, olive oil, salt and cornstarch. Mix thoroughly with your hands, making sure each fry is coated in cornstarch and oil.
Spread the fries evenly on a large baking sheet, making sure to not overcrowd them.
Bake for 15 minutes, toss, and then back for another 15 minutes, until the edges are just starting to turn brown.
For the Aioli
Add all the ingredients, starting with the eggs at the bottom, to a high sided, deep bowl, glass, or measuring cup (tall and skinny is best).
Submerge the immersion blender, and turn on, slowly moving it up and down through the ingredients for about 20 seconds.
Cover, and keep in the refrigerator until ready to make your dipping sauces.
For the Toasted Marshmallow Dip
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Place marshmallows in a shallow baking dish lined with parchment paper. Roast in the oven until swollen and golden brown. Keep a close eye on these, they go from perfect to on fire very quickly.
Meanwhile, heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium high heat.
Once the marshmallows are done, carefully add them to the cream in the saucepan. Stir until dissolved.
Serve in a heatproof bowl. Add a half a marshmallow to the top and torch it for garnish if desired.
Tips
  • The toasted marshmallow dip has to be served hot or pretty warm. It starts to get stiffer as it cools. You can pop it in the microwave though if it starts getting cold - good as new!
  • The aioli can be kept in the fridge for up to one week.
Cara Campbell
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Comments
  • LILLIAN Mashburn LILLIAN Mashburn on Feb 18, 2022

    I don't want to make my own aoli because of raw eggs. That can be dangerous!!

    • Cara Campbell Cara Campbell on Feb 19, 2022

      Totally understand. There's actually a way to make safe raw eggs - check out this article from the Chicago Tribune. If you microwave the eggs with water and lemon juice, they will cook, but the lemon juice prevents them from curdling. I've never tried this technique, but it sounds pretty interesting.

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