Crispy Baked Chili Squash Fries

by Heidi @ Food Doodles on November 21, 2011

Apparently I’ve been hoarding recipes.  I honestly thought I had nothing to post and I just checked my “to be posted” file on my computer and found a ton of pictures waiting for me to sift through.  So here I am.  I also didn’t just check it, as it’s been a couple hours of sorting, editing and organizing and nap time is almost over now, so I’ll get right to it!

As much as I love sweet potato fries and squash “fries” they will never be crunchy like regular old potato fries.  I’m happy with how my oven fries usually turn out and I’m always left feeling a ton better than if we go out for regular crispy crunchy fried fries.  But at the same time, sometimes I just need something crunchy.  Like really, honestly, crunchy, not at all how oven sweet potato fries usually turn out.  Enter these squash fries.  They may not be your typical fries, but they’re crunchy, and they’re exactly what I wanted 😀

I really love these.  And what kid can resist something breaded and crunchy like these, even if it is squash in the middle.  Plus, you can adapt these fries to whatever you like.  The same method will work with sweet potatoes, and you can literally use any spices, herbs, and other flavorings that you want.  Or just keep it simple and have some plain fries, just as long as they have enough salt to bring out the yummy squash flavor.

I may have taken a bazillion pictures in my excitement.  Keep scrolling 😀


Crispy Baked Chili Squash Fries

Inspired by How Sweet It Is Crispy Acorn Squash Rounds

Serves about 2-4 adults depending on what it’s served with.

  • 1 small squash(about 1/2 lb once peeled and seeds removed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 C panko or other breadcrumbs, whole grain if possible
  • 1/4C whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 tbsp mild chili powder
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • Very little oil just to spritz over the fries

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner and set aside.

Set out three small bowls.  In one bowl, beat the eggs well and set aside.  In a separate bowl place the panko or bread crumbs and in the third bowl mix together the whole wheat flour, chili powder, oregano, salt, onion and garlic powders.

Slice open your squash and remove the seeds.  Then peel the squash using a heavy duty vegetable peeler(or if you’re really confidant, maybe a good knife).  It may help to cut the squash into quarters to peel it, and be careful to only peel away from yourself and all of your fingers as it can be really difficult depending on the type of squash.  Once the squash is peeled, using a large knife chop into small “fries” or even small “nugget” shapes.  Once they’re all cut, cover all the slices with the whole wheat spice mixture(you could even do this in a ziploc bag all at once to make things easier).  Be sure to pack the spice mixture on to get the most flavor, then shake any excess off.  Then dip the “fries” in the beaten egg till completely covered, then immediately into the panko.  When the fries are completely covered in panko, place them on the baking sheet so that none of them are touching.  Once they’re all done being coated, spritz lightly with oil if you have a spray bottle with oil in it(I wouldn’t really recommend using Pam, or anything like that though as it contains more than just oil).  You could probably also take a small brush and very lightly brush oil over the fries, although that may not be necessary at all.

Place the fries in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.  Then using tongs, or even your fingers, flip each fry over.  Once all the fries are flipped, spritz with oil again and then return the pan to the oven for another 18-20 minutes watching that they don’t get too dark.  The fries should be done when the breading is golden and crisp, you can test the squash by poking a thicker piece with a fork, it should be very soft when completely cooked.  Serve immediately while hot with your favorite dipping sauces.

Leftovers will not reheat crunchy unless reheated in an oven, it’s best to make only as much as needed.  Extra squash can be covered and stored in the fridge to be made another day if you have extra.


Leave a Comment

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

1 leslie November 28, 2011 at 21:07

Made these tonight. Delicious!!! Very crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside. I added parmesan cheese to the Panko. Thanks for sharing!


2 Heidi @ Food Doodles November 29, 2011 at 14:57

I’m so glad you enjoyed them! Thanks for leaving a comment! The parmesan cheese sounds like a delicious add-in, I’ll have to try that next time 🙂


3 Amalia Hughes December 12, 2011 at 15:16

Made this recipe as well, the kids LOVED it ! Thanks for posting, keep them coming !


4 Justin November 28, 2011 at 15:54

They sound great, but I do object slightly to something being called fries when it’s only baked!


5 Marty November 27, 2011 at 19:38

What a great idea. The best sides are those that give that crunch without being deep fried in oil. Love your recipe. I imagine it works with any squash.


6 Vanessa November 26, 2011 at 20:36

What the what!? These look amaaaazing!


7 susan November 26, 2011 at 20:23

I love this idea! Cannot wait to add it to my weekly meal plan


8 Jesica @ Pencil Kitchen November 26, 2011 at 16:24

Definitely a children pleaser.. just between us adults…


9 Anna @ hiddenponies November 26, 2011 at 15:13

Wow, these look great, what a good idea for fries! I bet my kids will love these.


10 Richa@HobbyandMore November 26, 2011 at 14:07

i am loving the look of the fries.. a much healthier option! i am tired of potatoes already:)


11 Ashley@BakerbyNature November 25, 2011 at 07:37

I’m always craving the crunch these days, what a delicious idea!!


12 Maria @ Orchard Bloom November 24, 2011 at 09:49

These look awesome!!


13 surlykitchen November 22, 2011 at 06:59

wow, these look amazing! i can’t wait to try them


14 Lindsay @ Pinch of Yum November 22, 2011 at 05:09

Wow – love the looks of this one! So creative!


15 Kathryn November 22, 2011 at 02:55

Oh these look wonderful! I love the crunch of the coating and the kick of spice. Delicious!


16 Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} November 21, 2011 at 17:01

Meghan will rarely eat a cooked vegetable these days as she prefers the crunch of raw. But I think she’d like these with their crunchy exterior. Otherwise she won’t eat squash, so I’ll have to give these a try!


Previous post:

Next post: