Loaded Fries

By Jeri Mobley-Arias
December 7, 2023 | Updated on December 7, 2023

These loaded fries with steak are salty, savory, and saucy; crispy fries topped with juicy ribeye and drizzled with a creamy lime garlic sauce. Share a platter of these loaded french fries as an appetizer, snack, or side.

If you love making fries at home, check out this Animal-Style Fries (In-N-Out Copycat) recipe next.

loaded fries on a baking sheet

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Wondering what to put on loaded fries? Out of all the loaded fries recipes you could make, this is by far the best! Chunks of tender, marinated steak are piled on top of crispy, salty shoestring fries. Add a layer of lime garlic sour cream and you have the ultimate snack.

loaded fries on a baking sheet

Why This Loaded Fries Recipe Works

  • Better Than Fast Food Taco Bell, Wingstop, Zaxby’s, Nandos; nearly every fast food joint has their own loaded fries recipe. Skip the soggy cheese fries and enjoy a more sophisticated snack.
  • Great for Parties – Whether it’s the Super Bowl or you’re hosting a movie night, these fries are perfect for a gathering. Guests will be grabbing fries by the handful!
  • Versatile – Each element of this recipe is easy to customize. You can swap the type of fries, meat, or sauce to make this dish perfect for your taste buds.

Tools You’ll Need

loaded fries without garnishes on parchment paper lined sheet pan

Loaded Fries Ingredients

Make restaurant-quality loaded steak fries with simple ingredients.

  • Grown in Idaho Super Crispy Shoestring Fries – You can use homemade fries but this shortcut is so convenient and you get the same results every time. I love thin fries and the toppings aren’t overwhelming (shaved ribeye and sauce) so it works here.
  • Avocado oil – This browns the fries for a crispy coating.

Beef

  • Ribeye – This is a flavorful and well-marbled cut of beef known for its tenderness and rich taste. Use grass-fed thinly sliced ribeye steak for melt-in-your-mouth goodness.
  • Cloves garlic – Grated garlic adds a robust and savory flavor to the steak.
  • Rice vinegar – This has a mild, tangy taste and its acidity helps tenderize the meat.
  • Light & dark soy sauce – Light soy sauce adds saltiness, while dark soy sauce contributes depth, sweetness, and a darker hue.
  • White sugar & brown sugar – This complements the savory and umami notes from the other ingredients and helps the steak caramelize and form a crust when cooked.
  • Avocado oil – Use for the marinade and to later cook the steak.
  • Oyster sauce This popular condiment has a rich umami flavor.
  • Fish sauce – This sauce is savory, salt, and bursting with mouthwatering umami flavor. I always use the Three Crabs brand.
  • Fresh cracked black pepper – This has a more vibrant taste than regular pepper.
raw ribeye steak on a cutting board

Lime Garlic Sour Cream (Loaded Fries Sauce)

  • Sour cream – Use full-fat sour cream for that thick, creamy consistency.
  • Lime – You’ll need lime juice and zest.
  • Garlic cloves – Grated.
  • Water – This thins the sauce out just a bit.
  • Fish sauce – Use Three Crabs.

Garnish

  • Scallions, finely chopped or to taste
  • Cilantro, finely chopped
  • Hoisin sauce, to taste

How To Make Loaded Fries

The most convenient way to make frozen fries is in the air fryer. While they cook to golden brown perfection, prepare your marinated beef.

Beef Marinade

Place marinade ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. Add beef and mix until meat is coated in marinade. Marinate for 1½ hours.

ribeye steak marinating in a clear bowl

Garlic-Lime Sour Cream

Add all garlic-lime sour cream ingredients to a bowl and whisk to combine. Transfer to a small squeeze bottle and place in the refrigerator. If you do not have a squeeze bottle, transfer mixed sour cream to a small resealable plastic sandwich bag. You can transfer hoisin sauce into a separate plastic sandwich bag as well.

Fries

  1. Heat sauté pan over medium heat. Strain marinated beef allowing most of the marinade to strainer completely. Add 1½ tablespoons avocado oil, then add beef once pan is hot. Cook for 6-7 minutes or until meat is cooked through. Once cooked, cover pan with lid. While meat is cooking, preheat air fryer.
marinated cooked steak in a skillet

2. Place half of fries in the air fryer basket. Spread evenly. It’s okay if the fries overlap. Cook as directed on the bag, shaking the basket at the halfway mark.

french fries in an air fryer basket

3. Transfer cooked fries to a baking sheet. Top with beef (leaving juices in the pan), a generous drizzle of garlic-lime sour cream, and desired amount of hoisin sauce. KEEP IN MIND, hoisin sauce is salty, be mindful as you drizzle. Finish with cilantro and scallions. Enjoy your loaded fries!

loaded fries on a parchment paper lined baking sheet

Tips and Tricks

  • Don’t skip the marinade. That is the key to flavor in this recipe so make time for it.
  • Cooking times may vary. Depending on the make, model and size of your air fryer, you may need to adjust timing based on your air fryer.
  • Layer the toppings strategically to ensure an even distribution of flavors. This way, each bite is a delightful combination of textures and tastes. Fries are always the bottom layer, followed by meat, and the sauce is always last (aside from garnishes). Placing the meat between the fries and the sauce ensures the fries don’t get soggy.
  • Although you can store leftovers, I recommend only making what you plan to immediately serve. Loaded fries taste best when they’re fresh. If you do have leftovers, try to store the steak and the fries seperately.
close up view of garnished loaded steak fries

Loaded Fries Toppings

Loaded fries with steak are amazing but there are so many loaded fries ideas. Here are a few:

  • Meat Swap the steak for ground beef, pulled pork, shredded chicken, chili, or bacon.
  • Cheese You can pour a cheese sauce over the finished fries or top them with a melty cheese like sharp cheddar, mozzarella, or colby jack cheese.
  • Fries Try sweet potato fries, thick cut fries, tater tots, or waffle fries instead of shoestring fries.
  • Sauce Instead of lime garlic sour cream sauce, try In-N-Out Sauce, guacamole, or ranch dressing.
  • Jalapenos Add them for a spicy kick.
fries topped with ribeye steak

Frequently Asked Questions

How long do loaded fries last?

These fries are best when enjoyed immediately but you can store leftovers. Place them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

How do you reheat loaded fries?

Reheat loaded steak fries in the air fryer or oven for the best results. Preheat the oven or air fryer to 400°F then add the fries until warmed (about 2 minutes in the air fryer and 5-10 minutes in the oven).

What country did loaded fries come from?

Loaded fries originated in the United States during the 1950s. The first variation was actually cheese fries. Over the years, restaurants adapted other versions.

The dish is popular because they are a cheap way to make a filling meal. They’re also easy to make. That’s why places like Burger King, KFC, and Arby’s have all had their own recipes over the years.

What goes well with loaded steak fries?

These fries are so indulgent so they work as a meal. But if you want to serve them with something, try a salad, burgers, or chicken wings.

close up view of loaded steak fries

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loaded fries on a baking sheet

Loaded Fries

These loaded fries with steak are salty, savory, and saucy; crispy fries topped with juicy ribeye and drizzled with a creamy lime garlic sauce. Share a platter of these loaded french fries as an appetizer, snack, or side.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Marinate 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Servings 2 people
Author Jeri Mobley-Arias
Course Appetizer, Lunch, Snack
Cuisine American

Equipment

  • Mixing bowl
  • Microplane Grater
  • Whisk
  • strainer
  • Sauté pan
  • Airfryer
  • ½-baking sheet,

Ingredients

  • half bag Grown in Idaho Super Crispy Shoestring Fries
  • avocado oil

Beef

  • ¾ pound ribeye, grass-fed thinly sliced
  • 5 cloves garlic, grated
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • tablespoons brown sugar, packed
  • tablespoons avocado oil
  • 2 teaspoons oyster sauce
  • ½ tablespoon sugar
  • teaspoons fish sauce, Three Crabs brand
  • ½ teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dark soy sauce

Lime Garlic Sour Cream

  • ½ cup sour cream, full-fat
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 lime, zested
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • teaspoons fish sauce, Three Crabs

Garnish

  • 3 tablespoons scallions, finely chopped or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  • hoisin sauce, to taste

Instructions

Beef Marinade

  • Place marinade ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. Add beef and mix until meat is coated in marinade. Marinate for 1½ hours.

Garlic-Lime Sour Cream

  • Add all garlic-lime sour cream ingredients to a bowl and whisk to combine. Transfer to a small squeeze bottle and place in the refrigerator. If you do not have a squeeze bottle, transfer mixed sour cream to a small resealable plastic sandwich bag. You can transfer hoisin sauce into a separate plastic sandwich bag as well.

Fries

  • Heat sauté pan over medium heat. Strainer marinated beef allowing most of the marinade to strainer completely. Add 1½ tablespoons avocado oil, then add beef once pan is hot. Cook for 6-7 minutes or until meat is cooked through. Once cooked, cover pan with lid.
    While meat is cooking, preheat air fryer.
  • Place half of fries in the air fryer basket. Spread evenly. It's okay if the fries overlap. Cook as directed on the bag, shaking the basket at the halfway mark.
  • Transfer cooked fries to a baking sheet. Top with beef (leaving juices in the pan), a generous drizzle of garlic-lime sour cream, and desired amount of hoisin sauce. KEEP IN MIND, hoisin sauce is salty, be mindful as you drizzle. Finish with cilantro and scallions. Enjoy!

NOTES

Air Fryer Specifications  I used the Cosori Air Fryer Max XL 5.8 Quart, 1,700 watts. Depending on the make, model and size of your air fryer, you may need to adjust timing based on your air fryer.
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loaded fries on a baking sheet

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Hey, I'm Jeri!

At Whisper of Yum, we explore ALL cuisines - comfort foods, classics, elevated originals. If you love food like me, I invite you to settle in to this place, where swoon-worthy food is attainable + inspo for your next meal awaits.

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