Parmesan-Thyme Sweet Potato Fries


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sweet potato fries in a basket

Parmesan-Thyme Baked Sweet Potato Fries are baked in the oven with a crispy coating of parmesan and thyme.

Crispy baked sweet potato fries are one of those holy grail foods for me. When they’re good, they’re really good, but for having only one real ingredient, those little fries are so darn finicky. Just when I think I’ve found a way to make those healthy-yet-snackable potatoes hold their fry-like shape, I make them again and something goes wrong.

The fact is, there are a lot of sweet potato-specific factors at play. They have naturally varying amounts of sugars and starch which, for scienc-y reasons I don’t totally understand means they make for unpredictable baking (unlike my trusty, tried and true home fries that come out the same every time). Despite all this, I’m throwing my sweet potato fry hat in the ring and sharing the method that works best for me.

I tested a bunch of methods and ate a lot of test-fries. I soaked some in water since I read that removes some starch and gave some an egg wash and cut some thin and some thick and baked them at all sorts of temperatures and came to one conclusion – nothing’s guaranteed when it comes to baked sweet potato fries except that a little cheating goes a long way.

cutting sweet potatoes for fries

And by cheating I mean that to guarantee a bit of crunch on those fries, I had to put it there myself – in the form of parmesan and panko.

3 things help to make these crispy and undeniably fry-like:
1) Slicing them thin and even
2) Baking on a cooling rack so air can circulate underneath
3) Tossing them with panko and parmesan so a nice crisp crust forms while baking

It also helps to make a spiced yogurt dipping sauce to serve on the side. Because no potato can call itself a fry without something tasty for dipping.

a fry dipped in yogurt dipping sauce

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Sweet Potato Fries in a parchment lined basket
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Parmesan-Thyme Baked Sweet Potato Fries

These sweet potato fries are baked in the oven with a crispy coating of parmesan and thyme.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings


  • Half Sheet Pan
  • Parchment Paper
  • Mixing Bowls
  • Oven-Safe Wire Rack


  • 2 large Sweet Potatoes (rinsed and thoroughly dried)
  • 1/4 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Tbsp Panko Japanese Style Breadcrumbs
  • 1 Tbsp fresh Thyme Leaves
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper

Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1 tsp Sriracha (hot sauce, more or less to taste)
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper


  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a sheet tray with parchment paper and top with a cooling rack.
  • Peel sweet potatoes if you prefer - I like to leave the peel on mine. Slice sweet potato lengthwise into thin (1/2-inch square or smaller) fries. In a small bowl combine parmesan, panko, thyme leaves, salt and pepper.
  • In a plastic bag or large bowl, toss sweet potatoes with oil. Add parmesan mixture and toss until fries are evenly coated (don't worry if not all of the parmesan mixture sticks; just discard any leftover).
  • Spread sweet potatoes in single layer on prepared cooling rack. Bake until sweet potatoes are tender and golden brown, turning with a spatula halfway through, about 20 minutes.
  • Whisk together all ingredients for Spicy Yogurt Dipping Sauce. Serve on the side.


Calories: 216kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 852mg | Potassium: 674mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 24506IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 180mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $4.00
Calories: 216
Keyword: easy side dish, family friendly, fries, sweet potato recipe
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I’ve got a post on our weekend trip to Chiang Mai coming.  There were some highs and some lows.  And a lot of sitting on the floor of temples for the sake of a picture.

jess molly clara chiang mai

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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

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  1. I made this last week and they were perfect! Such great tips! Can’t wait to see the four of you soon!

  2. You had me at parmesan and panko! Such a yummy combination! And yes, WHY are sweet potato fries so dang fussy? Well, I’ll have to give this version a try and see how it stands up. Thanks for the recipe!