Buttery Garlic Camp French Fries

I first made these buttery garlic french fries at camp and they are absolutely amazing!    While not the healthiest option, frying and potatoes were made for each other.  Frying isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you see a dutch oven but it really is a great for it.  Because the cast iron is so dense it holds onto the heat  and maintain the oil temperature better than a standard pot would.  After I made these the first time at camp my wife has me making them at home, on cookouts, at friends houses, and everybody can’t get enough of them.  The best part, besides being so darn delicious, is that they’re so easy!

Start With Russet or Similar Potatoes

Russet or Idaho potatoes make some of the best potatoes for frying.  The key is a starchy potato as that will fry better and absorb flavor more.  Red, or other less starchy potatoes are best for boiling, stews, soups, etc.  HuffingtonPost actually has a pretty good write up here on which potatoes to use for what.

To start, wash the potatoes good, really good.  I mean really scrub them to where the skin is starting to get thin in spots.  I use a sponge with the abrasive back to scrub mine.  This will clean all the dirt off.  Then cut them into wedges.  I do this with a knife on the cutting board but you can get a vegetable wedger to make it easier if you want.  You want to get the wedges in the 1/2 inch thick range because they will fry up and cook most consistently at this size.

Put them in water until ready to fry.  This keeps the potatoes from browning and also removes some starch from the outside of the potatoes – giving you a better fry.  I know, ironic since we want a starchy potato and then remove some of the starch.  It’s really just removing excess starch.  Have you ever noticed how water with potatoes soaking will turn white?  That’s starch.  We want it inside the potato, not outside.  Side note: Soaking and removing starch is a VITAL step for making homemade potato chips.  Just thought you wanted to know.

Sliced wedges of potatoes in bowl of water

Prepare Garlic Butter Mixture

To be honest I’m not normally measuring these.  I just kinda eyeball it.  Feel free to use the exact measurements though if it helps you.  One note here, do not use margarine.  It doesn’t taste as good and it’s not as healthy as people think.  If you want to make this a healthier dish then substitute some of the butter for olive oil instead of using margarine.

  • 1 stick butter, melted or softened (NOT MARGARINE – YUCK!)
  • 2 -3 Teaspoons Garlic Powder to preferred taste
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • optional: 1 – 2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese for Parmesan garlic fries.

Mix it up with a spoon.  It will get drizzled over the freshly fried potatoes later.

Garlic Butter Mixture in a red plastic bowl


Fry Them Taters!


potatoes frying beautifully in a dutch oven on a camp stove

I do this on my camp stove in my dutch oven.  I typically use an entire 48 oz jug of Canola oil.  Peanut oil would work great too!  Avoid straight vegetable oil as it’s just not as good for you and doesn’t make it taste any better.  If you want a real treat cook these in crisco.  <<– Not recommended by the American Heart Association

Another good thing to do is make donuts for breakfast before hand.  Just save the oil for the french fries.  Hey, you’re camping here, no counting calories!  Check out my post on homemade donuts if you want to see how.

You want to heat the oil to about 350 degrees – normally medium to low heat on a camp stove.  I don’t ever actually check the temperature though.  If the fries are bubbling like in the picture, but aren’t burning, it’s the right temperature.

After about 10 minutes they will look like this, and they are done.  Tell me that picture doesn’t get your stomach excited.

Fresh cooked french fries being spooned out of the oil.

Drain Fries and Apply Buttery Garlic Mixture

Line a bowl with paper towels to collect excess oil.  If you’re using a plastic bowl like me then line it with foil first to protect the bowl from heat.  Use a slotted spoon to remove the fries and get as much oil off as possible.

Cooked, unseasoned, french fries in a bowl lined with foil and paper towels

Don’t let the fries cool off.  As soon as the oil is off of them start applying the buttery mixture.  The hot fries will easily melt the soft butter.  You will have to add some, toss the fries around, add more, and repeat until the fries are well coated.  Depending how many fries you are making this may be done in multiple batches too.

Once you are done the fries look absolutely amazing and they taste even better than they look!


Buttery garlic fries in a basket lined with foil and paper towels


Printable Recipe


Buttery Garlic Camp French Fries

These garlic fries are easy to make and hit that special soft spot that only fried food can touch.  Great with burgers!

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Author David Brewer


  • 3 - 5 lbs Russet Potatoes
  • 1 stick Unsalted butter, melted or softened
  • 2 - 3 tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 - 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese (Optional)
  • 48 Oz Canola or Peanut Oil


  1. Slice Potatoes into 1/2 inch thick wedges.  Soak in water while heating oil.

  2. Mix softened or melted butter with garlic powder, salt, and optional Parmesan cheese.

  3. Heat oil in dutch oven over low flame to approximately 350 degrees.

  4. Fry potato wedges for approximately 8 - 10 minutes, or until golden brown.

  5. Strain wedges and place in paper towel lined bowl or basket.

  6. coat wedges with garlic mixture and serve.

Recommended Products

Here are a few things that could help you make your camp fries.  These are Amazon affiliate links so I actually get a small commission on anything you buy when you click through them to Amazon.  It’s not much, but it helps keep the servers on and it pays for the occasional new toy I need for a post.  Honestly without it my wife probably wouldn’t let me buy half the stuff I use for this page.

Vegetable wedger

Flexible Cutting Mat

Coleman Camp Stove

Lodge Dutch Oven


Did you like this post, find it useful, or make these camp fries?  Drop me a comment below and let me know what you think!  It’s because of readers like you that I keep doing this so I’d love to hear from you.  Please share it on Facebook and Pinterest with the buttons below.


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