Skip to Content

Dirty Fries

These epic Dirty Fries are packed with flavor and perfect for sharing (although let’s be real, you might not want to…)! Made with crispy seasoned fries, jalapenos cheese sauce, more melted cheese, and topped with pickled red onions, fresh herbs, and tomatoes, these dirty fries are the ultimate indulgence.

dirty fries on a baking tray loaded with cheese sauce, red pepper, vegetarian bacon pieces, pickled red onions, guacamole, coriander/cilantro.

These dirty fries are so loaded that you might even call them filthy fries. Also known as loaded fries, dirty fries typically involve french fries topped with cheese (either a cheese sauce or just grated cheese), bacon (veggie bacon in this case!), onions or another veg, and multiple toppings.

There’s something about indulgent comfort foods that just hits the spot, isn’t there? I’ve been loving big, hearty dishes that really nourish the soul lately, like my creamy orzo mac and cheese and this super-cheesy baked orzo with veggie meatballs – but let’s face it, few things are quite as satisfying as a big, heaping plate of loaded fries.

That’s where these Dirty Fries come in…

Indulgent Comfort Food

To me, these dirty fries are the perfect indulgence. They’re salty, spicy, and oh-so-cheesy, with just the right amount of freshness and crunch from the diced tomatoes and herbs.

And best of all, they’re incredibly easy to make!

I love how adaptable this recipe is, too. You can use frozen oven fries for a quick and easy option, or make your own homemade cajun fries for an extra punch of flavor. And when it comes to toppings, the possibilities are endless! Feel free to experiment with different veggies, cheeses, and even proteins to create your own perfect concoction of comforting dirty fries.

Other potato recipes you might also like to try include these spicy potato tacos, crushed pesto potatoes, and super crispy roast potatoes.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Indulgent: These fries are the perfect indulgence for when you’re craving something cheesy and delicious. The ultimate comfort food.
  • Versatile: These fries are great as a snack or as a side dish, so perfect for larger groups and parties.
  • Easy: This recipe is simple to follow and super quick – so perfect for when you’re short on time.
  • Adaptable: This recipe is easily adaptable to suit your tastes, making it a great option for everyone. Add extra spice, extra cheese, make it vegan – whatever you need!
  • Delicious: Made with crispy fries, melted cheese, and spicy jalapenos, these fries are packed with flavor and are sure to satisfy your cravings.
loaded dirty fries topped with guacamole, pickled red onions, red peppers, and lots of cheese sauce and cheese topping

Equipment You’ll Need

This is a really easy recipe that doesn’t require many tools (saving you washing up!). Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Baking tray
  • A saucepan for cooking the bacon bits/red pepper and making the cheese sauce
  • Chopping board
  • Knife

Ingredient Notes

  • Oven Fries or Homemade Cajun Fries: You can use either frozen oven fries or homemade cajun fries in this recipe. If you’re using frozen oven fries, make sure to add some olive oil and cajun seasoning to them before cooking.
  • Cajun Seasoning: If you’re using oven fries, you’ll need to add some cajun seasoning to them to give them a spicy kick. You can also make your own with paprika, cayenne pepper, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano. The recipe linked above has the exact quantities you need! Alternatively, you could use a simpler combination of spices, which is what I’ve added to the recipe below.
  • Bacon: Since I’m vegetarian and this is a vegetarian food blog, I’ve used vegan bacon pieces for this recipe.
  • Red pepper: Diced red pepper adds some great flavor, texture, and color to this recipe!
  • Cheddar Cheese and Mozzarella: These two kinds of cheese work perfectly together to create a gooey, cheesy topping for the fries, plus add to the cheese sauce.
  • Cheese sauce: The cheese sauce is made from a simple roux of oil, flour, and milk, with cheese and jalapenos stirred in.
  • Jalapenos: Add sliced jalapenos to the fries for an extra spicy kick. In this recipe, I dice the jalapenos and add them (and a little of the
  • Tomato and Herbs: Dice a tomato and add a handful of parsley or cilantro to the top of the fries for some freshness and color.
  • Pickled red onions: I always have a jar of quick pickled red onions in the fridge, perfect for topping this recipe.

How To Make These Dirty Fries

Scroll down to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for the full ingredient notes and instructions – I’ve provided some more in-depth steps for making this recipe here, however.

Step 1: Prep Your Fries

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees C | 400 degrees F and line a baking dish with baking paper. Spread the fries onto the baking tray (trying to keep them to one flat layer if possible) and sprinkle over the seasoning and oil. Mix the fries with the seasoning so they’re evenly coated, then pop your fries into the oven to cook for 20 – 25 minutes.

Step 2: Cook the red pepper and bacon bits

While the fries are cooking, make the bacon bits, cheese sauce, and toppings.

To start, finely dice your red bell pepper. Heat some olive oil in a pan or casserole dish and add the diced red pepper and vegan bacon bits, frying for 5 – 8 minutes. Once cooked, remove the ingredients from the pan and put to one side.

Step 3: Make the cheese sauce

To make the cheese sauce, add the oil to the same dish you were just using, then add the plain flour and stir continuously for a couple of minutes. Add in your milk, always stirring to avoid lumps, and cook until the sauce has begun to thicken (~5 minutes).

Once the sauce has begun to thicken, add the cheddar cheese and mozzarella, as well as the diced jalapenos and jalapeno brine.

Step 4: Prepare the other toppings

While the fries finish cooking, finely chop your cilantro, get your pickled red onions out of the fridge, dice your tomato, and prepare your homemade guacamole if using.

Step 5: Assemble the fries

To assemble the fries, first top the cooked fries with the bacon/red pepper mixture. Then, pour over the jalapeno cheese sauce and top with a little more mozzarella/cheddar mixture. Place the dirty fries under the grill for a further 5 – 10 minutes so the cheese gets super melty, golden, and gooey.

Step 6: Added the other toppings

Once cooked, remove the dirty fries from the grill and top with the pickled red onions, guacamole, diced tomato, and chopped cilantro. Enjoy!

Fully loaded dirty fries topped with guacamole, pickled red onion, red pepper, and cheese sauce

Expert Tips

  • For a vegan-friendly option, use vegan cheese instead of cheddar and mozzarella.
  • You can use any vegetables you like as toppings for these fries, so feel free to experiment and find your favorites. Red onion instead of white, mushrooms, and even sweet potatoes could be tasty additions.
  • Top with fried beans and homemade guacamole for nacho fries!
  • Serve with a dipping sauce: To take these dirty fries to the next level, consider serving them with a dipping sauce on the side. A spicy chipotle mayo or a tangy ranch dressing would both work well. I’ve also seen the spicy mayo drizzled over the dirty fries which looks delicious!
  • Make it healthier: If you’re looking to make this recipe a bit healthier, consider swapping out the fries for sweet potato fries or using a smaller amount of cheese on top. Honestly, though, dirty fries probably aren’t for you if you’re looking for ‘healthy’ options.
  • Add some crunch: To add some extra texture to your dirty fries, try sprinkling some crispy fried onions or even some crushed-up tortilla chips on top.


These dirty fries are best enjoyed straight out of the oven, but you can store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

I wouldn’t recommend freezing your dirty fries with the cheese cooked – but you can freeze the cajun fries and then make this recipe quickly cooking the fries from frozen!

Serving Suggestions

These dirty fries are perfect on their own as a snack, but they also work great as a side dish with burgers, hot dogs, or sandwiches. Here are a few recipes I have that would pair well:

Other Recipes You Might Like

If you’re looking for more comfort food recipes, check out some of these other delicious options. These loaded fries could go great with tofu nuggets or some Mexican beans, or even topped with a classic homemade guacamole.


Can I make these dirty fries ahead of time?

These fries are best enjoyed straight out of the oven, but you can prepare the toppings ahead of time and store them in the fridge until you’re ready to make the fries.

Can I use a different type of cheese for these fries?

Absolutely! Feel free to use any type of cheese you like or even a combination of different cheeses. I think mozzarella and cheddar work great, but a spicy pepperjack cheese, creamy gouda, or a combination of many could all work well!

Can I use fresh potatoes instead of frozen fries?

Yes, you can use fresh potatoes to make your own homemade fries. Follow the recipe for homemade cajun fries and then continue with the recipe as written. Personally, I like the skinny frozen oven fries best, but if you prefer homemade fries or even wedges then go for it!

Can I skip the cheese sauce?

Of course – you could omit the cheese sauce and just top your dirty fries with grated cheese and grill. The jalapeno cheese sauce really does take this recipe to the next level, though.

Dirty Fries

Dirty Fries

Yield: 3 - 4 portions
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

With crispy fries, cheese, onions and peppers, spicy jalapenos, fresh herbs & tomatoes, these dirty fries are the ultimate indulgence.


  • 400g oven fries
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 60g vegan bacon lardons (I used THIS brand)
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 300ml milk
  • 80g grated cheddar cheese
  • 70g grated mozzarella
  • 3 tbsp sliced jalapenos + 2 tbsp brine
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • 4 tbsp pickled red onions
  • 5 tbsp homemade guacamole
  • Handful of cilantro, diced


  1. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees C | 400 degrees F and line a baking dish with baking paper.
  2. Place your oven fries on your baking tray with 0.5 tsp olive oil and the seasonings, and coat evenly. Cook for 20 - 25 minutes according to package instructions.
  3. While the fries are cooking, heat another 0.5 tbsp oil in a saucepan and add the bacon and red pepper. Saute for 5 - 7 minutes until softened.
  4. Remove the pepper and bacon from the pan, then add the remaining oil. Heat for a minute or two, then stir in the plain flour and cook for another 3 minutes, stirring continuously.
  5. Stir in the milk, whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Once the sauce has started thickening (5 minutes), add about 3/4 of the cheese, the jalapenos, and the brine.
  6. Remove the fries from the oven and top them first with the bacon and red pepper mix, then with the cheese sauce and the remaining cheese.
  7. Placeunder the grill for around 10 minutes until the cheese has melted.
  8. Remove the dirty fries from the oven, and top with the tomato, pickled red onions, herbs, and guacamole.


  • For a vegan-friendly option, use vegan cheese instead of cheddar and mozzarella.
  • You can use any vegetables you like as toppings for these fries, so feel free to experiment and find your favorites.
  • Don't have time to make a cheese sauce? Just add the cheese - it will still taste delicious!


These dirty fries are best enjoyed straight out of the oven, but you can store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 549Total Fat: 30gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 982mgCarbohydrates: 60gFiber: 6gSugar: 3gProtein: 11g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Skip to Recipe