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Best budget recipes for 50% or less: Sam’s perfect oven chips. Best homemade oven chips recipe

Photo: Maris Piper potatoes

Photo: Maris Piper potatoes

Danny has cut our potato bill from around £4 a week to 80p a week. Our cold dark barn is the perfect place to store spuds. He was horrified when he discovered how much that we were spending on potatoes. The price rose steeply last winter. The past warmer winters meant that most UK spuds were susceptible to blight – harvests were small and prices shot up.

Since then he has been looking out for marked down spuds in the supermarkets. Generally he finds them for 40p for 2.5 kilos. They are hung in the dark barn in thick Hessian sacks.

Perhaps this long bout of freezing weather in the UK might kill the blight spores this winter. Having decided not to try spuds again this year, I think that I’ll give them a final go this summer. There’s nothing like a home grown spud, transformed in home harvested goose fat to a plump crispy roast potato on a Sunday evening.

Danny likes to eat supper early. If he’s away I never eat before nine. Last night I was held up in Cambridge – Danny was cooking so I telephoned to warn of the delay. When I opened the cottage door his neck was stiff.
“We (you) forgot to buy oven chips. So we’ll have to wait 45 minutes for these to cook.”

My heart sank. We don’t eat a lot of chips but we enjoy them when we do. Oven ready chips are one of our regular convenience foods as I’m not wildly keen on our homemade oven chips.
“Why don’t we (you) try Sam’s method and par boil the chips. Then they only take 20 minutes in the oven.” D said he had already started the Sam method.

He interpreted Sam’s recipe and came up with these. They were wonderful – soft and fluffy inside and crisp outside.

And even better – they used less fat than the McCain’s only 5 percent fat chips and tasted scrummier than their best selling Home Fries.

In fact these homemade chips were so good that D pushed back his chair and carefully scrubbed chips off the shopping list. Thank you Sam.

Sam’s perfect oven chips. Best homemade oven chips recipe (for 2-3 hungry people)


  • 800 g of potatoes
  • 5 tblsp of olive oil (approx 30ml/30g)
  • Quarter tsp of garlic granules
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Large pinch of salt
  • A good few twists of ground black pepper


Set the oven for 210c/190c fan

  1. Peel the spuds and halve them. Add to a pan of boiling water (salted) bring the pan up to simmering point and leave the halves to simmer for five minutes. Drain and let them cool for 5 minutes or so.
  2. Meanwhile, pour the oil, cayenne, salt and pepper into a big bowl and mix well.
  3. Cut the potatoes carefully into chunky chips. Toss these in the seasoned oil and spread over a large baking tray. You may have to toss in one half at a time. We have a perforated chip and pizza pan very like this one CASA NON STICK PIZZA CHIP CRISPER and I reckon that it helps to make perfect chips and roast potatoes.
  4. Bake them for 20 minutes 210c/190c fan and then ramp up the temperature for 10 minutes at 240c/220c fan, IMPORTANT – check them every 3 minutes as you want the outside to be crisp not burnt.

Danny also explained that these oven chips can be baked at a lower temperature for longer if you have another dish in the oven (say 180c/160c fan), as long as you ramp up the temperature for a good ten minutes at the end.

He says getting the perfect chip is more of an art than a science so you may need to practice to get your chips spot on because oven temperatures vary widely. Our best homemade oven chips so far were made with Maris Piper potatoes.

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  1. Try using goose fat instead of oil, heat the fat in the baking tin in the oven, then add parboiled chips. Wonderful

  2. Hi! We don’t tend to parboil the potatoes either, but I shall definitely give it a go…

    When making chips or indeed roasted veggies at home I tend to mix the oil and seasonings (Aromat’s a quick and easy thing to use) in the corner of a plastic freezer bag, then add the veg and give the bag a shake. This seems to get a pretty decent coating on the veg without too much mess.

  3. Us too! We cook chips like we do roast potatoes. I usually completely cook the potatoes (more by accident than design most times)& then roast them in olive oil. For chips I cut them first when raw into very fat chips & then boil them as chips before roasting them in the olive oil in a baking tray exactly like roast. They’re delicious, but usually only as good as the potatoes Maris Piper/Peer or King Eds. Much less smell, fire risk & calories than conventional fried chips & I think nicer.

    • Jackie Morrison

      Proper roasties are not made with olive oil, but fat. To cheat you can use Olive oil but thats NOT proper roasties!Duck fat, goose fat or plain beef dripping is the proper way..

  4. We make homemade oven chips but don’t parboil them first. They take about 20-25 minutes. We do have the oven REALLY hot and use a spray oil (bought a special bottle thing that you add your own oil to from Pampered Chef) to coat the potatoes before they go in the oven. Even if I do say so myself, they’re really good chips.

  5. Toffeeapple

    Now I want chips! I haven’t made any in years but this seems a good way around the ‘smelly house syndrome’ associated with fried chips.

  6. Fiona ~ I posted a recipe for onion pie and thought of you. I’ll bet you can fix it up into something much better!

    I haven’t grown potatoes for a while, but have been considering trying the pomado again. (tomato plant grafted onto a potato plant). This would be a real space saver! 😉 I found it on the Internet.

  7. i “parboil” mine in the microwave for 10 minutes. that works well. Also sprinkle BBQ seasoning over the chips/wedges (cos i tend to make wedges rather than chips), and that gives a lovely flavour…

  8. I always parboil my roasties but never thought to do the chips that way too. I’ll remember that tip, thanks!

  9. Michelle in NZ

    I do something similar. And have also found using fan grill worked brilliantly with raw spuds for chips or wedges – 10 mins a side and keep watch yet keep the oven door closed. Best with a naturally floury spud.

    For a greek a style twist on baked/fan baked add some lemon juice`towards the end (& toss around). yes will get some dark bits but just adds to their charm and flavour

    Happy eating!, Michelle and Zebbycat in Wellington

  10. Half a world away & in sync. LOL.

    Seems Im always first to visit you lately. You must be a real night owl as I come here once it gets quiet in the U.K forum I frequent.

    This recipe is very close to how I make chips (and wedges with the skin on) I add a spoonful taco seasoning to the oil mix sometimes.

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