History of French Fries : How French Are They? 0

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If you have never heard of french fries then, I assume you don’t really like fast food. Most people who have had fast food in general in their life have ordered french fries with their burgers or just the fries on their own. This is the fundamental fast food item and its origins trace back to the 1700s or so. But that certain statement has some critics. One of the most common fast food items has one of the most debated origins. So, let’s dive into the history of french fries.

Origins: Is it really french?

The heading is kind of a shocker isn’t it? If you think that the french fries are really “French” then you are partially right, but only partially. Many historians agree that the true origins of french fries start from Belgium. Southern Belgian cities do speak french. The villagers in Belgium depended on the fish. 

Meuse River played a role in the origins of French Fries

The Meuse river had plenty of fish that villagers would catch and slice up to fry. But in the harsh winter season the river would freeze up and fish would not be an option. They would then depend on potatoes. They would slice and fry the potatoes in thin pieces. If you wanted to know who invented french fries, then the probable answer would be the Belgian villagers. 

The U.S and French Confusion

Thomas Jefferson made French Fries Popular during in the U.S

Now, at the times of global conflicts like the first world war and so, U.S soldiers would be stationed in specific places. Belgium and France would be one of those places. The soldiers liked the items so much that they would constantly order fries. President Thomas Jefferson used to have “French Prepared” Potato Slice fries on a consistent basis in his banquets. 

However, there is a group of people historians recall similar potato slice fries being sold in the streets of Paris. Similar to the Belgian villagers, French blue collar workers also depended on potatoes. Historians assume that french fries was a famous item.


As we mentioned, the French fries became an instant hit among the U.S soldiers. So much so, that they learned the preparation styles and brought it to U.S shores. Thus, French fries became a stable item on dinner plates all over the U.S . As with the origins of pizza, French fries also became one of the prime fast food items in American fast food places. That is how “Where did French fries originate?” became such a confusing topic.

Any food item that becomes popular in America, it also becomes a popular one all over the world. That is also true for french fries. From street vendors to world famous franchises, now french fries are a must-have item. McDonald’s in particular has been a great promoter of french fries across the world. 

While its origin might be disputed, what isn’t a dispute is the popularity of French fries. You can order your favorite French fries from Hungrynaki!

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