If you thought deep-dish pizza was a delicious indulgence, wait until you try some of these best french fries Chicago has to offer. Restaurants and diners around the city have managed to tinker and improve such a seemingly simple side dish. All of these local establishments offer the best french fries in unique ways at a reasonable price. There is no need to break the bank to eat well, but you may want to stop by an ATM, because most of these places are cash only establishments.
3324 N California Ave
Chicago, IL 60618
Price: $1.50 – $3
Hours: Mon to Sat – 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sun – Closed
There are only three types of fries on Hot Doug’s menu, but all can be considered some of the best served in Chicago. The renowned duck fat fries are only served on Fridays and Saturdays, so prepare to wait in line. Or, choose to eat your freshly cut french fries plain or topped off with some free condiments. Raw onions, caramelized onions, ketchup, spicy giardiniera (a tangy hot pepper topping) and four types of mustard are just some of the condiments you can add for flavor. Cheese fries are the third type served, and can be topped with chili for an additional 50 cents to make scrumptious chili cheese fries. To taste some of the best fries in Chicago you will need cash, the only form of currency accepted at Hot Doug’s.
4126 W Montrose Ave
Chicago, IL 60641
Price: $1.89 to $7.92
Some may call this Chicago establishment Susie’s Drive-In while others may call it Susie’s Drive-Thru. Either way, people drive to Susie’s for the french fries. Susie’s is known for its different types of cheese fries, which are all served in an edible bowl similar to a taco shell. At this Chicago diner you can top cheese fries off with chili, gyros, chicken, bacon, beefsteak and more. It also offers cheese ball cheese fries and regular cheese fries. If you are a vegetarian looking for the best fries in Chicago, check out Susie’s because all fries are cooked in pure vegetable oil. No plastic will be accepted, because this is a cash-only restaurant.
Red Hot Ranch
2072 N Western Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
Hours: Sun to Thurs – 10:30 a.m. to 4 a.m., Fri to Sat – 10:30 a.m. to 5 a.m.
The menu is small, but the quality is excellent at this late-night Chicago diner. Hand-cut french fries may be your only option for a side dish, but they are cooked to order to ensure crispiness. If you’re also ordering a hot dog, Red Hot Ranch puts the french fries directly on top. Condiments are limited to the basics, but when eating some of the best french fries in Chicago, you will be happy to enjoy the fresh taste without drowning them in sauce.
BIG & little’s
860 N Orleans St.
Chicago, IL 60610
Price: $2 -$14
Hours: Mon to Fri – 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sat – 12 p.m. to 9 p.m., Sun – Closed
If looking for some greasy yet delicious diner food, then BIG & little’s is a Chicago restaurant you will want to try. Pair the well-known tacos with a side of truffle, sweet potato or regular french fries. For an extra $3.75, you can dip any of the fries in a side of truffle duck fat Au Jus. Even “The Next Food Network Star” season two winner Guy Fieri thinks this diner serves up some of the best french fries in Chicago. Fieri tried, loved and featured the foie gras and fries on his television show “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives.” This Chicago establishment is cash-only, but has an ATM.
DMK Burger Bar
2954 N Sheffield Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
Hours: Mon to Wed – 11 a.m. to 12 a.m., Thurs to Sun – 11:30 a.m. to 12 a.m.
If you are searching for more than the average french fry, search no more, because the menu at this DMK Burger Bar has five scrumptious types of fries. The sea salt and black pepper fries come with the house ketchup, the sweet potato fries come with lemon Tabasco aioli and the parmesan fries come with a truffle cream. If those do not tickle your fancy, try the Wisconsin cheddar and scallion fries or the Amish blue and smoked bacon fries. They are all created from hand-cut russet potatoes, so you will always be getting a crisp and fresh side dish. If you happen to be in the service industry, go on a Sunday night to try some of the best french fries in Chicago at half the price.
Related: Six of Chicago’s Best Burgers
Natalie Kuchik is a longtime freelance writer living in Chicago. She enjoys interviewing bands, reviewing concerts, and writing about all things entertainment related. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.