AP Photo/Burger King, Noel Barnhurst
Earlier this week, Burger King—the corporation, not that guy in the creepy plastic mask from their commercials—unveiled a new lower-fat French fry. Lower-fat, not low-fat. Just pointing that out.
"Satisfries" are crinkle-cut fries coated in a thin layer of batter that absorbs less oil, B.K. says. A small serving contain 270 calories and 11 grams of fat, versus the regular fries' 340 calories and 15 grams of fat. They also cost about 30 cents more than regular fries.
Really: If you're pairing them with a Whopper, why bother?
"Satisfries" also contain 40 percent less fat and 30 percent fewer calories than McDonald's fries, "which are widely considered [be] the fast-food industry's most popular French fries." But does Micky D's also have the best French fries?
We weighed the pros and cons of the fries offered by some of the most popular fast food chains and now present them in our definitive, ranked list of the best and worst. Because science.
Tater tots are basically the same thing as fries, just presented differently. But c'mon—they're tots. That's a whole different potato ballpark. So we're giving Sonic the most honorable of mention. Their tots are bomb.
10. In N Out
If you read our ranking of fast food chains, as a whole, then you know In N Out did pretty well. Top 5, to be exact. But that's mostly going off the burgers. Their fries are cut in the restaurant, which would be a good thing if they weren't always cut into little nubs. Seriously, anyone else get like three real fries and then a bunch of little bits every single time they eat at In N Out?
People will argue that you can get the fries "animal style," but at that point you're basically just eating a plate of cheese. Pro tip: If you find yourself at the In N Out counter, ask for them well done.
9. Carl's Jr.
Carl's Jr. gets bonus points for the variety of fries you can pick from—fancy options like buffalo blue cheese crosscut fries and chili cheese fries, even fried zucchini!—but the quantity doesn't exactly translate to quality. Props to them for offering sweet potato fries though.
We admit we have a weak spot for waffle fries.
Burger King has made a big deal about how their fries are supposedly better than McDonald's, but the simple truth is they're not. B.K. fries are fine if you need something to pair with a burger, but they're forgettable. There's nothing special to them. They're the bare minimum of French fries.
Wendy's ditched their old French fry recipe to hop on the naturally cut bandwagon and, in our opinion, adding sea salt was an upgrade. The only problem with Wendy's new fries is the same problem they had with their old fries: They're often too crispy.
That said, dipping fries into a Frosty is heaven.
5. Five Guys
Five Guys fries aren't for everyone. If you're craving a more tradition fast food French fry, go elsewhere. These are like the gourmet fries of the fast food world. They're fancy. Five Guys cuts them fresh, then fries them in peanut oil. They're a big, greasy mess—we meant fancy for a fast food chain—and they are amazing.
In the ultimate sign that life is maybe fairer than you think, the West Coast has In N Out, but the Midwest gets Steak ‘n Shake. You might disqualify it from the fast food race (it's more of a diner setup), but we're including it if only because they have the thinnest fries of the bunch. Which we mean as a compliment. They're traditional, perfect for pairing with a good, old-fashioned hamburger.
3. Jack in the Box
Jack in the Box delivers when it comes to side options. They have bacon cheddar potato wedges and stuffed jalapenos and regular fries, sure, but their crème de la crème is their seasoned curly fries. If you stop by Jack in the Box at 3 a.m. (the prime time for Jack), they're the best curly fries you've ever eaten.
They're classic! Salty, crunchy, classic. But they're also #2.
Jack in the Box may have good curly fries, but Arby's has great curly fries. The best, even. They are seasoned to perfection. They're the curliest of curly fries. They're always crispy, but not too crispy, and have that yummy soft spot in the middle. And Arby's dipping sauce puts McDonald's ketchup packets to shame.
With all that said: Remember, when in doubt, always choose onion rings.