Ask Calorie Ken: I'm a French Fry Pig, Part 3

Get your French Fry fix without looking like a spud.

By , Columnist

Pam No-Fry Potatoes

Dear Calorie Ken,

I LOVE French fries, but they don't love me! How can I get my French fry fix without looking like a spud myself?

French Fry Pig

Previously, Calorie Ken took a magnifying glass to the father of fast food french fries, McDonald's, and reminded you that their marketing message is "feel good about our food," not, "our food is good for you." Then he talked about how size matters. For the last of this three-part french fry fandango, Calorie Ken compares.

French Fries, Part 3 of 3: Dare to Compare

Calorie King is a great online nutrition resource, and, when you are on the go, or Internet-deprived, they have a nice little pocket edition.

Calorie King online has a neat compare feature. Pick a food - we'll start with the common denominator of this series, a large order of McDonald's french fries. Search on McDonald's french fries, and you'll get a Nutrition Facts label like the one on all packaged foods. But look closer. Look at the bottom. It has a "compare" feature.

Click on "Compare," and then pick another food. For our example, use Ore Ida Golden Crinkle Fries. Make sure you are comparing ounce for ounce. A large serving of McDonald's fries is 5.4 ounces or 500 calories.

Pig, Freedom Fries were a Patriot Act illusion of choice. French Fry Freedom is about real choices. We know that a large size of McDonald's french fries is 5.4 oz and 500 calories. By comparison, 5.4 oz of Ore Ida Golden Crinkle fries is 219 calories, and 5.4 oz of Pam No Fry Potatoes is 93 calories.

93 calories for homemade baked french fries. NINETY THREE! Pig, you can pig out on home-made oven baked fries!

But, you are probably asking, "Who wants baked french fries?" Baked french FRIES? That's a contradiction of terms. Pig, Calorie Ken thinks you deserve a break today, and encourages you to have it your way and make your obsession with fries a healthy one. Own your obsession by making your own fries your own way. Slice 'em to the size of your liking. Season 'em to your taste. Peel your potatoes, or, keep it simple and enjoy extra fiber by leaving the skins on. You want greasy fingers? Spray 'em with Pam until they shine and slip out of your fingers when you pick 'em up.

We've dared to compare, and the clear winner is the home-made No-Fry option. Choose this, and you'll save money, too. A large order of fast food fries is around $2.50, and the same amount you make yourself will cost less than a dollar. Pig, make your body happy, your wallet happy, and your taste buds happy all at the same time!


Swanky reader, Calorie Ken wants to hear from you!  Post your comments below, and send your questions to  And, tell others!  Post on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn...everywhere, and share with your e-mail distribution lists. We hope to make Calorie Ken the Dear Abby of good health and nutrition, and we need your help.  Cheers! 

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For two years, Ken Brooks (Calorie Ken) was a volunteer in the Tufts University CALERIE Study. He is now a nutrition evangelist. Send your nutrition, weight management, general health and exercise questions to

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