Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Japanese Seven Spice

Baked Sweet Potato fries with Japanese Seven Spice by

When the Shogun planted the sweet potato in his private garden in 1735, the vegetable officially became rooted in Japanese cuisine.

From sweet potato pastries to roasted sweet potatoes (yaki-imo) sold by street vendors.  From sweet potato tempura to a candied sweet potato dish called daigaku imo - a recipe recently featured by our friend, Nami Chen, of Just One Cookbook.

With its distinctive orange flesh, and naturally sweet flavor, it’s no surprise that the sweet potato is packed with nutrients like Vitamin A and beta carotene.  And no surprise why this tasty veggie quickly spread from its native place in South and Central America, to across the world into Japanese gardens and fields, dinner tables and even distilleries.

Yes, sweet potatoes are used to produce a strong Japanese liquor called imojōchū.  We won’t be sharing that bootlegging recipe today, but we are featuring a simple Japanese-inspired sweet potato recipe that might just go well with the drink…

Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Japanese Seven Spice (and a sprinkling of Sichuan Pepper Sea Salt).

Japanese Seven Spice seasoning and Sichuan Pepper Sea Salt available at

Leave the skin on, and slice the sweet potatoes into your preferred size.  Coat with a bit of oil and then bake in the oven until crisp.

When they’re done, give these Baked Sweet Potato Fries a dash of our versatile Japanese Seven Spice (Shichimi Togarashi).  The spicy, citrusy and nutty flavors of the seven spice balances the sweetness of the potatoes.  And for an extra punch, season them lightly with Sichuan Pepper Sea Salt.

Sweet Potato Fries with Japanese Seven Spice recipe by

buy japanese seven spice, korean chili flakes and spicy korean chili seasoning available at season with spice asian spice shop

Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Japanese Seven Spice

Sweet potatoes – sliced into 1/2 - 3/4 inch thick pieces (cut off any skinny ends to prevent burning)
Vegetable oil or light olive oil
Generous sprinkles of Season with Spice’s Japanese Seven Spice (Shichimi Togarashi)
Season with Spice’s Sichuan Pepper Sea Salt, to taste (optional, but highly recommended)

1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
2. Lightly coat the sweet potato pieces with oil. To prevent sticking, mix well to make sure all pieces are evenly coated with oil.
3. Spread the sweet potatoes out in a single layer on a baking sheet. Do not overcrowd.
4. Bake in the oven for a total of 25-30 minutes. After the first 15 minutes, remove from the oven and turn over all the sweet potato pieces. Then bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until they are nicely crisp and golden. Every oven is different, so do keep a close watch on them.
5. Remove from oven, and sprinkle generously with Japanese Seven Spice and season lightly with Sichuan Pepper Sea Salt.

- For a crispier sweet potato fry, be sure to dry the sweet potatoes well after cleaning.