Rustic 5-Spice Potato Chips


asian spiced potato chips

It’s easier than you might think to make potato chips at home. These particular chips are skin-on, thicker than usual, asian-spiced crunchy bliss. And? They take about 10 minutes to make.

The short version of this recipe goes like this: Slice. Fry. Sprinkle. Inhale. Read on for detailed instructions.

single homemade potato chip

You only need a one or two potatoes to serve four people as a side. I like to dust my chips with hand-mixed Asian 5-Spice salt. They make a totally great accompaniment to burgers—or a pan-roasted sirloin.

How thick should you cut your potato chips?

I like them a little bit thicker than a standard potato chip. I also like to leave the skin on the potato. If you prefer, though, peel the potatoes before slicing.

hand cut potato chip

I’m really good with a knife, and some of mine still came out uneven. You want them to be the same thickness so they all cook evenly.

potato and cleaver

Generally speaking, I like to cut the potatoes so that they’re a little on the thicker side, but they’re still thin enough to see through. Too thick = floppy chips.

transluscent potato slice

All that said, I’d recommend using a mandoline to cut these. Or a food processor fitted with a thin slicing disk. Trust me. It will save you time and hassle.

How to buy a mandoline

If you haven’t seen one before, a mandoline is a hand-operated machine that you use to uniformly and precisely slice firm foods (fruits, veggies, etc.).

The blade is housed in the body of the mandoline, and you slide the food over it to make your cuts. You can adjust the height of the blade to change the thickness of the slices.

Mandolines usually fold up, and come with a nifty little guard to hold the food so you don’t slice your fingertips off. (I’ve done that before. Use the guard. It’s not worth the risk.) For more info on how they work, check out this in-depth description of the different parts.

Now, a high-quality French mandoline is a beautiful—but pricey—thing. I’m talking about one of these babies, the Bron Original Stainless Steel Mandoline, which will run you just under $200.

Bron mandoline

There are a bunch of in-between models, too.

If you don’t want to spend a ton of money, you can pick up a Japanese beniriner for about $20.

It’s missing some of the bells and whistles of the French model above (folding legs, etc.), but it delivers where it counts—i.e. it’s compact and sharp. It accomplishes most of the basic cuts for a lot less money.

I’ve had one of these for years. I picked it up in Boston’s Chinatown, and it’s been indespensible to me. I highly recommend it.

Alrighty. To the hot oil!

Rustic 5-Spice Potato Chips

1-2 large russet potatoes
canola oil for frying
1 tsp. five-spice powder
1 tsp. kosher salt

Serves 2-4 as a snack

Slice and rinse the potatoes

Grab your potato(es). Scrub them. Peel them if you like.

unpeeled russet potato

Slice them into thin rounds.

If you have the time, soak them in ice cold water for about an hour to leach out some of the starch. (Less starch = crispier chip.)

If you don’t, put them in a colander or strainer and give them a good, long rinse under cold, running water.

pile of potato slices

Shake them around under the water to get them good and wet.

rinse potato slices under cold water

Pat them dry with paper towels. You want to get as much water off them as possible. (Water splatters when it hits hot oil, and nobody likes a grease burn.)

thinly sliced potato

Make the Five-Spice Salt

Do this before you make the chips. You’ll want to season the chips when they’re hot out of the oil—which is when the seasoning will stick best.

Put the salt and five spice powder in a small bowl. Whisk together to combine until relatively uniform. Set aside.

five spice powder and salt

Fry the potato chips

Line a baking sheet with a few paper towels. Set a rack on top. Set it aside.

Put about 2 inches of oil in a heavy-bottomed pot. Set it on the stove over high heat. Heat the oil to about 380 degrees, if you have a candy thermometer handy.

pour the oil into a large pot

If you don’t, heat the oil until the surface shimmers, then start testing it. Dip (carefully!) the edge of a potato slice into the hot oil. If bubbles start to form furiously and immediately, the oil is hot enough to fry. If not, wait a minute or two, then test again.

test how hot the oil is

When your oil is hot enough, add a handful of potato slices to the pot.

fry the potato chips in batches

Stir them around with a skimmer or slotted spoon, so they fry on both sides.

turn the potato chips in the oil

Pull them out of the oil with your skimmer or slotted spoon when they’re light brown and crisp. This should take about 2 minutes, depending on how thick your chips are.

remove the potato chips from the oil with a spider

Season the potato chips

Transfer the hot chips to your prepared rack. Sprinkle with five-spice salt to taste.

drain the potato chips on a rack

Repeat with the rest of the potato slices until you’ve fried them all.

sprinkle the potato chips with salt when hot


bowl of handmade potato chips

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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie serves as an Associate Creative Director at PARTNERS+simons, a boutique ad agency in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.


  1. Oh, they look delicious! My husband cooks very little but, this is one of the best that he makes. I will have to tell him about adding the five-spice to it! Great photos! Thanks!

  2. Oh, I love the idea of 5-spice salted chips! Usually I think of 5-spice in connection with sweets for some reason, so this recipe is an unexpected surprise. Genius! I’m with you in the camp of “leave the peels on.” Rustic, texture, yum. Have a great weekend!

  3. I just made these today and they’re wildly delicious! So crunchy! I did about half the batch with the 5-spice salt and then did the rest with either garlic or coarse sea salt. Thanks so much for the inspiration! 🙂 Lauriebot

  4. Hey Jessie-
    Thanks for all the great recipes…just starting to cook and am really enjoying my new hobby. Making your duck tonight, and was wondering, can I fry my potato chips in canola oil with my saved duck fat from tonight? I haven’t done much frying apart from shrimp, and wanted to know what your thoughts are on frying in duck fat.

    • Hmm, gosh. OK, it probably depends on how much fat you get off the duck. If you have enough to do them 100% in duck fat, go for it, they’ll be delicious. If you don’t get enough, you’d have to mix the fat with another oil. which might screw you up.

      Duck fat has a smoke point (i.e. when the oil literally starts to burn and smoke) of 375 degrees. Canola oil has a smoke point of 400 degrees. In theory, you could mix them, but you’d have to keep the temp low enough that the duck fat doesn’t burn–which means that your chips might absorb more of the canola oil. You’d probably be safe if you fried at 360 or so, just know that your chips might be a little heavier…

      Let me know if that makes sense. Honestly, I’d save the duck fat and use it to make hash browns, or something like that. 😀 Let me know what you do!

      Good luck! And congrats on starting to cook! It’s totally so happymaking! 😀


  5. Please boil slightly the pealed potatoes ….it works superb to drain off the starch than to leave in cold water. N guarentees that u will be amazed as ur chips will not stick to one another while frying…