“Papas Locas” means “crazy potatoes” in English and is a famous Mexican street food dish loved for its crispy fried potatoes, tasty toppings, and zesty sauces. This dish is not just yummy but also looks fantastic because of its colorful toppings.

To make it, start with crispy fried potatoes that are crunchy outside and soft inside. Then, add savory ingredients like black beans, chorizo or tofu, cheese, cilantro, red onion, and jalapeno peppers to give it a mix of flavors, textures, and colors. What makes Papas Locas unique is the tangy sauces, sour cream, and salsa, adding a creamy and spicy touch.

Papas Locas is flexible and can be a side dish, main course, or an appetizer at parties. With all the topping choices, you can make it just the way you like.

This Mexican gem reflects a love for bold flavors and colors. Whether you’re a potato fan or trying something new, Papas Locas is worth a taste. So, grab a plate and enjoy this delightful and exciting dish.

The Origins and Background of the Recipe

Papas Locas is thought to have its roots in the northern Mexican state of Sinaloa, where it goes by the name “Papas a la Francesa Locas” or “Crazy French Fries.” This dish is believed to have drawn inspiration from French fries, which found their way to Mexico thanks to French immigrants arriving in the late 19th century.

As time passed, Papas Locas evolved to incorporate a diverse array of toppings and sauces, resulting in the delicious version we cherish today. Its popularity has soared, especially in Mexico City, where it’s frequently sold by street vendors and at food markets.

Although the precise origins of Papas Locas remain a bit mysterious, it’s undeniably a significant part of Mexican cuisine and culture. This dish epitomizes the creativity, daring spirit, and mouthwatering flavors that Mexico is celebrated for.

How To Make Papas Locas


  • 4-5 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and sliced into slender wedges.
  • 2 tablespoons of cornstarch
  • Salt
  • Sizzling hot cooking oil, your trusty steed for frying.
  • 1/2 cup of cooked black beans, adding depth and richness.
  • 1/2 cup of your choice: chorizo for the bold, or tofu for the adventurous.
  • 1/2 cup of crumbled queso fresco, or perhaps grated cheddar cheese for the cheese lovers.
  • 1/4 cup of vibrant cilantro, offering a burst of freshness.
  • 1/4 cup of diced red onion, adding a playful crunch.
  • 1/4 cup of chopped fresh jalapeno peppers, ready to spice things up.
  • 1/4 cup of velvety sour cream, for a creamy twist.
  • 1/4 cup of salsa, to bring the zest and zing


  1. Start by giving your potato slices a refreshing cold-water bath, followed by a gentle pat-dry with paper towels.
  2. In a roomy bowl, blend the cornstarch with the salt, like an artist mixing colors on a palette.
  3. Toss the potato wedges into this seasoned mix, ensuring an even coating – it’s like dressing them in a crunchy, golden coat!
  4. Heat your cooking oil in a deep fryer or sturdy pan over medium-high heat. This is where the magic begins.
  5. Fry those seasoned potato wedges in batches until they emerge as golden brown, crispy treasures, ready to tantalize your senses.
  6. After their crispy journey, let them rest on a plate lined with paper towels and add a dash more of that salt for perfection.
  7. Now, it’s time for the grand reveal! Arrange those crispy wonders on a serving platter, as if setting the stage for a culinary masterpiece.
  8. Sprinkle your canvas with black beans, whether chorizo for the bold or tofu for the adventurous – the choice is yours.
  9. Crown your creation with the crumbled queso fresco or a shower of grated cheddar cheese, creating a luscious, cheesy tapestry.
  10. Bring in the vibrant cilantro, the zesty red onion, and the fiery jalapeno peppers to add a symphony of color and taste.
  11. Now, for the finishing touches – a gentle drizzle of silky sour cream and a generous pour of zesty salsa.
  12. The masterpiece is complete. Serve immediately and savor your journey through the flavorful wonderland that is Papas Locas!

Ingredient Substitution Options

  • Potatoes: While the classic choice is starchy potatoes like Russet or Yukon Gold, you can experiment with sweet potatoes for a different flavor and a slightly healthier twist.
  • Cornstarch: If you prefer a gluten-free option or don’t have cornstarch, you can use potato starch or rice flour as a substitute for coating the potatoes.
  • Salt: Use a sea salt or kosher salt for seasoning. You can also try flavored salts like garlic salt or chili salt to add extra depth to the flavor.
  • Oil for Frying: Any high-heat cooking oil can be used, such as vegetable oil, canola oil, peanut oil, or even coconut oil for a unique flavor.
  • Black Beans: If you’re not a fan of black beans, you can substitute pinto beans or kidney beans, or even use refried beans for a creamier texture.
  • Cilantro: If cilantro isn’t your favorite herb, you can use fresh parsley or green onions for a milder flavor.
  • Jalapeno Peppers: To control the level of spiciness, you can choose milder peppers like bell peppers, or go for hotter varieties like serrano or habanero if you like the heat.
  • Sour Cream: If you’re looking for a dairy-free option, try coconut yogurt, almond yogurt, or cashew-based sour cream as a substitute.

Remember that ingredient substitutions may alter the taste and texture of your Papas Locas, but it can also lead to exciting new flavor combinations. Feel free to mix and match according to your preferences and dietary needs.


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