Traditional Poutine: Fries, Gravy, Cheese Curds, Oh My!

homemade real food poutine

Poutine is quite simple: fries, brown gravy, and cheese curds.  Simply delicious!  Poutine is comfort at it’s best, full of satisfying starches from the potatoes, a salty edge from the cheese curds, and velvety homemade gravy full of naturally occurring gelatin.

I think of poutine as one of those dishes that is a cross between bar food and an elegantly elevated dish.  But no matter how you classify it, it is full of nourishing fats if you use the best ingredients possible: grassfed cheese curds, homemade gravy with beef bone broth, and organic potatoes fried in coconut oil.

Originally from Quebec, this Canadian fast food dish has seen a widespread popularity the last several years.  I personally cannot wait to find a local dive that serves it with foie gras, or with other gourmet additions.  But before you get too fancy, try it the traditional way.  It is more than enough all on it’s own!

The gravy that I made was a little different than a traditional brown gravy, mostly because I had some fresh thyme, and I think thyme and gravy are soul mates.  So you can add in any fresh herbs that you have growing in your garden, or that look particularly gorgeous at the farmer’s market.

Equipment Needed:

Note: Warm fries, plus hot gravy and cold cheese curds makes this dish really sing.  You want to serve immediately so that the heat from the gravy warms the cheese curds ever so slightly, but not to the point of melting.

Real Food Poutine

2 large white or gold potatoes, cut into large sticks
2 cups coconut oil (find coconut oil here)
sea salt to taste (find unrefined sea salt here)

2 tablespoons butter (find grass-fed butter here)
2 tablespoons whole grain flour (find whole grains here, sprouted flour here, how to make here)
2 cups beef broth (how to make beef stock here)
sprig of thyme (optional)
sea salt and pepper to taste (find unrefined sea salt and organic peppercorns here)
1 tablespoon arrowroot powder (find arrowroot powder here) (optional)

1/2 cup cheese curds (find grass-fed dairy here)

  1. Line a jelly roll pan with paper towels, and set aside.  
  2. Make the fries: Heat the coconut oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat until hot enough to brown a small piece of potato without spitting oil out of the pan (about 300 degrees).
  3. Fry the potatoes in batches, until golden brown, letting them cool on the paper-towel-lined jelly roll sheet until all the potatoes have been fried one time.  Then, fry the potatoes in batches one more time, until all the potatoes have been fried twice.  (This ensures that they are completely cooked through, and are nice and crispy!)
  4. Salt the fries to taste, and keep warm by covering with another paper towel.
  5. In the meantime, make the gravy: melt the butter in a saucepan over medium high heat.  Add the flour and stir together with a wooden spoon and cook until fragrant, about 5 minutes.  Gradually pour in beef stock, whisking constantly until completely incorporated.  Add the spring of thyme and bring to a simmer.
  6. Simmer the gravy until reduced and thickened, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.  If the gravy doesn’t thicken up enough, use the arrowroot powder, and whisk in for a few minutes while the gravy continues to simmer.  When reached desired thickness (when it coats the back of the wooden spoon), remove the sprig of thyme and discard.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Make the poutine: Pile the fries onto a plate.  Sprinkle with half the cheese curds.  Ladle gravy over the fries and cheese curds, and then sprinkle with the remaining cheese curds.  Serve immediately!
PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.


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  1. How do you make cheese curds?

  2. Never mind…my farmer had CHEESE CURDS at the market today! I told her what I’d planned and she had a suggestion for a slightly different “take” on poutine! Can’t wait to try it!!

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