In-N-Out Animal Style Fries – CopyKat Recipes


Indulge in the ultimate comfort food with In-N-Out Animal Style Fries. Perfectly crispy French fries are topped with melted cheese, caramelized onions, and homemade spread sauce, a creamy, tangy, and slightly spicy concoction. These tasty fries are ideal for a fun family dinner, a game night snack, or when you’re craving something deliciously indulgent.

Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries in a serving basket.Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries in a serving basket.

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What makes In-N-Out Animal Style Fries so good 

Those who haven’t spent much time on the West Coast are probably wondering “What are Animal Fries?”. These off-menu fries are the biggest open secret at In-N-Out Burger and one of the chain’s most popular sellers.

Customers love the combination of cheddar cheese, caramelized onions, and plenty of the restaurant’s famous Spread Sauce ladled over extra-crispy fries. Sure, eating these French fries may be a bit on the messy side, but it’s totally worth it! 

Why you should try this In N Out Animal Fries recipe

While In-N-Outs may be ubiquitous in some areas of the country, you simply can’t find them in others. So, if you happen to live in one of the places where the chain isn’t, this In and Out Fries Animal Style copycat recipe can help you get your fix.

Not a fan of fries? That’s fine, but you will still want to check out how to make the famous Spread Sauce that you can use to add zip to lots of other foods. 

In-N-Out’s Animal Style Fries ingredients

For the spread sauce, you’ll need:

  • Mayonnaise
  • Ketchup
  • Sweet pickle relish
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt

For the caramelized onions, you’ll need:

  • Olive oil
  • Brown sugar
  • Yellow onion, chopped

For preparing, assembling, and serving In and Out fries Animal Style, you’ll need:

  • Frozen French fries
  • Mild Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • Caramelized onions
  • Spread sauce
Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries ingredients in bowls.Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries ingredients in bowls.

Ingredient notes

Baking frozen store-bought straight-cut fries is the easiest way to prepare the French fries for this recipe, but you can also fry them in oil for a more authentic flavor. Fresh homemade fries made with russet potatoes will make this recipe taste extra delicious. Or, you can even skip French fries altogether and use tater tots instead!

Try replacing the shredded Cheddar cheese with cheese sauce. Watch this video to learn how to make a quick and creamy cheese sauce. You can also substitute it with American cheese slices.

How to make In and Out Animal Style Fries at home

To prepare the Spread Sauce:

  1. In a small mixing bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, ketchup, sweet pickle relish, apple cider vinegar, salt, and freshly ground black pepper.
  2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the flavors meld. 

To caramelize the onions:

  1. Place a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. While the skillet is heating up, dice the yellow onion into small pieces. Reserve for later.
  3. Pour the olive oil into the hot skillet and swirl it around before adding the diced yellow onions. 
  4. Stir the onions to coat them with the olive oil, and then add the brown sugar. Stir well until the brown sugar begins to melt. 
  5. Reduce the heat to low, and slowly caramelize the onions. Stir frequently to prevent burning. The brown sugar will speed up the process but don’t rush it. You don’t want burnt onions. 
Collage of making animal sauce and caramelized onions.Collage of making animal sauce and caramelized onions.

To assemble In and Out Animal Style Fries:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  2. Cook the frozen fries according to the package instructions.
  3. Spread the cooked fries on a baking tray and sprinkle the cheddar cheese over them. Heat the fries in the oven until the cheese melts, about 5 minutes. 
  4. Top with the caramelized onions and spread sauce. 
  5. Serve hot. 
Collage of baking fries and topping them with cheese, caramelized onions, and animal suace.Collage of baking fries and topping them with cheese, caramelized onions, and animal suace.

What to serve In-N-Out Animal Style Fries with

A plate of Animal Fries is a great snack on its own, but you can pair it with many other fast-casual dishes to make a meal. Here are a few suggestions to try: 

  • Smashburger’s Buffalo Burger. This burger is a bit spicy and plenty funky from the hot sauce and blue cheese crumbles. A Smashburger Buffalo Burger may be a little wilder than even Animal Fries. 
  • Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese Sandwich. Do you like cheesy jalapeno poppers? A jalapeno popper grilled cheese sandwich gives you all the taste of the classic appetizer in sandwich form. Vegetarians can leave off the bacon and still enjoy an incredibly delectable meat-free meal. 
  • Whataburger Chicken Strips. Looking for something other than a sandwich? These Whataburger Chicken Strips are what you are after. The real buttermilk batter gives these chicken tenders an authentic Southern fried chicken taste. 
Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries on parchment paper in a serving basket.Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries on parchment paper in a serving basket.

How to store extra spread sauce 

The special sauce is great with fries, but you can use it on burgers, sandwiches, and as a salad dressing. If you end up with more sauce than you need, put it in an airtight container in the fridge. 

How long does the spread sauce last?

The Spread Sauce will stay fresh in the refrigerator for four or five days. 

Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries on parchment paper.Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries on parchment paper.

Love fries? Try these recipes!

Favorite fast food side dish recipes

Check out more of my easy side dish recipes and the best copycat fast food recipes on CopyKat!

Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries in a serving basket.Copycat In-N-Out animal style fries in a serving basket.

In-N-Out Animal Style Fries

Crispy French fries topped with melted cheese, caramelized onions, and tangy spread sauce are incredibly delicious.

Add to Collection

Course: Side Dish

Cuisine: American

Keyword: In-N-Out Recipes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Servings: 4

Calories: 755kcal



  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Caramelized Onions

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped


  • 1 32-ounce bag frozen straight-cut French fries
  • 2 cups shredded mild cheddar cheese


  • Place mayonnaise, ketchup, relish, vinegar, salt and pepper in a small bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.

  • In a frying pan, heat olive oil and brown sugar over medium heat.

  • Add onion and cook for 10-12 minutes until caramelized, stirring frequently.

  • Place fries on a baking sheet in a single layer and cook according to package instructions. Make sure not to overcook them.

  • Remove fries from the oven and top with cheese.

  • Return the fries to the oven and cook for another 5-7 minutes or until the cheese has melted and fries are starting to brown.

  • Top the cheese fries with caramelized onions and animal sauce.


Calories: 755kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 68g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 26g | Monounsaturated Fat: 19g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 80mg | Sodium: 1443mg | Potassium: 208mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 901IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 421mg | Iron: 1mg

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