Authentic Canadian Poutine Recipe

Authentic Canadian Poutine Recipe - fried fries, poutine gravy and white cheddar cheese curds

Looking for an authentic Canadian Poutine recipe? This is it, along with explaining the whole Canadian poutine thing :)

what kind of a Canadian food blogger would I be if I didn’t have a recipe for Poutine on this blog? Afterall, isn’t the wonderful concoction of fries, gravy and cheese curds one of the most quintessential Canadian dishes? So if you already know how great this dish is and are just looking for a great, authentic poutine recipe to make at home, skip on down to the recipe. I’ve got you covered!

If you can’t get cheese curds, the closest possible substitution if you want the poutine experience, would be torn chunks (not shredded!) of a full-fat mozzarella cheese (not fresh mozzarella – use the kind you’d put on top of pizza). You want it in chunks so it doesn’t melt completely. Don’t be skimpy. Some cheese curds are the size of my baby finger. That’s part of the poutine experience – the chunks of warm, softened cheese and shredded just won’t cut it because it melts completely and mixes in with the gravy. (Cheddar is not the best substitute. Even though cheese curds are technically cheddar they don’t taste like it. The taste is much more mozzarella-like – soft, pliable, subtle taste, squeaky :)

Finally, a word about the gravy. If you’ve eaten a lot of poutine, you’ve probably experienced a wide range of gravy tastes. Some are clearly chicken, some are dark and beefy. I think the perfect one is somewhere in between. I looked to French-Canadian chef Ricardo for a reliable and authentic recipe. Let’s face it, the French-Canadians know poutine! His gravy is 2/3 beef stock and 1/3 chicken stock, for a lightened up beef gravy. I think it’s perfect.

Not sure how to pronounce Poutine? If you are an English speaking Canadian, you’ll almost certainly pronounce it “poo-teen” (emphasis on the last syllable). French Canadians might suggest that it should be pronounced as “poo-tin” (again, with the emphasis on the last syllable). I say, if you find yourself in Quebec, you could try the latter – pretty much anywhere else in Canada and elsewhere, the former will serve you well.

Authentic Canadian Poutine Recipe - fried fries, poutine gravy and white cheddar cheese curds Yes, I clearly missed the memo about healthier food after the New Year. But that said, stay tuned … I’m going to post a “Poutine Light(er)” recipe tomorrow, that uses oven-baked fries and a lighter hand with the cheese. Still not healthy exactly, but at least heading in that direction :)


The Recipe

Authentic Canadian Poutine recipe

Authentic Canadian Poutine Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Authentic Canadian Poutine featuring deep-fried fries, poutine gravy and white cheddar cheese curds all tossed together. Do be careful with deep frying. A proper deep fryer is recommended.
Author:
Recipe type: Main Course
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Poutine Gravy:
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) water
  • 6 Tbsp. (90 ml) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 20 oz. (568 ml) beef broth
  • 10 oz. (284 ml) chicken broth
  • Pepper, to taste

  • For Deep Fried Fries:
  • 2 lbs. Russet potatoes (3-4 medium potatoes)
  • Peanut or other frying oil

  • Toppings:
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups white cheddar cheese curds (for authentic poutine. Torn chunks of mozzarella cheese would be the closest substitutation)
Instructions
  1. Prepare the gravy: In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in the water and set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Add the flour and cook, stirring regularly, for about 5 minutes, until the mixture turns golden brown. Add the garlic and cook for a further 30 seconds.
  3. Add the beef and chicken broth and bring to a boil, stirring with a whisk. Stir in the cornstarch and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Season with pepper. Taste and add additional salt, if necessary, to taste. Make ahead and re-warm or keep warm until your fries are ready.
  4. For Deep-Fried Fries: Prepare your potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch thick sticks. Place into a large bowl and cover completely with cold water. Allow to stand at least one hour or several hours. When ready to cook, heat your oil in your deep fryer or large, wide, heavy cooking pot to 300° F.
  5. Remove the potatoes from the water and place onto a sheet of paper towel. Blot to remove as much excess moisture as possible.
  6. Add your fries to the 300° F. oil and cook for 5-8 minutes, just until potatoes are starting to cook but are not yet browned. Remove potatoes from oil and scatter on a wire rack. Increase oil temperature to 375° F. Once oil is heated to that temperature, return the potatoes to the fryer and cook until potatoes are golden brown. Remove to a paper towel-lined bowl.
  7. To Prepare Poutine: Add your fried or baked fries to a large, clean bowl. Season lightly with salt while still warm. Add a ladle of hot poutine gravy to the bowl and using tongs, toss the fries in the gravy. Add more gravy, as needed to mostly coat the fries.
  8. Add the cheese curds and toss with the hot fries and gravy. Serve with freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately.
 

Credits: Poutine Gravy adapted from Ricardo.



Yummly


63 Comments

  • I am definitely one of those Canadian bloggers who’s missing a poutine recipe and now I don’t need one!! I am SO EXCITED to try this at home!! xx

  • The sight of these make my mouth water!

  • I’ve never had the chance to try poutine, but it looks like the ultimate comfort food!

  • I’m such a sucker for poutine and this looks completely irresistible!

  • I’m pretty sure it’s way to early in the morning to be craving poutine, but now that’s exactly what I’m craving!!

    Thanks a lot. Hmph.

    Better start rummaging through the kitchen… :P

  • Sophie says:

    Gracious, I love poutine! It is certainly a rarity in restaurants around here, but whenever I see some I pounce on it and order a full portion. This is not always a great idea as I have had nearly-inedibly salty to terribly bland poutine, or with silly additions such as bell peppers, or bacon (really? Can’t we leave bacon out of it once in a while?). This is a wonderful way to make it RIGHT! I agree that the gravy should be between chicken and dark beef. Perfection :) Thanks for a great recipe!

    • Jennifer M says:

      Thanks Sophie and enjoy! We don’t get as many really bad poutine offerings in Canada, because they’d never get away with it ;) The gravy always seems to be what makes or breaks a poutine.

      There are a lot of “gourmet” poutines here, as well, usually with meat on top (pulled pork, brisket, chili). I’m a purist though. I always order it straight up :)

  • I actually had no idea what Poutine was until I read your post today (makes me sound so worldly right? :p) but it looks crazy good, like the ultimate comfort food. Hopefully I’ll get to visit Canada someday and then I’ll know exactly what I need to try while I’m there!

    • Jennifer M says:

      We’ve tried hard to keep poutine “our little secret”, Alexandra, to keep it all to ourselves. Don’t want to have a run on cheese curds or anything ;)

      Seriously though, it probably looks like a hot mess to some people but it really is the ultimate comfort food. It will cure whatever ails anyone! Hope you get a chance to try it.

  • Renee says:

    Good Lord, Jennifer! Just what I needed. Looks absolutely divine.

    • Jennifer M says:

      Thanks Renee. It had to be, since I actually got cheese curds in my Christmas stocking! (My husband gets very creative with his stocking stuffers :)

  • stephanie says:

    OMG! Your poutine looks AMAZING! I love, love, love poutine (like any good Canadian) and I want yours. :)

    • Jennifer M says:

      Thanks so much, Stephanie. First time I tried to make at home and it was more than worth it! Btw, I’m still dreaming about your breakfast taquitos. I’ll be trying those this weekend.

  • Amanda says:

    We had poutine for the first time on a trip to Canada three years ago and it has been a favorite memory for our family to remember how stunned the waitress was when we asked what it was. I was thrilled to surprise my family here in Alabama with it during this cold snap last week. It was great – thank you!

    • Jennifer M says:

      I love that Alabama enjoyed a little Canadian poutine to go with the cold weather (that also probably blew down from Canada – um, sorry about that :) Thanks for coming back to let me know. Hope it’s warmed up for you.

      • Amanda says:

        We were back to “no need for a coat” afternoons this weekend! Not bad for mid-January.

        • Jennifer M says:

          Sounds heavenly! It’s -3 C. today (high 20’s in the Fahrenheit scale) and it feels surprisingly balmy. We’re saying the same thing – not bad for mid-January :)

  • Celestine says:

    Thanks so much for posting about poutine. I’ve never had it before, but I’m going to surprise my husband with it. He’s from Toronto and moved to Virginia two years ago. I whipped up some Nanaimo bars during the holidays and they were a hit with him and our friends here. I’m so glad I found your site (via foodie crush) and am looking forward to exploring past posts and new posts.

    • Jennifer M says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Celestine. I hope you can find real cheese curds in Virginia for you poutine. He will love it. Trust me :)

  • EM says:

    The most important is to use Canned Broth, preferably Campbell. More concentrated Flavors. and give to the flour a brown color. This is poutine sauce, it’s not fancy ingredients who give the good gravy.

  • bilqis says:

    thank you very much.
    i’m from Indonesia, and i have never try the authentic recipe of Poutine before. but now i’m attending Culinary Arts class which is lets me to looking for an interesting food from another country. then i found this website, so i’m very grateful to know this recipe, so i can try and modify this recipe in my cooking class.

  • bilqis says:

    oh ya, i want to ask you something. when are usually Canadian serve this dish? and what kind of drink usually perfectly match with it? thank youuuu

    • Jennifer M says:

      Poutine is a lunch or dinner dish. I like it on it’s own, but many with bigger appetites have it as a side for a hamburger, for example. It’s diner/fast food, so often eaten with a carbonated soft drink (Coke/Pepsi).

  • Heather J says:

    Hey there!
    Thanks for the recipe! I look forward to trying it out! My husband and his family are from Canadian and keep telling me about the Gouda cheese that was always on their Poutine. Is that a form for cheddar curds?

    • Jennifer M says:

      Hi Heather. Sorry for the delay. Missed your comment somehow. Anyway, I’ve never heard of Gouda used in Poutine (and I’ve eaten a lot of it). Cheese curds are produced through the process of making cheddar cheese. They are very mild tasting and melt easily. The closest in taste, would be chunks of mozzarella.

  • Alexandra D. says:

    Okay so I have never even heard of this food until I searched a recipe to use my pulled pork on. It came up with poutine and here I am. My question is, I have sweet potatoes I need to use and obviously the pulled pork, do you think those would go well in this recipe. Substitute the fries for sweet potato fries and put pulled pork on top of them?
    TIA

    • Jennifer says:

      Ok Alexandra. I’m going to be completely honest. I love sweet potato fries. I love pulled pork. But honestly, when it comes to Pulled Pork Poutine, I’d use regular fries. That said, I don’t think it would be bad. Sweet potatoes are well … sweet, and the finished dish will be different than if using regular potatoes. They also don’t crisp up all that well, so you might end up with a bit of a mushy finished dish. Just my thoughts :)

  • Caniwi says:

    I’ve been living in New Zealand for a few years now and one night while in a pub in a small town of 300 people found poutine on the menu! I GOT SO EXCITED, then a little skeptical.. to my surprise, the chef was from Montreal and brought me my mouth watering dish of what I craved.

    Authentic Poutine, in a tiny town, in the southern hemisphere. :)

    I now have a source for cheese curds and really have no reason to return to Canada. HEAVEN!

  • Marc Lalancette says:

    Hello there. Thank you for posting this recipe so that other people may enjoy this great Quebec lunchtime favorite.

    Someone had asked what is serve with this meal. A typical poutine lunch would be: poutine with a Pepsi and a Mae West for dessert (a Mae West is a brand name for a moon pie style cake. It’s a 2 layer white cake, the whole thing covered in white frosting).

    Living in Indiana now. Can’t find a good cheese curd to make this for my boys. Your post made me sentimental for home…

    • Jennifer says:

      Hi Marc. Thanks. I’ve never heard of a Mae West. It hasn’t spread to Ontario, anyway. Sounds like we’re really missing something though, because it sounds delicious!!

      • Marc Lalancette says:

        Jennifer. If they still make them, they were made ny the Vachon company, the same people that made the Joe Louis and the Caramello cakes.

        • Jennifer says:

          I’ve eaten a few Joe Louis in my life ;) I’m going to look for them. Could be they’re on the shelf and I’ve just never noticed!

  • Nicole says:

    I love poutine! There is this place in Cincinnati called “Senate” and they have a putine that is “amaze-balls”. It consists of the same ingredients you have and cheese curds and braised beef. I don’t go often because the food is too amazing and its kind of far. But now I have a recipe that I can turn to whenever I need a poutine fix! Thanks for this.

  • Suzanne Hartman says:

    This recipe for real imitation poutine is what I’ve been looking for! Thanks so much! I love that you described so well what the cheese curds were like– to a Californian who knows nothing about real cheese curds. I’ve been unable to try Poutine until now I couldn’t try poutine. Hooray!

  • Ryan says:

    Cannot wait to give this a go, had Poutine at my State Fair here in Minnesota and I’ve had a craving for it since!

  • Jim Smith says:

    We have this in the UK, its called gravy and chips lol. That said this look so tasty I’ll be trying this as a matter of urgency.

    Thanks for the recipe :-)

    • Jennifer says:

      We call it fries and gravy in Canada, too. Poutine is all above the addition of cheese curds. That’s where the magic happens ;)

  • christine says:

    I’m making a turkey dinner for my family mon 10/13/14 wich happens to be canadian thanksgiving(not planned) I’m making poutine instead of mashed potatoes, my best friend is coming,she grew up in canada, I’m going to use this recipe, thank you

  • Laury says:

    I was wondering if you needed both chicken and beef broth, or if you could just use one of either

    • Jennifer says:

      Hi Laury, the combination of broths is important for flavour and so that the gravy is neither too light or too dark. If you use canned broth, there’s less waste/left-over.

  • Hisqueel says:

    Thanks man. I am going to make it this evening.
    I still cant forget the wonderful poutine i had last November at Alfa, Longueil-St hubert. Hope it tastes similar.

  • Michelle Garber says:

    Made this with tater tots tonight… Used gf flour and gf tots. I LOVE this gravy, I will use it for other things!! I love following your recipes, thanks for the great meals ?

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