Why Five Guys Always Gives You So Many Extra Fries

Five Guys is one of many quick-service chains that have swept across the country, and the restaurant's peculiarities are part of the reason why. The untold truth of Five Guys is that quality ingredients and a few marketing tricks elevated them to a level where they could refuse to serve the Pentagon. While it might be one of the fastest-growing restaurant chains in the world, according to Forbes, the decision to franchise while maintaining high-quality food is what fueled their expansion, enabling them to sell more than 300 options for units in 18 months (via Five Guys). Of course, the public's need for incredibly good, seemingly endless french fries was also helpful.

Five Guys takes french fries quite seriously. They only use potatoes grown in Idaho above the 42nd parallel to ensure they have the right texture and flavor. The company also doesn't believe in freezers, which means that the fries are never frozen (via Delish). The quick-service cooks only use peanut oil to fry the potatoes too, which gives them a rich, buttery flavor that melts in the mouth (via Reader's Digest). Finally, the potatoes are twice-fried, once to pre-cook and a second time to get them perfectly crisp with a soft interior according to Taste of Home. Once the spuds are fried, they're shaken exactly 15 times–no more, no less–before being served. This carefully honed technique is designed to keep everything in order with the Five Guys science of burgers and fries.

Even more fries with that

If you've ever been to a Five Guys location, then you know that regardless of what size you order, there's always a "topper," which is that extra scoop of fries piled into the bottom of the bag. According to PopSugar, the idea behind giving customers so many extra fries is that the guests think they're getting a great deal. The extra fries, however, are factored into the menu pricing, so it really is just an illusion of receiving more than your money's worth.

According to Reader's Digest, the founder of the restaurant, Jerry Murrell, it's better for customers to feel that they their serving of fries was too large. He even told Food Republic, "People complain that they get too many fries. I just tell them to make hash browns with the leftovers. I teach my managers that if people aren't complaining, then you're not giving them enough." Whether you're hangry or just need those extra fries in the bag to dip in a thick and creamy milkshake, there should never be a shortage when you eat here. While some people complain that the brand creates too much waste by only serving food in 'to go' fashion, this is also what allows them to provide those extra fries (via Taste of Home). Without the paper bag, there would only be a cup of fries and no "topper."

How to order them

While the "topper" might be a clever marketing ploy, you can always continue to think the Five Guys employees are simply treating you to some extra fries for being awesome. Though the menu is often touted as simple, there are supposedly about 250,000 options available for customizing your burger order (via Five Guys).  Presumably, one of those options includes piling fries onto your burger. But the possibilities for ordering french fries might be limitless. Or maybe limited to 250,000 possibilities, which is close enough to limitless. 

If you are someone who values the crispiest fries in the bag above the rest, then you can order all of the fries that crisp at Five Guys. To get an order of perfectly crisp fries though, ask for them to be "extra well done" (via Wide Open Eats). This should yield a cup and a "topper" of nothing but incredibly crunchy French fries made for munching and dipping.

Add custom toppings to your Five Guys fries

Other customizable ideas include making your own sauce or mixing in Cajun seasoning. The menu offers mayo, ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce, A1 sauce, and hot sauce as a part of their free toppings (via Five Guys). This means you can mix any of your favorite sauces for your own signature dipping sauce. Don't forget that it can be combined with their cajun fries, too, for an extra kick.

Most fast food, quick service, and coffee shops have a secret menu these days, and Five Guys certainly does as well. One employee suggests trying "confetti fries," which have BBQ sauce, mayo, and cajun spices added on top before being tossed in the bag to lightly coat the crispy potatoes (via Reddit). Another secret menu item: cheese fries. Just ask for a bit of cheese on your fries when you order (via Secret Menus). With so many options, all of those extra fries might be even more tempting than before.