chilli and chocolate, cajun squirrel and builder’s breakfast
January 16, 2020 7:46 AM   Subscribe

 
What I love about the variety of flavours that are now on offer to us is that this basically the Willy Wonkification of potato chips/crisps. I'm not mad about it at all.

I do have this vision in my head of an eccentric food-maker in a lab adding pine tree bark and sea salt into a giant vat and then stirring with a big paddle.
posted by Fizz at 7:51 AM on January 16 [5 favorites]


An added bonus I've discovered to funky flavored potato chips - a potato chip omelette is a thing that exists, and is actually a perfect use for leftover, slightly-crushed chips from the bottom of the bag. The flavored chips give you a chance to play around. (The first time I made that I used the dregs of an old roommate's sriracha flavor chips, and it was a big hit.)
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:58 AM on January 16 [11 favorites]


And yet people still make fun of Canada for ketchup chips!
posted by jacquilynne at 8:15 AM on January 16 [6 favorites]


I've been making chip omelettes for years, but decided that flaming hot cheetos are the way to go. Ridged chips do okay too, but most regular chips will lose more of their crunch than I'd prefer.
posted by LionIndex at 8:15 AM on January 16 [1 favorite]


And yet people still make fun of Canada for ketchup chips!

When my brother and I were kids in the early 90s, we visited our relatives down in San Diego. My aunt asked us what flavour of chips she should get us from the store. I said ketchup, my brother said dill pickle. She thought we were making fun of her and we got in trouble.

Whenever I munch on ballpark hot dog-flavoured ripple chips, I think of that moment, and I blow the chip dust off my pointer finger like a pistol.
posted by Beardman at 8:46 AM on January 16 [17 favorites]


As far as I'm concerned, "vinegar" chips are just as sensational as "biscuits and gravy" or whatever.
posted by GoblinHoney at 8:51 AM on January 16 [15 favorites]


… he shudders at the memory of Seabrook’s sweetcorn
Seabrook’s sweetcorn flavour crisps were fantastic.

I also love the way that UK-centric crisp flavours are so "wow these are so out there!", while elsewhere in the world there are cucumber, kimchi, cherry blossom, durian and matcha flavours.
posted by scruss at 8:57 AM on January 16 [1 favorite]


Don't miss the money quote at the end of the article:

“Climate change is going to change agricultural production: people will eat less meat, there will be finite availability of certain kinds of produce, or at least a higher cost to pay,” she says. “But I think, because flavour is potent in very small quantities, it’s one of the things you’ll be able to expand.” As our food options shrink, Berenstein argues, artificial flavourings could become more prevalent as we look to mix up our limited diets.

“It’s easier for me to imagine a climate change dystopian grocery store that is full of potato chips perfectly enhanced with cricket protein, in every flavour imaginable, than it is for me to imagine a shrink in the number of flavour opportunities,” she says.

posted by ourobouros at 8:59 AM on January 16 [18 favorites]


Related: how to eat: a crisp sandwich.

My grandmother used to make us potato chip sandwiches and bacon sandwiches, two things I thought she invented thanks to some sort of decadent gene that she passed on to me. When I discovered these were both established food items in England, it blew my mind!
posted by sallybrown at 9:08 AM on January 16 [5 favorites]


Good, more salt and vinegar for me!
posted by praemunire at 9:17 AM on January 16 [8 favorites]


I wish most of these wacky flavored European crisps tasted like anything though. Every time I've bought some funky bacon / onion jam chips (or whatever) they just tasted like salt.

Give me the good Mexican-American flavors. The cheese+lime+chile flavor of Takis or Flamin Hot Cheetos is a revelation. Then again I think it'd probably destroy the tongue of any European used to milder flavors.
posted by Nelson at 9:19 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


I need to figure out where to buy powdered vinegar, so that I can make everything as delicious as salt and vinegar chips/crisps.
posted by asperity at 9:28 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


a perfect use for leftover, slightly-crushed chips from the bottom of the bag

That's fine, but you would think that after all this time, someone would have figured out how to ship potato chips / crisps without causing the broken chips residue in the bottom of the bag.
posted by beagle at 9:33 AM on January 16


But salt and vinegar is my favourite flavour.

(In Spain, the default chip flavour that isn't just salt is serrano ham, one of the weird but popular ones is fried egg)
posted by sukeban at 9:43 AM on January 16 [8 favorites]


And yet people still make fun of Canada for ketchup chips!

I don't like ketchup so I've never had a ketchup chip, and I would never make fun of Canada for a chip that tastes, probably, bad to me, but might be tasty to people who like that ketchup.

Roast chicken chips, on the other hand, should be Canada's national embarrassment, made up for only by the fact that all dressed is genuinely quite good.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:46 AM on January 16 [1 favorite]


I need to figure out where to buy powdered vinegar, so that I can make everything as delicious as salt and vinegar chips/crisps.

In my grocery store it's by the popcorn. Shakers of different flavours to add to your popcorn, salt n vinegar, ketchup, dill pickle etc.
posted by skinnydipp at 9:48 AM on January 16 [4 favorites]


Serious Eats on salt & vinegar chips in case you want to know where the flavors come from.
posted by asperity at 9:51 AM on January 16 [6 favorites]


I need to figure out where to buy powdered vinegar, so that I can make everything as delicious as salt and vinegar chips/crisps.

Good news!
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:51 AM on January 16


I bought a Haggis flavoured chip recently but have yet to try it. I'm intrigued and scared.
posted by mazola at 9:52 AM on January 16


I feel I should leave this here:

Pastry Chef attempts to make gourmet Takis
posted by Fleebnork at 9:54 AM on January 16 [2 favorites]


I think I just want the sodium diacetate rather than the salt. I'm always keener on the vinegar half of the flavor than the salt, and also I already have table salt. Apparently I can get a 50 lb bag of sodium diacetate for $140? That seems excessive.
posted by asperity at 9:54 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


Just discovered All-Dressed Chips recently (no clue how that escaped my notice for so long) and I'm not sure I need any other flavors after that.

Also, calling them 'crisps' sounds so much more appealing to me than chips.
posted by Theophrastus Johnson at 9:56 AM on January 16 [2 favorites]


That's fine, but you would think that after all this time, someone would have figured out how to ship potato chips / crisps without causing the broken chips residue in the bottom of the bag.

That was the goal of Pringles and we all know how that turned out!
posted by delicious-luncheon at 9:57 AM on January 16 [4 favorites]


I bought a Haggis flavoured chip recently but have yet to try it. I'm intrigued and scared

I had some recently, and they were pretty good. The horror they engendered in my friends was even more delicious, though.

I have also had, and liked, haggis, but not recently enough to say if they actually tasted anything like it.
posted by rodlymight at 10:02 AM on January 16 [2 favorites]


The comments are quite fun. Doesn't take long for the obvious Gwyneth Paltrow jokes to make an appearance.

You could buy Brussel sprout flavoured crisps at Christmas. I tried some, they were truly vile; and I like sprouts. They used Mariah Carey on the advertising material for them, I wonder if she ever knew what she was signed up for?
posted by epo at 10:04 AM on January 16


All Dressed is the perfect blend of ketchup, BBQ, and salt n' vinegar.

From a Platonic perspective it's something of an enigma, insofar as All Dressed is clearly the ideal form of chipness, but is also an admixture of other components, not a single undecomposable flavour. Something of a gestalt flavour, whose sum is greater than its parts.
posted by Beardman at 10:06 AM on January 16 [2 favorites]


When I discovered the section of popcorn flavours at my grocery store.. That's when I truly learned the meaning of the term "habit-forming"
posted by elkevelvet at 10:09 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


One of Singapore's best gifts to the world but maybe not our arteries: the salted egg crisps
posted by cendawanita at 10:09 AM on January 16 [4 favorites]


All Dressed is the perfect blend of ketchup, BBQ, and salt n' vinegar.

Utz Carolina Barbecue flavor is a US flavor somewhat similar to this.
posted by sallybrown at 10:10 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


I'm still genuinely upset that Frito-Lay discontinued Taco Doritos. You can get so-called Taco Doritos in some markets, but they're a pale imitation of the genuine ones, lacking a true taco-y bite; they're basically slightly spicier Nacho Cheese Doritos. Many years ago, they reintroduced a limited edition called "Tacos after Midnight," which were an exact duplicate of the old ones, but as I said...limited edition. It was crueler that way.
posted by holborne at 10:14 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


No, Sir, when a man is tired of salt and vinegar, he is tired of life; for there is in salt and vinegar all that life can afford.
posted by pracowity at 10:15 AM on January 16 [20 favorites]


This is great! At my work we have a thing of bringing in a bag of any new flavor we run across. We've had at least 3, 4 dozen different kinds over the past year. It seems like we must be reaching the end of all novelty, but not yet. I'm looking forward to sharing this article with everyone.

As our food options shrink, Berenstein argues, artificial flavourings could become more prevalent as we look to mix up our limited diets.


So our future diet is basically Ireland 1780-1840, but this time, some awesome flavors for those six potatoes a day?

Checks out.
posted by Miko at 10:36 AM on January 16 [4 favorites]


If you have a chance to try them, the Utz Crab Chip is pretty damn spectacular. (It's basically a chip liberally coated in Old Bay seasoning I think? But they are great, and then weird look I get from my wife when I buy them is totally worth it)

Haggis chips now... I dunno. You have to be brave I think. Y'know what they say, "haggis takes guts"
posted by caution live frogs at 11:05 AM on January 16 [5 favorites]


There is (or at least used to be) vegemite crisps. I have been on the lookout for these but never actually found any for sale.
posted by chavenet at 11:36 AM on January 16


The haggis crisps are most likely Mackies, and they are great.

The other reason to buy Mackies is that their CEO is a strong supporter of wind power, so much so that a certain Donald Trump refuses to have their products (which include good ice cream) at his properties in the UK
posted by scruss at 11:38 AM on January 16 [3 favorites]


I'm still waiting for Walkers Frito-Lay to bring back the Wasabi Ginger chips out here in the US.

I'll occasionally crack and order a few multipack bags of crisps from the UK, but as great as they are, they're not Wasabi Ginger.
posted by Nice Guy Mike at 11:41 AM on January 16 [1 favorite]


During a recent carb holiday, I discovered what may be the perfect comfort food: mac and cheese with tuna, flavored with adobo and eaten on All-Dressed chips.
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:58 AM on January 16


Japanese Lays: Yogurt or Szechuan Pepper.

The best.
posted by rock swoon has no past at 12:02 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


I will have you all know that I made an emergency grocery store run this afternoon to get some chips for a potato chip omelette for lunch. I ended up with an "onion and garlic" flavor (the barbecue flavors were never my jam).

Every time I've bought some funky bacon / onion jam chips (or whatever) they just tasted like salt.

The first time Lays did one of those testing-new-flavors contest thingies there was a "bacon mac and cheese" finalist. I got a bag to taste-test with some friends and we all agreed it tasted disconcertingly like barbecue, and we couldn't figure out why.

I also just found that the Irish "Buzzfeed" Youtube clone channel, that's gone by "Facts" and now is called "Try," has done "weird potato chip flavors" three times now:

Irish people try American Lay's Chips
Irish people try American Lay's chips
Irish people try Canadian chips (spoiler: they love the ketchup flavor)
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:20 PM on January 16


Pump the brakes.

All Dressed Chips are the best chips to ever hit the store shelves and I'll fight you over it.
posted by Quack at 1:39 PM on January 16 [2 favorites]


If ever you are in Switzerland look out for Zweifel Paprika Chips.
posted by Lanark at 1:45 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


Korean Honey Butter chips are really good. If you don't live near an H-Mart, you can find them at Trader Joe's.
posted by cazoo at 1:47 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


Previously on crisp butties.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 2:21 PM on January 16


Can we have Metafilter potato chip exchange? Or do I have to ask on Metatalk for that?
posted by Ashwagandha at 2:29 PM on January 16 [3 favorites]


I had a friend who once worked in a potato chip (crisp) factory. The BBQ flavor was a fine powder stored in a big overhead tank. There was a standard warning that if that tank started to leak or even worse, fall and burst it was a life or death situation in the factory calling for immediate evacuation. And yes, one day it did burst. Luckily everyone got out alive. It appears that a light dusting of the material on a thin fried potato is fine. In higher quantities and especially breathed in its a killer.
posted by njohnson23 at 2:32 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


BBQ chips: delicious but dangerous!
posted by mazola at 2:34 PM on January 16


There is a flavor my grocery store sells called "voodoo" that is quite delicious.
posted by BeeDo at 3:05 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


Where do I, as an American, find these exciting chips? I love potato chips too much and don't usually keep them in the house, so I guess I haven't been paying proper attention in the grocery store. Or are they only found in delis, bodegas, and the like?

I have the same feeling when I see people with cans of RAR MONSTER RIPPED COAL ENERGY BLAST drinks or bubblegum-flavored soda. Where does it come from? Where?!?
posted by The corpse in the library at 3:05 PM on January 16


There is a flavor my grocery store sells called "voodoo" that is quite delicious.

Near me there's a store in Vanuatu with a sauce called "Cannibal Juice". I have yet to try it.
posted by dobbs at 3:29 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


FTA: "Crisp history is remarkably spotty: debate rages about which company invented which flavour. When I contact Walkers to ask for a rough timeline of when its flavours were released, I am sent a document with “????” written between the 70s and the 00s."

Snort.
posted by soundguy99 at 3:52 PM on January 16


I had some Mackie's Haggis flavoured crisps a few years ago. This was while the Mad Cow meat embargo against the UK was going on (is it still?). Anyway, they used some non-meat flavouring and... Meh. Good chips, good crunch, but not really haggis-y.
posted by CCBC at 3:59 PM on January 16


Where do I, as an American, find these exciting chips? I love potato chips too much and don't usually keep them in the house, so I guess I haven't been paying proper attention in the grocery store.

Having done quite a bit of US traveling (and a little UK & Canadian), 1) pretty sure the UK is light-years ahead of us in variety of chip/crisp flavo(u)rs, so a lot of these just aren't on this side of the pond and 2) there's a lot of regional variation in the availability of flavors in the US? Like, some new flavors only really gained a foothold in certain areas, plus there are still quite a few regional chip companies who only distribute in certain areas but will have some interesting takes on known flavors or have new ones - fer example, Zapp's used to only be found in the South (they're out of Louisiana), but I can tell since their "Voodoo" flavor got invented in '08 that they've had a much wider spread.

Grocery store is probably your best bet for chip and soda flavor variations, although it's also kinda common to find some of the smaller companies selling their wares in sandwich shops (like if you've got a local/regional sub/grinder/hoagie place they might have some interesting choices as add-ons) and "high-end" groceries. Also convenience stores attached to gas stations. I feel like a lot of small deli/bodega/convenience stores have a pretty limited selection that favors the big chains and ordinary flavors.

cans of RAR MONSTER RIPPED COAL ENERGY BLAST drinks

Oh god, this stuff is totally a deli/bodega/convenience store thing - most of them have huge coolers full of the stuff. (Source: I work in an industry that practically runs on these drinks, sometimes I feel like the only person who doesn't just pounds cans of this all day.)

Apparently I Have Thoughts about chips? who knew?
posted by soundguy99 at 4:15 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


As a Canadian, Voodoo chips are pretty close to all-dressed. Not the same, but in the same family. Both are very good.
posted by PennD at 4:37 PM on January 16


Once you start paying attention to US chip stocking, you’ll notice which grocery stores have the good stuff (Kettle Chips and regional brands) versus which just have the mass market stuff (Lays). Once you become chip obsessed, you notice things like “why do lots of stores have the mediocre Kettle Chip flavors but so few have the delicious* sour cream and onion Kettle Chips?” and “every airport only has plain Lays, two Pringle flavors, and those weird TGI Friday potato skin chips.”

Your best chip bet is any local deli or a random convenience store in the middle of nowhere. That’s where you find the really regional chip flavors you’ll never see again.

* RIP cheddar beer Kettle Chips
posted by sallybrown at 4:40 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


No one has mentioned Whole Shebang?

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/chips-so-good-you-ll-have-go-jail-get-them-n648241
Seriously good!
posted by tumbling at 4:57 PM on January 16


The place I see strange-flavored potato chips is at the HomeGoods store. They have a section of discounted products that I've always assumed was the last resting place of fad foods: Himalayan pink salt-encrusted popcorn, macarons, dried goji berries, citrus olive oils, etc. I bought a bag of truffle flavored potato chips there once that were so thoroughly infused with synthetic truffle flavor that I can taste them to this day.
posted by acrasis at 5:18 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


Aren't Whole Shabang chips kind of like All Dressed?
posted by Ashwagandha at 6:08 PM on January 16


All these comments, and no one has mentioned my absolute favorite flavor of chips: oregano. Very very difficult to find in the US, so I always look forward to them when traveling to Greece. They’re so good!
posted by lysimache at 6:32 PM on January 16 [1 favorite]


51% of snackers are always on the lookout to try new snacks

Who is NOT a snacker? Isn’t this like, 51% of the human race?
posted by jcruelty at 8:05 PM on January 16


cajun squirrel ???
posted by jcruelty at 8:05 PM on January 16


Northern Irish crisp-maker Tayto ???
posted by jcruelty at 8:06 PM on January 16


I need to sit down
posted by jcruelty at 8:06 PM on January 16


Best exotic flavor I've tried personally is Lay's Biscuits and Gravy. mmm

Sadly, never got to try Lays Crispy Taco 😭

A potato chip that tastes like a crispy cafeteria taco? SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY
posted by jcruelty at 8:07 PM on January 16


I saw, but did not buy, lamington flavour chips.

(A lamington is a sponge cake coated in chocolate icing and rolled in coconut.)
posted by freethefeet at 3:23 AM on January 17 [1 favorite]


Oh god be grateful for all your chip flavors. Germany has like 3 flavors: paprika, salt, and plain.

(I may be exaggerating...but only slightly)
posted by LizBoBiz at 4:24 AM on January 17


The Biscuits and Gravy never did anything for me but Wasabi Ginger was outrageously good.
posted by mmascolino at 6:48 AM on January 17 [1 favorite]


* RIP cheddar beer Kettle Chips

Oh god damn I loved those. They were the best Kettle Chip flavor and I'm so sad to see an official RIP.
posted by dlugoczaj at 6:51 AM on January 17 [1 favorite]


tzatziki flavor lays
or gtfo
posted by some loser at 9:39 AM on January 17


For a while Lay's or some other big potato chip concern was selling potato chips that tasted like steak with all the fixings. They tasted like someone took a rare steak and wrung it out over a bag of potato chips. I thought they were great. All my friends thought they were disgusting EXCEPT my vegetarian friend, who was thrilled at a completely vegetarian potato chip that let her have the steak experience.
posted by zeusianfog at 11:03 AM on January 17


Jcruelty it’s the UK div of the Meath-based real thing. Breathe.
posted by toodleydoodley at 12:05 PM on January 17


Every time I check my Recent Activity page I see this potato chip thread next to the Indian Pickle thread. Which raises the obvious question; why are there no mango pickle chips? I asked Google to find me things about [achaar crisps] and it comes back to me with suggestions on dill pickle potato chips. Which suggests that while its synonym detection is working, it's missing a larger sense of context.
posted by Nelson at 1:41 PM on January 17 [3 favorites]




I bought the lamington chips. They taste.. interesting.
posted by freethefeet at 1:19 AM on January 18


why are there no mango pickle chips?

Though they are made of corn & rice rather than potato, I've eaten these and they are pretty tasty.
posted by Ashwagandha at 4:06 PM on January 20 [1 favorite]


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