REVIEW: ips – chips with protein – White Cheddar

Rating: ©©©© chips  (lip-smacking)

Ips Chips with Protein - White Cheddarips….?  Well…huh?  What??

Hey, it’s basically like chips only minus the C and H.  Well, lets just hope that the C and the H aren’t our favorite parts!!

Every now and again we here at Chip Review cross paths with a new type, style, flavor of chip that we have never ever tasted before.  Well, ips chips with protein just so happens to be one of those entirely new chips!  So, what’s so new about these chips you ask?  Well, let us elaborate.

ips = intelligent protein snacks

And where does this said intelligent protein actually come from?  You are never going to guess.  No, seriously, take a guess.  EGG WHITES!  That’s right E double-G whites! Now before you jump to any preconceived conclusions about how these ips chips simply cannot be very good tasting based on what we have told you thus far, we’re going to let you onto a little secret – they are surprisingly enough, very tasty!  We’re fairly certain that ips used to sport the slogan The Original Egg White Chips™, but we are guessing that many close minded people out there weren’t giving them the shot they deserve, and simply turning away before ever tasting them!  And so, ips made the decision to remove the slogan from the front of the bag, and instead focus on what the benefit of using the egg really offers – ‘chips with protein’.  Whatever it takes to get the word out!

According to ips founder Sean Olsen:

“The idea for ips first hatched when I was making breakfast for my kids. I’m always looking for healthier foods to feed them and they loved the crispy edges of the eggs I cooked. So I decided to turn that protein crunch into a treat the world could enjoy.

“That’s why we’re proud to offer the world’s first chip made with non-GMO corn and wholesome egg white, a breakthrough snack that has the tasty crunch you want and the satisfying protein you need!  We use our patent-pending Pressure-Puff process to make our light and crispy ips. We take corn, egg whites and other all natural ingredients, blend them together under high pressure and puff the mixture to create a light and crispy chip. Then we toast the chips in an oven – we never fry them – and apply our special seasonings.”

Texture wise, ips chips remind us of a potato puff, more than they do a corn puff.  Both puffs are airy and light, but where as a traditional corn puff has a certain level of meltability to it, a potato puff, or ips puffed egg-corn chips in this case, do not melt when the come in contact with the moisture in our mouths.  Their crunch retains a bright and crispy bite.  We’d say that the chips are roughly the size of a quarter, and amply coated in their white cheddar seasoning.  We really liked the tangy, slightly funky and salty, white cheddar seasoning that ips used on these chips.  It just seemed to embody a lot more character, and real cheese flavor than other white cheddar snacks we’ve tasted in the past.

So, there you have it, another crunchy alternative now available on the market; making our decision of what to snack on even more difficult.  However, our decision would be rather easy if we were looking for a healthier, protein-packed, snack that also tasted delicious!!

As always, these are our thoughts. Agree or disagree, make sure to let us know.

Chips provided to Chip Review by ips for review

ips Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© - return to sender

©© - tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

REVIEW: Trader Joe’s – Baconesque White Cheddar Popcorn

Rating: ©©©-1/4 chips (notable)

Trader Joe's - Baconesque White Cheddar PopcornThere once was a tall, slender, well dressed feller, who sported one heck of a mustache.  One day the dapper chap made the decision to stand upon a large forma of cheese (cheddar we presume), in hopes that he may find something porky!  Low and behold, along came a gal in elegant attire exclaiming the delicious virtues of some new flavored popped corn.  “I can’t believe it’s not bacon” she proclaimed.

Well, sorry to say, but we believe, in fact we are more than certain that it is not bacon!

Baconesque sounds right.

Bacon-ish, yeah.

Bacon-y, OK.

Oh wait, the bottom of the classy popcorn bag really says it all “…and a bacon like seasoning!”  In fact, bacon like. is probably stretching the truth a bit.  Just like we have never ever believed that the too yellow, too soft, fake stuff is anything like real butter, Trader Joe’s Baconesque White Cheddar Popcorn is also nothing like real bacon flavor!

All that being said, it is not as though we don’t like Trader Joe’s new popcorn, because we do.  It just does not taste like bacon to us.  What it does taste like is smoked white cheddar cheese seasoning.  Have you ever tasted smoked cheddar or mozzarella cheese?  One of our chip reviewers simply loves a good smoked cheese melted on top of flame grilled burgers!  However, simply adding smoke flavoring into a salty cheese seasoning does not equal bacon.  The overly salty, overly smokey seasoning  is entirely devoid of any of bacon’s delicious natural porky sweetness.  We need something else.  At least one other distinct flavor characteristic of bacon.  Without any of these distinct elements, or layers of flavor, we are simply left with white cheddar cheese and smoke flavor = smoked cheddar seasoning.  The smokey cheddar flavor does pair well with the popcorn.  A rich and salty white cheddar cheese flavor evenly coated most of the larger sized, white popcorn kernels.  Many of our tasters actually enjoyed the popcorn, crunching handful after handful, but everyone agreed that it did not taste like bacon.

Trader Joe’s, we certainly do recognize and appreciate the recent effort you have put into creating new and unique corn based snacks.  Everyone knows how much we love spotting, tasting and reviewing new snacks!  While we haven’t been the hugest fans of either of the two most recent popcorn flavors – these bacon white cheddar, or the Chicago Style Mix.  We did very much enjoy both of the other corn-popcorn based snacks.  The Kettle Popped Sweet & Salty Whole Grain Popcorn Chips with Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds, Whole Quinoa & Sunflower Seeds encompassed a unique grainy texture, combined with the classic sweet and salty combo; while TJ’s Partially Popped Popcorn was a creative new spin on Corn Nuts, with delicious butter flavoring!

So, in the end, we liked the Baconesque popcorn well enough, we just didn’t really didn’t feel like it tasted like bacon.  However, Russ over at What’s Good at Trader Joe’s has a much more favorable review, if you care to read another review.

Until next time, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think. Agree or disagree, let us know.

Popcorn discovered at Trader Joe’s; La Grange, Illinois

Trader Joe’s Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© – return to sender

©© – tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

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REVIEW: Doritos Dinamita – Mojo Criollo

Rating: ©©©©-1/2 chips  (lip-smacking)

Doritos Dinamita - Mojo CriolloSomething has recently happened that we simply cannot explain! Either the earth’s axis has shifted and everything we thought we knew has suddenly changed (some of which is, case in point, certainly for the better), or we are finally starting to come around, and really appreciate some of the rolled corn tortilla snacks – aka crunchy taquitos!  On more than one occasion we have described the crunchy tubular snacks as one of, if not our, least favorite type of snacks of all-time.  But, a few recently delicious additions to this particular snack type arsenal have changed the way we will perceive them forever!  So, lets toot that horn and join the tasty rolled corn tortilla train!!  That’s right, bring on those all too dense, and too crunchy-hard fried tortillas.  We no longer require a flat chip that provides an ample licking surface for us to accurately taste the seasoning.  We will remain content with crunching down on the tasty corn tubes like everyone else!!

Mojo Criollo?  Exact translation: we’re not sure.  That being said, we do know that mojo criollo is the name of a marinade or sauce that a handful of different companies produce.  And, according to legend, mojo sauce has many different variations throughout the Carribbean.  In this particular instance Doritos appears to be utilizing Cuba’s delicious rendition, focusing primarily on garlic and citrus. Personally, we have been fans of Cuban mojo sauce for many, many years; often enjoying it at Victor’s 1959 Cuban Cafe, with such dishes as yucca frita (fried) and pan con lechon (pulled pork)!!  Honestly, the flavorful sauce would probably pair well with just about any cut of meat, and in this case with a corn tortilla chip!

The front of the Dinamita bag pretty much sums it up.  Lime, lemon and garlic all mingle together to form a seasoning that is unlike any other we have tried before, and yet at the same time felt (tasted) very comfortable coating the fried corn tortillas.  The citrus-ful seasoning was slightly reminiscent of last year’s Doritos Test Flavor: 404…  Only this time Doritos nailed it, and gave us a nearly perfectly executed and balanced mojo criollo flavor!  We just love the combination of citrus, and garlic, and maybe some bay leaf and pepper?  Sour and savory and salty and yummy!  We appreciate how Doritos refrained from adding any real sweetness to the chips.  Everyone who tried these were impressed!  Keep up the great work Doritos!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at 7-eleven; Willowbrook, Illinois

Doritos Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

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©© - tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

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REVIEW: Pringles Exclusive Flavor! – Mango Salsa

Rating: ©©©-1/2 chips  (tolerable)

Pringles - Mango SalsaJust the other week we went into detail on our thoughts and concerns over the controversial Exclusive Flavor!  We’re not sure how many other stores are exceptional (rich, big) enough to have their own versions of Exclusive Flavors, but so far as we can tell most, if not all, Exclusive Flavors that we have spotted have both been from blue and white behemoth – Walmart.

Plain and simple, these are some of the oddest tasting chips (crisps) ever!  Just weird!!  And, not because we haven’t reviewed mango flavored chips before.  Most recently we tasted and reviewed last year’s Lay’s Wavy Do Us a Flavor Finalist, who gave us their variation of the mango salsa!  Unfortunately, our initial reaction to those was yuck!  A very surprised, and disappointed, YUCK!  We were thinking that the mango salsa flavor was going to be our favorite among the four flavor finalists.  So, the question at hand is, will Pringles Mango Salsa disappoint as well?  Does mango salsa just not work as a chip flavor?  Because it is worth mentioning that other chip brands have proven that mangoes plus habaneros plus potato chips can actually be a fantastic combination!

Pringles Mango Salsa potato crisps are a combination of zippy – sour, with a sort of real fruity mango essence, plenty of garlic, a little bit of heat, the sweet and aromatic balance of onion, loads of salt, and sort of like mango salsa actually….  OK, so we’ve settled that.  These do kinda, sorta, taste like mango salsa….in powder seasoning form of course.  That being said, do they really taste good?  In our opinion, sort of, well, not really!  Initially, we taste those delicious mango salsa flavors, but then on the back end of the tasting experience our enjoyment sort of transitions to an off-putting experience.  We’re pretty sure that our negative feelings are a result from the combination of the mango salsa flavor and potato crisps.  It just seems unnatural to combined those two!  Who eats salsa with potato chips?! Not us, and there is likely a good reason for that.  The combo does not seem organic. It just doesn’t jive! Corn and fruit = works.  Potatoes and fruit = not so much!

In the end, we appreciate Pringles mango salsa flavor accuracy, but this is not a combo we would be buying again for any reason.  That being said, of course we would crunch a few if we spotted them on a snack table at some great chip party we were attending!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at Walmart; Countryside, Illinois

Pringles Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

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©© - tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

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REVIEW: El Sabroso – Salt & Lime Flavored Potato Chips or Papas Fritas Sabor a Sal y Limón

Rating: ©©©-3/4 chips  (notable)

El Sabroso - Salt-LimeWell, hello El Sabroso!  If we had to guess we would say that this particular bag of chips is bilingual!  On the top Spanish half of the bag we’ve got El Sabroso – Papas Fritas – Sabor a Sal y Limón.  On the bottom English half of the bag we’ve got Salt & Lime Flavored – Potato Chips.  But, what about the English translation for the brand name – El Sabroso?  We don’t think that we have ever looked up what the name means, and apparently it would translate to – The Tasty or The Delicious!  Sounds like a great name to us!!

It has been quite a long time since we have tasted or reviewed any strictly LIME flavored chips.  In fact, looking back through the database we discovered that there aren’t very many solely lime flavored chips.  Tons of lime plus chile flavored chips, and plenty of lime plus some other ingredient flavored chips, but when it comes to strictly lime flavored chips we have not tried very many.

While these chips are not very significant in any texture, flavor, or form, it is their refreshing simplicity that just sat very well with us.  And, while these potato chips taste very similar to so many other artificially lime flavored chips, (translation: they taste very much like salt & vinegar seasoning, or in other words, like potato chips that have been thoroughly coated with tongue zinging, ultra-sour, citric acid), we were more than prepared, and satisfied by them.  Mingling with the heavy dose of citric acid, was a dash of real lime juice, giving us just enough of that tingling lime flavor perception.  On the tail end of the flavor, our tongues also noticed a slight hint of sweetness that was a welcome addition to help counter the citrus sour.  Although we are not typically huge fans of very thin potato chips, these papas fritas were pretty good this time.  Very thin, no real potato flavor detectable, only a slight, soft, crunch, and what we would consider a medium size chip.

Overall, these chips were really nothing special, but sometimes that is more than enough, and expectations do not need to be exceeded, but only met!

These are our thoughts, agree or disagree, make sure to let us know!

Chips discovered at Shell Gas Station; Hillside, Illinois

El Sabroso Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

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©© - tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

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