[Review] Lay’s Creamy Bacon Potato Salad Chips

Happy birthday, America! You’ve been around for 240 years and don’t look a day over–well, I don’t know, I guess you look 240 years old. But boy, are you great! I forgot to buy you a present, but I did come up with this list of my favorite moments in your storied history.

  1. The moon landing
  2. Steve Rogers becoming Captain America
  3. The invention of Easy Mac
  4. Will Smith saving the world from aliens in Independence Day
  5. Michael Jordan saving the basketball world from aliens in Space Jam

Soooo it turns out that I also forgot to bake a cake for the occasion. But that’s okay, because I brought a bag of potato chips instead! The package shows the words “bacon” and “potato,” which are two of America’s favorite foods. Also, these two foods combined are still referred to as a “salad” despite not actually being healthy in any way, which is even more American.

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Potato salad has long been a staple in my family, and I know the ingredients like the back of a package of Oreos my hand. A good potato salad contains eggs, mayonnaise, mustard, celery, and of course, potatoes. Sometimes bacon is added, because America.

Lay’s Creamy Bacon Potato Salad Chips smell strongly of bacon, but there’s a distinct “creaminess” to the smell on top of it. As bold as the bacon smell is, it doesn’t quite remind me of potato salad. Maybe closer to poutine, or loaded fries. Either way, I’ve already washed my hands three times and they still reek of bacon.

Bacon is the dominant taste in these chips, too. After the initial burst of bacon, a creamy and tangy flavor develops…but it doesn’t taste like mayo. Looking at the ingredients, the “potato salad seasoning” blend in these chips includes sour cream, cheddar cheese, natural bacon type flavor (?), onion powder, garlic powder, and mustard seed oil. Obviously, the bacon taste comes from the “natural bacon type flavor,” and the creamy flavor must come from the sour cream and cheddar cheese. It’s not a bad combination, but it’s not one I would associate with potato salad.

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After the tangy and cheesy flavors fade, more sour tastes come through. Right at the end of each chip, there’s a definite kick of mustard and garlic, which carries into the aftertaste along with the base flavor of the potato chip itself. While this might not sound totally appealing, it actually helps bring the chip back to its potato salad roots. Those more complex flavors are what I remember most about a good, homemade potato salad, and there’s just enough of them in these chips to be noticeable.

I can appreciate the attempt to do something new and interesting, and there are definitely a lot of flavors going on in this chip, but I would stop short of calling it “creamy bacon potato salad.” Yes, there’s a good amount of bacon flavor, but the creaminess comes from sour cream and cheddar cheese–both of which just seem out of place. This strikes me as the type of potato chip you pick up just to see for yourself how they achieved the flavor, and then forget about.

I’m sorry, America. In hindsight, these chips weren’t my best idea. Next time, I’ll make sure I remember your birthday cake.

Item: Lay’s Creamy Bacon Potato Salad Chips
Price and Place of Purchase: $2.48 at Walmart
Nutrition Facts (serving size-1 oz): 150 calories, 90 calories from fat, 10 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 170 milligrams of sodium, 330 milligrams of potassium, 15 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 1 gram of sugar, 2 grams of protein.
In a Nutshell: Complex potato chip with good bacon flavor and noticeable creamy and sour elements, but not exactly “potato salad.” Long live the Tune Squad. I probably should have eaten an actual salad instead of these chips. Can somebody help me scrub this bacon smell out of my fingertips?
Overall Score: 6 out of 10

Our friends at Junk Banter also reviewed Lay’s Creamy Bacon Potato Salad Chips. Check it out!

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