Sriracha is a Thai hot sauce, but also sounds like it would make a great name for a pet snake or venereal disease.
Here in the United States, many of us think of sriracha as the rooster sauce with the green cap. Some of us also call the spicy red condiment from Huy Fong Foods “cock sauce” with heavy emphasis on the “cock” and followed by giggling.
But as I have learned from some readers (and Wikipedia), sriracha isn’t only the sauce from Huy Fong Foods. Traditional Thai sriracha is usually milder and sweeter, and the companies that make them are probably glad their product isn’t called “cock sauce.”
Sriracha has seen a rise in popularity over the past few years thanks to Bon Appétit magazine calling it 2010’s Ingredient of the Year, a web comic by The Oatmeal, and the need to make bad pho broth taste better. The bottle of Huy Fong Foods’ sriracha sauce suggests putting sriracha on pasta, pizza, hot dogs, and hamburgers. And Tyler Raineri from Lake Zurich, Illinois suggested to Lay’s that they put in on a potato chip…and they did.
In order to find out how much Lay’s Do Us a Flavor Finalist Sriracha Potato Chips taste like sriracha, I had to go in search of a bottle of sriracha. Since the Thai restaurant down the street probably wouldn’t appreciate me stealing a bottle from one of their tables, I ended up at the Asian Foods section at Safeway and purchased a bottle Huy Fong Foods sriracha sauce, along with a bag of regular Lay’s chips to try them with.
The Lay’s Sriracha Potato Chips have a slight orange hue that’s not as menacing as the bright red color of the sauce, but they do make the deep fried potato slices look cheesy. Speaking of cheese, there are three of them listed in the ingredients list — cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and Swiss cheese.
Are the chips cheesy?
No, not really, but after trying sriracha-drizzled potato chips, I also wouldn’t consider them to be Huy Fong Foods sriracha-y. Instead Lay’s Do Us a Flavor Finalist Sriracha Potato Chips taste (and smell) more like another popular hot sauce — Tabasco.
Even though they taste Tabasco-flavored, these chips are addictive. They have a slight sweetness and a nice spicy kick at the back end, and the amount of heat is almost comparable to actual rooster sauce. Also, the seasoning sticks to your fingers, so when you’re done eating, you’ll have a spicy treat after.
Overall, the Lay’s Do Us a Flavor Finalist Sriracha Potato Chips are very good, but, unfortunately, they didn’t get the flavor right. Tyler Raineri from Lake Zurich, Illinois should be mad about that.
(Nutrition Facts – 1 ounce/about 17 chips – 150 calories, 90 calories from fat, 10 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 135 milligrams of sodium, 320 milligrams of potassium, 15 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 1 gram of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)
Item: Lay’s Do Us a Flavor Finalist Sriracha Potato Chips
Purchased Price: $4.29 (on sale)
Size: 9.5 oz. bag
Purchased at: Safeway
Rating: 7 out of 10
Pros: Addictive flavor. Nice spicy kick. Sriracha would be a great name for a snake. The Oatmeal. Good pho.
Cons: Tastes more like Tabasco. Orange hue not menacing enough. Having an 8th grade sense of humor. Stealing bottled condiments from Thai restaurants. Bad pho.