When I first heard that Nabisco’s Ritz Crackers were moving into chips, I was terrified. I have PTSD from Cheez-It’s attempt to move into chips with Grooves. Grooves didn’t do the Cheez-It cracker justice! I have almost the same love for Ritz as I do for Cheez-It; I love those damn buttery Ritz crackers. Point is, I had high expectations for Ritz’s new Crisp & Thins.
So, what are they?
It’s Ritz’s attempt to hop on the “Better For You” train – touting oven-baked, not fried, potato & wheat chips. It launched in the U.K. first and now they’re rolling out globally. There’s a lineup of four flavors on U.S. shelves: Sea Salt, Bacon, Salt & Vinegar, And Cream Cheese & Onion. I picked out Salt & Vinegar (because I like salt & vinegar chips) and Cream Cheese & Onion (because I kept thinking it was sour cream & onion and wanted to see why Ritz had to be all frou frou about it).
I first smelled the Cream Cheese & Onion ones, which didn’t really smell like much. On that basis, I vigorously inhaled the Salt & Vinegar, which was a mistake. The pungent vinegar invaded my olfactory with no mercy. 100 percent user error, not Ritz’s fault.
The chips themselves were very, for the lack of a better word, artsy but the kind of pretentious and annoying artsy. I say this because they couldn’t just choose a damn circle or square like all other crackers. Instead, they chose a puddle shape. But we all know that it probably took their manufacturing team way too long to perfect the mold for these. These puddles also had seemingly random air pockets/bubbles.
In the same vein of pretentious artsy, it looked like they tried very hard to have a baked look – one side of the chip had scorch marks. They really reminded me of naan bread – oblong-ish shape, air pockets, and with the occasional imperfect scorch marks. The Cream Cheese & Onion had a slight orange tinge, while the coloring of the Salt & Vinegar was just normal, pasty cracker color.
At this point, I concluded that these would probably be nothing like the buttery crackers that I know and love. But, you know what, I was okay with it – I knew I couldn’t hold Ritz back from their healthy chip dreams.
The Cream Cheese & Onion surprisingly tasted more like subtle cheddar & sour cream than sour cream & onion. Trusty ol’ cheddar & sour cream is always salty cheesy goodness, but it’s nothing mind blowing and I’m still eye rolling at the artsy fartsiness. However, I can’t believe I dismissed the air pocket/bubbles because they made the texture. Something about the crunch of the cracker with the extra oomph from the air pockets is amazing. Never judge a book by its cover, y’all!
As for the Salt & Vinegar, same textural amazingness but unlike other salt & vinegar flavored chips, there was a subtle-y sweet aftertaste. After almost an entire bag of them, I concluded that it might just be from the chip itself being wheat and potato that’s helping to balance out the vinegar tang.
After two bags of munching, I really appreciated that my fingers weren’t left with a greasy, powdery residue. There was some, but nothing like the usual chip residue mess.
Valiant “Better For You” attempt, Ritz! It might actually work; I liked the Salt & Vinegar ones so much that I’d consider replacing my usual salt & vinegar kettle chips with them.
(Nutrition Facts – 21 Pieces – 130 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 200 milligrams of sodium, 270 grams of potassium 21 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 1 gram of sugar and 2 grams of protein..)
Size: 7.1 oz. bag
Purchased at: Kroger
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Cream Cheese & Onion)
Rating: 9 out of 10 (Salt & Vinegar)
Pros: Nothing like a Ritz Cracker, but tasty AND “better for you”. Textural amazingness. No greasy, powdery residue.
Cons: Why the artsy fartsy chip shape & names? Cream Cheese & Onion is just semantics for cheddar & sour cream.
11 thoughts to “REVIEW: Ritz Crisp & Thins (Salt & Vinegar and Cream Cheese & Onion)”
Yeah, these really grew on me. The salt & vinegar is top notch and STRONG, the way it should be. The cream cheese onion are good but not great (I can abide by a 7, probably would go 6 myself). The regular salted are REALLY salty which makes them probably the best one (craziness that the regular version is the best one). The bacon one oddly is the worst but still ok.
ur just crazy if u gave the salt and vinegar a 9.. who the hell ikes vithat nasty crap on anything but a meal? smh. the other was prob the best tasting thing ive had but one rating down due to the brittle chips.. wat the hell is it with theses brands and their lays crumble chip excuse…a chip is suppoed to be firm.. like ruffles.. they runed this for that but the flavor at least works.. im good with a pallete.. whoever said the bacon is the worst can suck staleapple.. stupid idiot
You can’t even spell “palate.”
I bought a bag of the Cream Cheese and Onion. Ate about a handful and……threw the rest away. They aren’t Ritz crackers, they aren’t chips, they are foul tasting. They may be “Better for You” only because you won’t want to eat them.
Wait…Ritz has moved into chips before. I didn’t remember until I saw this review, but we used to get these all the time when I was a kid.
They suck, not sure why they changed the recipe from
The basic toast chips, my kids love the sour cream and onion toasted chips, and now they don’t sell them , Just the crest that taste like chemically
I *love* cheeze-it grooves! Especially the cheddar flavor.
Love the chip look and flavor of Crisp & Thin Cream CHeese & onion..Loved them….
I think they’re so tasty and not heavy on your stomach if your on a diet a few of these chips will do it justice. The ritz are my type of chips. ??
They chose cream cheese and onion because that’s a more common topping for a cracker than sour cream and cheddar. I didnt taste cheddar anyway, just a vague cheesiness.
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