Taco Bell’s latest offering features Nacho Fries topped with steak, nacho cheese sauce, tomatoes, reduced-fat sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, and the new White Hot Ranch Sauce.
Yes, that combination of ingredients, minus the White Hot Ranch, seems familiar. I’m probably going to have to look through our entire review archive to find out what it is. Give me an hour or so.
Oh, they were in last month’s Steak Nacho Fries Burrito. So this new menu item, which is also available in burrito form, is basically last month’s menu item, except the chipotle sauce is swapped for the White Hot Ranch Sauce. I expect this reusing of ingredient combos from Taco Bell, but not with back-to-back products.
Since I imagine many of you have an idea of how most of this menu item tastes, let’s focus on the White Hot Ranch Sauce. The best way I can describe it is to say its flavor and heat remind me of Flamin’ Hot Cool Ranch Doritos, but I’m not saying they taste alike. With the chips, they were basically spicy Cool Ranch Doritos where the Flamin’ Hot’s flavors didn’t come into play. And with this sauce, it’s pretty much a spicy ranch. It has a noticeable tanginess with some heat, but there’s no flavor from that kick. With that said, it’s a tasty addition to the vast Taco Bell sauce lineup, and I enjoyed it enough that I found myself trying to scrape up as much as I could from the bottom of the container.
As for its spiciness, I’d put it at a lower mid-level heat. But I wonder if it might’ve been higher if the somewhat soothing sauces of nacho cheese and sour cream weren’t there.
When I first read about these topped Nacho Fries, I thought, “Did Taco Bell get rid of its Spicy Ranch and replace it with this new spicy ranch? Or is this Spicy Ranch, but with a longer name?”
No and no. Taco Bell now has two spicy ranch sauces available.
What’s the difference? The older one has habanero peppers, while the newer one has ghost chile powder, which makes it slightly spicier. Ohhhh, now I get it, “white hot” = “ghost chile.” I should’ve put dos and dos together.
I noticed a few other things about the menu item as a whole. While as tender as it always is, the steak tasted different to me. It was low…okay, it’s always been somewhat low quality to begin with, but it had a slightly less meaty flavor. Also, I will repeat what I wrote in my Steak Nacho Fries Burrito review. I really liked the tomato’s acidic bursts, which bring fresh, tasty moments that cut through all the savoriness and spiciness.
Overall, the combination of most of the ingredients in Taco Bell’s Steak White Hot Ranch Fries isn’t new, but the addition of the White Hot Ranch Sauce makes it worth a try.
Purchased Price: $5.79*
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 510 calories, 33 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 1040 milligrams of sodium, 40 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, 4 grams of sugar, and 14 grams of protein.
*Because I live on a rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, things are a bit pricier here. You’ll probably pay less than I did.