REVIEW: Lay’s Salsa Fresca Potato Chips

Every time I see a bag of Lay’s potato chips, I am reminded of the brand’s famous slogan, a testament to the enduring brilliance of advertising: “Betcha can’t eat just one!”

While it’s a bet most of us would lose, I have always found tortilla chips and salsa to be the more addictive snack: the salt, the crunch, the heat, the sweet and juicy tomatoes, the urge to eat an entire bowl as your meal at the Mexican restaurant while the waiter casts judgmental glares in your direction!

Merging two snack food kings into one limited edition summer flavor, Lay’s Salsa Fresca potato chips promise a rich, zesty crunch inspired by fresh summer tomato salsa. Betcha can’t eat just half the bag?

Well, there are always loopholes in self-control, and here’s one for this product: it takes somewhere between one and twenty crunches to experience this flavor fully. Deliciously light and crispy, each chip is coated with savory red tomato powder, which is the dominant flavor throughout the bag. The taste reminds me so much of SpaghettiOs—concentrated and a little sweet without being ketchup-like—but I’m not mad about it.

In the first few bites, a faint tickle of spice rises near the back of the throat. Although jalapeños are featured on the packaging, the chip seasoning captures the pepper’s spice without its earthy flavor. The result is a salty, zesty heat that builds, but very slowly. Like a clumsy person navigating an icy sidewalk, it takes its time and risks no fancy footwork. The tickle evolves to broad warmth across the mouth but never gets too intense.

In the aftertaste, I detect some garlic, as well as a little tang. I attribute the tanginess to the sour cream listed in the ingredients, a delicious side in its own right but a curious addition to salsa fresca. Every few chips, the tang turns sharp and vaguely reminds me of lime. Other flavors associated with salsa fresca—like cilantro and onion—are not present.

While the chips represent several key salsa ingredients, the flavors are simple and unfold in stages rather than as one cohesive bite. Overall, the chip is tasty, salty, and snackable, but its flavor is predominantly tomato powder with a building kick.

As a limited edition summer product, Lay’s Salsa Fresca potato chips scratch that salty, snacky itch that plagues me as I wait for my tomato plants to bloom. It’s a fun flavor, but replaceable in my snacking repertoire. I’ll gladly eat more than one (chip), but not more than one (bag).

Purchased Price: $3.49
Size: 7 3/4 oz (219.7 g) bag
Purchased at: Wegmans
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (per serving, about 15 chips) 150 calories, 9 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 140 milligrams of sodium, 16 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.

10 thoughts to “REVIEW: Lay’s Salsa Fresca Potato Chips”

  1. That’s such a weird slogan. Who eats only one of any kind of chip? The serving sizes are already ridiculous anyway — eating 15 chips still seems like not very many — because serving sizes have no basis in actual nutritional science. They’re actually based on surveying a bunch of people (all men/boys from age 4-90). Seems like a weird way to market chips.

  2. Will definitely try these, I love the garden salsa sun chips so hoping these have a similar vibe.

  3. Are these the same as the Abobadas ones? The basically have the same pictures of tomato, jalapeno and lime on the bag.

  4. They were BOGO at Publix, and I ended up eating an entire big bag in one sitting lol. Pretty tasty, especially the chips with a lot of seasoning on them.

  5. Not sure if the bag my co-worker brought in was off, but no one said they were good. A couple of the more glowing reviews was, “I’d eat them if I was drunk enough” or “They’re ok, but I wouldn’t buy them”.

    1. “I’d eat them if I was drunk enough”

      It’s not these chips fault that your workplace if full of alcoholics.

  6. These weren’t bad but I didn’t get “salsa” from them. If you never told me what it was, I never would have guessed what it was suppose to be. I get the spice from the jalapeno and there is a tomato-y taste to it, but it reminds me more of a spicy BBQ flavor that lacks smokey flavor. I also think these might have worked better as a kettle chip or wavy chip. Something about the plain flat chip doesn’t make it pop as well as I was expecting. 7 out of 10 sounds about right. Decent enough but plenty of room for improvement

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.