REVIEW: Mexican Street Corn Pringles

Mexican Street Corn Pringles

What are Mexican Street Corn Pringles?

Pringles has once again said, “You want a new potato crisp that tastes like a potato crisp? Too bad!” and dropped the can with crujientes de papa that taste like Mexican street corn, a food cart treat consisting of a grilled ear of corn slathered in mayonnaise, crema, cotija cheese, chile powder, cilantro, and lime.

How are they?

Mexican Street Corn Pringles Top

Okay, that was harsh. I admit I’ve been having some “food that tastes like other food” fatigue. But my fond memories of the Reuben-flavored Pringles allowed me to give the brand a pass and look forward to this variety. In the can, they smelled like a standard, albeit mild, barbecue chip.

Mexican Street Corn Pringles 2

Since the label all but asks me to compare: elote, it’s not-eh. But what it is is a tremendously flavorful and eatable snack with powerful bright lime, subtle creaminess, a hint of spice, and a gently persistent smokey tang throughout. There is a specific sweetness that evokes corn niblets, but it was inconsistent bite to bite, and the strong potato taste of the crisp stood in the way.

There was also a bit of cheesiness that reminded me of the classic cheddar cheese Pringles (which, to age myself, I always mistakenly call Cheez Ums… RIP Cheez Ums). I do wish there was more of a mayonnaise-like fattiness to stand up to the tart and sweet notes; that balance has always been my favorite part of street corn and esquites.

Mexican Street Corn Pringles Plate

Some may find these Pringles to be underdressed, but I prefer a lighter dusting when the flavors are so bold, so I was very happy with the distribution on each crisp.

Anything else you need to know?

If you eat a whole crisp at a time, the acidic lime in the seasoning may irritate the edges of your mouth. It didn’t slow me down but probably should have.


Unlike the Reuben Pringles, which were so spot on I was able to give a Violet Beauregarde-style description of each sandwich ingredient I was tasting as I ate them, the Mexican Street Corn Pringles would be better described as street corn inspired, not flavored. I reckon anyone who likes the ingredients of Mexican street corn would like these crisps, but don’t expect them to satisfy any cravings you may have for the real thing. This fatigued snacker is going to just ignore the name on the can and enjoy the crisps for what they are: delicious.

Purchased Price: $1.79
Size: 5.5 oz (158g)
Purchased at: Big Y (while in MA; still trying to track these down in L.A.)
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 oz/28g, about 14 crisps) 150 calories, 9 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 mg of cholesterol, 210 milligrams of sodium, 16 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of total sugars, <1 grams of fiber, and 1 gram of protein.

REVIEW: Jeni’s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream

Jeni s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream Pint

What is Jeni’s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream?

Ever wanted to be able to sneeze while eating a jelly donut without spraying your countertop with powdered sugar? Jeni’s has endeavored to create an allergy season compatible version of the treat with vanilla custard, raspberry jelly, and a brown sugar donut crumble.

How is it?

Jeni s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream Top

From how easily my ice cream scoop glided through the top of the pint, it was clear this was going to have the same heavenly consistency as other Jeni’s ice creams I’ve tried. The custard was thick, creamy, and smooth with a slight chewiness, and there were big pockets of both jam and crumble to keep the texture interesting.

Despite the high quality of the ice cream and mix-ins, I was disappointed with how little it tasted like a powdered jelly donut. Each bite had an unfitting cream cheese-like tang, which I suspect resulted from using a salted custard but may have been from a natural flavor added to mimic the taste of powdered sugar. There was also a noticeable nutmeg flavor that, when combined with the sweet and egg yolky custard, made the ice cream taste like eggnog.

Jeni s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream Scoop

The donut crumble wasn’t quite right either. As far as I know, jelly donuts are usually yeast donuts, but the flavor and texture of the crumble led me to believe more inspiration was taken from cake donuts. The nutmeg flavor throughout strengthened that assumption since I associate the spice with plain cake donuts.

Jelly was spot on, though. So spot on that I wished there was even more of it since it was the only thing making the ice cream taste like a jelly donut.

Anything else you need to know?

This is premium ice cream and priced accordingly. If this flavor doesn’t sound 100% up your alley, it might be a bit too expensive to take a chance on. However, Jeni’s ice cream is so high quality and delicious that it truly is worth splurging on from time to time (I’m particularly fond of its buttermilk frozen yogurts).


Jeni s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream Copy

I’ve still given Jeni’s Powdered Jelly Donut Ice Cream a decent rating because it’s a tasty ice cream that I’ll have no problem finishing. I don’t know that anyone could be unhappy with the flavors in this pint if they tried it name unknown. But, as a powdered jelly donut ice cream, it was unsuccessful. Seems my countertops (and floor, and pants, and…) will continue to live with powdered sugar on them.

Purchased Price: $8.99
Size: One pint (473 mL)
Purchased at: Whole Foods
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2/3 Cup / 123g) 310 calories, 17 grams of fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 80 mg of cholesterol, 200 milligrams of sodium, 39 grams of total carbohydrates, 33 grams of total sugars, 0 grams of fiber, and 5 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Simple 7UP

Simple 7Up Box

What is Simple 7UP?

7UP has employed the KISS principle (“Keep It Simple, Stupid”) and brought us all a pared down version of its lemon-lime soft drink. Simple 7UP is as uncomplicated as possible with only six real ingredients: filtered carbonated water, sugar, citric acid, lemon extract, lime extract, and stevia leaf extract.

How is it?

Simple 7Up Top

I was optimistic about this soda as I smelled it in the can since it had a much more distinct lemon and lime scent than I’m used to from 7UP. When I took a sip, it initially excited me with its exceptionally light and crisp flavor, reminding me of a sparkling citrus juice beverage. Unlike regular 7UP, which encases blended lemon-lime flavor in a rounded syrupiness, Simple 7UP had noticeably separate flavors of lemon and lime that were lightly sweetened and incredibly fresh in the carbonated water. And despite using extracts instead of juice, the taste of each managed to shine without being too strong.

Simple 7Up Glass

But then the stevia had to go and complicate things. The sip that started off so strong quickly turned bitter yet off-puttingly sweet, then had the audacity to finish on that terrible note. And so it went for each sip until I’d had enough about half of a can in.

The highs were so high and the lows were so low, I’m honestly not sure how I feel about this soda.

Anything else you need to know?

It seems like 7UP isn’t sure how they feel about it either, since there’s barely any mention of the beverage from the brand online; it’s conspicuously absent from the product section of its website. I found one article saying Simple 7UP was being test-marketed about a year ago, but couldn’t find any information about this rollout.

Additionally, I was surprised to learn the original 7UP also only contains six ingredients. So, keep in mind the simplicity here lies in the “real”ness of the ingredients themselves, not their quantity.


Simple 7Up Can

Simply said, I’m torn. I loved how five of the six ingredients worked together, but the inclusion of stevia caused each sip to end on a flavor repellent enough for me to decide to not purchase again. Anyone who’s ever seen how much sugar is in a lemonade recipe can understand the hesitation to make sugar the only sweetener in a citrus soda, but it’s hard to not imagine how spectacular Simple 7UP could have tasted if they had kept it even simpler.

Purchased Price: $6.49
Size: 12 pack (12 oz cans)
Purchased at: Ralphs
Rating: 5 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 can) 110 calories, 0 grams of fat, 40 milligrams of sodium, 28 grams of total carbohydrates, 28 grams of total sugars, and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Shamrock Macchiato

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Layers

No, it’s not mint flavored.

I assume this is the answer to the first question that popped into your head when you saw the product name. And it’s a reasonable thing to ask: Dunkin’ introduced the Shamrock Macchiato in a news release only two days after the iconic St. Patrick’s Day shake with the same moniker and color returned to McDonald’s.

I love mint and coffee together, so I was let down to learn this beverage instead contained the preexisting (albeit seasonal) Irish Creme flavor swirl with a clover-hued makeover. Still, I think Irish cream is delicious and I love that this swirl lets me enjoy the taste of it sans alcohol, so my disappointment quickly dissipated as I became eager to see how it complemented a macchiato.

As I mentioned, the Irish Creme swirl is a bright, grassy green this year. It was drizzled into 2% milk (the default at that store) in the bottom half of my to-go cup, which lightened the shade to a pastel. With the espresso on top, there was a unique color blocking effect that would cause a few rubbernecks from passersby, but I honestly didn’t find the combination of colors all that attractive.

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Top

I’ve heard of people drinking a simple two ingredient cocktail of Bailey’s and milk, and I totally get it now. I took a sip of just the Irish Cremed milk before mixing the two halves, and it was rich and delicious. Dunkin’ definitely got the essence of Irish cream right and did a great job mimicking the taste and slight burn of the alcohol in this swirl. However, the sweetness of the syrup with whatever was used to give it a faux whiskey flavor oddly gave it notes of cherry and almond that, while tasty, would make more sense in an Amaretto flavor swirl.

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Mixed

Once mixed, the macchiato took on a nauseous green tinge that made it look like it had eaten some bad oysters. Luckily it tasted way better than it looked, and I think it was a smart move to add Irish Creme to a macchiato. The strong and bitter espresso toned down the sweetness of the swirl and made it more balanced than it would be in a drink made with Dunkin’s thinner and milder coffee. The Irish Creme paired nicely with the espresso and milk as one would expect, but the swirl may have tasted even more like the real thing if the drink had been made with whole milk since Irish cream is, well, creamier.

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Top 2

If you can overlook the misleading name, the occasional discomfort of feeling like you’re breaking the law as you drink it in the car, and the sickly green hue upon stirring, give this macchiato a try. I wouldn’t say it sham-rocks, but it’s clo-very good.

Purchased Price: $5.05
Size: Medium
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (With whole milk) 280 calories, 6 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 3.5 grams of saturated fat, 20 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 48 grams of total carbohydrates, 45 grams of total sugars, 0 grams of fiber, and 8 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Ruffles Flamin’ Hot Cheddar & Sour Cream Potato Chips

Ruffles Flamin Hot Cheddar  Sour Cream Potato Chips Bag

I feel comfortable sharing something rather controversial with you all: I can’t stand Cheetos, crunchy or puffed. (Feel free to express your outrage in the comments.)

As the tastebuds of my peers developed to handle Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, I was envious that there wasn’t a Flamin’ Hot food for me to call my own. Luckily Frito-Lay began to add the seasoning to other munchies, and I could finally join my friends in doling out some bright red high fives. The newest snack to stain my fingers is the Ruffles Flamin’ Hot Cheddar & Sour Cream Potato Chips.

Ruffles Flamin Hot Cheddar  Sour Cream Potato Chips Lebron

The bag says the flavor is by LeBron James and it features a large photo of him and some inspirational words that tie into Ruffles’ “Own Your Ridges” campaign. I’m not sure if the flavor was LeBron’s idea or if he just supports Ruffles Flamin’ Hotting its cheddar and sour cream potato chip, but with the popularity of Flamin’ Hot snack foods in Los Angeles, a partnership with the Lakers star makes perfect sense.

Ruffles Flamin Hot Cheddar  Sour Cream Potato Chips Inside Bag

In the bag, the chips smelled very similar to the regular Cheddar & Sour Cream but with an added vinegary tang. They had that same richly colored Flamin’ Hot powder that coats other chips and puffs, and it was a generous covering that made the not hot version seem under-dusted by comparison.

Ruffles Flamin Hot Cheddar  Sour Cream Potato Chips Red Not Red

True to the name, these tasted like a Flamin’ Hot version of the Cheddar & Sour Cream Ruffles. Cheese and sour cream have long been standard accompaniments for spicy foods, and the pairing made just as much sense on these chips. The Flamin’ Hot powder felt comfortably at home with the cheddar and sour cream dust, but also switched things up a bit. Unlike the regular Cheddar & Sour Cream, which is very cheese flavor-forward, the acidic coating on the Flamin’ Hot version really brought out the sour cream, which was a welcome change for this fan of sour ‘n’ spicy foods. Additionally, Ruffles are robust chips and really hold their own when given the Flamin’ Hot treatment. I loved the substantial crunch and full potato taste of the chip underneath all that zesty seasoning.

Ruffles Flamin Hot Cheddar  Sour Cream Potato Chips Red

Like other Flamin’ Hot snacks I’ve tried, the spice level disarmed me by being minimal at first but then building after a serving or two. Even then, these chips never noticeably burned my mouth or stomach, and I only realized they were getting to me once my nose started to run. Others may wish these Ruffles were more picante, but I feel like they had the right amount of heat to allow one to eat them by the handful without a night of heartburn.

On that note, it seems I almost finished the entire bag as I wrote this review. Bright red high five to whoever can tell me the best way to get Flamin’ Hot Cheetle out of a laptop keyboard.

Purchased Price: $3.49 (on sale, originally $4.79)
Size: 8 oz bag
Purchased at: Ralphs
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (28 grams/about 13 chips) 160 calories, 10 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 15 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 1 gram of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.