REVIEW: Tostitos Hint of Guacamole Tortilla Chips

Tostitos Hint of Guacamole Tortilla Chips Bag

What are Tostitos Hint of Guacamole Tortilla Chips?

The next evolution of Frito-Lay’s “Hint of” Tostitos is good ol’ guac.

How are they?

Tostitos Hint of Guacamole pack a big flavor for a chip that only promises a little. They’re essentially “Hint of Doritos,” and for that reason, I loved them.

There’s a fresh avocado taste despite no avocado in the ingredient list, which was a bit weird. I guess that’s an expense thing? Either way, the taste came through.

Tostitos Hint of Guacamole Tortilla Chips Bowl

There’s a nice “hint of” heat that I was able to decipher, and then confirm, as jalapeno. The flavor reminded me a bit of Jalapeno Fritos, which I can absolutely demolish in one or two sittings.

I also noticed a – I guess the name really fits – a “hint of” cheese, which the ingredients confirmed as cheddar and Swiss. I wasn’t expecting that, but it definitely enhanced the overall flavor.

These have all the elements of a great guacamole. Except for peas, which everyone knows is the key ingredient to a great guacamole dip. (Relax internet, I’m just kidding… although I would try that with zero remorse.)

Anything else you need to know?

Tostitos Hint of Guacamole Tortilla Chips Closeup

Tostitos Hint of Lime might be my favorite tortilla chip, but the size and shape are annoying. You can easily break them into pieces, but let’s be real, we all try to shove the entire massive triangle into our mouths in one bite.

Hint of Guac are the ideal size. I don’t dip flavored chips, so I want them to be snackable, and I gotta give Frito-Lay credit for opting to make these “bite sized rounds.”

As I mentioned above, some chips are so caked in flavor, they might as well be guacamole-flavored Doritos – a variety I know exists, but has somehow eluded me my entire life. Maybe if enough people like these, Frito-Lay will take the hint and make those a year-round release.

Conclusion:

Tostitos Hint of Guacamole Tortilla Chips Bag Bowl

Despite the mild spice and an overload of sodium, I found these deliciously snackable.

I think I’ve had most of the “Hint of” line, and would probably slot these just under Lime. I’d actually really like to try mixing these, Queso, and Lime together for a big “Hint of” Mexican dinner flavored mix. Someone test that out and get back to me.

Purchased Price: $4.29
Size: 12 oz
Purchased at: Acme
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (20 Chips) 150 calories, 8 grams of fat, 0 gram of trans fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 150 milligrams of sodium, 17 grams of total carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of total sugars, 1 gram of fiber, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Twisted Lime Doritos

Twisted Lime Doritos Bag

What are Twisted Lime Doritos?

Provided you’ve had Doritos at some point in your life, you probably already get the basic premise here: America’s favorite flavored tortilla chip (according to me, but not like, science or polling or anything) gets a lime twist. Earlier this year, Doritos introduced Flamin’ Hot Limón Doritos, which makes me think that this is its version of a less violent baby-brother, you know, with no prison rap sheet and fewer face tattoos.

How is it?

I have a culinary aversion to things labeled as “EXTREME!” or “TWISTED!” (insert face-shredding guitar solo.) I do not want my snacks to be aggressive or be, in any fashion, “to the max!!!” So, I’ll admit: I wasn’t expecting to like these Twisted Lime Doritos. (And I say this as someone who would consider emblazoning my tombstone with “he liked Doritos more than an adult man should.”) But guess what? These were fantastic!

Twisted Lime Doritos Closeup

It was almost as if Doritos took a pared-down Cool Ranch base, infused it with a hint of lime, then made the resulting chip prance through a field of jalapeños. I wasn’t expecting the ranchiness and the heat, but it was all right there in the ingredients list: jalapeño powder, buttermilk, and sour cream. All of these things coalesced in just the right amounts resulting in a fine new offering to the Frito-Lay family.

Anything else you need to know?

The tanginess from the lime is perfect without being overwhelming, but also, THE HEAT! These chips pack a punch. It’s a slow-building burn that takes a few seconds to hit, but once it does, you’re gonna need a quick swig of animal milk to put out the fire. This also came as a surprise, which, well, I suppose it shouldn’t have, given that the packaging is adorned with flames.

Conclusion:

While I’m not sure this is a new Everyday Dorito (see: Nacho Cheese, Spicy Nacho Cheese, Cool Ranch), this is a great model to take out for the occasional weekend spin (Taco, Spicy Sweet Chili). You know, supposing its kept around for any length of time.

Purchased Price: $1.69
Size: 2.75 ounce bag
Purchased at: QuikTrip
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (Per Bag) 400 calories, 20 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 gram of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 510 milligrams of sodium, 48 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of dietary fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 5 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Smartfood Caramel & Cinnamon Apple Mix Popcorn

Smartfood Caramel  Cinnamon Apple Mix

What is Smartfood Caramel & Cinnamon Apple Mix Popcorn?

It’s a new seasonal mix that combines caramel popcorn with cinnamon apple-flavored popcorn. While the cinnamon apple is a new flavor, the caramel one can be found in Smartfood’s Caramel & Cheddar Mix Popcorn. According to the folks at Frito-Lay, it’ll be available during the fall and winter months.

How is it?

Well, it depends on how you eat it. Much like Smartfood’s Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix that came out during the summer, I had to be mindful of what I pulled out of the bag.

Smartfood Caramel  Cinnamon Apple Mix Closeup

There are two types of pieces — lightly seasoned apple cinnamon kernels and heavily coated caramel kernels. Visually, the ratio looks like it’s two apple cinnamon kernels for every one caramel.

Although there are more of them, try to avoid eating only the apple cinnamon pieces because their flavor is too faint. They’re so unsatisfying that if someone gave me a bag of only those kernels, I’d hand the bag back to them, remove them from my holiday card list forever, block them on Facebook, and spurn any future greetings from them in public.

However, when eaten with the caramel-coated popcorn, the apple cinnamon flavor is exponentially better, making it hard to put down the bag. There’s some seasoning on the confection coated pieces, but they’re there because they happen to share the same bag with the other. There’s also a pleasant butteriness that makes my mind think pie crust. So, yes, this tastes like apple pie-flavored popcorn.

Anything else you need to know?

If you ever wanted to huff an apple pie, but couldn’t because of the logistics of it, this bag will help you accomplish that. It smells so wonderful that the scent should be available as a candle because strapping this bag to my face using binder clips and a rubber band is probably not safe.

Along with this seven-ounce bag with a $3.99 suggested retail price, there’s also a two-ounce bag with a $1.89 suggested retail price. But don’t mess around with the smaller one. Go for the bigger bag. Your mouth won’t regret it.

Conclusion:

I love Smartfood’s Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix, but I love this Caramel & Cinnamon Apple Mix more. I’m disappointed it’s seasonal. But since it tastes like apple pie, it could come back during the Fourth of July-apple pie season.

DISCLOSURE: I received free samples of the product. Thanks, Frito-Lay! Doing so did not influence my review.

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 7 oz bag
Purchased at: Received from Frito-Lay
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 1/2 cups) 140 calories, 8 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 105 milligrams of sodium, 16 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 6 grams of sugar, and 1 gram of protein.

REVIEW: Cheetos Mac ‘N Cheese Cups

Cheetos Mac  N Cheese Cups

I’m as angry red as the Flamin’ Hot version of Cheetos Mac ‘N Cheese (there are also Bold & Cheesy and Cheesy Jalapeno varieties).

For years, I’ve been longing for Cheetos-flavored seasoning to be bottled so that we all can sprinkle some Cheetle on whatever our taste buds desire. But here we are with a Cheetos-flavored powdery substance, but it’s not bottled. Instead, I have to mix it with cooked noodles and water to make mac ’n cheese in a cup.

WHY CAN’T WE HAVE NICE THINGS, LIKE BOTTLED CHEETOS SEASONING!

(Oh, Cheetle is the official term for what we’ve all called Cheeto Dust. Since Cheetos sent me these, I thought I’d be courteous and use the correct terminology.)

Can you imagine topping pasta with Cheetos seasoning instead of grated parmesan cheese? Or maybe put it on McDonald’s French fries, scrambled eggs, potato chips, hash browns, chili, anything from Taco Bell, anything made by Chef Boyardee, a Costco hot dog, Costco pizza, Costco rotisserie chicken, the frozen cauliflower crust pizza I always pick up from Costco…

Sorry, as you can see, I’ve imagined a life with Cheetos seasoning for a long time, and I often shop at Costco.

Cheetos Mac ’N Cheese is available in these single-serve cups, but they’re also sold as box dinners that involve doing more than adding water and mixing.

Cheetos Bold  Cheesy Mac  N Cheese Cups

The Bold & Cheesy variety is pretty much the adjective-heavy way of saying original Cheetos flavor. Does it taste like the beloved snack? It does, but it’s a bit unsatisfying to get the famous cheesiness this way. I’ll explain more after I go through all the varieties. But this one is my favorite of the three.

Cheetos Cheesy Jalapeno Mac  N Cheese

Cheesy Jalapeno is a Cheetos variety I’ve eaten twice, but I can’t remember the last time I had it or how it tastes. So I don’t know if this mac ’n cheese’s flavor comes close to it. It has a strong jalapeno scent and taste that’s slightly more potent than the cheese. It’s also a tad spicy, but not as much as the Flamin’ Hot one. As I ate it, I kept thinking chile con queso.

Cheetos Flamin Hot Mac  N Cheese

As for the Flamin’ Hot Mac ’N Cheese, it was, unfortunately, disappointing. It made me sweat a little, but I don’t know if it was the hot noodles or Flamin’ Hot seasoning that caused it. Also, it started off tasty, but about halfway through the cup, it became a bit bland, and the spiciness kind of fizzled. Also, and this might be just me, the angry red/Swedish Fish/B-movie blood color is a little off-putting.

The Bold & Cheesy and Cheesy Jalapeno varieties are decent, but with all three, it’s like I’m eating a cheesy Cup Noodles instead of mac ’n cheese. Look, I’ve had Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Cups, so I kind of expected the slightly watery texture of the sauce. But I feel like something that’s Cheetos flavored deserves better because most variations of the snack are addictive and hard to put down. I can’t say the same about these.

Cheetos Flamin Hot Mac  N Cheese Powder

They could be improved, though. Most of the appeal for Cheetos is its cheesiness, but there’s also the crunch factor, which these lack. Yes, we could add some of the crunchy snack ourselves, but it would be easier for Frito-Lay to include some crushed Cheetos that we could use like bread crumbs to top the mac ‘n cheese. I’m pretty sure the folks there have no problem getting access to tons of the stuff.

As I mentioned earlier, Cheetos Mac ’N Cheese is also available in boxes that call for butter and milk to prepare them, which seems like you’ll get a better end result. So I’d recommend purchasing those instead of these single-serve cups.

DISCLOSURE: I received free samples of the product. (Thanks, Cheetos!) Doing so did not influence my review.

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 2.32 oz cup (Bold & Cheesy), 2.25 oz cup (Cheesy Jalapeno), 2.11 oz cup (Flamin’ Hot)
Purchased at: Received from Cheetos
Rating: 6 out of 10 (Bold & Cheesy), 6 out of 10 (Cheesy Jalapeno), 4 out of 10 (Flamin’ Hot)
Nutrition Facts: (1 package) Bold & Cheesy – 240 calories, 5 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, less than 5 milligrams of cholesterol, 690 milligrams of sodium, 43 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 5 grams of sugar, and 7 grams of protein. Cheesy Jalapeno

REVIEW: Smartfood Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix

Smartfood Cap n Crunch s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix Bag

When I first heard about Smartfood’s Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix, I thought, “Why isn’t there a Cap’n Crunch Kettle Corn Mix?”

But after putting more thought than anyone should about the idea, I realized, “Do I REALLY want popcorn kernel hulls lodged into whatever scratches are made by the Cap’n Crunch cereal?”

Nope.

This less hurtful snack combines Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries from Quaker, owned by PepsiCo, with berry-flavored popcorn from Smartfood, also owned by PepsiCo. Because of the added kernel seasoning, it would be difficult to recreate this combo after its limited time is up with merely a bag of plain microwave popcorn and box of Oops All Berries.

But this is tasty enough that it should come back, or be a permanent addition to the Smartfood lineup.

Smartfood Cap n Crunch s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix Bag Closeup

Sadly, the popcorn itself isn’t colored like rainbow popcorn. Instead, at a quick glance, they look like plain popcorn. But there is a seasoning layer that makes the popped kernels look like they spent some time suntanning on the deck of the S.S. Guppy. That coating provides a noticeable amount of berry flavor and light saltiness. But it’s not enough to make the popcorn alone a satisfying snack or a product that should be added to the Smartfood lineup.

The Crunch Berries amp up the berry flavor to a level you’d get if you were, well, eating Crunch Berries cereal. I know. It’s a little anticlimactic. Maybe if I rephrase it with ship-speak? The cereal’s flavor hits the bow, stem, port, and starboard sides of my tongue full steam ahead with berry. It’s berry good.

While I find this snack to be wonderful, there is a minor, but correctable issue. When I first started eating it by blindly grabbing some from its bag, I’d feel for the cereal pieces and then feel for some popcorn before pulling out my hand. But almost every time, my fingers would pull out only popcorn. I guess the cereal piece I felt for slipped away somehow. Or I might have the worst luck or useless fingers. But being able to see the cereal pieces, pick one up, and then grab some popcorn helped tremendously.

While Smartfood Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries Popcorn Mix tastes pretty much like Crunch Berries, I did love having the two crunchy textures of popcorn and cereal at the same time in my mouth. Yes, this does seem like an odd combination, but I’m happy to report it works well.

DISCLOSURE: I received free samples of the product. (Thanks, PepsiCo!) Doing so did not influence my review, although it totally seems like it. But I assure you it did not.

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 6 1/4 oz bag
Purchased at: Received from PepsiCo
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 3/4 cups) 140 calories, 6 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 110 milligrams of sodium, 19 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 6 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Doritos Mountain Dew (Australia)

Mountain Dew Doritos  Australia Package

What are Doritos Mountain Dew?

Mountain-Dew-flavored Doritos from Australia – the land of megabats, and well, mega everything. Now they’re doing America in a big way, rolling an iconic snack combo into one product best enjoyed wearing a sleeveless flannel and cutoff shorts, in a monster truck speeding down a 2-lane road surrounded by wheat fields.

Mountain Dew Doritos  Australia Soda 2

How are they?

These were far better than I expected. I figured the citrus would work – there’s already lime-flavored chips in stores that are excellent. The sweetness was the question mark – Mountain Dew is SO sweet – could they pull off the right sweet/savory combo?

It ended up working really well because of the lemon-lime, I think. It gives it the tang and mouth-puckering quality that keeps it from being ALL sweet. It also gave it a bit of the sparkle of a carbonated beverage. Not exactly the bubbly sensation, but the light, bright citric acid that’s in nearly every soda.

These were just as addictive as any chip, but the novelty of the sweet are tart flavors was extra and I loved it.

Mountain Dew Doritos  Australia Chips 3

Anything else you need to know?

I’ve been told these chips DID exist in the US, back in 2008 as “Doritos Quest” mystery flavor. I completely missed those, but I would’ve paid more attention if they were called Doritos Mountain Dew. My head whipped right around this time, but “Doritos Quest” does nothing for me.

Apparently, there was also Doritos-flavored Mountain Dew called DEWitos in 2014 – tested in select colleges in the country. Comment below if you tried it!

WHY has no one here in the US of A thought to release a combo pack of Doritos Mountain Dew AND Dewitos? COME ON, AMERICA! Let’s get our heads in the junk food game here!

Mountain Dew Doritos  Australia Zesty 4

Conclusion:

Try them! They’re fun, they’re weird, they taste good, and they’re AMERICA. Frito-Lay, we need these in every store here in the US!

Purchased Price: $25.00 plus shipping
Size: 80g bag
Purchased at: Desert Drinks & Exotics
Rating: 10 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (27g) 139 calories, 6.9 grams of fat, 0.7grams of saturated fat, 0.1 gram of trans fat, 41 milligrams of sodium, 16.9 grams of carbohydrates, 2.1 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.