I’m not much of a gambler. I’ve been to Las Vegas once, a couple of years ago on a work trip, and I played (and lost) $5 in the hotel casino slot machine just so I could say I did it. It’s not that I don’t like risk; I will skydive or play basketball with brittle 40-year-old man knees or scream obscenities at a bull in Pamplona any day of the week. What I don’t like about gambling is the part where I am forced to part with money (mostly) due to things outside of my control.
But what about gambling with food? I do plenty of that, actually. I’ll eat pizza that was accidentally left out on the counter all night and slather my sandwiches with mayonnaise well north of its expiration date. As a young man brimming with virulent stupidity, I once ate a chicken tender from a trashcan on Bourbon Street. So is an extremely hot Cool Ranch Doritos any worse? (Well, okay— it’s undoubtedly safer than Trashcan Chicken, that’s for sure.) Let’s discuss.
The original Doritos Roulette chip — of the nacho cheese ilk — debuted in the US in 2015. (It’d been available abroad the year prior.) To the delight of spicy snack fans, they resurfaced last year in their original nacho incantation. But with the recent advent of Flamin’ Hot Cool Ranch Doritos, it seemed fated that Frito-Lay would eventually try its hand at Cool Ranch Roulette. So is it worth the gamble?
If you like Cool Ranch Doritos and don’t mind hot, you’ll like these chips. But how hot do they get, you’re wondering? Pretty hot. Like, really pretty hot, but not, “My nose and eyes are leaking, and I’m rethinking some of my life’s decisions, and why did I put off meeting with that guy about the living will. He said that the consultation was free unless they actually drafted paperwork” hot. Fresh jalapeño hot, but not 7 Pot Douglah hot. (It’s a pepper, look it up.) The heat is intense and lingering, and it is almost immediate.
The first chip I had was a regular Cool Ranch, and as I reached for a second, I wondered, how many hot chips are there in this bag? Is it like, 1 out of 10? 1 out of — and then as soon as I bit the second chip, my lips were burning, followed almost immediately by my tongue. Alarming as this was, it didn’t hold up statistically. I ate five or six chips before I got another hot one. (You know, just enough time for your mouth to begin feeling sort of okay again.) And really, that seemed to be about the ratio -— one out of every six or seven chips was burny.
It’s also worth noting that just because you liked the Flamin’ Hot Cool Ranch Doritos, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll like these. The FHCRD are a bit tangier and have more of a hot sauce burn, if you will, while this is much more of a pepper-based heat. Another reason that I enjoyed these more? If you have a kid who can’t yet read, it makes for a cheap laugh. (And it may also deter them from stealing your precious snacks.)
Purchased Price: $3.00
Size: 9.75 oz bag
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (12 chips) 150 calories, 8 grams of fat, 1 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of dietary fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar, 0 grams of added sugars, and 2 grams of protein.