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.

REVIEW: Ruffles Flamin’ Hot BBQ Potato Chips

Ruffles Flamin Hot BBQ Potato Chips Bag

What are Ruffles Flamin’ Hot BBQ Potato Chips?

The latest chips to churn out of the Ruffles factory bring together its ridged spud slices with a spicy BBQ flavor. It’s apparently the first time any Frito-Lay product has combined Flamin’ Hot – of Cheetos fame – with BBQ. This is being marketing-spun as Jayson Tatum’s (the basketball player featured on the bag) signature flavor as he hails from St. Louis, and it reminds him of his hometown barbecue.

How are they?

I’m giving props to the Ruffles flavor gurus because they know how to tantalize taste buds. At first blush, this flavor sounded boring and done before, but the eating experience was anything but lame.

Ruffles Flamin Hot BBQ Potato Chips Inside Bag

It was incredibly well-seasoned – not a bare piece of potato in sight – which helped ensure a flavorful eat. I was also really impressed by the size of each chip. Not just the fact that it wasn’t a bag of crumbs, but also that each piece was the perfect size to pop whole into my mouth – covering the majority of my taste buds in one bite for max flavor!

Ruffles Flamin Hot BBQ Potato Chips Closeup

The BBQ was practically perfection with its symphony of savory, sweet, and tangy notes. It definitely was dominant as the heat came up as an afternote. The spice built up, though, because I ate myself to a capsaicin-induced runny nose. So, if you pace yourself, you can control the heat level as the ‘cue tempers the spice, unlike the spicy wallop of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos on their own.

Anything else you need to know?

So far, I’m pretty impressed with the NBA and Ruffles collab line. I really enjoyed the Anthony Davis x Ruffles Lime & Jalapeno chips from last year.

Conclusion:

Whether you’re an avid NBA fan or not, these are worth picking up on your next snack run. If eight ounces is too much heat to commit to, you can find them in a single-serve size as well!

Purchased Price: $2.98
Size: 8 oz bag
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (about 11 Chips) 150 calories, 9 grams of fat, 0 gram of trans fat, 1.5 gram of saturated fat, 200 milligrams of sodium, 16 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of total sugars, 1 gram of fiber, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Ruffles Double Crunch Spicy Cheddar Jack Potato Chips

Ruffles Double Crunch Spicy Cheddar Jack Potato Chips Bag

What are Ruffles Double Crunch Spicy Cheddar Jack?

Double your pleasure, double your crunch, that’s the statement of the great chip, in Ruffles Double Crunch Spicy Cheddar Jack.

Ok, that intro didn’t work at all, but remember that fun gum jingle?!

How is it?

I’m a fan of any cheese with “Jack” in the name, whether it be Monterey, Pepper, Colby, or the titular Cheddar. If I see any of those as a menu option, it’s my burger cheese of choice, so naturally I liked the flavor of these chips.

I admit I don’t actually know what the “Jack” means, but the ingredients list Blue Cheese, Swiss, Parmesan, and Monterey Jack along with Cheddar and almost every powder in your spice rack.

Ruffles Double Crunch Spicy Cheddar Jack Potato Chips Bowl

They all merge into a flavor that’s about 2/3rds of the way to “Queso.” If I was blindfolded, I’d probably throw my hands up and guess “Jalapeno Cheddar,” so they deliver on their namesake.

As for the heat, I judge all spicy snacks on the “Flamin’ Hot” scale, and these are just below that. There’s an evenly dispersed, tolerable dry heat that smacks every inch of your mouth with the same intensity.

Anything else you need to know?

I live in constant fear of cracking a tooth, so take this with a grain of salt, but I don’t need my Ruffles to have double the crunch.

Ruffles Double Crunch Spicy Cheddar Jack Potato Chips Closeup

If Ruffles have ridges, these things have mountains and valleys. Who exactly was clamoring for more crunch from a Ruffle?

I know these aren’t the first Double Crunch Ruffle boasting “2x the crunch,” but they’re too hard and borderline stale tasting to me. It’s as if someone in the Frito-Lay factory screwed up while making Wavy Lay’s and just rolled with it.

If you broke down chip ridges by size, these would be a large, Wavy Lay’s would be medium and Ruffles would be a small. I like normal Ruffles best.

Conclusion:

I don’t think Ruffles needed to go the “Double Stuf Oreo” route, but if you’re in the mood for a chip with a kick that won’t leave you chugging Pepto, these are probably for you… and if you’re adventurous and like playing Russian Roulette with your molars, these are definitely for you.

Purchased Price: $2.98
Size: 7.25 oz
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (About 20 Chips) 140 calories, 8 grams of fat, 0 gram of trans fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 190 milligrams of sodium, 17 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of total sugars, 1 gram of fiber, 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Ruffles Double Crunch Honey Mustard Potato Chips

Ruffles Double Crunch Honey Mustard Potato Chips Bag

What are Ruffles Double Crunch Honey Mustard Potato Chips?

Ruffles adds to its extra crunchy repertoire a sweet and tangy honey mustard flavor.

How are they?

A fellow snack-lover recently told me that the only thing greater than the variety of potato chip flavors is the speed at which we consumers demand them. I would have to add that the only thing faster than our demand rate is the speed at which we buy. This commentary is not based in economics or science, but rather my speedometer reading as I rushed to the store in search of this product, which combines my loves of sweet, salty, and savory all in one bite.

Ruffles Double Crunch Honey Mustard Potato Chips Plated

These Ruffles perfectly recreate what I consider to be the ideal honey mustard profile: the tang of dark mustard balanced with bright, sweet honey. Faint hints of paprika and horseradish flavors contribute some spice without resulting in a building heat sensation. Although their bright yellow color would suggest otherwise, the chips are not overly-coated with seasoning. At first, I wanted a touch more mustard flavor, but now I think any more seasoning would risk overwhelming the chip, which is more delicate than its hardy pretzel cousin.

Although other varieties exist, I had never tried a Double Crunch product before, and now I am never going back. Similar to a kettle-cooked chip, the crunch of the deep, chevron-angled grooves is intensely satisfying. Along with big flavor and crunch, these Ruffles deliver a big chip; several were the size of my admittedly elfin palm.

Ruffles Double Crunch Honey Mustard Potato Chips Super Closeup

In short, these chips are tasty and addictive. A family member (a Sensible Eater who measures out salad dressing by the teaspoonful) and I demolished the bag in under 24 hours.

Anything else you need to know?

A Google search informed me that Ruffles released an Ultimate Tangy Honey Mustard flavor in 2013. Although I never had the opportunity to try them, the product images and ingredient list appear nearly identical to the Double Crunch variety. If you remember and pine for that product like a long-lost lover, the Double Crunch Ruffles may fill the hole in your chip-loving heart.

Conclusion:

Honey mustard fans of the world will happily set pretzels aside for this flavorful and addictive Double Crunch product.

Purchased Price: $2.50
Size: 7 3/4 oz. bag
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (per 28g/about 10 chips) 150 calories, 8 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 125 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Ruffles Baked Flamin’ Hot Potato Crisps

Ruffles Baked Flamin Hot Potato Crisps Bag

Frito-Lay’s Ruffles Baked is like Val Kilmer Batman. They’re both okay, but it hard to get excited when I know there are tastier options out there. Original Ruffles is like George Clooney Batman because both are hard to resist snacks. Nom nom nom. NOM.

If Ruffles Baked is like Val Kilmer Batman, then adding Flamin’ Hot seasoning to the potato crisps is like the addition of nipples on the Batsuit in Batman Forever. Both make things spicy.

I’ll admit I don’t regularly buy snacks from Frito-Lay’s Baked line, but I’m not dissatisfied when I do. But any Baked version of a Frito-Lay chip lacks the one thing fried chips have — addictiveness.

Okay, maybe addiction is too much on one side of the spectrum because I would not do unmentionable things to get my hands on a bag of Ruffles.

But, if a Ruffles Baked bag is placed in front of me, I’ll gladly munch on it. However, there’s an excellent chance there will still be some left. With, let’s say, a bag of regular Ruffles, there’s a 100 percent chance I will demolish that bag’s contents unless it’s taken away from me by force or if my doctor happens to be in the same room and he gives me a disapproving look.

Ruffles Baked Flamin Hot Potato Crisps Closeup

With that said, the familiar, slightly cheesy, and spicy Flamin’ Hot seasoning instantly makes these potato crisps my favorite variety in the Baked line that I’ve had so far, which I will admit is not many. Maybe four or five? And that doesn’t include the Cheetos Baked Flamin’ Hot.

But, even though these Ruffles are nicely coated in the red seasoning, it doesn’t completely hide the baked potato crisps’ flavor, which I’ve always thought tastes more like a cracker than a potato chip.

Ruffles Baked Flamin Hot Potato Crisps Closerup

Nevertheless, these crisps are hard to put down thanks to the flavor and heat from the red seasoning. But, oddly, I didn’t feel the need to put them down to drink something because, and maybe this is just my imagination, these don’t seem to be as spicy as regular Ruffles Flamin’ Hot or Flamin’ Hot Crunchy Cheetos.

While I very much enjoyed Baked Ruffles Flamin’ Hot, I can understand why others might not feel the same way because of the underlying crisp’s flavor. But, if you’re okay with Frito-Lay’s Baked line, which I imagine is a lot of people because it’s been around for years, then this is definitely worth a try.

DISCLOSURE: I received a free sample of the product. Doing so did not influence my review.

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 6 1/4 oz bag
Purchased at: Received from Frito-Lay
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (28 grams/about 11 crisps) 120 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 0.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 160 milligrams of sodium, 21 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.