I don’t like starting this review with a dictionary definition, like a fourth grader begins his or her science presentation, but here I go.
According to the dictionary, the word “ultimate” means “being the best or most extreme example of its kind,” and I believe that was the definition Frito-Lay wanted associated with their new Ruffles Ultimate Potato Chips, which are thicker and have deeper ridges than regular Ruffles.
I’m no potato chip maker, heck I don’t even own a deep fryer, but I’m pretty sure Frito-Lay could’ve made these Ruffles Ultimate potato chips even more extreme.
Are these ridges really “the ultimate”? I’ve seen deeper ridges in light wavelength diagrams and Zen garden sand. Also, are the thickness of these chips really the thickest Frito-Lay could’ve gone? I don’t think so. They should’ve been so thick and crunchy that chewing on them with your mouth open creates booming sound waves that have ridges as deep as the chips themselves.
Ruffles Ultimate comes in two apostrophed flavors: Kickin’ Jalapeno Ranch and Sweet & Smokin’ BBQ.
Ruffles Ultimate Sweet & Smokin’ BBQ is made using three ingredients: potatoes, vegetable oil, and something called Sweet Smokin’ BBQ seasoning, which consists of about 20 ingredients. Those ingredients includes sugar, brown sugar, chipotle chili pepper, molasses, onion powder, tomato powder, paprika extracts, garlic powder, and honey.
Ruffles Ultimate Sweet & Smokin’ BBQ smell like Lay’s barbecue potato chips, and the two chips also kind of taste alike. However, these Ruffles Ultimate chips have a little heat and smokiness to them, thanks to the chipotle. The spiciness isn’t noticeable at first, but your mouth will begin to feel it after the second or third chip. They have less heat than the Doritos Jacked Smoky Chipotle BBQ, so having your Brita pitcher at the ready is unnecessary. The chips are also a little sweet, thanks to the sugar, brown sugar, molasses, and honey, but they’re more spicy than sweet.
Ultimately, the Ruffles Ultimate Sweet & Smokin’ BBQ potato chips are a tasty, crunchy snack, but they don’t rock my snacking socks off. Its flavor is too similar to other barbecue Frito-Lay chips and, while the ridges are bigger, you’re getting an ounce less of chips per bag than the 9-9.5 ounce bags of regular Ruffles at about the same price. So I don’t consider these chips to be the ultimate, instead I think they’re unremarkable.
(Disclosure: I received this bag of Ruffles Ultimate Sweet & Smokin’ BBQ for free from Frito-Lay. I also received a bag of the other flavor, but that was already reviewed by another reviewer, who paid for it. I also received a jar of Ruffles Ultimate Smokehouse Bacon dip for free, but I’m probably not going to review that. I also received a rash from something, but I don’t know from what.)
(Nutrition Facts – 1 ounce – 160 calories, 90 calories from fat, 9 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 330 milligrams of potassium, 16 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)
Item: Ruffles Ultimate Sweet & Smokin’ BBQ
Size: 8 ounces
Purchased at: Received from Frito-Lay
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Tasty. Crunchy. Slight smoky heat from chipotle. Light sweetness. Not called Ruffles Extreme.
Cons: Unremarkable. Tastes too similar to other Frito-Lay chips. Ridges and thickness weren’t as ultimate as they could’ve gone. Chewing with your mouth open. Beginning a review with a dictionary definition.