REVIEW: Tostitos Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Tortilla Chips

Tostitos Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Chips Bag

What are Tostitos Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Tortilla Chips?

After years of simply giving us a “hint,” Frito Lay has decided to kick the lime flavor up a notch.

How are they?

Tostitos’ Hint of Lime are my favorite mass-produced tortilla chip. I eat them plain. I eat them with dips. I love em. They’re borderline perfection to me.

Guess what? Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Tostitos might actually be slightly better!?

Have you ever gotten a Hint of Lime chip that accumulated too much flavor dust? There are usually a few per bag, and it’s a nice surprise every time I get one. These are essentially that chip for an entire bag.

That might sound extreme, but don’t get too scared off by the word “sweet.” These aren’t cookies.

Tostitos Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Chips Closeup

There’s a nice balance between the sweet and salty, but they’re definitely fruitier than Hint. I honestly think they could have gotten away with just calling these “Lime and Sea Salt,” but it’s probably better that they gave everyone a heads-up.

If Hint of Lime taste like 3/4 salt and 1/4 lime, these are just that recipe flipped. You might lose a bit of that overall “salt” flavor, if that makes sense, but they’re still equally great.

Anything else you need to know?

Tostitos Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Chips Single

One of the key reasons these might have a leg up is the shape. Bite Size rounds are better chips than normal Tostitos. If I’m eating chips, I wanna be able to eat them in one bite. I’m not nibbling or breaking it beforehand. I take it as a challenge, and I feel like there’s always a risk of turning my lips into Heath Ledger Joker’s when I cram a giant triangle Tostito into my mouth.

I also find Bite Size better for dipping. Despite being smaller, they seem more structurally sound. These chips don’t even need a dip, but I tried them with salsa, and no shock, they work great.

Conclusion:

Tostitos Sweet Lime and Sea Salt Chips

All told, Sweet Lime and Sea Salt aren’t super different from Hint of Lime, so I’m curious what Frito Lay’s long-term plans are. They seem a bit redundant, but Frito has never been afraid of redundancies. How much different is a Classic Lay’s chip and Lightly Salted?

I hope these are a mainstay, and I look forward to switching between them and Hint of Lime all summer.

Purchased Price: $3.50
Size: 11 oz bag
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, 190 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of total sugars, 1 gram of fiber, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Tostitos Habanero Tortilla Chips

Tostitos Habanero Tortilla Chips Bag

What are Tostitos Habanero?

Following up on last year’s super delicious Hint of Spicy Queso and the just-okay Hint of Guacamole, the latest crispy circle from Tostitos drops the “Hint” and brings the heat with habanero-flavored bite-size rounds.

How are they?

Tostitos Habanero Tortilla Chips Closeup

Continuing along the path of Spicy Queso’s cheesy footsteps, these Habanero rounds are excellent. The immediate comparison that jumped at me is Salsa Verde Doritos. They have the same authentic and richly deep pepper taste as that Doritos variety, but with a sweeter and more tomato-y flavor that gives them their own unique presence in the Frito-Lay spicy chip hierarchy. It’s that extra layer of acidity, like the difference between white rice and orange Mexican rice, that really makes the flavor stand out.

Anything else you need to know?

For a chip claiming to be habanero-flavored, they aren’t nearly as hot as I was expecting, but that doesn’t take away from how delicious they are. Their heat is a far cry from the brand’s Flamin’ Hot staple, but I find it even more impressive that they taste great and peppery in a way that isn’t just heat.

Conclusion:

If you’re looking to set your mouth on fire in the way eating a raw habanero would, this may let you down, but I’m hooked. I’ll take flavor over fire any day and these still have just enough heat to make my tongue tingle with an authentic peppery sweetness that makes them undeniable.

Purchased Price: $3.50 (on sale)
Size: 11 oz bag
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (20 chips/28 grams) 150 calories, 8 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 180 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar, 2 grams of protein.

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: Tostitos Artisan Recipes Tortilla Chips (Fire-Roasted Chipotle and Roasted Garlic & Black Bean)

Tostitos Artisan Recipes Fire-Roasted Chipotle and Roasted Garlic & Black Bean

Poor Tostitos. They’re like the pink Corvette of the Barbie world: oh, sure, little girls play with the Corvette all the time, but only when Barbie’s having a Thelma & Louise-esque adventure with her best friend Teresa or Barbie, Trichelle, Chandra, and Zahara (what is with these names?) are going on a shopping trip. Otherwise, the Corvette stays parked off to the side, lonely and forgotten. The only little girls who play with the Corvette alone are the ones that may grow up wearing flannel shirts and favoring mullets.

The point I’m trying to make here is that, while other Frito-Lay products like Doritos and Cheetos get flavor makeovers approximately once every six seconds, Tostitos remains stalwart in its commitment to be just a tortilla chip, a vessel for you to dunk into the ten different varieties of Tostitos-branded dips. Oh sure, there’s some variety – you can get them round, multigrain, even with a hint of jalapeño or lime, but Tostitos will never coat your fingers with a thick layer of flavor dust.

However, Tostitos will be naked no more, thanks to their new line of Artisan Recipes. Somebody’s little brother stole the pink Corvette, and now it’s in a demolition derby with a Tonka backhoe and a monster truck named “The Crusher.” Good luck to you, pink Barbie Corvette.

Oh, right, we’re talking about chips, not reliving my childhood. The Artisan Recipes line only has two flavors for now: Fire-Roasted Chipotle and Roasted Garlic & Black Bean. I am assuming, depending on their level of success, that more flavors will be forthcoming.

I’ll let Frito-Lay’s press release do the explaining: “Tostitos Artisan Recipes offers tortilla chip fans an exciting new twist on this popular snack. Each flavor is made from high-quality whole-white corn and real ingredients like black beans, garlic and chipotle peppers that are baked in before cooking for a truly one-of-a-kind flavor.”

Ohhh, I get it now! The twist here is that the flavors are baked in. Tostitos is crashing the flavor party with an innovative idea – flavorful chips without the messy fingers. Chips for grown-ups! Or, at least, chips for grown-ups who have enough dignity not to suck the inches of flavor dust off their fingers in public. I don’t fall into that category, but I’ll give these chips a try anyways.

Fire-Roasted Chipotle

Tostitos Artisan Recipes Fire-Roasted Chipotle Chip

Let’s start with the good: Artisan Recipe Tostitos have a great texture. They are thinner and more delicate than regular Tostitos, with a nice, light crunch as you chew them. The tortilla taste is also very pleasant; they taste a lot like regular Tostitos, but with more of a pronounced grain flavor. This is because, unlike regular Tostitos (I consider Restaurant Style to be the de facto standard Tostitos), Artisan Recipes have eight more grains besides the standard whole white corn. Some of those grains include whole rye, barley, and triticale. I had to look up exactly what triticale is. Apparently science wanted to make wheat and rye have a baby, and triticale was the result. I don’t know why this was something that needed to happen, but regardless, it did, and now it’s in my stomach.

All these grains smashed together make a tasty chip, but that’s also a problem – where’s the chipotle? I had to get through chip number three before I could taste a bit of spice and feel any heat building up on the back of my tongue. I kept waiting for the smoky pepper flavor of chipotle to emerge, but it never did. Just a bit of spice and that little touch of heat at the end.

Artisan Recipes’ whole schtick is that the flavor is baked in, but there’s still flavor dust on the chips. It’s definitely more subtle than, say, a Nacho Cheese Dorito, but my fingers definitely had little red flecks on them along with the salt. I can’t call Tostitos a liar, because they never say outright that all the flavor is “baked in”, but they do fail to mention that it’s getting a little support from flavor dust. And yet, even with the backup, the chipotle flavor fails to come through, which is disappointing.

Roasted Garlic & Black Bean

Tostitos Artisan Recipes Roasted Garlic & Black Bean Chip

Predictably, these have the same nice, delicate texture of the Fire-Roasted Chipotle, but unfortunately, they also have the same affliction: lack-of-flavoritis. Those big flecks must be the black bean that’s baked in, but in the ingredients list, they are dried black beans. How could that possibly bring in any flavor?

As for the roasted garlic, I managed to find approximately one out of every four chips that tasted like garlic powder. On some of these chips, you can actually see a faint orange powder, which is curious. In fact, maybe my mouth is just inventing flavors at this point in a desperate attempt at tasting something, but I got more of a really subtle cheese taste on the chips that didn’t taste like garlic powder. Even though I had to work to find the faintly garlic-flavored chips, when I did get one, I really enjoyed it.

I had high hopes for Artisan Recipes Tostitos. I was hoping to get some rich flavor from baked-in, authentic ingredients. And, honestly, if they hadn’t had such descriptive, delicious-sounding names, I would have given them high marks for being a light tortilla chip with a good crunch. I risk losing my Processed Foods Only membership card by saying this, but I found the addition of eight extra grains made for a more flavorful tortilla chip. Unfortunately, the chipotle lacked smokiness and had only a mild heat in regards to flavor, the black beans were sadly absent, and the garlic was hit-and-miss. That said, the subtlety of these flavors would add a little extra depth when dunked into a Tostitos-branded dip, but they shot themselves in the foot and made the chips too fragile to support most dips. Tostitos Artisan Recipes are great chips in both texture and tortilla/grain flavor, but don’t expect your taste buds to be lovingly caressed by chipotle, garlic, or black beans.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 ounce – Fire-Roasted Chipotle – 150 calories, 70 calories from fat, 8 grams of total fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 4.5 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 2.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 90 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, less than 1 gram of sugars, 2 grams of protein, 2% calcium, 2% iron, 2% thiamin, 2% riboflavin, 2% niacin, 2% vitamin B6, 6% phosphorus, 6% magnesium and 2% zinc. Roasted Garlic & Black Bean – 150 calories, 70 calories from fat, 8 grams of total fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 4.5 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 2.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 90 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 0 grams of sugars, 2 grams of protein, 2% calcium, 2% iron, 2% thiamin, 8% riboflavin, 4% niacin, 4% vitamin B6, 4% phosphorus, 4% magnesium and 2% zinc.)

Item: Tostitos Artisan Recipes Tortilla Chips (Fire-Roasted Chipotle and Roasted Garlic & Black Bean)
Price: $3.49 and $2.49 (on sale, regularly $3.99)
Size: 9 ¾ oz. bags
Purchased at: Fry’s Foods and Safeway
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Fire-Roasted Chipotle)
Rating: 6 out of 10 (Roasted Garlic & Black Bean)
Pros: Good tortilla chip texture. Re-creating Thelma & Louise with Barbies. Lots of healthy, tasty grains. Demolition derbies. Garlic flavor on some chips was delicious. Chipotle delivered a little heat.
Cons: Chips didn’t live up to baked-in flavor promise. Little brothers stealing your Barbie Corvettes. Lack of smoky flavor in Fire-Roasted Chipotle. “Trichelle.” No black bean flavor.