The Better Chip: Product Review (+ the Joy the Baker Cookbook Giveaway Winner!)
Posted Mar 16 2012 9:08pm
As do many bloggers, I get regular offers to try products and potentially review them. I am always grateful, but I turn a lot of them down. For me to be comfortable reviewing a product it has to fit into the spirit of Kahakai Kitchen. Items that get reviewed have to relate to (or I have to be able to relate it to) food and cooking, and if it's food, it has to fit the "(mostly) healthy" label. That means that although it can be snack food or indulgent item, it needs to have whole, natural ingredients and not contain things I won't eat (high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors and scary preservatives, etc.). The first thing I do when I get a product sample offering is to go to the website and check out the ingredient list before even thinking about saying yes.
When a chance to try a new snack called The Better Chip , came about, a quick trip to their website was all it took for me to say yes. It said: "Made from double corn masa, 40% fresh veggies and enhanced with a smidgen of sea salt or natural seasoning for a better tasting and better dipping chip. We understand, not everyone appreciates better taste. Unfortunately for artificial ingredient lovers, we only use natural ingredients. No preservatives. No gluten. Nothing genetically modified. And no cholesterol. Simply better for you." Sounds good to me!
The ingredient labels backed up the claims and a couple of weeks later I received a box with two each of three of the four different chips in The Better Chip's product line; Sweet Onion and White Cheddar, Red Pepper and Salsa Fresca, and Jalapeño and Sea Salt, along with a tee-shirt. (There is a plain, Fresh Corn and Sea Salt chip that I didn't receive to try.)
I slowly, snacked, dipped and sampled my way through all three flavors and here is my feedback
Sweet Onion and White Cheddar: The website says, "We blended real, fresh onions into our double thick corn masa and then sprinkled on some naturally delicious white cheddar. The result: A sturdier, thicker, onionier chip that can handle any dip." I say: These were my favorite chip straight from the bag. The onion and light cheese gives these an almost sweet and savory taste that makes it hard to stop eating them. They do leave a slight bit of lingering onion breath, but it's worth the breath mint afterward to enjoy the natural oniony flavor.
Red Pepper and Salsa Fresca: The website says, "We really did blend real red bell peppers into our double thick corn masa. And then gave them a happy dusting of salsa fresca. So strong, tasty and crunchy, you won’t have to worry about leaving chip stragglers in your dip." I say: These chips on their own were slightly too "tomatoey" for me--the tomato flavor came through more on my palate than the red pepper. Dipping them into hummus however, greatly improved my feelings about them. They have the smallest hint of chile powder that works well with a creamy dip and I think they would be great dipped into or sprinkled on top of a a creamy soup
Jalapeño and Sea Salt: The website says, "Hey, don't blame us if your lips are on fire. We warned you. That’s what happens when you blend real jalapeños with double thick corn masa. Add to that a bit of sea salt and you’ve got a thicker, crunchier and ouchier chip that can take on any dip." I say, Ouchier is right! these are definitely spicy chips that provides a lingering heat on the lips and tongue. For those who like it spicy you can eat them plain. For me, they were just perfect with a small mound of guacamole as the cold creamy avocado puts out the fire, but the spicy jalapeño flavor still comes through loud and clear.
All of the chips are 130 calories for half the 2-oz bag (about 10 chips) with about 6 grams or 9% fat and no cholesterol. (The onion chips do have a sprinkling of white cheddar so there would be trace amounts of cholesterol in that variety--although not enough to register on the label.) They range from about 115 mg of sodium to 160 mg per serving and about 2g of fiber and protein. So, while no chip is health food of course, these aren't too bad for an occasional snack and are better both nutritionally and in flavor-wise than many chips out there. And, much as I love a good chip, and these are good, I'll be completely honest here and tell you that The Better Chip won my heart with the super soft, women's cut Nature Always Does It Better tee-shirt that they included in the box. ;-) I love comfy tee-shirts that are cut right.
Right now these chips are in limited stores and states (see where to buy here), but they hope and expect to grow.
For the drawing, a separate entry for each applicable comment went into a bowl and one name was drawn. Yes, we do it old-school here as I like the fun of drawing a name versus automatically generating one. (What can I say--I don't get out much!) ;-)
ATY's comment says "I saw her features in Sunset magazine this month and I'd love to try out her cook book. My favorite baked goods are cookies. I always have to have some type of cookie in the house."
Congratulations All Things Yummy! Please email me (@email@example.com) with your mailing address and I'll get the book out to you ASAP.
Note: Although the chips and tee-shirt, as well as the cookbook for the giveaway were provided to me from the companies, I received no monetary compensation for the reviews and my opinions as always, remain my own.