Product: Corn Nuts Chips (Flavor Reviewed: Santa Fe Ranch)
Purchased at: Grocery Outlet (Lakewood)
Price: 50 cents a bag
Marisa’s Take: The last time we reviewed a Corn Nuts product (which was also one of our first reviews), mainly I ragged on the chipotle flavor fad and a amusing/euphemism-filled 90s era radio ad campaign (which I still find myself singing in terribly inappropriate places, like grocery stores and public transit). While ashamedly, I am a fan of Corn Nuts, we’d figure we’d try a new kind we spotted recently for 50 cents at our local Grocery Outlet.
If regular Corn Nuts weren’t hardcore enough for you (sidenote: if you thought a great way of removing loose baby teeth was the string-on-a-doorknob trick, try Corn Nuts), now you have a more mouth friendly option. They are called Corn Nuts “Chips”, but a more accurate description would be “Mini Corn Disks”. The chips are ground corn, fashioned into a little discus, a bit smaller than a dime. While the chip moniker may allude to large flat tortilla triangles that are dippable (with salsa, queso or whatever you choose) but these are just a variation on the familiar Corn Nuts we’ve come to know and love (everyone loves Corn Nuts, right…right?).
As far as the taste goes, since the ingredients are the same, they’re essentially the same as Ranch Corn Nuts. However, in regard to the texture, in a parallel universe, they would be marketed as Albuquerque Ranch Fritos Circles. They’re very similar to the corn chips and would be probably be awesome in a Frito Pie variation.
Ben’s Take: I’m quite useless whenever a Corn Nuts product comes my way. Their high concentrations of salty flavor and maximum tooth shattering crunch cause the rational and objective centers of my brain to shut down. I become extremely impulsive and just pile them into my face (or basket, and then into my face) without regard for how ridiculous I might look, or the potential health implications of consuming that much sodium.
Interestingly I really don’t care about Fritos. Even the spicy chili flavor. You would think a pulverized fried corn product that’s loaded with salt would cause me to go crazy but I find their size and shape rather unappealing. I really didn’t know what to think when Marisa explained that these were basically almost-dime-sized Fritos.
The small form factor of the Corn Nuts chips really did have me worried. Would my near-universal love of Corn Nuts products be shattered by this foray into old and unexciting territories?
As it would turn out, it’s not the size of the wave chip, but the motion of the ocean total radness of the package. The size of the chips actually allows more of that cool ranch flavor to coat the toasty and extra crunchy corn center making them even more flavor packed than any Frito ever dreamed about being. The undippable size even works to the chip’s advantage because they don’t shatter and turn into spiky corn dust unlike their bigger counterparts. Instead they allow you go venture into the unexplored chip frontier. On their own you can shovel handfuls into your mouth. In a salad, they’re the best croutons you’ve ever used. Even in chowder their texture holds up quite well and the ranch flavoring didn’t hurt the clams in the slightest. You just don’t want to coat these guys with anything because they’re so dang tasty.
The best part is: at $.50 a pack they’re cheaper than croutons and any other chip brand. I would eat handfuls of these everyday if I didn’t care about my health. Heck, I just might do that anyways.
Buy Corn Nuts Chips Santa Fe Flavor on Amazon.com!