Trader Joe’s Sea Salted Saddle Potato Crisps

A few summers ago, Trader Joe’s introduced a ton of mango-themed items into its repertoire, a trend that would continue for a few years until all that remains is Jerk Chicken Skewers with Mango Chutney. This post is not about Jerk Chicken Skewers with Mango Chutney. It is, however, about a new item that arrived this summer, this month, in fact, at Trader Joe’s. I’m sure we’ve all noticed that sometimes our beloved TJ’s gives things very goofy, but kinda accurate-in-that-same-goofy-way names.

This tube of knock-off Pringles is blindingly orange. You could use them as traffic cones.

Sea Salted Saddle Potato Crisps. They’re Pringles. Trader Joe’s own knock off Pringles, original flavor only, ten ingredients listed on the label. Of that ten, only two are things you might not be able to pronounce(corn maltodextrin and mono/digyclerides).

These come in a blindingly decorative tube with a green-skinned, mustachioed man in a flowered suit jacket and checked pant riding a horse, gripping its saddle. But there isn’t a horse, and the saddle is a Prin— potato crisp.

I haven’t had Pringles in a long, long time, so I’m not apt to compare how they stack up(and these are completely stackable, by the way), but their flavor is… well, it’s pretty good. You can smell the almost-potato(that’s dried potato) and rice flour(that’s rice flour) as they come to your mouth, and a hint of neutral oil hits the palate being barely noticeable and exquisitely tolerable. It’s sunflower oil, a neutral oil I like to cook with in place of canola and vegetable these days.

Delicious but pale in color, one might wonder if they're cooked thoroughly.

I will say, these look rough. Straight out of the tube, they look downright uncooked, and the subtle rocky texture scarring them from a hot sunflower oil bath looks a bit off putting. But then again… Pringles are like that too, yeah? But the original is more of a golden color, while these are an even tone of pale potato. These are so pale a relative of yours might be this color.

They’re definitely tasty though. For anybody into that not-quite chip but still fried potato feel, give these a shot. They’re almost McDonald’s fry-esque, as TJ’s Spud Crunchies before them were(though those felt a lot closer), so maybe its a Russet potato and oil taste. For somebody who doesn’t eat much snack food anymore, they’re salty. But each time I popped the lid on these, I did have to fight myself not to grab a few more; luckily they’re low on calories.

My verdict? Pick them up, pop them open, and maybe think about stopping. You won’t. But these don’t have a slogan, anyway, so you have nothing to feel bad about. Nobody’s teasing you for eating too many snacks here.

Also hey, those Jerk Chicken Skewers with Mango Chutney are seasonal, and they’re absolutely delicious.

Found at Trader Joe’s.

July 25, 2020
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