This beloved aisle in conventional and high end grocery stores alike, inevitably makes its way to everyone’s heart (through their stomachs). The chip aisle offers an abundant assortment of everyone’s favorite indulgent snack. Today, brands are doing a stellar job of catering to the new health trends and overall dietary needs of the masses by incorporating new, interesting oils into their recipes or just simply changing the main ingredient (which was once limited to just corn or potato.) A consumer now sees everything from root vegetables (notably done well by Forager) to chickpeas, to beans, to sweet potatoes, to rice. There is something for everyone (and more importantly, every diet).
One notable shift is how Avocado Oil replacing the previous big hit, Olive Oil. Various brands have jumped on this healthy oil kick such as chip industry darlings, Boulder Canyon and Kettle Brand Chips. Avocado Oil offers up benefits such as a heathy dose of Oleic Acid (a uniquely healthy omega 9 acid,) it has properties that lower cholesterol in your blood, has a high amount of Lutein (which is eye health happy) and the additional benefits for skin health are endless.
We’re also noticing an increase in the varied amount of new flavors being added to the lineup. The list for different BBQ names alone could be a page long. Lay’s has created a reputation for coming up with fun and bizarre flavors over the years, such as Shrimp Cocktail and Southern Biscuits and Gravy, but are now in good company when it comes to testing the flavor chord. Kettle Brand stood out in particular with their news flavors on such as Dill Pickle, Pepperoncini, Hawaiian BBQ (with avocado oil), Sriracha and Maple Bacon. Other brands, both in specialty stores and in private label, such as Simple Truth, are jumping on the bandwagon as well with irresistibly unique flavors.
THINKING OUTSIDE THE POTATO
Another big standout on shelf is the new ingredients coming to the table in chip form. What once used to be corn tortilla or potato slice filled category, is now a diverse and colorful array of different vegetables and legumes. Forager has beautiful new packaging for their Organic Roots, Greens and Beets chips. Saffron Road has a Baked Lentil Chip in delicious flavors such as Cucumber Dill to accompany their Chickbean Crisps in equally tasty flavors. Rhythm Superfoods and Alive and Radiant are utilizing nutritionally dense kale as a crunchy chip-like snack that are incredibly hard to put down (when you add nacho cheese, forget about it!) Lastly, many brands, in particular, Beanito’s has a play on a very dippable tortilla-looking chip that is instead bean based with loads of fiber and other nutrients. As one can see, the chip aisle has added levels of intrigue and depth. Everyone can now find a healthily indulgent savory snack, without the worry of calorie counts or dietary restrictions. To chip or not to chip? I think there’s an easy answer!