It’s hard to beat a good bag of chips. It’s the perfect side to a sandwich and the great snack at a party. It’s salt, starch, and some amalgam of lab-tested flavors that form an unnatural yet delicious morsel.
But, which chips deserve “best in the world” status? That’s hard to say. There are a lot of options out there from the piquant salt and vinegars to cheese dusted classics. Over at Ranker, they asked the world to throw down the crispy fried potato, tortilla, and what-ever-Pringles-are gauntlet for answers. A top ten emerged after nearly 100,000 votes. Warning: Salt and vinegar landed at 21 and the divinely crisp and well-flavored Kettle Chips hit 26th! People, people, people — Kettle Chips deserve a spot on all our BBQ tables, poker tables, and coffee tables while viewing sports or gaming or some such activity. They’re the ultimate in crunchy, salty, potato-y greatness. But, okay. 26th. Sure…
Anyway, let’s dive in and see where your favorite chips landed in the rankings.
10. SPICY SWEET CHILI DORITOS
The tenth place feels like a solid slot for a Dorito to sit. These tortilla chips have a decent balance of spice and sweet built right into each and every chip. They aren’t overpowering in either the spicy or sweet direction and make for a great base for some kickass homemade nachos.
9. ORIGINAL PRINGLES
Plain, old Pringles are a wonder food of the 20th century. The 42 percent potato based chip-like snack took the world by storm in the 1960s and hasn’t let up since. Plain — or Original — Pringles aren’t flashy. They’re not going to wow anyone at a party. But, you know, they get the job done when you need a starch and salt fix without overtaxing your taste buds.
8. SUN CHIPS HARVEST CHEDDAR
Sun Chips are at number eight. Kettle Chips are at number 26. Has the whole world gone mad? Okay, we’ll attribute this to Subway still selling Sun Chips with their footlong subs. Or maybe it’s the voter’s nostalgia for the 1990s. It’s hard to say really. The chips are made with a matrix of grains then rippled, fried, and seasoned. Throw on some Hole and pop open a bag and you’ll be feeling the dream of the 90s all over again.
7. LAY’S SOUR CREAM AND ONION
Now we’re getting into classics territory. If you grew up on plain potato chips, then sour cream and onion felt like the first real adventure into the wonders of potato chip flavors. They were a little dangerous. Salty! Onions! Velvety sour cream! Sour Cream and Onion were the gateway chip to bigger and bolder flavors. So, number seven feels like a good spot.
6. LAY’S CLASSIC
The word ‘classic’ is right in the name. These are the go to chips for any event from child birth to wakes and all that life has to offer in between. If anything, these chips should probably be ranked a little higher for their durability and adaptability. But in a world full of salty snacks, it’s a hard fight to the top.
5. PRINGLES SOUR CREAM AND ONION
Sour cream and onion again! We’re not the only ones who think Pringles are kinda weird, right? They’re a mix of potato, wheat starch, and rice, potato, and corn flours. Yet, for all their weirdness, they’re delicious. There’s a brittle crunch to the chips that works with the perfect thinness and uniform shape. You can’t help but get a sense of a sterile lab filled with lab coat wearing lab-people toiling to make the best chip the world will ever eat.
4. LAY’S BARBECUE
This is a tough one. We gotta say, a good barbecue chip can transport you to a sunny backyard with pints of potato salad and heaps of ribs piled high on picnic tables. But, Lay’s Barbecue chips? Lay’s are a great salt delivery system. But they’ve always felt too thin for a good barbecue chip. Something about piles of smoked meat and ranch dips calls for a chip with a little heft. You know, like a Kettle Chip.
3. RUFFLES CHEDDAR SOUR CREAM
Finally, some chips with a little character made the cut. Ruffles are the ridged-for-your-pleasure chips that deserve a spot on any pantry shelf. The double hit of cheesy ‘cheddar’ dusting with the smooth sour cream works wonders for this entry. Add in the texture of the ruffle and we have a winner that’s well deserving of the top three.
2. COOL RANCH DORITOS
Cool Ranch over Nacho Cheese Doritos is a bold choice, people of the world. On the one hand, Nacho Cheese Doritos are a stone-cold classic. On the other hand, Cool Ranch, yo! Cool Ranch came on the scene in the 1980s and changed the tortilla chip game forever by adding a ranch dressing twist to the corn chip classic. We never looked back. Why? Because these are the chips dreams are made of.
Alright, gun to your head, what the hell are Cheetos exactly? We know they’re delicious. They’re covered in a dense and delicious cheese dust after all. But these fried blobs of starch have an air of mystery to them.
Cheetos are actually fried corn puffs. Which, admittedly doesn’t have the same ring to it. “Hey, pass me some fried cheese corn puffs.” The name is a mashing of Cheese and Fritos and, “Hey, pass me the Cheetos,” does sound a lot better. We guess that these aren’t technically chips (can puffs be chips?). But, come on, who doesn’t love the crunch, the cheese, and licking those sticky, cheesy fingers after killing a bag all on your own?