Tortilla Chip Taste Test (Happy Tortilla Chip Day!)

By: Michelle Buffardi

It's National Tortilla Chip Day! The best way to celebrate this special day (and really, most special days) is with a salt-rimmed margarita and some of the best chips you can get your hands on. Which chips, you ask? There are so many choices. But don't worry, we've done the work for you. We tasted 11 popular tortilla chip brands to determine the best. The taste test was completely blind (testers had no idea which chip they were tasting) and tasters were instructed to judge based on flavor, texture and dip-ability. We served salsa, guacamole and black bean dip and recommended that testers try each chip plain before dipping.

Before we went shopping, we asked our Facebook fans for recommendations, they're marked with an * below.

The tortilla chips:
  • Utz Organic Blue Corn Tortilla Chips
  • Xochitl Totopos de Maiz (pronounced so-cheel. we didn't know either) *
  • Tostitos White Corn Restaurant Style
  • Grande All Natural Original Tortilla Chips
  • Bachman Deli Style MultiGrain Tortilla Chips
  • Tostitos Natural Blue Corn
  • Utz Restaurant Style White Corn Tortilla Chips
  • Baked! Tostitos Scoops
  • On the Border Cafe Style *
  • Snyder's of Hanover Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips *
  • Tostitos Scoops!

(* Facebook fan recommendation)
The verdict:

First place: Bachman Deli Style MultiGrain Tortilla Chips

Tasters commented that the chips, which contain corn, oats and buckwheat, were "not traditional but very good," "had a shape that wouldn't screw up the roof of your mouth" (they're round) and the most testers felt that the chip would make a good stand-alone snack and that while they were good with a dip or salsa, didn't need it.

Second place: Grande All Natural Original Tortilla Chips

Grande got major points for flavor and adequate saltiness and tasters enjoyed the texture, proclaiming that the chips were “thin but not flimsy,” sturdy" and that they “held up well when dipped."

Third place: a tie between Tostitos Restaurant Style and Tostitos Organic Blue Corn

One taster described these chips as "restaurant-y" and others found them to be “firm, good with dip.” They lost points my our office snackers, however, for being too crunchy and having a slight aftertaste. The consensus was that these were a decent vehicle for salsa and dips, but when consumed alone, were lacking.

The color of these chips was a vibrant purple-blue color which really stood out next to the Utz brand blue corn chips which were a ghastly gray by comparison. Some tasters liked the color, but some were turned off and found the color "scary." Likewise with the texture -- tasters were split. One taste-tester found that these chips held up well to dip, and another had this to say, "broke inside the guac -- come on!" It's mixed reviews like this that cost these the win.

Now that you know the best chips, go forth and snack all day. Eat 'em plain, or try these recipes:

More chip chat from our family and friends:
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