When I first heard of Arico’s new Cassava Chips, my first thought was ‘What’s a cassava?” Imagine my embarrassment when I discovered that the Cassava is the third largest source of carbohydrates for human food in the world. Apparently I have become a bit too limited in my produce browsing as of late. Anywho, as expected, it is a tuber that is native to South America, yet most abundantly produced in Africa. For all eating purposes, Arico’s Cassava Chips contain twice the fiber and 40% less fat than the leading potato chips (according to the Arico website).
Never one to pass up a unique new food, I dove in with pure enthusiasm. I was especially excited to see a flavor portfolio that was completely open to gluten-free and dairy-free diets. What many people may not realize is that both dairy and gluten are frequently used in seasonings for many brands of potato chips. After years of holding out for the plain chips, I couldn’t wait to taste a little flavor. But…
… I always try the “plain” flavor first. It gives me a good baseline for the product itself. Each chip exuded the crisp crunch of a nice, thick potato chip. However, it exited with an ever-so-slight cracker-like texture, almost like a baked potato chip, but not quite. These were still a level up in indulgence.
The Original flavor possessed a salty sweetness that was delicious, though not totally reminiscent of your ordinary Lay’s variety. The aftertaste was just a touch bitter, yet almost nonexistent. It left my mouth with a rather clean, yet almost flat taste. Overall, a good chip, but I had a feeling that the other varieties might capture my attention just a bit more …
Oddly enough, I wasn’t a big chip fan as a kid. But if there is one flavor I hesitated to turn down, it was barbecue. Consequently, there was no doubt in my mind that I would like this chip … yet I was unprepared for the mature flavors my taste buds were about to meet. Rather than the sugary-sweet, almost ketchup like taste that so many barbecue flavored items exude, these chips had a smooth, smoky flavor that was enhanced with a touch of sweetness for a very impressive taste. My husband, who usually avoids anything labeled as barbecue flavored, couldn’t get enough of them!
Ginger on Fire
This bag was so puffed up with air that a huge burst of ginger spice exploded from the bag as I popped it open. Yet, the flavor was surprisingly tame and amiable. A light sweetness merged with the warm ginger flavor that tapered off into a slightly spicy heat. Luckily, the spice wasn’t the least bit overwhelming for my timid taste buds. Actually, that aftertaste of spice made them quite addictive, coaxing me to continue onto the next chip, and the next chip, and well … the bag was quickly devoured. The intrigue of this flavor made it my new favorite.
Sea Salt Mist
When they say sea salt they aren’t kidding! For about a year, my husband and I lived just a short walk from the ocean. On every warm day we would walk down with our towels and play in the waves for an hour or so. As I bit into this sea-worthy chip those memories came rushing back. While I didn’t expect much from a plain old salty chip, this variety leapt just above the Ginger on Fire in my rankings for its pure addictiveness and guilty sea salt pleasure. Perhaps the best “plain” chip I have ever tasted, healthy or not. The pure virtue of it is just a bonus!
Where to Purchase: Visit the Arico Foods website to purchase online, or to find a retailer near you.