We Tried 14 Store-Bought Tortilla Chips And Found A New Favorite

Bags of tortilla chips
Bags of tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

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When it comes to snacking, few things rival the satisfying crunch of a perfectly crafted tortilla chip. Whether paired with creamy guacamole or zesty salsa or enjoyed solo, the ideal tortilla chip can elevate any snack experience. But with a myriad of brands lining the grocery store shelves, each boasting its own unique flavor and texture, finding the ultimate chip can be a daunting task. To settle the age-old debate of which grocery store tortilla chip reigns supreme, I embarked on a mission to taste-test 14 popular brands, meticulously evaluating each for flavor, crunch, saltiness, and dipping ability.

From the classic staples to the up-and-coming contenders, the results of this taste test promise to deliver an honest and unbiased ranking, providing valuable insights for chip connoisseurs and casual snackers alike. Whether you're a die-hard fan of a particular brand or simply seeking to broaden your snacking horizons, join me on this flavorful journey as I delve into the crunchy world of grocery store tortilla chips to see which brand has the best flavor, separating the mediocre from the magnificent. Learn more about my process at the end of the article!

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14. Trader Joe's Organic White Corn

Trader Joe's Organic White Corn Tortilla Chips
Trader Joe's Organic White Corn Tortilla Chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

I don't think I've ever put a Trader Joe's snack item in last place, but I guess there is a first for everything. Last on my list is the brand's Organic White Corn Tortilla Chips. From the first bite, the texture really threw me off. These chips were too hard, and the mouthfeel that followed almost felt stale. There was no salt or corn flavoring on the chip, either. They were completely bland, even with salsa as a support.

Regarding positives, there were only a few redeeming qualities with this option. The chips were huge, which made them great for dipping and scooping, and they are also organic, with nothing but natural ingredients. However, these two minor points can't negate the lack of taste that followed each bite.

Overall, this option was a major fail in my book. Even with little to no salt, the lack of any flavor whatsoever is the reason for this placement. Sorry, TJ's -- this one is a miss.

13. Late July Organic Sea Salt & Lime

Late July Organic Sea Salt & Lime tortilla chips
Late July Organic Sea Salt & Lime tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

I'd always seen the Late July brand on the shelves but never veered from my tortilla path to give the chips a try. Looking at my options, I grabbed the sea salt and lime variant to switch things up, and boy, did I make a big mistake.

The first thing I noticed when I opened the bag was an artificial lime smell, and the taste wasn't much better. I swear these chips tasted like the aftertaste of lime seltzer. Is that possible? In any case, I stand by assessment. The lime flavor isn't really in the chip; it's lingering somewhere in the aftertaste. There are no bold flavors as you'd expect from lime tortilla chips, including a lack of saltiness.

First impressions are everything, and unfortunately, Late July blew it. You couldn't pay me to eat these again, especially with so many other amazing options on this list.

12. Mi Niña Organic Sea Salt

Mi Niña Organic Sea Salt tortilla chips
Mi Niña Organic Sea Salt tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

I was surprised at how low I ranked the Mi Niña tortilla chips, as they're usually my go-to option, but compared to some of the delicious flavor profiles I ranked higher, these just didn't make the cut.

The Mi Niña chips had a hard crunch, which made them great for dips. They were sturdy and could hold a lot of salsa, but there was no "sea salt" to be found in the ingredients, which was pretty disappointing. They were really bland compared to the rest and didn't stand out, even with salsa or guacamole.

I'm not sure why I still have a place in my heart for these chips, maybe some fond memories of my younger years, but Mi Niña just didn't do it for me. I recommend them based on a natural ingredient list and the ability to withstand a hearty dip, but other than that, these chips have become a no in my book.

11. Siete Maíz Lime Totopos

Siete Maíz Lime Totopos
Siete Maíz Lime Totopos - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Siete's Maíz Totopos had me curious. I'd never tried this brand before, so I grabbed the lime option hoping for a blast of salt and lime with my first bite. Overall, these lime chips weren't bad, but they had very little lime flavor. There were subtle hints to be found, mainly in the aftertaste, but the lime got lost the more I ate.

There was salt in the profile but also another flavor I couldn't seem to place. After going through the ingredient list, I made the assumption it was the avocado oil, but that left me with even more questions.

These lime totopos were confusing when it came to their flavor profile, but they weren't horrible, either. I would probably eat these if they were on the table and I needed a snack, but I don't think I'll be buying them again. I need a lime option that doesn't leave me disappointed.

10. Clancy's Restaurant Style

Clancy's Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips
Clancy's Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

While I'm a fan of the cult that is Aldi, I have to say, the German grocery chain failed with this one. Clancy's Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips were way too salty -- even the chips themselves were riddled with excessive flavor dust. While the overall size of each chip was big, they weren't quite thick enough to handle hearty dips and chunky salsas.

Overall, I'm not going to say these chips tasted bad; you just have to like a lot of salt, so for me, this is a hard no. I couldn't eat more than a few of these in one sitting, as every bite made me want more and more water to balance out. I think these do have a place in the world, but that place is not in my kitchen cabinet. Even with a cheap price tag, to me, these aren't worth it.

9. Santitas White Corn

Santitas White Corn tortilla chips
Santitas White Corn tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Santitas White Corn tortilla chips are another option I'd seen on grocery store shelves but never tried. They offer your typical tortilla texture and look. My first impression was that they weren't bad by any means, but there wasn't anything in the flavor profile to write home about.

Compared to half of the variants on this list, they were pretty bland, with no real salt taste or pronounced corn flavoring. They also had a weird aftertaste that kept me from wanting more, but the salsa covered that right up. The chips were thick enough to stay intact while dipping into the salsa, but even then, there was nothing notable or impressive.

To me, these rank as "fine." If you need tortilla chips for an array of dips at a party, these will do the trick, but when it comes to more nuanced flavors, hit up some of the other options below.

8. Simply Nature Organic Yellow Corn

Simply Nature Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips
Simply Nature Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Aldi was two for two in the failure department, which breaks my heart considering all the love I've shown Aldi's snacks in the past. Next up on my list is Simply Nature's Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips. The only positive thing I can say is that I liked the circular shape for dipping, and the chips were really sturdy. I don't necessarily care a lot about chip density and texture, but something about these circles was inviting and solid. However, the lack of taste couldn't be overlooked.

I tasted aspects of that yellow corn flavor, but there was no depth and no salt. The crunch was okay, but these weren't as good as some of the others in the Simply Nature family or on this list. Without a bold taste, there wasn't much I could do to offer support. I'd say stick with the brand's multi-grain option if you shop at Aldi.

7. Good & Gather Yellow Corn

Good & Gather Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips
Good & Gather Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Target offered a decent tortilla chip experience with its Good & Gather Yellow Corn option. This variant featured a thick chip and lots of baked flavor, making it a killer choice for rich dips. The salt kind of died out on the end of the profile and gave way to baked flavor, but you could taste the corn in every bite, which made them feel fresh.

I ranked Good & Gather's chips at 7th place because while they were pretty good, they weren't a favorite when compared to some of the others. Since there was no one aspect that stood out about them, they own their standing proudly but probably won't see my kitchen cabinets again. However, these are good tortilla chips, especially if you're in a rush and or want to save a few bucks compared to some of the higher-end brands. Don't write off Target's tortilla chips; they are worth a try.

6. Hippeas Chickpea Sea Salt & Lime

Hippeas Chickpea Tortilla Chips
Hippeas Chickpea Tortilla Chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

I'm always a little standoffish when it comes to food items made with ingredients they seemingly shouldn't be made from. What do I mean? I mean items like Hippeas Chickpea Sea Salt & Lime Tortilla Chips. This brand is known for innovative snacks like this one, which, instead of classic corn, is made with chickpeas. However, with one bite, I was politely surprised.

First thing first: It's important to know that these were a little weird, but they grew on me. These chips had a great flavor profile with lots of flavor dust, but not in a way that was overpowering. They had a good balance of salt and lime, and they maintained that balance the more I ate. The look and texture were also pretty darn close to the real deal, which is truly impressive.

Hippeas isn't my personal favorite since the chips aren't traditional tortilla chips, but they are definitely worth a try. I'd happily eat these again!

5. Tostitos Original Restaurant Style

Tostitos tortilla chips
Tostitos tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

If we're talking popular name-brand tortilla chips, Tostitos will most likely be at the top of a lot of consumers' lists. For this taste test, I went with the brand's Original Restaurant Style option.

First impression: Tostitos had the biggest chips in the bunch. They weren't super thick, so they didn't make the cut for a top dipping chip, but they can hold a lot of salsa if you spread it out evenly. Next up was taste, and I was a little disappointed to learn that these chips tasted different than I remembered. Honestly, they tasted a lot like Fritos, which wasn't necessarily bad, but they were pretty salty overall. There was a lot of good flavor to enjoy, a flavor I know most like, but the more I ate, the more that flavor sat on my palate and destroyed my taste buds, along with anything else I put on the chip.

When it came to this ranking, with so many bland options, I had to give it to Tostitos. The brand offers a bold and flavorful tortilla experience I know myself and others enjoy. But buyer beware: You're in for a salty surprise.

4. Great Value Restaurant Style White Corn

Walmart Great Value tortilla chips
Walmart Great Value tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Hi, it's me again complaining about never knowing what I'm going to get from any of Walmart's Great Value products. Today, Walmart took 4th place, something I wasn't ready to acknowledge in the grand scheme of tortilla chips. I grabbed a bag of the brand's Restaurant Style White Corn Tortilla Chips, and I was surprised to say that Walmart created a solid option.

These were your standard, run-of-the-mill tortilla chips with that typical corn flavor and salty finish. They were a good size -- not too thick, but they worked well with a dip. The salt was there, but it wasn't overpowering, offering a nice balance of flavors you can pair with anything from guacamole to salsa.

I can't believe I'm saying it, but you can't go wrong with Great Value when it comes to tortilla chips. And the chips are cheaper than the rest, so give them a try!

3. 365 Organic Salted Restaurant Style

Whole Foods 365 organic tortilla chips
Whole Foods 365 organic tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Another love-it-or-hate-it brand for me is 365 by Whole Foods Market. I've noticed from all my taste tests that it can be pretty hit or miss. Just because it might be better for you doesn't mean it tastes good, but when it comes to tortilla chips, 365 was a surefire hit.

I went with the brand's Organic Salted Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips, and I was pleasantly surprised. Something about these tasted really fresh, as if they had a pronounced baked quality to them. They were crispy without too much salt overtaking the flavor profile, making them a perfect option solo or with the salsa. They weren't too thick, but they worked with a heavy salsa. Plus, they're organic, with a natural ingredient list, so who can be mad about that?

Overall, these tortilla chips felt like a home run and checked a lot of boxes. While it isn't a brand known for tortilla chips, 365 really nailed it.

2. Que Pasa Organic Yellow Corn

Que Pasa Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips
Que Pasa Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

Placing second in this ranking is a brand I'd never heard of called Que Pasa. I tried the Organic Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips and immediately fell in love, wondering if any other brand would steal the lead in this tortilla showdown.

What got me right off the bat was the texture. I really liked the mouthfeel of these chips, which might sound silly, but this aspect was a standout. They had a good crunch, with some air pockets for a light and fluffy bite. The chips were harder than most of the other options, too, which made them perfect for thick dips. They also featured a great balance of salt and corn, giving them actual depth which paired nicely with the salsa.

If you haven't tried Que Pasa yet, this is your sign, and I recommend you do. I think you'll be surprised at what you find!

1. Xochitl Salted Corn Chips

Xochitl tortilla chips
Xochitl tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

I had a few friends tell me Xochitl makes the best tortilla chip. It's not that I was skeptical, but going into this taste test, I wondered how different these chips could really taste in comparison to the rest. They're generally made from the same ingredients and cooked the same way. However, I am big enough to admit I was wrong. Xochitl's Salted Corn Chips were the best tortilla chips by far.

While they were thin and weren't great for dips, which made me consider moving them out of this spot in the ranking, the flavor was sheer perfection. They were salty but not overpowering, and there was depth here, maybe from whatever oil Xochitl used or the quality of the corn. Whatever the case, these were clear standouts and my new favorite! Sorry to the rest of the list, but this is the only brand you'll see me eating from now on.


Bags of tortilla chips
Bags of tortilla chips - Jenn Carnevale / Static Media

For this taste test, I sought out and purchased all 14 brands and ranked them based on taste and overall experience. While texture and thickness did play a role because let's face it -- who wants broken chips in their dip -- the flavor profile had to be spot on. If the chip tasted great, it got moved up the list, leaving the blander options behind.

Read the original article on Daily Meal.