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Jul 5, 2007 12:04 PM

Lay's Potato Chips: Just 3 ingredients?

We don't normally eat Lay's chips; I always found them too thin, salty and greasy.

But a friend bought some over, and I checked the ingredient list because I was curious about a recent discussion of glutamates in snack foods and how they increase cravings -- you know, "You can't have just one!" and all that. So I figured with that slogan, Lay's would be full of them.

The bag read:
"Ingredients: Potatoes, Sunflower Oil, Salt."

That's it.

Somehow, I find that extremely hard to believe -- especially since my son left the bag open for a day or two unbeknownst to me and they still tasted good, better than I remembered.

NO preservatives of any kind? No flavorings, or anything else? Seriously?

Am I just overly suspicious, or is Lay's Potato Chips really one of the most unprocessed foodstuffs in my kitchen?

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  1. Um...yeah. All brands of potato chips have that ingredient list. Its all the "new" lowfat stuff that has scary ingredient lists.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Cathy

      And pringles... But yes, it doesn't get much simplier than plain potato chips... The salt and Oil do all the work to process and preserve...


      1. re: Dommy

        i don't consider Pringles to be chips. what are they 'chipped' from?
        we refer to Pringles et al as Crisps.

    2. fav...lays...just opened bag...big bag...first one out of the bag is the best...mmm

      1 Reply
      1. re: pfarrell

        The first chip is my favorite as well, I think it has something to so with the smell when you tear open the bag, just gets your juices flowing. Funny thing is we never finish a bag, we eat a few handfulls but we live in a moist beach area so after a day they are pretty much crunchless...ick.

      2. Yep... your old-fashioned plain potato chips generally only has potatoes and salt. It's once you get into the flavoured varieties that the ingredients list gets scary!

        3 Replies
        1. re: Kajikit

          I was so excited to see "salt and pepper" flavored chips and I bought a bag of HERR's Salt 'n Pepper chips without reading the ingredients list (since HERR's chips are a simple, quality product). The first chip revealed the sad fact that they felt the need to add a bunch of other flavorings...a long list of stuff that was either mysterious or otherwise not necessary. Seems that every brand of Salt and Pepper chips does this unfortunately.

          1. re: The Professor

            Utz brand salt and pepper chips are my current favorite. They do add onion powder as well as S&P, but I really like the addition.

            I wish Lay's would still sell their Dill Pickle chips in the US, those were awesome. We went to Bonaire last year (little island nation off the coast of Venezuela) for snorkeling, and I bought Lay's Baked Ham chips in the store there! Tasted just like baked ham in a chip form. we're going back this year, I might have to figure out a way to bring a bag or two home with me!

            1. re: kimfair1

              I probably wouldn't even mind the onion power and garlic powder they add, and I'm definitely not anti MSG (used moderately, it has its place) but I was disappointed because the addition of these things just made it taste so generic and 'same old'. Fortunately I have since found some 'salt and pepper' chips that are just that...and they are incredible. The other stuff is like gilding a lily.

        2. Yes, you're overly suspicious. Widespread flouting of USDA and FDA labeling requirements is frowned upon and hard to do. The reason the chips taste so good is that they have so few ingredients.

          2 Replies
          1. re: ccbweb

            Haha, ok ok, you guys convinced me. Maybe I should let my guard down! :-)

            1. re: Covert Ops

              Well no... it's always good to check lables... but I've had vast experience in food manufacturing and although IME, none of my clients ever purposely tried to poison the american public, it's always a good idea to check ingredients and not just trust the box (something called 'natural', might not mean what you think it might mean... )

              In general though... USDA intervention is a big PITA... so most reputible companies try to avoid that as much as possible...


          2. I never noticed this, but I'm glad that Lay's are my favorite chips now. :)