North Iowa Bloggers Taste Test Lay’s “Do Us A Flavor” Chips

Strange chip flavors brought the North Iowa bloggers together this week.

We haven’t gathered for a while and probably have the cappuccino-flavored chips to thank. Tasting them made a great excuse for us to get together, so I guess the cappuccino chips have that going for them.

Beth of It’s Just Life hosted the party in her home and spoiled us with sangria, homemade hummus, fresh fruit, and pretty salads. We enjoyed one of those rare, windless North Iowa evenings out on the deck.

I contributed Amanda Paa’s Summer Squash Peach Kisses (pictured on the bottom left) from her new Smitten With Squash cookbook. They are a perfect summer appetizer to bring to a gathering, especially if there are guests attending who can’t eat gluten.

Shopping for the ingredients proved to be interesting. I originally planned to bring a wine cooler to pair with the chips along with the Peach Kisses. At the store, I loaded my basket with fresh vegetables and a Malibu cranberry rum cooler. The man behind me in the checkout line curiously eyed the contents of my grocery basket and commented, “Malibu and vegetables! That’s interesting.” All I could do was nod.

I forgot to bring the Malibu coolers to the party which was just as well. If you enjoy drinking sunscreen, this is the drink for you. 

Food Collage for Blog.jpg

Val Plagge brought a crock pot of sweet and savory ham balls, a food I’d never tried before (top middle). When I asked her where she found ground ham, she was like, “Well, we do raise hogs on our farm so. . . ”

Beth set out an elaborate potato chip taste testing station complete with smiley face voting stickers. Here’s what I thought of the four new flavors listed in the order of which we collaboratively ranked them:


Wasabi Ginger: Lay’s accurately captures the flavors of wasabi, pickled ginger, and an onion note without tasting too artificial. Those who did not like pickled ginger (or ginger in general) did not like this flavor, though everyone seemed to like the wasabi flavor. I enjoy eating both the wasabi and pickled ginger garnishes when I order sushi so it was a win-win. I would buy my own bag.

Beth feels as happy as I do about the Wasabi Ginger chips.

Beth likes the Wasabi Ginger chips as much as I do.

Bacon Mac & Cheese: These chips tasted mostly of bacon and a little of cheese. The bacon flavor tasted artificial and reminded me of the Bacos and TGI Friday’s Cheddar Bacon Potato Skin Chips I ate as a kid. The “mac & cheese” description is probably overstated. Still, there’s nothing terribly objectionable about the chips unless you don’t like the flavor of Bacos. . .or bacon.

Cappuccino: We were most intrigued by these cappuccino chips. When I first spotted them in the store, I was aghast. Did Chad Scott submit the flavor as a joke and then Lay’s took him seriously? Turns out Chad just really likes coffee


This is how Donna and I feel about cappuccino chips.

The chips taste like cheap vanilla coffee creamer mixed with misery and Ron Burgundy’s tears. And possibly death.

All of these flavors swished around in my mouth and I struggled to swallow them. I learned that “cappuccino” doesn’t refer to my favorite type of cappuccino crafted with espresso and lots of foam. Rather, it means the cheap, cloyingly sweet gas station cappuccino that squirts from the scary machines that keep on squirting long after you’ve stopped pushing the cappuccino button. That kind.

Some of my companions said that the chips tasted less terrible than they anticipated, while others liked the cinnamon note. One admitted the chips grew on her as she kept eating them and described them as “dessert chips.”

I just wanted all of these chips to burn. And while the chips were in my mouth, I wanted the whole world to burn.

I spotted a small bag of cappuccino chips at a Casey’s General Store in case you want to taste them for yourself but not commit to a full-sized bag.

Mango Salsa:
As if it couldn’t get worse than cappuccino-flavored potato chips, you’ve got Mango Salsa chips. I initially predicted I would prefer this flavor because I like sweet and spicy mango salsa. Do not be deceived.

Hampton blogger Katy most accurately compared the chip to something straight out of Bath & Body Works. We all agreed and the only thing I could taste was tutti frutti mango reminiscent of a pre-teen body splash or Scentsy wax melt. This was the only flavor I did not go back to for a second taste.

And that’s a wrap! The North Iowa bloggers tried all four varieties of these chips so you don’t have to. See Donna & Beth’s posts for more thoughts on the chip tasting.


Sara Broers was fishing in Colorado, but here in spirit.

Have you tried any of these new flavors? What did you think?

Meet my fellow taste testers:
Amy, Modern Rural Living
Beth, It’s Just Life
Katy, Learning As I Go
Laura, All Things Travel
Sara (in absentia), All in an Iowan Mom’s Day & Travel With Sara
Val, Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids


  1. Amy

    Every time I see the cappuccino flavor in the store, it turns my stomach. No interest in trying it whatsoever.

    • Jeni Flaa

      Don’t do it! I saw a sample sized bag of the cappuccino, but none of the other flavors which was strange. Some of the other bloggers didn’t mind the flavor as much but I just hated it.

  2. Michelle

    I have tried the Bacon Mac & Cheese ones and found them to be just OK. They weren’t awful but they weren’t great either. I’m looking forward to trying the Wasabi Ginger flavor. I’m going to to just say no to the Cappucino and Mango Salsa flavors.

    • Jeni Flaa

      You echo how I feel about the Bacon Mac & Cheese ones too.

  3. Monica Jertson Cateron

    Oh my gosh your descriptions- HILARIOUS. “And possibly death.” I am inspired to NEVER try the flavors Cappuccino and Mango Salsa. Ever. Ill probably pass on the bacon mac and cheese as well, not really my thing. Wasabi tho, now we’re talking.

    • Jeni Flaa

      I hope that doesn’t get me into trouble. We’ll send you some in the mail:)

  4. Donna Hup

    I love this post so much. Your descriptions crack me up. I must concur #StayAwayFromLaysCappuccino I had such a great time hanging with you all!! 🙂

    • Jeni Flaa

      I had such a great time hanging out with you too! I always do!

    • Amy

      Best Hashtag ever!

  5. Beth Ann Chiles

    As always you are over the top in describing the tastes of these delectable treats. And I use that term loosely with several of the flavors. 🙂 Thanks for your wining contributions!!!!
    PS. I have an almost full bag of Cappuccino chips and Mango Salsa if you want them….

    • Jeni Flaa

      Oh man, no thanks Beth! Save them for Mr. Diamond. A welcome home gift.

  6. Amy

    “The chips taste like cheap vanilla coffee creamer mixed with misery and Ron Burgundy’s tears. And possibly death.”

    Seriously the BEST line AND way to describe it’s taste! HAHA 🙂

    • Jeni Flaa

      Thanks Amy! It popped into my head because I kept picturing Ron Burgundy eating these potato chips and sobbing. I don’t know why, I just did.

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