What happens when the world’s favorite brand of stack-able potato crisps meets Nissin’s popular line of Japanese-style survival rations? Lots of people tilt their heads and go “huh,” for starters. Also, I make a Snacktaku video.
Ramen is a traditional Japanese dish consisting of Chinese-style noodles served in a broth with a wide variety of toppings. A good bowl of ramen is like a hug on a cold and cloudy day, filling you with warmth, joy and possibly pork.
But that’s fresh ramen. Instant ramen is another thing entirely.
Nissin’s Top Ramen, probably the most popular brand of instant noodle dish in the world, is less about warm hugs on cold and cloudy days and more about eating for a week and still making rent. Sold in large batches for ridiculously cheap (you can get 24 packs of the Oriental flavor on Amazon for under six bucks), it’s the go-to stomach-filler for folks on a very tight budget.
Pringles are crisps that come in a can suitable for holding tennis balls. Note that I call them crisps instead of chips. That’s because unlike regular potato chips, which are fried slices of potato, Pringles are around 42 percent potato, with wheat starch and flours making the rest. Ground, shaped and fried, Pringles are about as far from real potato chips as Top Ramen is from real ramen.
So a marriage between these two popular misfits makes sense. Available for a limited time exclusively through Dollar General, the store you pass on the way to other stores, Top Ramen Chicken Pringles combine the potato-ish crisps with the delicious taste of Nissin’s chicken-flavored Top Ramen powder.
The result is a yellow-ish Pringle that tastes a lot like chicken-flavored ramen powder, but only if you lick the crisps. Pop them in your mouth and give them a good crunching, and that potato-like Pringles flavor comes into play, muting the Top Ramen kick significantly.
I also tried topping chicken-flavored Top Ramen with Top Ramen chicken-flavored Pringles.
The coating on the Pringles punched up the Top Ramen flavor slightly. The crisps themselves instantly became much less crisp. Soon I had a bowl of ramen mixed with soggy potato flaps. Mmmm, soggy potato flaps.
Joking about being completely broke aside, I love a good bowl of Top Ramen as much as the next person who might be able to afford more food but spent all of their money on keyboards and toys. I just can’t see buying a food that tastes like Top Ramen when actual Top Ramen costs only slightly more than no money at all.