November and December put many of us on a treadmill of familiar tastes. From Thanksgiving through the new year, fortunate families, friends, and co-workers gather to gorge themselves on assorted roasts, sides, and desserts.
These timeless dishes pacify the masses, but perhaps we should think about some innovative approaches to a holiday meal.
So Potato Chip World asks: can you create a full holiday meal from potato chip flavors?
With a few tweaks to traditional chips, some off-the-shelf flavors, and a little imagination, you could come surprisingly close.
To build a holiday potato chip meal, I took the most commonly referenced Thanksgiving meals and sides from online recipe sites (such as allrecipes.com and foodnetwork.com. I gauged the degree of difficulty and evaluated the current potato chip options listed in our Chipography. If chips options are sparse or non-existent, we suggested a workaround recipe using potato chips (or, in case of emergency, sweet potato chips).
Now remember: the question is not “would you want to”, but “could you do it.” A 10-course potato chip feast may not go over well with Uncle Dennis if he and his family traveled 90 minutes in the snow for dinner. But if your guests are devout potato chip nuts, this could work.
Before we get started, a tip of the cap should go to Boulder Canyon chips, who packaged up a “Thanksgiving Dinner” themed chip pack. On face value it seems gimmicky; however, the flavors fill a void in many traditional holiday categories.
Roasted Meats – Really Easy to Replicate
- Boulder Canyon Roast Turkey
- Keogh’s Roast Beef & Irish Stout
- Mackie’s of Scotland Roast Ham
- Mackie’s Venison & Cranberry
- Tyrrell’s Sunday Best Roast Chicken
- Walker’s Roast Chicken
Of all the components of the holiday potato chip meal, meat was the easiest. Yes, meat-flavored potato chips are surprisingly common.
I didn’t include the steak, prawn, or rib-flavored chips because this is a holiday dinner. Roasts are the proper choice.
Mashed Potatoes – Need a Recipe, Difficult to Replicate
Wrap your head around this for a second: the hardest flavor to mimic on a potato chip is based on a variation of that exact ingredient.
Suggested Workaround: Mashed Potato Chips
- Lightly salted potato chips
- 1/2 tsp dried butter substitute like Molly McButter
Sprinkle the chips with Molly McButter. Serve to guests.
Roasted Vegetables – Easy to Replicate, Hard to Find Holiday Flavors
- Mackie’s of Scotland Tangy Tomato
- Mackie’s Caramelized Onion
There aren’t many roasted vegetable flavors in the market. Roasted garlic doesn’t count, and even caramelized onion is a stretch. Mackie’s makes another appearance on this list.
Macaroni and Cheese – Easy to Replicate, Hard to Purchase
- Lays Jalapeño Mac & Cheese
- Lays Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese
The two mac and cheese flavors from this year’s “Do Us a Flavor” contests (Jalapeño mac was a Canadian entry) are hard to find now, but if you’re willing to scour eBay you can land this side dish.
Stuffing – Easy to Replicate
- Boulder Canyon Stuffing
Boulder Canyon is in a class of its own. However, for those intrepid folks that want to give it a track, try a mix of the spices below.
Chips with Stuffing Seasoning
- Lightly salted chips
- Sage (1/4 tsp)
- Celery Salt (1 tsp)
- Black Pepper (1/4 tsp)
- Onion Powder (1/4 tsp)
Sprinkle the chips with the seasoning mix. Serve to guests.
Sweet Potatoes – Easy to Replicate (If you bend the rules)
Potato Chip World can provide no insightful commentary on sweet potato chips. But hey, this next workaround may not be too bad.
Suggested Workaround: Sweet Potato Chips and Dip
- Sweet Potato Chips
- A jar of marshmallow fluff
Dip the sweet potato chips in the fluff. Place on plate. Serve to guests.
Cranberry Sauce – Easy to Replicate
- Boulder Canyon Cranberry
Not counting the venison and cranberry flavor above, this is again a peerless entry from Boulder Canyon.
Green Bean Casserole – Need a Recipe, Difficult to Replicate
Nothing I’ve found suggests a green bean flavored chip exists.
Suggested Workaround: Green Bean Casserole with Potato Chip Topping
Consult your favorite green bean casserole recipe. Substitute crumbled onion flavored potato chips in place of French fried onions.
Look: you just made your way through seven courses of potato chips. I know this contradicts what was stated above. You need some vegetables in you.
Dinner Rolls – Incredibly Difficult to Replicate, Just Don’t Bother
When you’re building a meal out of starch, do you really need another starch? Rolls are disqualified.
Relish Tray – Easy to Replicate
- Dill pickle (many, including Route 11, McClure’s, Old Dutch, Tim’s)
- Salt & Vinegar
- Sour Cream & Onion
In western Pennsylvania they do cookie tables. In northern Wisconsin they do relish trays. Advantage Wisconsin.
Pumpkin Pie – Easy to Replicate
- Boulder Canyon Pumpkin Pie
Once again Boulder Canyon offers the only potato chip flavor.
Pumpkin Pie Spice Pringles are not technically potato chips, yet their creativity warrant honorable mention.
If you really felt the need to try making something at home, the recommended route is sweet potato chips and the spices below:
Sweet Potato Pie Spice Chips
- Sugar (1 tbsp)
- Cinnamon (1/4 tsp)
- Ground Ginger (1/8 tsp)
- Ground Cloves (1/8 tsp)
- Sweet potato chips
Sprinkle the sweet potato chips with the seasoning mix. Serve to guests.