Lay's "Do Us a Flavor" Taste Test: Mango Salsa, Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese, Wasabi Ginger, and Cappuccino

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Lauren Saria
We got some pretty strong reactions to this year's Lay's "Do Us a Flavor" contest chips.
The Guilty Pleasure: Lay's Do Us a Flavor Contest Finalists
Where to Get It: We found all four varieties at Target
Price: Ranges from $3.79 to $3.79 per bag
What It Really Costs: From what we can tell, no one will like all four flavors so you're going to have at least two unpleasant experiences while taste testing.

You might remember the first time Lay's did the "Do Us a Flavor" contest -- you know, the thing where millions of regular people get to submit ideas for chip flavors and then Lay's picks finalists, makes them, and allows the public to vote for a winner.

Well, it's back. And this time, the flavor finalists include Mango Salsa, Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese, Wasabi Ginger, and Cappuccino. New to this year's contest is a variety of chip styles. So while the Cappuccino and Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese flavors come on classic Lay's chips, it's the kettle cooked Lay's that get the Wasabi Ginger treatment and wavy Lay's that are coated with Mango Salsa seasoning.

Anyway, here's how they taste.

See also: Lay's "Do Us a Flavor" Taste Test: Sriracha, Cheesy Garlic Bread or Chicken & Waffles?

Cappucino
Created by: Chad Scott of Las Vegas

The fact the bag of cappuccino-flavored Lay's features two sticks of cinnamon might be a little troubling to anyone who actually drinks cappuccino. Why? Because a cappuccino is usually made of two things: espresso and steamed milk. No cinnamon is involved.

But aside from the fact that these chips don't actually taste like cappuccino, they're not nearly as bad as they should be. For the most part, they taste like chips covered in instant coffee powder and cinnamon. They're more sweet than you'd expect an espresso chip to be, thanks to ingredients including brown sugar and butter but we think that actually works in the chips favor. After all, who really wants milky, bitter potato chips?

In summary: Are they weird? Yes. Are they horrible? Not quite.

Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese
Created by: Matt Allen of Troy, Ohio

When you consider the other three flavors in this contest, it's almost laughable that they're up against a chip that combines the flavors of bacon and cheese. Who doesn't like bacon and cheese? No one. We'll be quite surprised if this flavor doesn't win.

Plus, these chips taste exactly how you would imagine them. There's a lot of artificial cheese flavor and just enough smoky, meatiness to conjure images of a steaming bowl of bacon-studded cheese noodles.

In summary: We probably wouldn't buy them, but if you put a bowl in front of us, we'd eat them.

Wasabi Ginger
Created by: Meneko Spigner McBeth of Deptford, New Jersey

This is by far the least aggressive flavor of the bunch. It's also probably the least weird. At first, they're slightly sweet, but once you bite, you get the sinus-clearing flavors of wasabi and ginger. They're not as spicy as you might want if you're a heat freak. But then again, that's probably a good thing.

As for the kettle chip texture, we thing it's a nice touch. The extra crunch tones down what might otherwise have been a too-powerful flavor.

In summary: We could probably polish off a bag of these, too.

Mango Salsa
Created by: Julia Stanley-Metz of Sacramento, California

Oh, Julia.

You probably had good intentions when suggesting this flavor but something went very, very wrong with these chips. It's weird because a chip flavored like salsa actually makes way more sense than any of the other three flavors. But poor execution has completely destroyed what may have originally been a good idea.

These chips taste like "they sprayed Bath and Body Works spray on a chip," in the words of one taste tester.

Another person crowned these chips "the worst snack ever created."

We agree.

The problem is that instead of having a well-balanced sweet/spicy flavor, these chips offer a perfume-y fruitiness that assaults your taste buds and nose. It's like Juicy Fruit on a chip. In a bad, bad way.

In summary: The only thing worse than these chips is Fruit Punch Oreos.

That's our opinion. You can vote for your favorite flavor on the Lay's "Do Us a Flavor" website. The creator of the winning flavor (as in the person who took five seconds to type a flavor idea into a website) gets $1 million so choose wisely.

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26 comments
lays2014
lays2014

Wasabi flavor was the best tasting. The Mango salsa was horrible. The worst chip I've ever tasted. It reminded me of vomit. The Cappuccino was second worst. The cheddar bacon wasn't too bad but nothing special. Hands down wasabi was the best.

lucascayce
lucascayce

My suggestion was "Wasabi Soy" as in soy sauce but somehow they picked Wasabi Ginger. Ginger doesn't even have a taste, it's merely used to cleanse the palate. Oh well, I'll stop being bitter now. Damn you, Lay's!

Cherie Pancoast
Cherie Pancoast

I've had Bacon Mac & Cheese... DELICIOUS!! I've had Mango Salsa.... Tastes exactly like mango salsa... But yuck.

Susan Mulligan
Susan Mulligan

Cappucino. Mango is a close second. It tastes like lotion from Bath and Body Works.

Ryan Greene
Ryan Greene

It's not the bacon Mac n cheese that's for sure

Kate Kealy
Kate Kealy

Love coffee, love potato chips. But not together. Ever.

Madi Lipari
Madi Lipari

Dude, I like the Mango Salsa because it kind of tastes like fruit garbage.

Jesse Adams
Jesse Adams

I'm in love with the bacon mac and cheese

Emily Heller
Emily Heller

Strangely addictive because they have MSG in them lol

Kate Banker
Kate Banker

Adam Lanteigne please tell me the wasabi ginger was your idea....genius

Chris Schaaff
Chris Schaaff

Cappuccino was OK, oddly enough. The Ginger Wasabi were the \U0001f4a3!

Alan King
Alan King

I bought the mango salsa ones ate one and put the bag down..... Horrible!!!! Cant imagine cappuccino is much better

Jena Powers
Jena Powers

Cappucino must be terrible, but they're all garbage heh

Barb Walters Harris
Barb Walters Harris

gonna go with cappuccino. though i must say the chicken & waffles flavor was pretty tasty in an odd/addictive sort of way.

georgetheturtle
georgetheturtle

@lays2014 I thought it was just me. The second I tasted the first one, I thought Vomit- oooh, then I checked again and definite vomit!


vistrika
vistrika

@lucascayce excuse me... ginger has the best flavor ever.  think ginger snaps.  Think gingerbread.  think Thai food.  Okay I'll stop now

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