We Tried Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls And They Kind Of Taste Like Salty Styrofoam

Trade Joe's Crunchy Curls bag
Trade Joe's Crunchy Curls bag - Michael Palan / Static Media

Chips and other munchy snacks are mainly super awesome and delicious because they are made of potatoes or corn. Trader Joe's has always tried to provide alternative avenues to achieve the same great taste and texture with snacks that are a little more guilt-free. In 2008, it released Crunchy Curls, which leaned on lentil flour and potato starch to make eaters believers. TJ boasts on the bags of these snacks, "If you didn't know better, you might just think these were just potato curls. But ah, there's the rub. You do know better. And because you do, you can enjoy the crunch while knowing that you're getting a whole lotta lentil love in every serving."

Since the curls are a buzzy snack all over again in 2024, we thought it was time to reevaluate them. Are they totally lentil, or does it take a lot of mental work to make a mouth believe they are any good? I dug into a bag with an open mind and came out with this new chew and review that is based on taste, texture, and overall lovability.

Read more: 22 Discontinued Trader Joe's Items We're Probably Not Getting Back

What Does Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls Taste Like?

pile of Crunchy Curls
pile of Crunchy Curls - Michael Palan / Static Media

When one thinks of curled snacks, a simple cheesy, poofy, bright orange arch comes right to mind. However, the "Crunchy" ones Trader Joe's hawks is not just a single curl, but an endless one. These guys look like a spiral helix that would make a pig jealous that its tail doesn't look as aerodynamic.

These pale yellow Crunchy Curls smell somewhere between a tempting rice cake and boxed popcorn from a stadium. Their exterior is rigid and they don't easily break, even when pressed upon by one's fingers.

When I chomped down on the first curl I encountered, it didn't really taste like much of anything. Perhaps there was a hint of something potato-like in its flavor, but maybe that was just my mind making that up to assign it some sort of value. What they definitely were was crunchy, salty, and rather filling due to their dense nature.

Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls Nutritional Information

back of Crunchy Curls bag
back of Crunchy Curls bag - Michael Palan / Static Media

Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls are simply made of lentil flour, potato starch for extra crunch, soybean oil, safflower oil and/or sunflower oil, and salt. The curls are vegan, contain soy, and may also contain traces of wheat.

The 6-ounce bag contains approximately 185 curls, and a single serving size is about 31 curls. They are astonishingly good for only 130 calories, 5 grams of total fat, 1 gram of polyunsaturated fat, 4 grams of monounsaturated fat, 280 milligrams of sodium, 19 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, and 3 grams of protein. They are cholesterol free, and also contain 1 milligram of iron and 160 milligrams of potassium.

How To Buy Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls

shelf with bags of Crunchy Curls
shelf with bags of Crunchy Curls - Michael Palan / Static Media

The Crunchy Curls are currently on shelves at Trader Joe's nationwide, while supplies last. They are located in the Chips, Crackers & Crunchy Bites snack section. If a Trader Joe's is out of your reach, you can also find the snacks online.

A 6-ounce bag retails for $2.99. Based on the best by date on the bag I purchased, they are good for up to four months.

The Final Verdict

bag of Crunchy Curls
bag of Crunchy Curls - Michael Palan / Static Media

I'm not exactly sure who will take to Trader Joe's second coming of its Crunchy Curls. Lentil snack enthusiasts? Eaters looking for pork rinds, minus the pork? People seeking edible versions of petrified Styrofoam? By all means, if you fall under one of those categories, please enjoy these. For the rest of us, they'll come off as denser and tasteless versions of veggie sticks, and just make us wish that they were infused with corn.

One has nothing to really lose if you just want to try them out for size, or um, taste, as Trader Joe's return policy is very generous. So, if these snacks don't exactly float your boat, you can return them and get your money back. With only about 4 calories per a curl, the Crunchy Curls are like the celery of snacks, but I think I'll just stick with celery.

Read the original article on Daily Meal