Potato chips are thin, crispy reminders that sometimes too much salt is just enough. Although they are flawless as-is, and serve their purpose when expedited directly to your mouth, the humble potato chip can enhance a meal, and even provide some mechanical help with your pizza making. Here are some of the best ways to use chips, and finish those pesky crumbles at the bottom of the bag.
Tasty breading for chicken
Why use lightly seasoned flour or bread crumbs when you could use crunchy, deep fried potatoes? Stale or fresh potato chips make an excellent breading because they’re already seasoned, and have a propensity for crispiness. Crush the chips into tiny pieces by hand, or for extra coverage use a food processor, and substitute the crumbs for the breading in any breaded chicken recipe. This is a great time to use flavored chips like barbecue or jalepeño for an extra kick. Bake or fry as usual.
A binder for meatballs and meatloaf
Most meatball and meatloaf concoctions include a panade (a blend of starch and a liquid), usually in the form of bread crumbs and milk. You’ll get a lovely meatball with that formula, but to add a punch of flavor and a welcome touch of firmness, use potato chips instead of bread crumbs. America’s Test Kitchen details their successful experiment using a number of different chip flavors, and if nothing else, chips are a great back up for when you realize that canister of breadcrumbs sitting in your cabinet is actually empty.
Alternative to cornmeal for homemade pizza and bread
One of the most crucial ingredients to pizza making doesn’t go into the dough, and it’s not a topping. It’s the cornmeal ball bearings that go under the crust so the dough doesn’t stick to the pizza peel. Cornmeal is the standard, but if you run out then you can use something crunchy or hard that won’t absorb moisture rapidly. Crack open that bag of kettle chips. Before the pizza—or loaf of sourdough--is ready to slide into the oven, crush a couple handfuls of chips into small pieces with a rolling pin or food processor. Cover the peel with the crumbs and sit the dough right on top. The pizza or bread should slide into the oven easily, and the flavor of the finished slice is sure to turn a few heads.
Crispy topping for casseroles
Besides melting cheese, the only other reason you really bake a casserole is to get a crispy top. Ensure there is no question of a crispy, crunchy layer and coat the surface of your casserole with crushed potato chips. This is especially good for recipes where the top doesn’t easily crust up well, like lasagnas or more liquidy casseroles. Top the dish with crushed potato chips in the last five to ten minutes of cooking so they don’t burn.
A crackly sandwich layer
Sandwiches aren’t known for providing a ton of texture, and how many sandos out there are just meat and cheese between soft bread. Rip open that bag of crunch and lay a few crisps in your sandwich. Each bite will have a little texture, and extra saltiness. Heck, you can even forgo other fillings and just make a chip sandwich. Jazz things up a bit with flavored chips. I find salt and vinegar crisps have a forever-home in this application.
A faux Spanish tortilla
How to Make a Potato Chip Spanish Tortilla
Spanish Tortillas are like ultra thick, potato-y omelets, and you’d normally spend a good bit of time slicing and boiling potatoes to prepare it. If you’re in a time crunch, you can make this knock-off tortilla in less than ten minutes with potato chips. Whisk up some eggs, dump in chips, fry, and carefully flip your way to snack heaven.
A Chip and dip omelette
Riding the wave of chips and eggs, why not invite Chip’s best friend, Dip, to the party? Dip usually brings a welcome dose of fats, salt, and other seasonings–all things that improve an omelette. Simply whisk in a tablespoon of dip for every egg and stir in a couple handfuls of crushed chips you have at the ready. For more details and a recipe, read here.
Potato chips in your soup
Chips are a crunchy and salty delight. At the very minimum, you should add them to your soup as a crushed topping akin to crumbled crackers. At maximum, you can cook them into your soup like this fascinating dill pickle potato chip soup recipe instructs. It’s salty, tangy, and potato-y. I really can’t see how this could go wrong.
Salty-sweet potato chip krispies
I don’t have to convince anyone that salty and sweet go together, so just throw all your inhibitions out the window (they’re compostable anyway) and make rice krispies treats with a thin, salty chip. Let me be clear, replace all rice krispies with crushed potato chips and mix them with melted butter and marshmallows. Dump this divinely evil concoction into a buttered baking dish, and let it set. Cut your chip krispies into shapes, and let it consume you.
Potato chip cookies
Legend has it, if the base dough of a drop cookie can handle chocolate chips, then it can handle potato chips. The flaky, crisp texture of the potato chips adds a delightful bit of texture, and the salty component kicks more of your flavor receptors into gear. Add a dose of crushed chips to any drop cookie recipe that calls for mix-ins, like nuts, dried fruits, or chocolate chips. This is, however, one of the cases I’d recommend you stick to the classic chip, and avoid that sour cream and onion bag.
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