If you want to break out of the potato-chip rut without having to slave away in the kitchen, store-bought soy crisps are a great, gluten-free alternative. Most varieties of crisps mix soy with puffed rice for a light, airy consistency. They have about a third fewer calories than potato chips and way less fat.
There are many brands and flavors to choose from — from barbecue to caramel — but after we sampled several varieties from Glenny's and Newman's Own Organics, two clear winners emerged: Glenny's Creamy Ranch, which one tester suggested as a perfect complement to a tuna-salad sandwich, and Newman's Own Organics Cinnamon Sugar. "It's not too sweet and not too salty," noted a taster.
Not everyone was sold on the soy crisps, however. "In general, I don't like the texture. It's like eating foam chips," noted one critic. "They all have this cardboardy taste."
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For sheer crispy, crunchy deliciousness, the potato chip is tough to beat. It’s no wonder, then, that Americans spend more than $7 billion a year on the salty snack. Not coincidentally, it’s also one of the top dietary contributors to weight gain, according to a recent Harvard study.
But rather than lecture you on your naughty chip-chomping habit, I’m here to help you kick it: following are five delectable — and healthier — alternatives to potato chips, all taste-tested by members of the TIME.com team. You can buy the snacks at grocery stores, but they taste better baked from scratch, so I’ve included the recipes I liked best. (If you go the DIY route, it might be worth investing in a mandoline, which can help you make neat, even slices in a snap.)
Whether you bake or buy these treats, each has less fat and fewer calories than deep-fried potato chips. And they’re all delicious.