It's a veggie chip world and we just live in it!
By Ellen Schuster, BA, MS
I was recently in the chip aisle and was overwhelmed by the many veggie chip choices. (Cauliflower pretzels? Really? Personally, I'd rather roast some cauliflower and add my own spices.) My concerns about veggie chips are that many are high in sodium and pricey. OK, to be honest, the few that I've tried aren't very tasty. Here are some resources to help you assess the options out there.
**2 databases to find specific product nutrition information @ https://www.ewg.org/foodscores/productscategory_group=Chips+%26+Snacks and https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/search/list?home=true
RDNs, dietitians, nutritionists to the rescue!
**Are veggie chips/straws healthy? Nutritionists/dietitians weigh in ... they are primarily potatoes, fried and with a little vegetable powder. Try to find a chip with a vegetable listed as the first or second ingredient when looking for these alternative chips. More @ http://time.com/5590711/veggie-chips-straws-vs-potato-chips/
**Are healthy snacks good for you? @ https://www.vox.com/the-goods/2019/1/17/18185262/healthy-snacks-cauliflower-puffs-peatos offers opinions from several nutrition experts and adds a new word to describe these snack options ... "alterna-chips." Bottom line: the fat content in veggie chips are about the same as regular chips and although they may have more fiber and protein, this isn't really a meaningful contribution to the diet.
**A closer look at the nutrition of veggie chips @ https://abcnews.go.com/Health/closer-nutrition-vegetable-chips/story?id=38167759 enlists a nutritionist to look at some nutrition/ingredient labels. Are you looking to add veggies to your diet? Are you looking for low fat? Some companies respond with why their products are good choices.
**Veggie chips: are they healthy? @ https://www.foodnetwork.com/healthyeats/healthy-tips/2011/10/veggie-chips-are-they-healthy provides an R.D.'s bottom line ... moderation is key for any chip.
**The best and worst packaged chips for your health @ https://www.tasteofhome.com/article/unhealthy-and-healthy-chips/ provides another R.D.'s choices noting fat, calories, vitamin content and in some cases, interesting flavors.
**Do these healthy chips hold up? @ https://www.everydayhealth.com/diet-and-nutrition-pictures/do-these-healthy-chips-hold-up.aspx offers one R.D.'s comparison of several choices and their calorie, sodium and fat content.
Not an RDN review but some helpful info
**The best healthy veggie chips to buy @ http://www.eatingwell.com/article/290755/the-best-healthy-veggie-chips-to-buy/ is EW's attempt at their picks for the best veggie chips. They suggest these 3 tips: 1) look at salt content; 2) seek out bonus nutrients such as chips made from sweet potatoes with Vitamin A or fiber and 3) numbers to keep in mind with regard to sodium and fiber. There are also instructions about how to make your own chips at home.
**Veggie chips are compared @ https://www.consumerreports.org/cro/magazine/2013/02/eat-your-vegetable-chips/index.htm and Consumer Reports compares cost/serving, calories, fat and sodium.
Make your own!
**10 healthy DIY veggie chips under 200 calories has instructions on how to make sweet potato, zucchini, beet and other chips @ https://blog.myfitnesspal.com/10-healthy-diy-veggie-chips-under-200-calories/ with nutrition info provided.
**3 tips to making a great chip at home @ http://dish.allrecipes.com/tips-for-better-veggie-chips/ reminds us to marinade, give each plenty of room as they bake and add spices you love.