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McCain Rustic Oven Chips Skin On

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10 Reviews

A healthier twist on oven chips, the skin is left on and the only added ingredient is sunflower oil. Taste and texture suffers as a result however, and they are largely quite bland and dry.

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      12.09.2013 10:14
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      Ideal for hungry, busy or lazy people!

      Price: £1.75 for a 1kg bag at my local Sainsbury's

      Nutritional information (per 100g oven-baked):-

      Calories: 131
      Kj: 552
      Fat: 2.7g
      (of which saturates: 0.3g)
      (of which mono unsaturates: 0.7g)
      (of which polyunsaturates 1.5g)
      Carbohydrate: 24.5g
      (of which sugars: 0.8g)
      Fibre: 2.2g
      Protein: 2.1g
      Salt: 0.1g

      Ingredients:-

      Potatoes, sunflower oil

      Dietary/Allergy advice:-

      Kosher
      Suitable for vegetarians
      Gluten-free

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

      Being lazy yet loving chips (sometimes) and feeling that living alone isn't worth the trouble of peeling potatoes and cooking them from scratch for myself, I frequently try out different frozen potato products. In general, I find McCain branded foods to be of reasonably good quality, so thought I'd try their Rustic Chips.

      McCain Rustic Chips can be found in the freezer department of most decent-sized supermarkets, and many other grocery outlets. They are packed into an orange and yellow coloured plastic bag which bears the company logo and an image of a few of the chips on the front. The rear of the pack shows nutritional information, dietary/allergy advice, ingredients, storing and cooking instructions, recycling advice for the packaging and the manufacturer's quality claim together with their contact details.

      These chips are made from unpeeled potatoes and are cut quite thickly. On opening the packet, their appearance isn't immediately appealing as they have a strange almost orange-ish coloured hue to them. However, they mostly are free from those horrible black bits that some brands of frozen potato products are riddled with.

      Because they are cut thickly, I find I only need a few to make a substantial potato addition to a meal.

      These are oven-bake chips, claiming to be soft and fluffy inside once cooked. Having experimented a few times in order to get them as closely to the way that I like chips to be, I find that I have to increase the recommended cooking time by about 8 minutes.

      Despite looking tiredly orange in the pack, once cooked, they take on a lovely golden brown colour and smell good whilst in the oven. However, they still don't look like home-cooked chips as although they are different sizes, the ends of them are too square whereas whenever I make my own chips, the ends tend to be pointed. That doesn't matter to me though, because it is the flavour and texture I go for above anything else and I don't really care what shape anything is.

      On cutting into the chips, sometimes the potato skins can need a bit of a grind with my knife (I assume the reason for that may be due to me keeping them in the oven longer than the manufacturer recommends), but they aren't tough to chew on. Despite McCain's 'soft and fluffy' claim regarding the insides of the chips, I personally find that not to be quite the case, the middles coming across to me as more of a slightly floury, yet simultaneously creamy texture. However, such isn't at all unpleasant.

      The chips taste good with a strong potato flavour, being at least equal to many other quality frozen potato products, but you can tell they are oven chips. For some reason, all frozen potato products to me have a slight under-taste - some stronger than others - and McCain Rustic Chips are no exception, but that under-taste isn't overpowering.

      £1.75 may sound a little on the expensive side for a bag of frozen chips which probably wouldn't last a family very long, but I can eke them out for 6 to 8 meals (depending on how hungry I am at any given time) just for myself.....hence, they do work out reasonably economical for a single person or a family with miniscule appetites.

      In their cooked state, McCain Rustic Chips are a little on the dry side, but not so dry that they stop me enjoying them. I had wondered whether the slightly dry consistency may have been due to me cooking them for longer than recommended, so I tried an experiment, sticking strictly to the manufacturer's instructions the next time I ate them....and, the result was the same....a tiny bit dry. They are very tasty though!

      All chips have at least a fairly high fat content, but considering how substantial these are and bearing in mind a small portion would be enough to satisfy most appetites, they are quite kind in that department. Also, there are no additives, the only ingredients being potatoes and sunflower oil. I did say above that these chips do have a faint trace of that under-taste which one would assume could come from additives, but perhaps it is down to the freezing process?

      Another nutritional advantage is the higher fibre content (higher than most other varieties of frozen chips) due to the skins not having been removed from the potatoes.

      All in all, McCain Rustic Chips are a tasty, comparatively wholesome way of having your 'chip fix' without needing to worry all that much about scoffing loads of junk food, because they do contain some nutritional value above other brands.

      At the moment, my local Sainsbury's are offering 2 x 1kg packs for £3.00, so it may be an idea to stock up if you have room in your freezer.

      My summary? These chips come highly recommended by me and although they aren't the same as home-cooked, they definitely are a cut above the rest.

      Thanks for reading!

      ~~ Also published on Ciao under my CelticSoulSister user name ~~

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        02.08.2013 21:12
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        Good for those concerned with fat content - but you may find them slightly tasteless

        I follow the Weightwatchers plan, but I adore my food, and have lost almost 4st in the past year and a half or so by doing the point-counting properly and never denying myself the nice stuff. No salads or plain, boring low fat ready meals for me, thanks! I could never do without chips now and again, and being on a very strict budget, I do tend to buy cheap, filling oven chips. These rustic chips from McCain are 3% fat and so seemed ideal for me.

        INGREDIENTS AND FAT CONTENT
        These contain nothing but potatoes and sunflower oil. They have 3% fat, and contain 0.2g of saturated fat per 100g of frozen chips.

        COOKING
        To cook these (from frozen), you just put them on a baking tray and bake between 16 and 19 minutes. I find that around 16 minutes is better as they seem to have a fine line between 'golden brown' and 'golden brown to slightly burnt'. The longer they cook, the harder and crispier they go, which isn't to my personal liking. The pack recommends these are baked at 220C but I never put the oven higher than 200C; you would need to judge things by your own oven.

        TASTE
        I buy these fairly regularly, and I have found that these can be a bit hit and miss. Some bags will have chips that can be quite flavourless, while in others the chips taste 'fattier' and thus more like normal chips. The 'nice' bags taste very nice indeed although I do need to eat these with a tiny bit of BBQ or tomato sauce, otherwise they can taste bland and very starchy. The chips themselves are quite thick cut and chunky. Some of the chips have the skin on them. I personally prefer the chips without this.

        I do like these as they feel relatively guilt-free and help curb any cravings for chips I may have. On occasion I would sprinkle these with paprika before putting them into the oven, just to give them a boost of flavour.

        PRICE
        These are £1.75 for a 1kg bag. A bag of these would last me between 3 or 4 weeks if I am eating them once a week. Sainsbury's sometimes sell these for £1. Either price is fine in my book.

        WOULD I RECOMMEND THESE?
        I would only recommend these if like myself you want to buy a lower fat option. If not, I think these are just too much on the bland side, and if you are not worried about your weight or the fat content, you'd be better off sticking to regular oven chips - or better still, making proper chips yourself (mmm... chance would be a fine thing!)

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          18.05.2013 13:05

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          These look home-made. I once asked my mum if she'd made them, she told me that it was a new McCain product. D'oh! Seeing as I like flavour, I had melted grated cheese on mine, with tomatoe sauce. If you put some butter on them, and microwave them, they can taste like jacket potatoes. Or I sometimes have these with Heinz Spaghetti. I can't eat a potatoe product without something to go with it. These are good, but just don't expect a spicy tang, or a fried texture. These are simply for the oven. No wonder they're healthy. I do think there are better flavours out there.

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          13.03.2013 17:19
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          You can tell these aren't your full fat friend!

          Fish and chips, pie and chips, Steak and chips, cheesey chips, chips and curry sauce....the list of combinations is endless! Chips are generally a staple, convenience food in most households, however I am not a fan of greasy, dripping in fat chips that scream heart attack so I always opt for some form of 'healthier' chips when buying some for tea. Which is when I spotted these Mccain Rustic oven chips, which appealed to me because they were advertised as having only 3 % fat and their skins left on - Like potato wedges perhaps? Which happen to my favourite from of potato!

          ~McCain~
          McCain's first opened on February 23rd 1957 and is one of the most well known names from the freezer isle!
          At McCain, we take pride in what we do. That's why we only use the finest ingredients, simply prepared and it's this attention to detail that has made us the nation's favourite chip manufacturer.
          McCain works with selected farmers, some of whom we have worked with for three generations. This means we know where our potatoes come from and what potato is right for making the perfect chip, or wedge, or any other of our McCain products!

          It's also part of our philosophy to help all the McCain family enjoy our products as part of a healthy, balanced diet.

          Taken from http://www.mccain.co.uk/about-mccain/

          As well as rustic oven chips McCain's produce other potato products such as hash browns, traditional home chips, fries, croquettes, jacket potatoes, roast potatoes, potato smiles and wedges all in different flavours.

          ~Price & Availability~
          McCain's Rustic oven chips are available to buy in a 1kg bag from Asda, Waitrose, Tesco, Ocado and Sainsbury's for around £1.75. Which is about 50p more than your supermarket branded 'healthier 3% fat' chips.

          ~Packaging~
          McCain's rustic oven chips come in an orange /yellow bag with the base design as a sun rising above a field. McCain's logo is printed largely in black text on the sun and on the field is the name of the chips in burgundy. To the bottom left hand side of the front you will find a description of the product; 'oven ready chunky chips prepared with potatoes & sunflower oil'. And on the adjacent side an at a glance nutritional 'traffic light' chart. On the back of the bag you are given the McCain's potato to chips story, ingredients list, contact details, cooking guidelines, full nutritional information, storage instructions and the McCain's potato promise.

          ~Appearance, taste & Texture ~
          Once cooked, which can take some time to get it just right - nice and crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, I was quite pleased with how these chips looked. They were nice and chunky with a nice golden brown skin and fluffy and white inside. They did look very much like potato wedges with their 'skins', however biting into one I found something was missing. They looked crunchy, but they weren't and they had been cooked for much longer than suggested. Other people in my family described these as not being very 'chip like', which I can totally agree with as they were very bland which I guess it where the extremely small ingredients list comes in. Couldn't they have had some sort of seasoning on the skins? That wouldn't have to make them an unhealthy chip as they would still contain just potato and sunflower oil with a little added oomph, it would just make them much more flavourful! On the up side, coated in salt, vinegar and sauce they were ok I was just really missing the crispiness on the outside and I couldn't find a fault with the insides, they were just as you expect from McCain's - fluffy and light potato!

          ~Other information~
          McCain's rustic oven chips contain 216 calories, 4.5g of fat, 0.5g of saturated fat, 1.3g of sugar and 0.2g of salt per 165g serving, which is all coded green on the traffic light system - so for chips these really aren't bad for you at all! Plus the fact that 165g is a lot of these chips as they are very filling and they only contain 131 calories per 100g which is a substantial portion in my view.

          The suggested cooking time for Mccain's rustic oven chips is 16-19 minutes at 210 degrees in a regular oven or 220 degrees in a fan assisted one. They need turning a few times throughout cooking to ensure the chip is baked on all sides.

          The only ingredients they contain are potatoes and sunflower oil! You can't get any better than that now can you? No added nasties....just potatoes and sunflower oil!

          Mccain's rustic oven chips are gluten free and suitable for vegetarians.

          No allergy advice is given on the bag, so it would be a good idea to look into these further if you have any allergies before you buy them.

          ~Over all opinion ~
          For a healthy chip these aren't so bad, but I just find them a bit boring and not very exciting to eat, however they are very filling which is a bonus because it stops you from eating one too many, which would draw them away from being better for you if you ate the whole bag! If your looking for a traditional, crispy oven chip then these definiately aren't for you and I can imagine you would be pretty disappointed with these, however if you're just looking for a healthier alternative to regular chips like me or you're on a diet, then you're in luck - as long as you don't mind adding some salt and pepper and maybe a splash of sauce?

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          02.05.2012 19:42
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          An interesting twist on regular chips from McCains

          I bought a bag of McCains Rustic Oven Chips solely because they were the only chips my Sainsbury's Local had in stock when I wanted them. They were available for a special offer price of £1 for the 1 kilo bag which normally sells there for £1.50. I didn't even notice the "rustic" part on the label until I got home! This means that the chips have some of the potato skin left on. I would still have bought them anyway, as I often leave the skins on when I make my own chips, for a bit extra flavour and maybe fibre too.

          These particular chips are frozen, and so come in the usual plastic bag. This packet doesn't re-seal after use, so if you don't want to use all of the chips at once, you have to clip or seal the bag together yourself. When I tipped the chips out of the bag for the first time I was impressed at how big many of the chips were. Although they aren't all the same size, some are 3 or 4 inches long. This makes them satisfying to eat but the lack of a uniform size means that they do not finish cooking at the same time. I am used to putting a tray of chips in the oven and more or less forgetting about them, until the kitchen timer goes off. With these, I had to turn them often and remove the smaller ones in stages as they cooked. This makes them slightly less convenient if you are busy preparing something else. The cooking time is 16-19 minutes, and surprisingly given their size, even the larger ones cook within that time.

          As well as long, these are very chunky. They remind me of a cross between potato wedges and steak cut oven chips. The potato skin is obvious along one edge of the chips. They do look a bit more interesting than regular chips, and they smell just as good when they are cooking. On taking them out of the oven, the chips are a nice golden brown colour, with the skins being darker and a rougher texture. They were also nice and crispy, despite the fact they were cooked without oil. I thought they may stick to the oven tray but they were fine. I appreciated that when it came to washing up time.

          Taste wise, I think these taste more "potatoey" than standard chips, perhaps because they are thicker as much as anything. The potato skins taste more earthy - I think if you like eating the scrubbed skins of jacket potatoes as I do, you will really like this flavour. I did find them drier than average though, with a less fluffy interior. I didn't mind this myself, as I was eating them with a tomato sauce. They are not at all greasy or fatty in taste or touch so they are perfect for eating with your hands. They also hold together well if you want to dip them! I thought the extra potato skins could be tough, but they are only a bit more chewy. As they reminded me of long potato wedges in a way, I cooked the second half of my bag with a chilli sprinkle and they tasted great. I think the rougher potato skin helps to trap flavour on the chips which means they seemed to have a more intense taste than normal.

          The chips are prepared by McCains with sunflower oil, and contain less fat than many chips. A 165g serving gives you 216 calories, and 2% of your recommended daily intake of saturated fat, and 3% of your RDA of salt. I think this is reasonable for a chip, and it means I feel that I am having something that is both a treat and relatively healthy.

          I would recommend these to anyone who would like to try a healthier chip, or one that tastes a bit different. If you want a classic tasting chip only, the difference in taste may not suit you though. I will happily buy these again, whether on offer or not. They are a useful food to keep in the freezer and a interesting change from the usual oven kind. They need more attention when cooking than other chips, but I think they are worth the trouble!

          [This review also appears on Ciao, under my user name.]

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          22.11.2010 12:34
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          A great healthy alternative to everyday chips, worth swapping to, to help your healthier lifestyle

          I have always really liked eating chips, but as most people are already aware, they are not particularly good for you. Potatoes are a much healthier option, but I'm not a big fan of Potatoes. Therefore I thought I would try an option that is somewhere in the middle. Chips with their skins left on, often called 'Rustic Chips'.

          As I usually like McCain's chips I thought I would try their Rustic variety. These are frozen oven chips and come in a bright yellow plastic bag, which shows the nutritional values on the front of the bag in an easy to read table. This is a 1kg bag and costs £1.34 from asda.

          The chips themselves are cut in a very chunky size, similar to Steak chips and you can see, even when frozen, the skin on one edge of each chip. To cook simply pre-heat your oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas Mark 7. For fan-assisted ovens preheat to 210°C/410°F. Leave them to cook for 16-19 minutes, turning half way through. They will turn a golden colour when they are cooked.

          These chips produce almost no fat and you will need to oil the pan to stop them from sticking. I would suggest using a spray light oil, as these are only 1 calorie per spray and if you put high fat cooking oil in the pan, it makes the calorie and fat count for these chips a lot higher.

          They have only two ingredients. Potatoes and Sunflower Oil. They are therefore suitable for vegetarians and are free from Gluten.

          The Nutritional Values for these chips are as follows:

          Typical Values Per 100g Frozen Per 100g Oven Baked

          Energy kJ 428 552
          Kcal 101 131
          Protein 1.7 2.1
          Carbohydrate g 18.6 24.5
          Of which sugars g 0.7 0.8
          Fat g 2.1 2.7
          Of Which saturates g0.2 0.3
          Cholesterol mg 0 0
          Fibre g 1.9 2.2
          Sodium g 0.02 0.03
          Equivalent as salt g 0.01 0.01

          As you can see from the above table, the Fat and Saturated Fat are considerably lower than most chips. Calories at 131 per 100g are quite low and the salt is extremely low.

          So what are they like? Because of their size, you can taste the potato quite clearly in the middle of each chip. Due to this I feel they need more sauce than everyday oven chips. The outside of the chips is just as tasty as any other types of chip. One big advantage is that they are extremely filling and you therefore only need a small portion on your plate. This keeps the calories down even further.

          Who should buy them? - I personally think they should be brought by people that love chips, but would like to eat something a little healthier. You need to at least partially like potatoes to enjoy these chips. Anyone who wishes to improve their diet should seriously consider switching to these chips instead of other chips, especially the highly fatty fries.

          Advantages: - The calories, fat and salt are all low on these. They are high in carbohydrates and are therefore filling in the stomach, so only a small portion is required to make you feel full up. Good value for money. They taste just enough like chips to keep you feeling you are eating chips and not potatoes. They also leave you feeling full for longer and therefore you do not need to eat again as soon.

          Disadvantages: They are not quite as delicious as everyday oven chips or Fries. The high carbohydrate levels will leave you feeling slightly bloated after eating them.

          What meals they go best with: Because of their chunky size, they go perfectly with Steak dinners or instead of potatoes with Roast dinners. They do not go so well with bean based meals although I will eat with beans because they are so much healthier.

          In my adult life I have eaten far too many plates of chips. I have now swapped to these Rustic chips and feel a little less guilty at the end of the meal. I would strongly recommend these to others.

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            26.05.2010 21:46
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            Great as a side dish or a party snack

            I'm a regular buyer of McCain's rustic oven chips and have to say I quite like them.
            They come packaged in a thick cellophane bag. It's not resealable so needs to be stored in the freezer with care once opened.
            The chips themselves are quite large and chunky. Most are 2 - 3 inches long and about 3/4 of an inch thick. This means that you have to be careful when cooking as some of the really thick ones need a bit longer to make sure they are cooked the whole way through. All the chips have a thin layer of skin on them, which I think makes them a bit tastier than your average oven chip.
            To cook them it takes about 20 minutes on a baking tray at 220, turning them a couple of times to make sure they're evenly cooked.
            These really remind me of the taste you get with American style loaded potato skins and sometimes I melt cheese over them or have them with sour cream - I find that for this product, that works better than the traditional salt and vinegar.
            A standard portion (165g) has 4.5g of fat 0.2g of salt and 216 calories.
            A 1 kg bag is normally priced at around £1.30, but they are regularly on offer for £1, which is when I stock up.
            A tasty little twist on regular chips.

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            10.03.2010 17:22
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            not very nice

            McCain's Rustic Oven Chips are one of the latest offerings on the frozen chip market, the difference between these and other branded frozen chips is that they still have their skins on. A 1Kg bag normally retails at £1.35 making them mid range as far as the price goes.

            These chips are the chunkiest oven chips I have ever seen, they are chips for people who like their chips to be chunky. Not every chip has skin on, the ones cut from the centre of the potato are skinless. Cooking them is easy, simply bung them into a very hot oven for 16 to 19 minutes and they are ready.

            When the chips were cooked they were a nice uniform golden brown colour but the sides with the skin on looked all gnarled and really dried out. The chips have a nice crispy outer coating and the inside is nice and fluffy but very dry meaning you feel like you're chewing away on a mouthfull of horrible dry mashed potato. You need a lot of ketchup to moisten the chips or keep a glass of water on hand when you are eating them. The taste of the potato is pretty good, the skin on sides taste like the skin of a baked potato would and the insides have a nice strong taste of a floury potato.

            The bad news about the packet of chips is that once you get down to the bottom of the packet the last serving was almost completely composed of tiny little chips which soon burnt while the bigger chips remained uncooked. The fact there is such a huge size variation between chips in the packet is not good for cooking times.

            The good news is that the chips are made of only two ingredients which are potato and sunflower oil and the fact the skins are left on means they are higher in fibre than standard oven chips and also a lot of the vitamin content in potatoes is just under the skin so this has been preserved. A 100g portion contains 131 calories, only 0.8g of fat and they are very low salt.

            Even though these oven chips are probably better for you than many others I still don't like them much because they are far too dry and as my daughter also didn't like them it means we will be sticking to Homefrys in the future.

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              02.03.2010 20:01
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              Not recommended

              When you have a toddler a bag of frozen chips is always required in the freezer for the days when you need some thing quick to throw in the oven .As McCain's Rustic oven chips with the skins on were on offer at £1.69 at Morrison's for a 2kg bag I decided to give these a try for a change.

              The chips come in the usual chip bag with a picture of the cooked results on the front.

              Nutritional information.

              On this occasion I will list all the ingredients which are potatoes and sunflower oil. McCain also claim that it is made with only British potatoes.

              It advertises on the pack these are vegetarian, gluten free, cholesterol free. It also claims to have no hydrogenated fats, artificial flavours or colourings.

              Per 100g cooked contains
              131Kcals
              2.7g fat
              These values seem very reasonable to me.

              When you open the bag the size of the chips is quite a surprise Chips are huge the measure approximately 2cm by 3cm on average.

              These take 16-19 minutes to cook in the oven on a high heat.

              I cooked mine for closer to the 19 minutes than the 16 as I do like crunchy chips.

              Once removed from the oven the chips were a light golden brown colour and seemed to fill the plate more than standard chips.

              When I tasted the chips I was a little disappointed that they did not have the crunchy taste I love with Oven chips. There was however very fluffy and light inside but I did find that these made them slightly dry and felt they were too chunky. I did like the skin on the chips which did have a very earthy flavour which was enjoyable and made me feel I was feeling a big fat healthy chip.

              My son, like most toddlers, is a great fan of chips but he seems to be less and less impressed each time he eats them. My son does eat his favourite food on his plate first and normally he would eat his chips first but these are left till last.

              We will eat these chips simply because we have now bought them but I won't be buying them again even if they are on offer.

              These chips have won an innovative product award in 2008 but I am personally left wondering why? While these can be described as healthy chip I would not describe them as a tasty chip. These would be much tastier if smaller in size.

              I would prefer to buy standard chips or potato wedges and will not be recommending these chips.

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                11.02.2010 12:08
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                Nice Chips That Should Be Half The Thickness I Reckon

                I brought a bag of these Rustic Oven Chips in Morrisons the other day because they're on offer where you can get a big bag for £1.69. We usually get Mccain because even though none of us eat frozen chips much you know you can always get a nice butty out of their chips.

                I cooked some last night and was majorly surprised at how fat the chips are, the skins don't look very different in colour from the potato but the size of them put be off even before I'd put them in the oven.

                They only have to be cooked for 19 mins and it shocked me that they were done good in that time because of how fat they are. When they're done they don't smell much of chips until you've put salt and vinegar on them but they do look nice.

                I reckon they're too big to go on a butty, you'd only get about 6 chips on your bread and they're waaaaaay too fat anyway. We had ours with a burger in a bun and seriously you only need to put a hand full on your plate because they're mega filling.

                They taste good but are too fat, I know I keep going on about it but these chips are stupidly massive and I don't like it. The potato inside them is lovely and fluffy and the outsides have got a nice texture, the skins aren't anything special I don't think because they don't taste of a lot but at least it makes them look nice! lol

                All 5 of us had them and we all sort of thought the same thing. My 2 year old sister loved them but only because they was chunky enough for her to hold properly! lol She only had 2 and was full up so that shows how big the chips are! The rest of us thought they was ok but not worth buying again because you can get the same tasting chips that are a proper size.

                Another thing I noticed is that the chips are that big that the bag seems to be gone dead quick, this big bag is half empty now and none of us had that many chips so if you brought the normal sized bag it would probably only do you one meal for a family.

                Not recommended.... are Mccain having a laugh with the size of these chips???

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