Putting chips inside of a sandwich is one of those clunky food innovations that I thought America would rightly claim, but it turns out this creation has a murky and international history. In the UK, it’s triumphantly called a crisp sandwich. I appreciate that the Brits gave this pairing a catchy name. In the States, we unceremoniously refer to it as a potato chip sandwich, like we have trouble with words or something. Moreover, Britain absolutely kicks our ass when it comes to naming sandwiches (see: the Chip Butty and the Coronation Chicken Sandwich). Although, I vehemently disagree with this article from The Guardian article saying that a crisp sandwich is the equivalent of “picking your nose.” Unless in London picking your nose means you’re a cool dude who has brilliant ideas.
Everyone knows chips go with sandwiches like TK go with TK, but in some cases, it just makes sense to take the chips out of the bag and put them directly onto the sandwich. When nestled between slices of bread, chips add some much-needed crunch, plus salt and oil, elevating the sandwich itself in the process. Tuna salad topped with plain potato chips is a childhood classic that comes to mind. Kenji Lopez-Alt wrote all about it, but the chips add an assertive amount of salt and flavor to the mushy sameness of the tuna salad and bread. There’s more, too: Barbecue chips in a Sloppy Joe are a tangy one-two punch, and I love sour cream and onion chips with the clean, rich taste of turkey. But what sandwich and chip combinations have yet to be explored? What brave, new frontiers will be discovered here at Sporked? Let’s investigate, friends. Put on your lab coats, and let’s discuss some of these never-before-tried sandwich and chip pairings.
Bacon & Eggs
Guerrero Chicharrones and Egg Salad
An iconic duo, bacon and eggs go together like me and not doing my taxes (go ahead and come for it, IRS!). Guerrero chicharrones are crispy pork rinds that pack a savory, salty, porky punch. Put them on an egg salad sandwich on sourdough and you’ve got yourself a deliciously fatty, bacon-y, decadent sandwich. The plainness of the eggs and mayonnaise pairs delightfully well with the salty, meaty taste of the pork rinds. Guerrero chicharrones are my brand of choice; they’re just so light and airy while still being crunchy and flavorful. This is a pairing that makes sense both flavor-wise and texture-wise, which is exactly what I’m looking for when I want a chip sandwich.
Carolina Pulled Pork Ham Sandwich
Ham Sandwich with Utz Carolina Style Barbecue Chips
Did you know that Utz makes chips flavored like Carolina-style BBQ sauce? Did you know that they absolutely slap? These chips are deliciously tangy, sweet, and smoky. Putting them on a ham sandwich is a no-brainer, and recreating a Carolina pulled pork slider sandwich is an even easier decision. Get some thin-sliced Boar’s Head ham, good white bread, coleslaw, and swiss, then top the sandwich off with some of the aforementioned Utz Carolina Style Barbecue chips for a meaty, tangy, and crispy regional-style sandwich combo that’s a textural victory for sandwiches everywhere.
Roast Beef, Cheddar Cheese, and Herr’s Ketchup Chips
Don’t call it a Smashburger—this lovely idea comes from myself and from editor-in-chief Justine Sterling. Basically, the goal here is to re-create a burger with sliced deli meat. Take thin slices of roast beef, top them with American cheese, then bake that in the oven to melt the cheese and warm the meat. After a few minutes, the meat and cheese out of the oven and place them on some bread. Then add a thin smear of mayonnaise and some Herr’s Ketchup chips to form your special sauce. Add some thinly sliced dill pickles, and, friends, you’ve got yourself a Flat Burger™. It’s got all of the same components as a burger: beef, cheese, mayo, ketchup, and pickles, but the ketchup chips add a mouth-smacking amount of salt, tang, and crunch.
Jalapeño Popper Grilled Cheese
Herr’s Jalapeño Poppers Cheese Curls and a Grilled Cheese
We love Herr’s Jalapeño Poppers cheese curls so much. I even introduced these to Rhett & Link, and they were floored by how good the flavor is. The jalapeño flavor is robust, the cheddar cheese flavor bold, and they are also well-salted. The snack itself is addicting, but adding some of these to a grilled cheese will provide delicious salt and spice. Plus, the cheddar cheese flavor in these curls has a slightly tangy component to it, which adds to the complexity of the grilled cheese itself. Sometimes, you just can’t resist putting a hat on a hat. The light crisp of the cheese curls adds enough crunch without overdoing it; you still get to enjoy the melty and velvety nature of the grilled cheese.
Potato Stix Primanti Brothers Sandwich
Pastrami Sandwich with Utz Potato Stix
I’m from Western Pennsylvania, where french fry-stacked sandwiches like the ones served at Primanti Brothers have become an institution, but I’ve never truly been a fan of fries on a sandwich. I am, admittedly, much more of a french fries on a salad type of guy. That said, this is a french fries-and-sandwich combo I can get down with. Make your meat-heavy sandwich of choice (though I fully recommend using pastrami here), add some coleslaw, provolone cheese, and some Utz Potato Stix. Potato Stix are retro (the packaging still looks very 1970s), but they pack a lovely fried potato flavor. The potatoes are crispy like a chip, and the lightly salted, somewhat greasy nature of these things is delectable. Fresh french fries on a sandwich are just too squishy, while potato stix actually offer some great, needed texture to make a pastrami sandwich sing.