Potato Chip Rant

My kids eat potato chips. Now, I’m not going to say they eat a lot of chips. They actually have fairly healthy diets, but chips are an “extra,” bringing crispy, salty goodness to snack time. If you’re trying to feed hungry teenagers, sometimes you go for the high calorie, filling foods. But in truth, don’t potato chips count as a vegetable? P-O-T-A-T-O-E-S, after all.

If you buy a “regular” bag of potato chips—and for the sake of our argument, we are using Wavy Lays in the red bag—you will get 7.75 ounces of chips. One serving of Wavy Lays potato chips is one ounce, or “about 11 chips.” [I’m sorry… eleven chips? First of all, who counts out eleven chips? What does “about” mean? Can I have eleven chips or can I only have ten?] Anyway, in the “regular” bag of potato chips, there are “about 8” servings, but I can do the math, and I know the eighth person is going to get gypped. Therefore, I would say there are “about 7” servings in a bag. That way, all seven people get a bonus chip (especially with the chintzy, eleven-chip serving size).

If you buy a “Family Size” bag of potato chips, you can still only eat those eleven chips, but now (because you are part of a family), you will get ten ounces of chips. The “Family Size” bag offers 2.25 ounces more than if you were a single person buying the regular bag of chips, I suppose because a family is only slightly bigger than one person. It doesn’t seem that a two-and-a-quarter-ounce difference justifies the denotation of “Family Size,” but maybe most families are different than mine. The nice thing about the “Family Size” bag is that there are ten servings. None of this “about 10” servings with the last person being gypped. Because chip makers knows how families work. And families must be fair to all parties so as to prevent World War Three.

Now, if you are really going to go hog wild on the chip-eating thing, you might splurge on the “Party Size” bag because then you will get a full fifty percent more than if you are only in a family. Yes friends, you will get 15.25 ounces, allowing you to invite half the number of people in your family to your “Party” as long as your guests count out their eleven chips. I am thinking they should see how many ounces they might cram into the “Hungry Teen Snack Size” bag.

And speaking of hungry teens, about this eleven chip serving size…. Whoever determined that eleven chips is a serving has most likely never even met a teenager, never mind eaten with one. Perhaps, they have never even met someone who eats potato chips….


4 thoughts on “Potato Chip Rant

  1. What a delightful post. I adore chips and I count them. Not only because I too buy the large bags (and keep them in the main house – my won’t power isn’t what it could be), but also because I’m determined to disprove My Fitness Pal is as helpful in my health maintenance plan as it’s reputed to be (this is after losing 2 Fitbit bracelets last year). We’ve decided that “about x servings” applies more to about how many visitors drifted in after we opened the bag, so we defer to the 2 bags a week plan. No matter what, Twelve-Year-Old always says he’s been gypped (50% age, 50% entitlement check). Love this blog!


    1. Thank you, Roo! I try not to eat too many chips myself, but with an open bag always handy, it’s tough not to. I love your “won’t power.” I guess I have to say mine is not what it could be, either. I do like your idea to blame the disappearing chips on the visitors who drift through. I think I will start blaming the constant stream of teens, whether they eat while they are here or not…. Thank you for reading! 🙂


  2. I really liked the distinctions you made. I think I’ve only once counted out my chips for a single serving. Then there are those who come to your party and scoop with their hand or shovel their portion. Maybe Lays could use the “counting portion” or the “scooping portion;” lastly, the “shovel portion.” What I find more amazing is that Frito Lay’s actually has machines which counts these portions for individual or family size bags. I wonder if the switch on the machine simply says “single portion” or “family portion.” Maybe it says “about 1 serving single” or “&about” There is definitely a method in the madness and it makes Lays Billions every year.


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