28 Unusual And Popular Chips You Can Only Get In France

minutes reading time

FRENCH chips in France: unusual flavours you can't get outside france

The world is full of interesting and bold potato chip flavours that are hard to come by outside their home country. Here are some of France’s most popular potato chips, unique to France’s fine dining palette. Many of which are reminiscent of French cuisine. 

popular chips in France: Unique flavours

Ever since the French snack company Vico introduced potato chips to France in the mid-’80s, they’ve become extremely popular.

According to Market research, France purchased about 522  Million Euros (600 Million USD) worth of chips in 2018, which has increased by about 6 percent each year. 

I’m not a big fan of potato chips; however, I’m always intrigued by the array of chip flavours available in local grocery stores when I travel to other countries.

As odd as they sound, some have instant appeal and beg to be tried like Russian caviar flavoured chips.

While other flavours sound so exotic compared to sour cream and onion. Miang Kum chips from Thailand are a perfect example. They were created to taste like the popular sour and spicy Thai dish they were named after (toasted coconut, peanuts, shallots, ginger, lime and ginger).

I know I’m not alone in this bizarre fascination. I think it’s partly due to the fact that chip companies attempt to make flavours that mimick local cuisine and give them names that remind us of those dishes or a particular food item popular in that country. 

It makes you wonder, can chips really taste like caviar, lobster, oysters or salmon teriyaki? Will blue cheese chips delight me or disgust me?

French potato chip flavours

Unique And Popular Chips Found In France

Even in France, where l’apéro is such a big part of life and a ritual to be savoured, chips somehow make it to the party. No wonder chips have only grown in popularity in France. These salty and savoury treats are a convenient snack to serve guests alongside cheese and olives.

L’apèro:
A French cultural ritual: Typically a non-formal gathering before dinner to have drinks (usually alcoholic beverages) and various finger foods such as chips, olives, and tapenade.

Printable: popular potato chip poster/wall art

Before we dive into the popular chips in France, be sure to download my printable popular potato chip poster below. Print it out at home, or blow it up to poster size if you like. Just click on the image below. French potato chip flavours available in France:

Bret’s: Popular Chips

SLOGAN: Le Chipsier Français (The french chip maker)

Bret’s, a French chip company founded in 1991 in Brittany, accounts for one-third of France’s chip market produces over 20 tonnes of chips annually with innovative flavourings specifically tailored to the French market. 

Camembert potato chips

Bret's chips aioli

Out of all the French chips found in France, camembert chips probably stand out the most to foreigners. Do they really taste like Camembert? Yes, they do. 

Marine flavoured chips (oyster and the sea)

Brets Marine chips taste like oysters

If you don’t like tasting the sea or hate oysters, stay away. But why not give it a try? The advertisement for these chips says it all. 

“C’est pas la mer à boire… MANGEZ-lA!”. Literally, It’s not the sea to drink…EAT IT, but idiomatically this French expression means: It’s not that big a deal, eat them. 

I love this expression because when someone complains about an impossible task, telling them “c’est pas la merà boire” is a cocky way to let someone know that whatever the difficult task is, it’s not as difficult as drinking all of the sea. 

Onion confit chips

confit d'oignons chips

I love confit d’oignons, especially with blue cheese but on chips? 

These chips taste like sweet and savoury caramelized onions, just like Onion confit, similar to chutney or jam. Confit d’oignon is often served as a condiment at parties and end-of-year celebrations as part of l’apèro alongside foie gras and cheese, but you can find it in grocery stores all year round. 

Caramelized Onion Confit Caramelized Onion Confit
$10.95 ($10.95 / Count)

Caramelized Onion confit (Chutney). Sweet and savory condiment to serve with cheese, bread or your cheese board.

02/25/2021 04:35 am GMT

Aioli chips

Bret's chips aioli

Before mayonnaise, there was Aïoli, a sauce made with salt, olive oil and generous amounts of garlic. Aioli is extremely popular in France, thanks to its proximity to the Mediterranean. They’re also a very popular chips 

Andalouse sauce potato chips

 

Bret's chips andalouse

Despite the name, Andalouse sauce is actually a specialty of Belgian, NOT from Andalusia. It’s typically made with mayonnaise, tomatoes or tomato paste, and peppers (capsicums). Belgians and French typically serve it with fries, but you can put it on anything. If you’re ever in France, ask for Andalouse sauce on your Kebab. 

Porcini potato chips

Bret's chips cèpes (porcini) mushrooms

I’ll admit, these aren’t the most popular chips. I only say that because I rarely see these at the grocery store but If you love porcini mushrooms, you’re going to love these cèpes (porcini) chips. They definitely have that umami quality. 

Tapenade potato chips

Tapenade chips in France

Tapenade is one of my favourite hors d’œuvre. If you’re not familiar with tapenade, it’s a condiment made of finely chopped olives, capers, anchovies, olive oil and sometimes a dash of lemon juice. It’s extremely popular in France, but especially in the south of France, where most people will offer it as an apèro to guests. 

This is completely off-topic, but I always keep the ingredients to make tapenade in my pantry to make it on the fly. It’s straightforward to make. Check out the video below. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YLkbVts3Kas

French fry sauce chips (or crisp sauce if you’re British)

sauce pomme frite chips

In addition to just plain mayonnaise, sauce Pommes Frites is another condiment often served alongside french fries in France. You can find bottles of it at the supermarket, and McDonald’s in France offers it as a choice when you order fries. Recipes vary, but it usually consists of mayonnaise, mustard and spices mixed together.

Braise chicken chips

Chicken flavoured chips have got to be some of the most popular chips in France because it seems that every chip maker has their own version.

These are supposed to taste like braised chicken. I think it may have something to do with the herbs they add to the seasoning. Unfortunately, the label lists the ingredients as “viande de poulet en poudre,” chicken powder seasoning. Not very telling. I think this is some sort of chemistry magic. 

Grilled pepper chorizo chips

poivrons grillés chorizo chips

Whenever I see chorizo, I have to remind myself that chorizo in France is Spanish chorizo and not Mexican. While they’re both delicious, they’re actually quite different. Either way, these chips definitely have that smokey chorizo sausage appeal. 

Gouda and cumin

Gouda and cumin chips

Gouda and cumin might seem like a strange mix, but this Dutch cheese is very popular in France. It’s not uncommon to find Cumin gouda cheese in the cheese section. 

Grilled rib roast or prime rib chips 

 

rib roast or prime rib chips

It’s a mystery. How do they get chips to taste like beef. The package only lists “extrait de bœuf en poudre” beef powder extract.

Organic Thyme Rosemary chips 

Bret's Rosemary and thyme chips cèpes mushrooms

All I can say is these are very herby tasting. You can definitely taste notes of rosemary and thyme. 

Vico: Popular Chip 

ORIGINAL SLOGAN: Le roi de la pomme de terre (The potato king)

NEW SLOGAN: Le roi de l’apèro (The king of apèro)

Vico is the King of potatoes, or at least that’s what their company slogan used to be until they changed it to “King of apèro.”

Vico was founded in 1955 in Picardie, one of the largest potato producing areas of Franc. They originally sold potatoes and potato-based products, including dehydrated potatoes, in other words (instant potatoes). In 1982, they entered the potato chip market and make a variety of “apero” snacks. 

Curly peanut butter

Vico curly peanut butter puff things

These curly things are similar to Cheetos without the cheese. They’re made of puffed corn then dusted with peanuts and spices. Personally, I really dislike these, but it’s the ultimate party snack. Kids seem to love these too, including my daughter. Bleh!

Mustard and vinegar chips

mustard and vinegar chips

You’ve probably tried honey mustard chips or salt and vinegar chips. Well, these mustard and vinegar chips taste nothing like those. 

Grilled chicken chips

Grilled chicken chips

Didn’t I tell you that every chip maker has some version of chicken chips? I can’t tell the difference between most of them. 

Lentil chips with mozzarella, basil and tomato

Lentil tomato mozzarella and basil potato chips

These crunchy lentil chips kind of remind me of a pizza. I’m surprised they didn’t call them pizza chips. It might be due to marketing reasons. 

Bacon bits and onion chips

bacon and onion chips

This bag of chips is called “petits lardons et oignons,” literally little bacon and onions.” Lardon is a common staple in French supermarkets. It’s very similar to bacon bits but slightly fattier and thicker than traditional bacon bits.  

Emmental chips

Emmental chips

Emmental is the most widely consumed cheese in France. It’s in everything from Croque monsieur (a French ham and cheese sandwich with bechamel sauce) to Gratin dauphinoise.

It’s also a popular flavour to add to chips. 

Grilled Merguez chips

Chips merguez grillée

Merguez is spicy mutton or beef sausage in Maghrebi cuisine; however, it’s become quite popular in France since the late twentieth century. 

Hot goat cheese and herb flavoured chips

chèvre chaud & herbes chips

I laughed when I saw the name of these chips. “Chèvre chaud & herbes” literally means “hot goat cheese and herbs.” Obviously, you’re not supposed to warm these chips up in the oven, but I get why they chose the name. Chèvre chaud (hot goat cheese) is often served on a salad or a hunk of baguette bread. 

Buckwheat goat cheese chips

sarrasin chips

Sarrasin or buckwheat is the same flour used to make savoury crepes, and apparently, they’re good for making chips. These chips are flavoured with goat cheese, and I’ve never tried them, nor do I want to. 

French Lay’s: 2 Unique chips.

Although Lay’s isn’t technically a French brand, their chips have been a hit in France ever since 2003.

40 percent of all potato chips sold in France are Lay’s chips.

In addition to the ever-popular sour cream and onion potato chips, Lay’s has created some interesting chips specifically for the French palette and marketplace. Here are just two. 

Parisian Sandwich chips (Sandwich Parisien).

Sandwich Parisien was a limited-edition flavour that came out around 2015 and tasted just like the butter and ham sandwich it was named after. 

Basque pepper (Piment Basque) 

French Lay’s came out with another special edition flavour called piment basque (basque pepper), essentially Espellette pepper. 

Espelette is a mildly spicy pepper with a sweet and smoky flavour, named after the Basque region located in the western Pyrenees that straddles the border between France and Spain on the coast of the Bay of Biscay. 

French lays chips: interesting potato chip flavours in France

Pringles

Pringles needs no introduction here. Like Lay’s chips, Pringles is everywhere in France and come in a variety of flavours you’re familiar with like sour cream and onion and pizza flavour. 

Roast Beef and mustard chips

Like chicken flavoured chips, beef flavour is a popular chip flavour in France. Pringles also has its own version of chicken chips.

Mushroom & cream chips

I think these are supposed to taste like cream of mushroom soup. I’ve never tried either of these but I can imagine what they might taste like. 

Pringles chips in France: roast beef and mushroom + mushroom and cream

La Belle Truffe

La Belle Truffe, located in France’s Provence region, specializes in all sorts of truffle flavoured food items.

Summer truffle potato chips

Chips à la truffe d’éte

la belle truffe truffle chips from France

La Belle truffe recently came out with a black truffle chip, which is to die for. Truffle really does taste good on almost anything. 

Belsia: Upscale Chips

Belsia is a relatively new chip maker from France, which started up around 2016. Chips from Belsia are what you would call artisanal chips.

They’re made from Létourville farm potatoes in the heart of Beauce. They’re hand-sorted, sliced, and cooked in small quantities in a cauldron, then lightly salted with Ile de Ré salt and seasoned. They’re gluten-free, preservative-free, artificial flavour free, and palm oil-free. 

Champagne vinegar Chips from Ardenne (with salt from  & Ile de Ré)

Champagne vinegar chips: unusual flavours

Vinaigre de champagne-Ardenne & sel de lîle de Ré. 

Belsi really elevates the everyday chips with their upscale champagne vinegar and salt from the Île de Ré island, which is off the west coast of France and known for its salt marshes and beaches. Unfortunately, these chips are a little hard to come by and usually show up at the outdoor market. 

Chips aren’t glamourous, but…

The next time you take a trip to France, take a stroll down the chip Aisle and feast your eyes on all the unique and popular chip flavours available to locals. You don’t have to try them all, but try one just for the fun of it. 

popular chips in France: Unique flavours

Sharing is caring: please consider saving this pin for later.

PIN unusual potato chip flavours you can only try in france

 

Boring Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you use them to buy something, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you which helps me buy more croissants. Merci for your support.


  1. Sometimes they just don’t taste as good as the name might seem. But what the heck, give them a try anyway. Chips are chips.

  2. These are my favorite!! The perfect balance of chicken and chips. Not gross and overly seasoned and still taste like chips. Not sure why they don’t exist in the US. Gotta love France sometimes ;-)

    1. It is a mystery to me too why these don’t exist in the US. There are chips in Montreal that are the same as in France like Bolognese, ketchup, hamburger flavour but chicken and thyme is not one of them. why why why.

  3. I don’t really eat chips anymore, but I’d give them a try just to see what they’re like. It’s interesting that you mention looking through the chip section while traveling since I remember getting seaweed flavored chips while traveling through Asia. It was…interesting. Anyway, I always try to make it to a grocery store while traveling. There’s usually something interesting there to make going there worthwhile.

    1. I know what you mean steve but the novelty of such strange flavours are tempting. Granted, the flavours in France are nothing compared to Asia. But they are different nonetheless. Enough so that the kids were compelled to try them out.

  4. lol in Asia you have shrimp flavored chips.. Fish.. lobster.. We also have ketchup and I think that’s just always weird period. Very cute model in the pictures too :)

    1. I love Shrimp flavoured crisps. When i first came to the US after having lived in Thailand and Vietnam as a child, I actually didn’t like western chips like cheese and bbq flavour. I still don’t. My four year old daughter loves the shrimp chips mmmm.

    2. I am wild about shrimp chips! I used to get them when I lived in NYC. But now I’m in a more remote place where I cannot get much Oriental foods.

      Donna

  5. You are very right, every country seems to have it’s own variation on chips. I really miss Salsa Verde chips! :)

    1. Meg, i miss good Mexican food which is really hard to find in europe. Black beans are very scarce too. LOL

  6. Yes indeed! They do make ones mouth water Annie!

    I remember the time when we were kids and the first thing that we put in our shopping carts were chips. And we always wanted a large variety!

    We have a lot of variety and flavors in our country too, without travelling around!! I guess people this end are more ‘chips crazy’ than anything else. :)

    Thanks for sharing and I’m sure your kids must be having a nice time with these when you travel too!

    1. Harleena,
      It’s funny how chips and crisps can tell a lot about a country. When i first came to the US i actually did not like chips, still don’t. But i do like a few here in France and Asia. They are much more savory.

  7. Hi Annie,

    Ah, chips are so addictive, that’s why I leave them at the store.

    By the way, on another subject, I made the detergent “recipe” that was on a previous post and I love it. I have detergent for months now before I need to make more. Thanks for that great tip :)

    1. Sylviane,

      You are so right. chips are so unhealthy.

      And i’m so excited for you, making that detergent. I know it’s a small thing but what i love about it is that it’s kind of green in that it’s saving the environment even just a little bit.

  8. They’re not ‘Chips’, they’re ‘Crisps’ ;-)

    We have even better flavours here in the UK.

    Who goes to France to buy Crisps anyway? Come on Annie… they’re unhealthy!!

    Having said that, thinking about it there are some awesome crisps (OK, ‘Chips’ just for you) in France…

    1. Alan,
      that’s why i put crisps and chips. Besides, the french call them chips too and that’s all that matters..

      And sometimes you have to eat unhealthy. Well, i don’t but my kids do. :)

      There is a crisp from the UK that i really like they are called Twizlers i think. I can’t remember but i used to work for a company that had heaps of brits and scots and i got hooked on the damn things.

  9. Hi Annie,

    interesting. As often as I have been to France so far (and to French supermarkets) I have never noticed this brand of chips, and these flavours either.

    Will have a closer look next time…

    Thanks for sharing

    Take care

    Oliver

    1. That’s a good thing Oliver. You probably didn’t see them because the crisp section is so tiny. We know about them because when we take the train, they are in those vending machines along with other unhealthy foods.

      Chips from Asia are even better flavored. I love shrimp flavoured crisps.

Comments are closed.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

We Should Be Friends