Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Totino's BOLD: Jalapeno Popper & Buffalo Style Chicken Rolls!!

As the resident FGFB slob who somewhat embarassingly still eats Totino's Pizza Rolls fairly regularly, buying their last new offerings was a no-brainer.  Even though the Cheesy Garlic flavor was the only one really worth getting again, I still was pretty happy that Totino was finally trying out some new flavors. 

Being a spice wimp, their new Jalapeno Popper Rolls and "Buffalo Style Chicken Rolls" worried me a bit. But much like I suck up Totino's Pizza Rolls, I sucked it up and bought both bags. What follows are my thoughts. 

First off, I love the bag. The L is a lightning bolt! What better way to say a snack is bold than by having it ELECTROCUTE YOU?! And there's fire, whacky fonts, great color choices, etc. 

However, inside the bag lived the same old weird creation a Totino's Pizza Roll is. And I cooked them too much.

As someone who isn't huge on the jalapeno but still loves a good jalapeno popper from time to time, these were sadly pretty disappointing. A jalapeno popper is good not because it's a hot pepper with crunch- it's good because it's a hot pepper mixed (at least in every one I've ever had) with cream cheese, cheddar cheese, or a mix of the two. They end up being a wonderful mix of spice, crunch and creamy, cheesy deliciousness.

These were basically chopped up peppers with a fairly tasteless white cheese that is a lot like the more gooey cheese from the Cheesy Garlic edition, only not very flavorful. So they end up just being gooey squares of heat that have that weird grassy jalapeno flavor that sometimes shows up (like it did in these chips).  

I tried them solo, with ranch, with BBQ sauce, and with blue cheese, and in every version, they tasted just as blah. They just had that weird fake cheese goo, and grassy and then very hot jalapeno flavor. I'm sorry Totino, but you blew it on these ones. 

Let's see how "Buffalo Style Chicken Rolls" are.

Man, that's just a weird title. Why didn't they just call them buffalo chicken rolls? And how weird of a term is "chicken rolls"?? These had a nice Frank's Red Hot tie in though, and I've been realizing more and more how much I like buffalo stuff lately, so I was still pretty excited.

so much so that I actually cooked them right!

After burning my mouth on the first two, then letting them sit even longer (how do these things hold heat like that?!), they tasted about like what I thought they would. And they were hot.


There seemed to be something missing though, as they felt like they were pretty much just pizza rolls with chicken and a ton of buffalo sauce. And nobody likes that. So I did what I should have done before I even tasted these and dipped them in blue cheese. They were instantly better, so I decided to go one step beyond and make buffaque rolls. 

I grabbed one of my favorite BBQ sauces and decorated...

then dipped again. 


But something was still off. What was missing? I thought of the other pizza rolls, I thought of the Michelina's buffalo rolls that came first and how I used to eat them... 

...covered in cheese.

CHEESE. There was nowhere near enough cheese in these chicken rolls. And not only that, if you look closely on the bag, it says "cheese substitute." Shame.

So I decided to step it up and make a small plate of these a much better way.

THAAAAAAT'S better. 

But you know what? Look at how hard I tried to like these. I had to cover them in BBQ sauce, cheese and blue cheese, and eat them chopped up with a fork in order for them to be "pretty good." So I guess if I'm being honest, these aren't very good. There's simply too much hot sauce, and it's too hot. There's no cheese and very little chicken. I guess if you love to have your mouth burn with no real redeeming qualities to make the burn worth it, these will be perfect for you. Otherwise, if you're like me, these are just ok. 

The bottom line: Good try Totino's, but you pretty much blew it on these. The jalapeno poppers are just grassy heat with flavorless cheese, and the buffalo ones are ok, but generally fairly blah as well and, once again, too hot. I guess I'm not BOLD (pretend there's a lightning bolt) enough to eat these. 

-review by Mike


  1. I agree. The Jalapeno Popper Rolls were the worst pizza-roll-type thing I've ever eaten in my life. There was no flavor, only heat. Heat isn't a bad thing, but a product cannot rely on heat alone; food needs flavor. The D- rating was appropriate for this particularly horrid product. I like jalapenos - pickled, roasted, fried or raw - they're all good, but this was bad, really bad. If anyone wonders what the "cheese" in these things is like, imagine you're making a homemade macaroni and cheese and you start off with a basic white sauce in a pot (butter, flour and milk), then instead of adding the two cups of shredded cheese to the mixture you add a quarter of a cup. I'd almost give it an F, but I'll reserve the F rating for something that makes me gag and throw up in the plate, this was better than that, but not by much.

    1. haha well said. You're absolutely right about the cheese. I EXPECT MORE, TOTINO!

  2. So, being equally disappointed in these led me to your blog. Buffalo ones were "eh". I ended up with the jalapeno ones when my local store was out of their usual selection and I was charged with returning WITH poppers. I felt horrible when I tasted them! What had I done?!
    They're flavorless because the ONLY real cheese in them is mozzarella. Probably because it's what they already have on hand. Mozzarella is a fine (read absolutely perfect in every way) pairing for bold salty flavors on pizza. It's a total gag-me flavor with nasty chopped jalapenos! Who the hell approved these?!
    At any rate, I wholeheartedly agree with y'all's assessment. Blech.