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El Ranchero Tortilla Chips w/salt (14 oz. bag)

Item Purchased: El Ranchero Tortilla Chips w/salt (14 oz. bag)
Location Purchased: Jewel-Osco / 3033 S. Halsted St. / Chicago, IL
Price: $1.99 + tax

Review: Every apartment I live in has always had a few kitchen staples that everyone is responsible for. In my last apartment, it was a cube of PBR or Old Style. If anyone drank the last one, it was their mission to replace it. It seems that my current roommate and I have silently settled on El Ranchero Tortilla Chips and Herdez salsa as our staples. Not a bad decision, if you ask me.

Chicago’s south side has several tortilla manufacturers. The two easiest to find at your local grocery are Del Rey brand and El Ranchero. Del Rey are alright if you like the bland Mexican restaurant complimentary chip flavor. For substantial crunch, flavor and dipping strength, however, one must reach for El Ranchero. In my poorer days living alone in a dollhouse sized studio apartment in the Gold Coast, I used to make entire meals out of these chips, a jar of salsa and some cheese. Sometimes (for old time’s sake) I still do.

Made with pure corn oil, a little bit of salt and not much else, these corn tortilla chips are the purest you can find and several times more addicting than the salt-drenched slop brands that need to take out multi-million dollar advertisements to tell you how addicting they are.

Tasty and local! Sign me up!

Rating: 4.75 / 5

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12 Responses to “El Ranchero Tortilla Chips w/salt (14 oz. bag)”

  1. DORA CRUZ Says:

    Im writing , only because i have a little complain to make , I ALWAYS HAVE the tortila chips w/ no salt , in the yellow bag , well on sun. i went to jewel & got a bag , in the afternoon when i opened , i found out they have so much salt on them , the only reason im writing is because it has been almost 5yrs , i gave up on eating salt… , they must of gotten a batch mixed up ????? I will have to try to take them back to jewel as soon as i have time , thank you for your time………. Dora Cruz

  2. Steve Says:

    I was El Ranchero’s biggest fan until I found El Milagro tortilla chips:
    The flavor is comparable, they’re both made in Chicago, and they’re both thick, hearty chips. I prefer El Milagro because there seem to be fewer defects– you can break teeth on some of the tortilla nuggets in a bag of El Ranchero.

  3. Scott Says:


    I was transferred to NYC and I can’t find where to buy El Ranchero Tortilla Chips!

    Anybody know where to buy ‘em in these parts??

    No other tortilla chip compares or even comes remotely close to El Ranchero. I’ve tried them all.

  4. Max Kelly Says:

    I grew up just over the border from Chicago and was fortunate enough to have witnessed El Ranchero’s first apearance on the mainstream shelves–back around, oh, 1988 or so? My mom started buying them and I was instantly hooked. Such simple ingredients, so damn good! (wasn’t this what EVEYBODY wanted in a corn tortilla chip!?) I’ve always loved the fact that their packaging and branding has remained so simple, even as their commercial success has earned the product a lot more real estaste on the grocery store shelves–It’s testimony to the fact that when the product is really good, it does not need to pander to the trends of style and packaging.

    Alas, the sad part for me is that El Ranchero does not seem to have any distribution outside of Chicago. For this ex-chicago boy now living in Florida, that makes life pretty tough! Until they start selling in the tropics, the best I can do is to keep shipping boxes of them down here each time I visit my family back in Chicago! (see photo).


  5. andrea Says:

    I love the el ranchero chips, however I have to say the nutritional facts have to be wrong. It says it doesnt have any sodium however in the ingredients it says it has salt????

  6. chef david Says:

    I have bought your El Ranchero tortilla chips for several years even before the current packaging when they came in a soft baggy type material. They use to be the best chips on the market but you have changed the way they’re made. The new texture of the chips are terrible and they taste blah. I will no longer buy them unless the original recipe is restored. I hope you see the light and make them the way they use to be…very sad that you have compromised your chips this way.

  7. Az Kid Says:

    My wife and I moved out to Az 8 years ago. The only time I get to eat these chips is when I take a trip to see the in-laws. My wife thinks I am crazy when I consider buying a few back to pack and pring back home with us. Love these chips - mostly the spicy ones.

  8. Roberta Hardy Says:

    Are El Ranchero tortilla chips distributed anywhere in Michigan?

  9. Sergio J Says:

    I too am having the same problem!!! I just moved to the DC area and cant find them any where. In Chicago I grew up on these. I used to buy them at Jewel and even Whole Foods, but Here I cant find them at the Whole foods Either. I went to Some of the Local Supermercados, and was disappointed. I didn’t just not find El Ranchero, but I could not find V&V Supremo Cheese. How SAD!!!!!

  10. Samantha Says:

    Moved to OH. Love my El-Ranchero Chips. Stopped at Jewell on the way out of the city & alas, they didn’t have any! I’m so sad!!!! They are the best chips ever. Need the distributers to expand!!!!

  11. Junk in the trunk « Kolleen Anne finds herself Says:

    [...] 4. El Ranchero tortilla chips - These are the best. No contest. If you like chips with a big crunch that can handle a heafty scoop of guac, these are for you. I mourned my tortilla chip selection in Missouri. Tostitos chips are like McDonald’s hamburgers. CRAP. [...]

  12. JS Says:

    El Ranchero are the absolute best. I moved away from the Chicago area (to St. Louis) and I load up with 5 or 6 bags whenever I’m back there. The closest I can find them is Bloomington, IL. I love all types of the chips, but I’ve never understood the “Mild Hot” kind. Which is it? Delicious, is what it is.

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