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Which are the tastiest and healthiest supermarket frozen chips?

We fired up the air fryer to sample hot chips from Woolworths, Coles, McCain, Birds Eye and more to see who makes the best.

cooking frozen crinkle cut chips in an oven
Last updated: 30 April 2024


Checked for accuracy by our qualified fact-checkers and verifiers. Find out more about fact-checking at CHOICE.

Hot chips are basically Australia's national dish – we love them doused in chicken salt alongside our fish, smothered in gravy with a burger, or just on their own, dunked in tomato sauce. 

It's no wonder then that many of us like to keep a pack of frozen chips in the freezer, on hand for when that hot chip craving strikes. 

Loved by young and old, frozen chips can help you throw together a satisfying dinner for a bit of a treat that'll be cheaper than heading out to your local chippie for a costly takeaway. 

We love them doused in chicken salt alongside our fish, smothered in gravy with a burger, or dunked in tomato sauce

Whether you prefer shoestring, crinkle cut or pub-style steak cut, we've taste-tested 34 supermarket frozen chips to uncover which are the best, based on flavour, texture, aroma and appearance. 

To ensure we got the crispiest results possible in the least amount of time, we cooked them all in air fryers. 

We know nutrition is important too, especially for a product that can be high in salt, saturated fat and other additives. We've given each product a nutrition score, so you can assess which is best for you and your family.

CHOICE tester in a lab coat

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What are the best frozen chips?

We polled members of CHOICE Community to find out people's favourite type of fry. 

More than 41% opted for a standard fry, while 36% said they preferred thick/steak cut, 22% were team crinkle cut, and just 13% chose shoestring fries. 

In our taste test, Birds Eye chips were a clear favourite and took out the top spots for best straight cut/other chip and best crinkle cut chip, with both varieties scoring high enough to be recommended. 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, these two products were higher on the sodium side, boosting their flavour scores.


Best straight cut/other chip

Birds Eye Golden Crunch Thin and Crispy Chips

  • CHOICE score: 88%
  • Nutrition score: 80%
  • Percentage potato content: 89%
  • Sodium per 100g: 339mg

Experts say: 

  • "Good texture, good flavour."
  • "Flavour and golden colour are pleasant, not a strong oily aroma which is nice. Slightly crisp and fluffy texture inside is a little starchy."
  • "Golden brown, not yellow. Smell is aromatic and of baked potato. Texture is crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Flavour is noticeably of baked potato."

Best crinkle cut chip

Birds Eye Golden Crunch Crinkle Cut Chips

  • CHOICE score: 85%
  • Nutrition score: 80%
  • Percentage potato content: 90%
  • Sodium per 100g: 313mg

Experts say: 

  • "Texture is good. Crunchy and not soggy. Flavour is nice and salty. Most of the colour is nice. Some of them are quite pale but don't look undercooked."
  • "Very good, excellent crunch, feels like they would retain shape and texture integrity, fun to eat, good crunch on ends, would hold sauce nicely."
  • "A little bit airy in the middle, could be a bit fluffier, but very crispy. Smell is not particularly strong. Taste excellent. Chips are very slightly oily."

Best shoestring/thin chip

Woolworths Essentials French Fries

  • CHOICE score: 66%
  • Nutrition score: 90%
  • Percentage potato content: 96%
  • Sodium per 100g: 73mg

Experts say: 

  • "Nice structure, tastes of potato, good crispness."
  • "Yellow and slightly brown in colour. Somewhat crispy on the outside and soft in the middle. Smell not particularly noticeable."
  • "Texture is very soggy, aroma isn't that strong. Needs salt."
Capture One Catalog0116

Best beer-battered chip

Woolworths Australian Beer Batter Steakhouse Chips

  • CHOICE score: 76%
  • Nutrition score: 80%
  • Percentage potato content: 91%
  • Sodium per 100g: 230mg

Experts say: 

  • "Nice crunch, good colour, natural taste, low batter and I like that."
  • "Quite pale. Flavour is OK. Texture seems soggy and soft."
  • "These chips smell and taste very good, and the texture is a mixture of crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. A little bit oily. Could be a bit crispier."

The CHOICE kids' verdict

Once our panel of judges determined the best tasting frozen chips, we took the top five and put them to some even tougher judges – the CHOICE kids' panel.

choice kids chips

Our junior taste testers couldn't agree on a winner, so they picked two.

Tying for first place, the top two chips according to the CHOICE kids were Potato Utopia Steakhouse Fries and Woolworths Australian Beer Batter Steakhouse Chips, which each received five points out of a total of eight.

The kids said the Potato Utopia Steakhouse Fries were "smooshy and salty (good)", while the Woolworths Australian Beer Batter Steakhouse Chips were "mushy and really potatoey". 

So there you have it. If you're after a tasty frozen chip that'll also get the tick of approval from your kids, these two are a safe bet.

Are frozen chips unhealthy?

Even though they're likely a better alternative to fast food and you may bake them in the oven, frozen chips are still typically pre-fried and already saturated with oil. 

And although they're made of potatoes, which in themselves are a source of potassium and B and C vitamins, commercial frozen chips have many other things added to them that can have negative effects on your health. These include salt, fats, starches and other additives. 

Research from 2019 shows that potato chips or fries could increase your risk of type two diabetes and high blood pressure.

What's in a fry?

Potato: Well, you'd hope so. Most of the frozen chips we tested had over 90% potato, with about 14 of the 35 products we looked at containing only two or three ingredients. 

Dextrin/dextrose: This is a starch that can be extracted from wheat, corn or potatoes and is used in chips to help make them crunchy and stay crispier for longer. Of the frozen chips we tested, 27 contained dextrin or a form of it. 

Oil: Most of the chips we looked at contained canola or sunflower oil, which are healthier alternatives to other oils as they contain less saturated fat. Two of the Aldi fries – Seasons Pride French Fries and Seasons Pride Crinkle Cut Chips – contained vegetable oil, which could be a blend of palm oil. Palm oil is higher in saturated fats, and those two products had more saturated fat per 100g (at 1.7g and 1.2g respectively) compared to the average of the test group (0.6g per 100g).

CHOICE kids Photos

They may be high in salt

Salt or sodium can be problematic for many reasons, including playing havoc with your blood pressure. Processed foods can be a significant contributor to sodium in the diet, and frozen chips are no exception. 

The Heart Foundation recommends a daily maximum of 2000mg of sodium for adults, which is about one teaspoon (or 5g) of salt. 

The average sodium content of the chips we tested was 118mg per 100 grams, and these values varied across the group – the chips with the most sodium had 341mg per 100g, and the chips with the least had less than 8mg per 100 grams. 

Both of the McCain Quick Cook chip varieties scored well and had less than 100mg of sodium per 100g: McCain Quick Cook Straight Cut Crunchy Chips had 77mg per 100g, and the McCain Quick Cook Crinkle Cut Crunchy Chips had 52mg per 100g. 

They may come with some (naturally occurring) nasties 

When potatoes are fried the natural sugars and the amino acid asparagine in the potato react and are responsible for the browning and flavours that occur in fries. This reaction creates acrylamide, a possible carcinogen. 

Acrylamide isn't only found in potato chips; it's also found in roasted potatoes, sweet biscuits, toasted bread and coffee. Multiple factors affect how much acrylamide is formed during the processing of potato chips, including the temperature at which they're fried, how long they're fried, the water content and the acidity of the potato. 

Potatoes belong to the nightshade family and contain a naturally occurring alkaloid that can cause an upset stomach if eaten in large amounts. The potatoes will produce more of these alkaloids if not stored properly, and cooking them doesn't get rid of the alkaloids. 

If you have potatoes at home, make sure they're stored in a cool, dark place, and cut away any sprouts or green areas before cooking. You should throw away any potatoes that appear very green.

Chips Cooked57noteatowel

A sample of the frozen chip products our testers tasted blind.

How we tested frozen chips


We tested 35 frozen potato chip products available in major Australian supermarket chains including Coles, Woolworths, Aldi and IGA. Beer-battered, crinkle cut, shoestring and straight cut varieties were tested separately.


Our panel of four judges tasted the air-fried potato chip samples 'blind' (without knowing the brands) and scored each sample on appearance, aroma, flavour and texture.

For the CHOICE kids taste test, we asked eight chip-loving kids to taste the top five chips from our adult taste test. They each voted for their two favourites using tokens.


The CHOICE score, our overall score, consists of 90% sensory and 10% nutrition (based on the Health Star Rating).

Here is a breakdown of the sensory weightings:

  • flavour (50%)
  • texture (30%)
  • appearance (10%) 
  • aroma (10%).

We recommend frozen chips with a CHOICE score of 80% or more.

Taste Test01

Amanda Walker, Conrad Lucas-Holland and Adrian Lini.

Meet our taste testers

Amanda Walker 

Dubbed the 'Lord of the Fry', Amanda Walker is the co-founder and owner of Lord of the Fries, Australia's leading vegan fast food chain serving up a variety of hot chips, burgers and hot dogs at locations across the country. Amanda is a veritable French fry fanatic and has eaten so many fries in her lifetime that she jumped at the opportunity to join our panel and help us determine the best supermarket hot chips.

Adrian Lini 

With a background in agricultural science from the University of Sydney, Adrian has always been passionate about the scientific method and comparing products side by side. As a test coordinator at CHOICE, he inspects and assesses a wide range of home appliances, from espresso machines and kettles to vacuums, lawnmowers, and pressure cleaners. He's quite fond of hot chips and jumped at the chance to join our tasting panel.

Conrad Lucas-Holland

New to CHOICE as a systems administrator in our IT department, Conrad represents the consumer in this test. There was no better way to induct him into the CHOICE family than to gently nudge him to consume over 20 samples of hot chips. Conrad has been navigating the culinary world from his kitchen for nearly a decade. His journey as a home chef has been fuelled by a desire to test different spices, put twists on traditional recipes, and streamline otherwise laborious cooking techniques.

Fiona Mair

Fiona is a seasoned home economist and test coordinator at CHOICE with over three decades of experience. Her expertise lies in testing and comparing kitchen appliances, assisting in product development for manufacturers, and conducting food taste tests, where she's judged a variety of products like hummus, strawberry jam, pesto and coffee. She's also an associate judge for the Sydney Royal Fine Food Show. Throughout her career at CHOICE, Fiona has cooked more than 8000 scones, 4000 chickens, 3000 sausages, 1000 meringues, and 500 pizzas to test more than 3000 appliances.

Stock images: Getty, unless otherwise stated.