Friday, September 7, 2012

Giving The Competition The Argument For Brand Name, Fresh Finds Crunchy Cheese Kurls Disappoint!

The Good: Does not taste bad, Not entirely unhealthy, Inexpensive
The Bad: Utterly indistinct taste, No cheese flavor!
The Basics: Crunchy Cheese Kurls would be great . . . if only they tasted like cheese! (Or anything, really, besides puffed corn!)

I feel bad for the small start-ups in the salty snack market. After all, it must be a bear to try to compete with a new product against Frito-Lay or Wise or any of the other giants of salty snacks. So, whenever I am out and I find food on sale – especially deeply discounted – I try to do my part to fight the big capitalist systems that rule so much of our lives and I try to support the little guy. Recently, that meant picking up a bag of Fresh Finds Crunchy Cheese Kurls from Big Lots as they were being clearance.

Unfortunately for Fresh Finds, the Crunchy Cheese Kurls make the argument to shell out for Cheetos better than Frito-Lay ever has. The dramatic difference, in this case, between the flavorful original, name brand and the cheap knock-off blandness of the generic upstart is astounding.


Crunchy Cheese Kurls, for those who are not familiar with them, are produced by Fresh Finds, a brand exclusively distributed in the U.S. at Big Lots stores. They are intended to compete against Cheetos and they might be decent competition for those who have no tastebuds or sense of comparison for the snack. These are a puffed corn snack that is dusted in orange powder (I refrain from calling it cheese powder, as my tastebuds deny the connection, so all I can confirm is that my eyes tell me!).

Crunchy Cheese Kurls come in a 13 oz. bag and features pieces that range from ¾” long to three inches long. They are curved and bubbled and no two Crunchy Cheese Kurls are identical.

Ease Of Preparation

Crunchy Cheese Kurls are simple to enjoy; all you need do it open the bag and remove the snacks from it! There is no trick to eating Crunchy Cheese Kurls; they are a snack that is ready to go from the bag to the mouth.


Crunchy Cheese Kurls smell like puffed corn the moment one opens the bag. For a snack made with real cheese, I was astonished by how little that came through from the aroma when the bag was opened.

On the tongue, the Crunchy Cheese Kurls are a similar letdown. Dominated by the flavor of corn, the Crunchy Cheese Kurls are neither cheesy, nor even salty. These are a disappointingly underflavored salty snack that left this cheeselover feeling completely underwhelmed.


Crunchy Cheese Kurls are a predictably unnatural snack, though the primary ingredients are processed corn meal, vegetable oil and maltodextrin. The shelf life of these snacks is unclear as I picked mine up because they were being clearance for being so close to the expiration date.

Each one ounce serving of Crunchy Cheese Kurls has 150 calories, seventy of which come from fat. While there are 8 grams of fat and 2 grams of protein, there is only 140 mg of sodium, which represents 6% of one's RDA of sodium. There are no other vitamins and minerals, which is somewhat astounding! There is a dietary note that the Crunchy Cheese Kurls include milk and soy ingredients, which prevents them from being Vegan compliant. They are, however, Gluten-free and have no trans fats.


Kept in their bag, Crunchy Cheese Kurls will remain fresh indefinitely, though my bag had an expiration date of September 17, 2012.. I've never had to deal with issues of freshness for my Crunchy Cheese Kurls.

Cleanup is simple as well. Crunchy Cheese Kurls are a dry food with minimal orange powder on them, so they leave very little mess behind. When done eating, simply wash your hands, throw out the bag and cleanup is done!


Crunchy Cheese Kurls are a poor snack and as one who loves cheese and loathes panning the competition to the mega companies on earth, these were even more of a disappointment than usual!

For other salty snacks, check out my reviews of:
CK Snacks Yummmmy Butter Popcorn
Andy Capp's Cheddar Fries
Cheez-It Cheddar Jack Snack Crackers


For other food and drink reviews, please click here to visit my index page!

© 2012 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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