This Ingredient Swap Just Took Pasta Chips To The Next Level

Chefs are always taking somebody's good recipe and making it better. On TikTok, the evolution of a popular dish happens in fast-forward. Take pasta chips, for example — one of the recent viral TikTok food trends. Barely two months ago, on April 29, TikToker @nick.digiovanni gave us a basic version of pasta chips: Boil bowtie pasta, then deep-fry until crispy, throw on a little salt, dip in red sauce, and there you have it, "the best snack ever." 

One month later, @kalejunkie took it up a notch. They ditched the deep fryer and dressed up their bowtie pasta with olive oil, parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning before putting it in an air fryer. The @kalejunkie version attracted 2.3 million views, but pasta chips weren't done evolving on TikTok. The food influencer who goes by "Kale Junkie" and whose real name is Nicole Keshishian Modic came back in a June 22 video with cooked rigatoni, air-fried with a coating of buffalo sauce. TikToker @louislevanti was right behind Modic on July 2, with a daring take on pasta chips. They went with cheese ravioli as their pasta choice.

TikTok chefs look for that crunch in their pasta chips

Judging by the TikTok comments, the main reason pasta chips have gone viral is their crunch. An air fryer turns cooked pasta, dressed up with some oil or sauce, into a satisfyingly crispy snack. Crunch is so important, in fact, that several commenters on @kalejunkie's buffalo pasta chips complained that they didn't hear anything when they bit into the finished product. "We need to hear the crunch for proof," @sarahbutwithanh commented. "They look chewy."

When @louislevanti opted for cheese ravioli to make their latest version of pasta chips, they knew it was a risky move. Would the big, cheese-filled pasta deliver the required crunch? Levanti explained in their TikTok caption, "Definitely not as crunchy as the regular pasta chips, but still SO good." They came out a beautiful golden brown and crunchy on the outside, softer on the inside — as you might expect. Levanti's version of buffalo-style pasta chips seemed to win over the commenters. "Omg air fried ravioli is my favorite you've simply OUTDONE yourself," @thebalancednutritionist commented. TikToker @niswanderbrooke also offered high praise. "I have not thought any pasta chips look good until now," they said. "I NEED!"