We Tried Taco Bell's Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries. Here's How It Went.

Taco Bell's Nacho Fries are a bit of a cult fast food item, and it's exciting whenever they reappear on the chain's menu. It's even more exciting when Taco Bell decides to mix things up and offer versions of the fries with fun toppings. In April 2022, the chain announced it would start selling a new loaded French fry dish nationwide: the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries.

These fries should please heat-lovers and ranch obsessives alike, as they're made with a spicy ranch sauce. This fully-loaded dish is a great example of Taco Bell's more-is-more approach to crafting menu items, with so many toppings it looks like the fries are drowning. We needed to know if this limited-time-only item was the perfect 2 a.m. snack or if it was just a hot mess that was less than the sum of its parts, so we tried it and shared our thoughts with you. Read on to find out if the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries are worth your hard-earned $3.49.

What's in the new Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries?

This menu item is a mouthful to say, and it's an even bigger mouthful to eat. It's a bonanza of different sauces and garnishes working together to create a Tex-Mex riff on poutine. The base of this dish is Taco Bell's fries, which are dusted with orange taco seasoning. On top of the fries, you get three different sauces: Reduced-Fat Sour Cream, Nacho Cheese Sauce, and White Hot Ranch. Per Nation's Restaurant News, the White Hot Ranch is made with scorchingly-spicy ghost peppers, so it should pack a real punch.

As if that wasn't enough dairy, there's also a scattering of shredded cheddar cheese thrown in for good measure. The fries are dotted with little nuggets of Taco Bell's steak. Don't worry, there are also some vegetables. We'd like to think the few cubes of diced tomatoes mixed in with the fries surely counteract the cheese, meat, and fried potato onslaught.

The ingredients list of the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries reads like a scientific journal article. Nothing is as simple as it seems. The seasoned fries themselves sans toppings have over 20 ingredients. The steak is not merely steak, but some amalgamation of beef, water, seasonings, and starch. But we know the deal we're making when we're signing up to eat Taco Bell. It's going to be engineered food, and it's probably going to be delicious.

Where are they available, and for how long?

Taco Bell's original Nacho Fries are notoriously elusive, appearing for a limited time on several occasions since their initial release in 2018 but never becoming a permanent part of the Taco Bell menu. According to Nation's Restaurant News, the Steak White Hot Nacho Fries are also a limited-time-only item.

The chain started testing the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries in 2021, but the item didn't become available to Taco Bell fans outside of the Chicago area until April of 2022. Now you can buy them at Taco Bells across the country, though it's not clear how long they'll be on the menu, so if you want to get some you should act quickly. Prices may vary regionally, but we paid $3.49 for our order. If you want something you can eat without using a fork, you can also order a burrito version of this menu item, which is basically just the fries and all the toppings rolled into a tortilla.

How do they compare to other Taco Bell menu items?

As Thrillist points out, the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries are quite similar to an earlier loaded Nacho Fry option from Taco Bell, the Steak Reaper Ranch Fries. The main difference is that the earlier item used Carolina reapers, another kind of absurdly-hot chile pepper, instead of ghost peppers. The chain has also released other variations on the formula, including Buffalo Chicken and Steak Rattlesnake fries.

Of course, Taco Bell had never offered fries on its menu until 2018, so the fact that the brand serves fries now is a change from the historical precedent. Until Taco Bell changed its slogan in 2012, the brand's "Think outside the bun" motto helped set it apart from the burger-and-fries offerings of its competitors. However, by incorporating Tex-Mex flavors into its fries, Taco Bell has proven itself able to add fries to its menu without sacrificing its core identity.

The other current menu item the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries most closely resembles is the Nachos BellGrande, which is another mess of sauces, meat, and toppings piled on a starchy base. Swap out tortilla chips for the spuds and these loaded fries would become a perfectly serviceable order of nachos.

What are the nutrition facts of the Steak White Hot Nacho Fries?

One order of Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries contains 510 calories. It appears that Taco Bell's website doesn't have a detailed breakdown of the fat, carbs, protein, etc. in this menu item. We can say though that we didn't feel full at all from eating this, and 510 calories seem like a lot for something that felt more like an unsubstantial snack than a full meal.

One order of regular Nacho Fries clocks in at 310 calories with 18 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 610 milligrams of sodium, 34 grams of carbs, and 4 grams of protein. It's fair to assume that the Steak White Hot Nacho Fries would have a little more of all of these nutrients in them.

This menu item isn't an advisable order for those with allergies to milk, gluten, eggs, or wheat. The various components are filled with sodium, flavor enhancers, preservatives, and stabilizers, so if you're trying to eat a natural diet or avoid additives in your foods, you should probably skip the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries.

How do the the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries taste?

We're not going to lie: These fries were excellent and supremely craveable. The one knock on the batch we tested was that the fries themselves didn't seem fresh and were a little bit soft, but with so much moisture happening from the sauces that didn't really matter at all. Everything smooshed together into a soggy, delicious mess.

We were kind of afraid of the steak, as industrially-processed steak is often bad and sad, but the steak slices in the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries were tasty, tender, and very well-seasoned. Every component in the dish was well-seasoned, in fact. Taco Bell is not shy about adding salt and other spices to its food, which is one of its great strengths as a fast food operation.

The White Hot Ranch contributed a little bit of buttermilk tang and a decent amount of spice to the proceedings. We usually douse everything we eat from Taco Bell in the spicy Diablo Sauce, but that wasn't necessary with these fries. The tomatoes seemed like an afterthought, but they did have a hint of freshness and acidity that complemented all the rich, creamy components. We would order the Steak White Hot Ranch Nacho Fries again in a heartbeat.