Oh heck with it, and my arteries. Hot off the heels of the last post, a review of McDonald’s new Buttermilk Crispy Chicken Tenders, this time let’s check out Burger King’s Cheesy Tots. Which actually is a return item to the menu since it was discontinued in 2009.
I got my Cheesy Tots from the Burger King in King’s Village Shopping Center, at the corner of Koa St. and Kaiulani Ave., right behind the Hyatt Regency. There, they were $2.99, which I assume is higher in price than outside of Waikiki, as most other items on the menu are at this location.
I’m surprised they didn’t say, “Warning: Contents may be hot… and addicting!”. Probably because they aren’t addicting, which I’ll get to shortly.
The box of eight Cheesy Tots are sold by itself by default, however you can ask for dipping sauce(s) if you like, as I did upon trying a few first.
Each Tot is about the size of your typical regular Tater Tot, albeit with a more puck/disk-like shape as you can see. That said, there’s actually enough in this box to feed two people, if say you’re eating it as a side with a burger.
Cutting one open neatly with a knife for the “money shot”, looks mostly like grated potato on this side of the Cheesy Tot, neatly coated with some sort of batter I’m guessing is based on yellow corn flour.
Speaking of which, here’s the Cheesy Tots ingredients: Potatoes, Wheat Flour, Processed Cheddar Cheese (Cheddar Cheese [Pasteurized Milk, Cheese Culture, Salt, Enzymes], Water, Enzyme Modified Cheese [Pasteurized Milk, Water, Cream, Milkfat, Sodium Phosphate, Salt, Cheese Culture, Enzymes], Milk Protein Concentrate, Sodium Phosphate, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Salt, Sorbic Acid [Preservative], Lactic Acid, Artificial Color), Vegetable Oil (Contains One or More of the Following: Canola Oil, Corn Oil, Cottonseed Oil, Palm Oil, Soybean Oil, Sunflower Oil), Mozzarella Cheese (Pasteurized Milk, Non-Fat Milk, Cultures, Salt, Enzymes), Enriched Wheat Flour (Flour, Niacin, Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Salt, Modified Food Starch (Corn, Potato), Sugar, Yellow Corn Flour, Natural Flavor, Dehydrated Potato, Rice Flour, Yeast, Dextrin, Methylcellulose, Dextrose, Disodium Dihydrogen Pyrophosphate (to promote color retention), Wheat Starch, Cornstarch.
Mmm, mmm, mmm, processed food at its best/worst, be still my beating heart. The nutrition numbers are even more frightening, with 420 calories per serving (1 whole order). That includes 20 grams of total fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 25mg of cholesterol, and get this: a Burger King whoppin’ 1050mg of sodium. Oh no! Watch out for Ken the Sodium Cop! lol At least there’s 6 grams of dietary fiber and 18 grams of protein. Of course there’s so many natural whole foods out there that are much better sources of protein and fiber than this without all that yucky stuff. But I’ll be the glutton for punishment yet again for the day.
On this other side of the cut-open Cheesy Tot, looks like here’s where most of that melted Cheddar and Mozzarella Cheese is.
And? How is it by itself? Meh. It’s “aaight”. Eh. Meh. Having all those chemicals and processing done to it, that comes through in its taste and texture. It tastes “fake” to me. Like this is more some experiment for NASA to send up to the space station. Not for anyone serious about food, that I at least think I’m somewhat serious about, being a food blogger and all. Then again, should one ever take fast food seriously? lol
I mean it’s edible and probably really good, if you’re either a little kid, or drunk. I seriously could barely get through the whole box. The blend of processed Cheddar and Mozzarella cheese — I suppose as one should expect, as it did — tastes as fake as fake news. Then you get the grated potatoes mixed with it that add this gloppy/sticky/mushy texture. The golden-fried slightly crispy breading on the outside is actually the best part in my opinion. It’s like people who don’t like the onions within an onion ring, so they take the onion out and just eat the batter. Come on, I know some of you do that! If I could do that with these and take the inside out from the outside and just eat the outside, I’d do that. Know what I mean? lol Speaking of the outside, thankfully they’re not greasy.
That high salt content didn’t really hit me until afterwards, when I could actually feel my blood boil just a bit. Seriously. Definitely enough where I needed water afterwards to thin out that effect. And again, of course I went hiking the next day to burn off all them evil fat calories this put on my tab.
Before giving up after really just one, I decided to go back and ask the gal at the counter for some cheese and ranch dipping sauces.
And? Burger King’s Cheese Sauce tastes more artificial than Cheez Whiz, which is sayin’ a lot. While I thought it might enhance it, as it turned out, dipping something with cheese already in it into more cheese, was kinda’ like dipping a Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich in peanut butter “sauce”. It was like, what’s the point? It ended up just tasting like a “muddled shmuck”. Whatever that is. lol But yeah, that’s what Cheesy Tots tastes like dipped in Cheese sauce: a “muddled shmuck”. lol
Dipped in the Ranch sauce was a little better, with the contrast of creaminess, herbs and slight tang. But still, it reminded me even more of how bad this is for my body.
Which is surprising how much I didn’t like the Cheesy Tots, as looking back at my review of Burger King’s Mac ‘n Cheetos, I actually liked those quite a bit, giving them 3 SPAM Musubi.
The Cheesy Tots? I’m going with 1 SPAM Musubi. They were good enough to finish the whole box, however I would NEVER buy it again. But that’s just my opinion. ;-)
What? Burger King Cheesy Tots
Where did you get it and how much? Burger King in King’s Village Shopping Center (Waikiki). $2.99 per 8-piece box.
Big Shaka to: The light and golden crispy breading on the outside is tasty and has a nice texture. Not greasy. At $2.99 for 8 fairly decent sized pieces, it’s a decent value (not considering the negative effect of the nutrition values). NASA.
No Shaka to: The texture inside is rather off-putting, like a gluey-glop of potatoes and fake cheese. Overall it tastes more like a NASA experiment for astronauts in space, not earthlings. Horrific nutritional numbers (and not tasting good enough to justify it).
The Tasty Island rating: 1 SPAM Musubi (average)
P.S. Rainbow Drive-In sells regular Tater Tots that you can order on the side, as well as add to dishes there, such as with chili, a burger or a Loco Moco….
Rainbow Drive-In Chili ‘n Tater Tots. Image source: Yelp
Then there’s Maui Brewing Company Waikiki’s unique Okinawan Tater Tots, made with locally grown purple Okinawan Sweet Potato and served with a Smokey House-made Ketchup…
And Maui Brewing Company Waikiki’s scratch-made from fresh ingredients Cheesy Tater Tots, served with Smokey House-made Ketchup…