Are you a fan of crunchy snacks? Do you find yourself reaching for a bag of pork rinds or Funyuns when the craving hits?
While these two snacks may seem similar in texture and appearance, they are actually quite different. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Funyuns and explore what makes them unique.
From their history to their ingredients, we’ll dive into everything you need to know about this popular snack. So, grab a bag of Funyuns and settle in as we answer the burning question: are Funyuns pork rinds?
Are Funyuns Pork Rinds?
No, Funyuns are not pork rinds. While both snacks are crispy and crunchy, they are made from different ingredients.
Funyuns are made from cornmeal that is shaped into ring shapes using an extrusion process. They are then fried in corn oil and seasoned with a mix of salt and onion powder to give them their distinct flavor. On the other hand, pork rinds are made from the skin of a pig that is fried until crispy.
So, while both snacks may satisfy your craving for something crunchy, they are not interchangeable. If you’re looking for a vegetarian or vegan option, Funyuns would be the way to go.
The History Of Funyuns
Funyuns were invented by a Frito-Lay employee named George Wade Bigner in 1969. Bigner was inspired by the growing popularity of extruded snacks, which were becoming more common in the 60s. He wanted to create a snack that had the texture and shape of fried onion rings, but was made from cornmeal.
Bigner’s invention was a success, and Funyuns quickly became one of Frito-Lay’s most popular products. They were marketed as a fun and unique snack that could be enjoyed by people of all ages. The name “Funyuns” was chosen by Jim Albright, a professor at the University of North Texas, after the original name “OnYums” was found to be already copyrighted.
Over the years, Funyuns have remained a popular snack, with several different flavors being introduced to cater to different tastes. Some flavors have been discontinued, like Wasabi and Steakhouse Onion, while others like Original, Flamin’ Hot, and Chile & Limón continue to be enjoyed by millions of people around the world.
In Brazil, Funyuns are sold under the name “Cebolitos”. This shows how the snack has become popular globally and has been adapted to suit different markets.
What Are Funyuns Made Of?
Funyuns are primarily made of cornmeal, which is shaped into ring shapes using an extrusion process. This process gives them their distinct shape and texture, resembling that of fried onion rings. The cornmeal rings are then fried in corn oil and seasoned with a mix of salt and onion powder to give them their flavor. While the seasoning blend includes onion powder and “natural toasted onion flavor,” there is no actual onion in the dough. This process results in a crispy and crunchy snack that is popular among many snack lovers. Funyuns are a product of PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay company and have been around since 1969. They are also sold under the name “Cebolitos” in Brazil.
How Do Funyuns Compare To Pork Rinds?
When it comes to taste and texture, Funyuns and pork rinds have some similarities but also some notable differences. Funyuns have a more uniform texture and a distinct onion flavor, while pork rinds have a more irregular texture and a savory, meaty flavor.
In terms of nutrition, pork rinds are a better option for those following a low-carb or keto diet as they contain zero carbs and are high in protein and fat. Funyuns, on the other hand, are made from cornmeal and contain more carbs and less protein and fat. Additionally, pork rinds are fried in their own fat, while Funyuns are fried in corn oil.
Are Funyuns A Healthy Snack Option?
Funyuns may not be the healthiest snack option out there, but they are not as bad as some people may think. One serving of Funyuns, which is approximately 13 rings or one ounce, contains 140 calories, 6 grams of fat (1 gram saturated), 19 grams of carbohydrates, and 280 mg of sodium. While they do contain some fat and sodium, they are low in saturated fat and do not contain any cholesterol or trans fat.
Funyuns are also gluten-free and made from cornmeal, which makes them a good option for people who have gluten sensitivities or allergies. In fact, they were gluten-free before it became a popular trend.
Moreover, a healthy version of Funyuns does exist. This version is made from pea, lentil, and fava bean flour base, which provides four grams of protein and three grams of fiber per serving. This healthier version is a good option for people who are looking for a snack that is both tasty and nutritious.
However, it is important to note that Funyuns are not a good option for people who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy diet. They are high in calories and do not provide many nutrients. Eating an entire 6-ounce bag of Funyuns would provide you with 840 calories, 36 grams of fat, 1,680 milligrams of sodium, and 114 grams of carbohydrates. Therefore, it is best to enjoy Funyuns in moderation as an occasional treat rather than a regular snack.
Funyuns Flavors And Varieties
Funyuns have been around since 1969 and have had a few different flavors over the years. The original flavor, which is still sold today, is the classic oniony taste that started it all. Other flavors that have been introduced include Wasabi, Flamin’ Hot, Chili & Limon, and Steakhouse Onion.
While some of these flavors have been retired, there have been petitions to bring them back due to their popularity. Frito-Lay, the company that makes Funyuns, has been known to revisit old and discontinued flavors for other products on a seasonal basis. Additionally, there are shrimp-flavored Funyuns that are sold in Japan in the spring.
The Flamin’ Hot Funyuns are a popular variety that provides a spicy kick to the classic onion flavor. While some people feel that the lack of oil in these Funyuns makes them a bit dry, they continue to be a favorite among spicy snack lovers.
The Steakhouse Onion Funyuns were introduced in 2015 but were discontinued in 2018. While they provided an additional layer of flavor with garlic, tomato, and a hint of heat, some people felt that they were unnecessary and didn’t enhance the original flavor enough.
Fun Ways To Enjoy Funyuns
If you’re a fan of Funyuns, there are plenty of fun and creative ways to enjoy them. Here are a few ideas:
1. Crushed Funyun coating: Crush up a bag of Funyuns and use the crumbs as a coating for chicken tenders or fish fillets. The onion flavor adds a unique twist to classic dishes.
2. Funyun dip: Mix together sour cream, cream cheese, and crushed Funyuns for a delicious dip that pairs perfectly with chips or veggies.
3. Funyun salad topping: Sprinkle crushed Funyuns on top of your favorite salad for added crunch and flavor.
4. Funyun trail mix: Mix together Funyuns, nuts, and dried fruit for a savory snack mix that’s perfect for on-the-go snacking.
5. Funyun croutons: Cut up Funyuns into small pieces and bake them in the oven until crispy. Use them as croutons on top of soups or salads for an unexpected crunch.
No matter how you choose to enjoy them, Funyuns are a versatile and tasty snack that can add a unique twist to any dish.