Basket Review No. 49: Chili’s

Another week, another snow storm, another record-breaking Basket Review. What record is being broken, you ask? I’m not really sure. But there’s gotta be a milestone in here somewhere.

Today, I AGAIN risked life and limb for you wonderful people. Fargo-Moorhead did dodge most of the projected snow, but it’s wet, it’s slushy and it’s very windy. And driving to get these chicken strips for lunch sucked. The wind tried its best to tip my Jeep over. Not today, wind. It did, however, claim the life of this poor Fargo billboard.

Anyways, I’m not here to complain about the weather or the fact that, by a landslide, this is the worst winter of my life or that it’s never ever going to end. IT’S FINE.

Was this chicken strip basket worth the trek? Nah, probably not.


In the realm of chicken strips, these were a little untraditional, given the batter. I immediately thought of sweet and sour chicken from a Chinese restaurant, which is an all-time Chinese dish. And that’s essentially what it was. Sweet and sour chicken, with no sweet and sour sauce.

I would opt for the sweet and sour chicken, though. Nothing popped about these “chicken crispers.” The initial bites I took in the Chili’s parking lot had an OK crisp to them. The batter was decent, but the chicken-to-batter ratio was all over the place. It was ideal in some spots, but there were other bites that were like 50 percent batter.

The fries weren’t bad. They had a good enough texture. I expected more seasoning, but life goes on.

For my dipping sauce, I opted for some cool, hipster, millennial avocado ranch, which was pretty solid. I don’t think I had previously eaten such a thing, but I’d definitely have it again. As my second side, I rolled with the black beans with pico de gallo, which were delightful. They don’t factor into my score, but I enjoyed them.

Overall, I’ll give this a 6.7. It was all fine and wasn’t bad, just not great. I will absolutely be returning to Chili’s, however, to do more Basket reviews. Let me explain.

So today, I got the original chicken crispers, or glorified sweet and sour chicken. Chili’s offers several versions of this dish.

At some point in the future, I will be trying the crispy chicken crispers (which is a stupid name, by the way, but I won’t hold it against them), the crispy honey-chipotle chicken crispers, the honey-chipotle chicken crispers and waffles, and the crispy buffalo bleu crispers. If you give me chicken strips several ways, you can bet I’ll get to them all.

The original, the OG, unfortunately, is nothing to write home about. 6.7.

Author: thrillswithjmills

Food lover located in Fargo, N.D. Chicken strip aficionado; blogger; aspiring TikTok superstar.

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