Taco Bell Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries Review: Does The Serrabanero Ranch Sauce Pack A Punch?

Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries
Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries - Michael Palan / Static Media

In 2018, Taco Bell introduced a new twist on a beloved fast food that turned out to be the biggest debut of an item in the company's history — Nacho Fries. To sustain customers' endless excitement about the popular side, the chain has only made it available as limited-time offerings. For the 11th iteration of Nacho Fries, Taco Bell is coming in hot, teaming up with a Portland, Oregon, hot sauce company to create Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries.

After trying the decent but messy Grilled Cheese Nacho Fries, I was curious how this new version would stack up. In order to find out, I took a short break from observing Passover and popped on over to a local Taco Bell.  After polishing off my plastic plate, I'm now ready to spill all the secrets. This chew and review is based on flavor, uniqueness, heat level, and overall lovability.

Some recommendations are based on first-hand impressions of promotional materials and products provided by the manufacturer.

Read more: The Ultimate Ranking Of American Fast Food Restaurants

What Do Taco Bell's Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries Taste Like?

fork in Nacho Fries
fork in Nacho Fries - Michael Palan / Static Media

Before me lies a plastic container that looks like it would house a baked potato to go. I pop off the slightly opaque lid to see a pile of various elements that make up the Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries. A hefty squirt of sour cream tops a mound filled with whites, yellows, oranges, and light browns, with a touch of red and green to avert the eye. It smiles like a well-dressed bowl of homemade chili.

Before eating the Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries as a whole, I try a solo taste of the Serrabanero Ranch Sauce. It runs cool, but this lower temperature can't remotely hide the neat heat it packs inside. After the initial coolness is breached, the zesty flavoring pipes up rather quickly, snapping my attention to it. In addition to the Nacho Fries and oozy nacho cheese sauce, there are tender chicken chunks and an underwhelming amount of fresh-tasting pico de gallo. These ingredients help to temper down the Serrabanero Ranch Sauce' punch, and in turn, the sauce punches up its fellow accoutrements' flavorings.

With so many elements loaded atop it, the Nacho Fries do end up a bit too smooshy. However, because those toppings are so tasty, the physical state of the fries matters not.

Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries Nutritional Information

packaged Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries
packaged Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries - Michael Palan / Static Media

The Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries naturally start with Taco Bell'a Nacho Fries, which are fried potatoes that are seasoned with Mexican spices. They are then doused with Secret Aardvark's Serrabanero sauce, which includes green tomatoes, roasted tomatillos, serrano, and green habanero peppers blended with ranch. The fries are topped with slow-roasted chicken, reduced-fat sour cream, nacho cheese sauce, pico de gallo, and a three-cheese blend. Digging deeper into the ingredients list, it appears the three cheese blend is actually a blend of four cheeses, including part-skim mozzarella, cheddar cheese, and a Monterrey Jack and American Cheese with peppers mix.

Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries come in a single serving size, which contains 510 calories, 32 grams of total fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 45 milligrams of cholesterol, 1160 milligrams of sodium, 15 grams of protein, and 42 grams of total carbohydrates, including 6 grams of dietary fiber and 3 grams of sugar. It also contains 110 milligrams of calcium, 1.8 milligrams of iron, and 910 milligrams of potassium. The fries contain the allergens gluten, milk, eggs, and wheat.

How Much Do Taco Bell's Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries Cost

Taco Bell menu
Taco Bell menu - Michael Palan / Static Media

Taco Bell's Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries are available at participating locations for a limited time only and while supplies last, starting April 25. These Nacho Fries come in one size only. The suggested retail price is $4.99, although the price might vary by location and could be higher with delivery. I happened to be in Rehoboth, Delaware, an excellent destination for food and drink, and at the location where I picked up my order, I spent $5.89; a side of the Serrabanero Ranch Sauce is available a la carte for $1.

Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries are listed on the menu under "New" and "Specialties." They can be purchased in-store at the counter, at a kiosk, or the drive-thru, where available. Advanced ordering for in-store pick-up and delivery is also an option in some areas. Both the site and app allow complete customization of your order, including removing and adding ingredients, and even swapping out the chicken for another protein. Upgrades like guacamole, and add-ons such as potatoes are also available an additional cost. Aardvark Nacho Fries are available for ordering any time Taco Bell is open, but be sure to confirm the availability at your location.

Our Final Thoughts About Taco Bell's Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries

Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries
Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries - Michael Palan / Static Media

Judging by its name alone, Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries sounds more like a Taco Bell secret menu item. Luckily, you don't need to know the trick to ordering it as it's right there on the menu -- for a limited time of course.

I ate my order of Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and it served as quite the wake-up call. It was super delicious and the aftertaste it left behind acted as a cooling spice, pepping up my tastebuds.

As a bonus, the new Serrabanero Ranch sauce isn't just confined to orders of the Secret Aardvark Nacho Fries either. In fact, you can add it to any Taco Bell menu item that reigns supreme in your heart to kick up the spice level a notch. This is a good thing, because you'll likely want to dip everything in it.

Read the original article on Daily Meal