Oven baked zucchini chips

5 affordable and healthier alternatives to takeaway hot chips

In Australia it is not uncommon for deep-fried hot chips to find their way onto the online food delivery order, showcasing the Nation’s obsession with this crispy treat. Two in 5 Aussies confess to salivating at the mere whiff of freshly cooked chips[1]. However, with the rising cost of living and grocery costs, finding healthier and budget-friendly alternatives can be a game-changer for Australian families. Fear not, because we’ve got you covered with some practical and delicious swaps that won’t break the bank.

Sweet potato fries

Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamins and fibre, offering a healthier choice for your hot chip fix. Instead of reaching for white potatoes each time, why not try oven-baked or air-fried sweet potatoes to create a vibrant and nutritious alternative. Simply slice them into fries or wedges, toss with a bit of olive oil, sprinkle with your favourite spices, and bake until crispy.

Not only are these a hit with the kids, but they are suitable for various occasions, whether it’s a casual movie night, a party appetizer, or a wholesome addition to lunchboxes. Check out this sweet potato chips recipe to get you started.

sweet potato chips

Zucchini chips

Embrace the versatility of zucchinis by transforming them into delightful chips. Zucchinis being low-energy and rich in antioxidants, make them an excellent choice for a healthier snack. Slice the zucchinis thinly, coat them with a light layer of olive oil, and bake until golden brown. Add a pinch of sea salt or your preferred seasoning for an extra burst of flavour. These zucchini chips are not only budget-friendly but also a creative way to sneak in some veggies for the whole family.

Oven baked zucchini chips

Air-fried cauliflower bites

Cauliflower takes the spotlight in this tasty alternative. Transforming cauliflower into crispy bites using an air fryer gives you a satisfying and healthier swap for traditional hot chips. There are a few variations you can try. For a super speedy option, toss cauliflower florets with olive oil, seasonings of your choice, and air fry until golden and crunchy. For a bit more crunch, lightly coat the cauliflower by dipping the florets into whisked egg, then coat with homemade wholemeal breadcrumbs or panko breadcrumbs, season as you like, spray with a little olive oil and air fry until golden brown.

Packed with fibre and Vitamin C, these air-fried cauliflower bites are a delicious way to keep your snacking habits morish[2].

Morish popcorn

For a wallet-friendly and wholesome alternative, look no further than the classic popcorn. There are two great ways you can make this tasty snack. If versatility is what you’re after, skip the store-bought microwave versions and opt for plain kernels. Pop them on the stove with a touch of olive oil and season to your liking. Whether you prefer a savory or sweet twist, homemade popcorn is a versatile and cost-effective alternative to hot chips.

For a quick and convenient option, explore healthier packaged popcorn choices that are low in added salt and fat. Look for options with minimal ingredients that are lightly salted or flavoured over buttery flavours or those with heavy coatings. These ready-to-eat options are a convenient and affordable way to enjoy the classic popcorn experience with a healthier spin. Popcorn is a fantastic whole grain that’s high in fibre and can be a blank canvas for your creativity.

Oven-baked potato chips

If you are really craving that hot crunchy potato create your own oven-baked or air-fried potato chips for that familiar crunch without the excess grease. Cut up potatoes into thick or thin fries (or even wedges), toss them with a hint of olive oil, and bake/air-fry until golden brown. Sprinkle with your preferred seasonings, and voilà—classic potato chips with a healthier twist that won’t disappoint.

Home made oven baked potato chips

In conclusion, creating healthier and affordable swaps for hot chips doesn’t mean sacrificing taste or breaking the bank. With these practical alternatives, you can enjoy delicious snacks while keeping your grocery budget in check. So, gather your friends or family, get creative in the kitchen, and savour the goodness of these wallet-friendly hot chip alternatives that don’t compromise on flavour or health.

For more ideas, check out these budget-friendly healthy recipes.


[1]- Menulog, Australia’s hot chip obsession, May 2019. Accessed: https://www.menulog.com.au/explore/media-centre/articles/australias-hot-chip-obsession
2- National Health and Medical Research Council. Eat for Health: Vegetables and Legumes / Beans. 2019. Accessed: https://www.eatforhealth.gov.au/food-essentials/five-food-groups/vegetables-and-legumes-beans