Healthy chips

Chips. With their crunch, flavor, and texture, plus the instant gratification that they provide, they have become a very popular snack food. Unfortunately, they have been collectively labeled as “junk food” in the past, but recent developments have redeemed them from such judgment. One by one, healthy chips are being introduced to provide the crunch, flavor, and texture that people look for in snacks, yes, but at the same time provide health benefits for the person snacking on them.

Spicy variant of kangkong chips.

Mostly plant-based, healthy chips are a welcome development in recent years, and one of these happens to be Kangkong King’s crispy fried kangkong or water convolvulus chips. Kangkong King uses 100-percent real kangkong leaves, which are battered and then fried leaf by leaf in coconut oil to become a vegan-friendly, gluten-free, and dairy-free snack to munch on. It is so good that once you start popping kangkong chips into your mouth, you simply cannot stop until the bag is empty — and it is just as well since you will be consuming green, leafy vegetables that are rich in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They also contain antioxidants and iron.

Photographs by Dolly Dy-Zulueta for the Saily Tribune
KKK Original kangkong chips.

A business owned and operated by five young entrepreneurs — siblings Frank and Anne Gaw, and their friends Andrew Tan Lee, Benjamin Ng, and Jay Tan — Kangkong King started in 2019. Frank, a business-minded person who genuinely loves snacking, had a eureka moment when he saw (and tried!) an order of crispy kangkong from a restaurant that was on the dining table at home. Snacking on it, Frank saw the potential of kangkong chips as a business venture although the recipe itself was not new. He had this idea of adding flavors to the simple recipe that would transform it into a novelty. So, smack in the first quarter of 2019, the team started experimenting on the recipe. Every day, the whole house smelled like fried batter and family dinners consistently included crispy kangkong until they hit the perfect recipe. By June of that same year, the team was ready for their first bazaar participation at Fishermall, and they were so overwhelmed by the positive feedback they got from customers that it became the turning point for them. They all geared up; full steam ahead. By September, they opened their first branch at Robinsons Place Manila.

Then, from selling freshly cooked crispy kangkong in mall kiosks, Kangkong King embarked on multiple experiments and research and development to pack their kangkong chips into resealable bags to prolong the shelf life of the product to six months without compromising quality and taste.

Six variants of Kangkong King chips.

Now, Kangkong King’s crispy fried water convolvulus chips come in seven flavors: KKK Original (the in-house special flavor), BBQ, sour cream, cheese, plain (no flavoring), sweet corn, and spicy. Occasionally, the brand releases limited-edition flavors, such as honey butter and sinigang.

Photograph courtesy of Kangkong King
The Kangkong King team during the opening of their first kiosk (from left) Jay Tan, Sheryl Tan, Anne Gaw, Frank Gaw, Andrew Tan Lee, and Benjamin Ng.

The product is sold at P128 per pack. Kangkong King also comes in Sulit Bundles of four and six. Physical kiosks are located at Robinsons Galleria, Robinsons Place Manila, SM Fairview, Alabang Town Center, and SM City North EDSA. Orders may also be placed online via (website), (Shopee), and
@kangkongkingph’s Facebook, and Instagram pages.

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