In general, the stories you hear about prison food are enough to put you off a life of crime for good (no shower jokes please).
But it turns out there’s one snack that well and truly breaks that mould – with a whole load of ex-cons claiming it’s the one thing they would happily do time again to get their hands on.
And this legendary snack – The Whole Shabang potato chips. According to various sources, they taste like ‘a combination of salt and vinegar, barbecue seasoning, and a little bit of every other flavour ever known’ reports NBC News.
The whole shabang chips are amazinggggg I love Alex 😍😍😍— Toni Bugaj (@T_BUGATTI_) May 30, 2016
Sometimes i wanna go back to jail just so i can have a bag of The Whole Shabang, best chips ever i swear.— Lou Syd (@naiirb) October 27, 2015
Chips Worth Going to Jail For -- The Whole Shabang http://t.co/YA8joGKFhZ— Jeep_Familys (@Jeep_Familys) August 13, 2015
But sadly for law-abiding citizens, the delicious crisps aren’t sold in stores. They’re ‘jail chips’ which essentially means they’re produced and sold exclusively for America’s prisoners.
And it turns out former jailbirds can’t get enough of them. NBC News visited Terry Workman who was inside for three months and during that time became obsessed with The Whole Shabang.
In fact, Terry and his friends used the chips to make a themselves a prison soup they called ‘chichi’ which he says he ate every single night of his prison stay.
The soup – ‘cooked’ in an emptied out Shabang packet – is made from rice, ramen, hot sauce, hot pickle, spicy sausage, honey, a few other ingredients and then topped with crushed up crisps.
The chips are made by a company called The Keefe Group. They are one of the biggest private suppliers of food to prisons in the U.S as well as running the prison systems ‘commissary accounts’.
This essentially means that every time an inmate buys a packet of Shabang, Keefe get paid twice – which may help to explain their reported $1 billion profits last year…
Anyway, it turns out that, under pressure from an army of fans, Keefe have now started selling Shabangs through their website to the general public, so don’t go doing anything you’ll regret just yet…