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10 childhood snacks Lao Americans loved munching on

You know you still have dreams about it. The crispy. The sweet. The tangy. The taste that makes your tongue jump and salivate. I’m talking about the snacks that defined what made us Lao and pretty much Southeast Asian back in the 90s. We would cry and pout at mom and dad with gleaming eyes in the snack aisle. In a throwback to old school snacks that unite most Asians, here were my top 10 childhood snacks that I couldn’t live without (in no apparent order).

1. Shrimp Chips


2. Pocky


3. Hello Panda


4. Roasted Coconut Peanuts


5. Coconut Flower Cookies

Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

These crunchy gems were always made fresh by your local Lao mama or Thai/Lao deli

6. Taro and Jackfruit Chips


7. Mee Mama Noodles (Original ‘Oriental’ Style)

mama-instant-noodle-soup-thailand from Eastbound

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For those who knew how to eat a real snack on a budget, we’d crunch a packet of mee Mama noodles and pour in the ingredient packets for a spicy and melt in your hands crunchfest. Nom, nom, nom.

8. Banana/Plantain Chips


The Three Sister’s recipe batch are the greasiest and yummiest

9. White Rabbit Creamy Milk Candy


Exactly what it reads. I don’t even know how they make it or what’s in it really. I just pop it in my mouth and let the creamy goodness pool up.

10. Lychee jelly


This was only fun when you get the fun jelly shapes in pandas and pigs. It had to have the yummy lychee bits in it with a little sweet juice on top when you opened it, or it wasn’t real. I would have a ton of these in my backpack as a kid, especially when it comes in an animal-shaped container.


What were your favorite snacks growing up in a Lao neighborhood?


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