People watching Super Bowl LIII in the Philadelphia region were introduced to a new locally-made snack that was more exciting than almost anything on the field.

They’re called Dietz Nuts, and they’re actually quite tasty.

Dietz & Watson, the 80-year-old Philly deli meat powerhouse, created its latest product specifically for the Super Bowl. The ad for the snack — more mundanely referred to as “protein-packed savory sausage bites” — features Craig Robinson of The Office joking with his real-life brother Chris about the bag he’s chomping on.

The brand, of course, is a play on the meme “Deez Nuts.” For those not familiar, know that the meme was popular enough to have been the name of a write-in candidate for president during the 2016 election. It’s also slightly NSFW.

What does 94-year-old Ruth “Momma” Dietz think of all this?

The company’s matriarch stepped back from day-to-day operations a couple years ago after a stroke, but she’d likely have given it her blessing if it’s something her kids, grandkids and great-grandkids endorsed. Founded in Philly by Gottlieb Dietz in 1939, D&W is one of the few successful fourth-generation-run companies operating in the US.

Apparently, current third-gen leaders Louis and Chris Eni and Cindy Yingling have a decent sense of humor. Produced by Philly’s RTOP, the TV commercial has plenty of jokes. But Robinson also makes the point that the meat nubbins are good — a great alternative to regular nuts.

After a taste-test of a sample pack of Honey Maple Dietz Nuts sent to the Billy Penn office, we can agree with Robinson’s assessment.

Originally afraid to dig into the snack pouch during work hours, we discovered the bites weren’t overwhelmingly garlicky or spicy, so you could theoretically snarf them down right before a meeting without suffering meat-mouth consequences.

As far as texture goes, they’re much softer and easier to eat than jerky — the trendy protein snack of the decade — and much less greasy than regular sausage. They’re kind of like if the salami rolls your mom packed in grade school lunch got squished into handy little cubes.

Packs of Dietz Nuts are available on the Dietz & Watson website for $7.14 a pop. Also available: Dietz Nuts boxer briefs, for when you really want to drive the point home.

Danya Henninger was first editor and then editor/director of Billy Penn at WHYY from 2019 to 2023.