Maybe its because I care way too much about food, maybe its because I’m broke, either way, I tend to shop at multiple grocery stores to find whats best at each one. One of the stores I love the most is Trader Joe’s. I think this feeling is mutual among most people that live in close vicinity to a Trader Joe’s. It just has something a little different to offer. Its more fun than a normal grocery store, and oftentimes more affordable.

Fun fact: I actually saw the former president of Trader Joe’s speak at FNCE. He now runs a market in a low income neighborhood of Boston where all of the food is SNAP eligible and sold at a majorly discounted rate so that low income families can have easier access to healthy food. Pretty cool.

Anyways, I just thought I’d compile a little list of some of my favorite things to get at Trader Joe’s incase you wanted to give it a shot.

Frozen Section
Turkey meatballs
: We buy the frozen turkey meatballs all the time to put with zucchini noodles and marinara sauce. They’re super easy to make and taste amazing.

Gnocchi: I’ve had both the gorgonzola gnocchi and the butternut squash with sage and butter gnocchi and both are definitely worth a try. They take no time to heat up and are great for either a meal or a side dish. This is an easy thing to just keep in the freezer in case you don’t feel like cooking one night. Warning if there are males in your household: my boyfriend usually eats a whole bag for himself.

Pre-Made Salads: There are a ton of different salads to chose from, and all of the ones I’ve tried have been great. As a personal preference I tend to get the ones without meat in them, pre-packed chicken just weirds me out. But other than the chicken they all seem to be pretty fresh. If I know I’m not going to be able to prepare lunches I’ll grab one or two for lunch during the week and they’re super easy to carry to work. Just a warning: they’re only good for 2 or 3 days, so I wouldn’t get one when you do your grocery shopping on Sunday if you aren’t planning on eating it till Friday.

Sweet Treats
Cookie Butter: If you haven’t tried cookie butter you are seriously missing out. I don’t even know what else to say about it. Just go get some.

Dark Chocolate Coconut Almonds: These are a recent discovery and may be my new favorite thing out of all of Trader Joe’s. They are dark chocolate almonds with a little layer of coconut between the chocolate and the almond. To quote my dad when I made him try them “they’re almost too good”.

Brown Rice & Quinoa Fusilli Pasta: I haven’t tried that many gluten-free pastas, but the ones I have tried tend to be slimy and soggy. Until I tried this one that is. This gluten free pasta tastes exactly like regular pasta, plus, even if your aren’t gluten free, it has healthier ingredients then regular pasta.

Sprouted Multi-Grain Bread: I don’t really buy bread often, but I really wanted to try that Ezekial bread that everyone had been raving about. I noticed that they had it a Trader Joe’s one day, and then I noticed that there was a TJ’s brand bread that looked pretty much the same and was about $2 cheaper. This bread is made with “High protein sprouted wheat berries, Rye Flakes, & Flax Seeds”, and it actually tastes really good! I use it almost every morning now to make avocado toast.

Flowers: Trader Joe’s has seriously the best and cheapest flowers there is. They have a bunch of different kinds and bouquets landing from $2.99-$8.99. I buy flowers pretty much every time I’m there.

Don’t Buy
While I love most things I’ve bought at Trader Joe’s, there is one thing that I wouldn’t suggest buying. Unfortunately, that thing is fresh produce. I’ve found that produce tends to be more expensive at Trader Joe’s than most other grocery stores, even Harris Teeter. For some reason a lot of their produce is packaged, which I don’t really understand. I feel like the packaging drives up the price and is just very unnecessary.

Does anyone else have any Trader Joe’s favorites they would suggest? Do you like this type of post? Let me know if there are any other grocery stores you’d like me to spotlight!

Posted by:madetoorder

I'm just an aspiring Registered Dietitian who loves food.

2 replies on “Grocery Store Spotlight: Trader Joe’s

  1. Just had TJ’s portabella mushroom chicken for dinner. It’s a stir fry chicken with shiitake mushrooms, edamame, and green beans. I’m lazy on work nights so the frozen deal works well. It was amazing….I do have another one to add to your don’t buy list… the tabbouleh. I should have known better to never stray from Neomonde. It was not fresh at all!

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