My Top 11 Picks At Trader Joe’s
Unlike what seems the majority, Trader Joe’s isn’t my usual grocery store. It’s not the place that I go for my weekly grocery store hauls, but they have a handful of items that I most certainly won’t find anywhere else – like their one of a kind snacks and unbeatable frozen section – so they’ve left me no choice. Everyone’s got their holy grail products and favorite items from this place that they swear by, but here are a handful of mine that you’ll find in my bag (reusable, of course).
1. Green Goddess Salad Dressing
Hands down my favorite salad dressing – not just from TJ’s, but ever, in history of salad dressings. The minimal amount of ingredients pack a ton of flavor and with herbs like basil and parsley, it instantly makes your salad taste like it’s straight from the garden. Salad dressings can often times be a quick way to ruin a thoughtfully curated salad with added sugars, emulsifiers, and hydrogenated oils – but not this one!
Favorite way to eat: Mixed in with my favorite loaded super food salad. Recipe is here!
2. Seeds & Grains Crispbread
This is one of the newer items I’ve discovered at TJ’s. I buy multiple whenever I see them because they tend to go fast. They are the perfect crunchy snack to have and loaded with a ton of nutritional seeds and grains like flax seeds, sunflower seeds, and oatmeal that will keep you full and satiated in between meals.
Favorite way to eat: I top with mashed avocado, Everything But The Bagel seasoning, tomatoes, and reduced balsamic. This snack is on repeat in my house currently.
3. Oat Milk
This is currently my favorite product. Why? Because it is extremely hard to find an affordable, dairy-free milk that is minimal, clean ingredients. This one is two ingredients – I repeat, TWO ingredients – oats & water. Oat milk has quickly made its way to the top of my list of favorite dairy-free milks. With the oats making it naturally sweet, it’s rare that you’ll see sugar added to oat milks. Between the minimal ingredients and the great flavor, the price of $2.29 is hard to beat. This is also a shelf stable product so it’ll last quite a bit, I grab 2-3 of these when I go.
Favorite way to eat: So. Many. Ways. In overnight oats, in a smoothie, in chia pudding, use it to make a matcha, or just to drink alongside some chocolate chip cookies! This is a great milk alternative – cost and ingredients are perfecto.
4. Everything But The Bagel seasoning
I don’t remember who I was before this seasoning. A true classic now, honestly. This is on everyone’s favorite Trader Joe’s items, and if it’s not on yours – it should be. There isn’t a wrong way to eat this seasoning, it’s good on anything slightly savory or salty.
Favorite way to eat: On avocado toast, duh. More specifically, a toasted piece of sourdough bread with mashed avocado and some EBTB seasoning and nutritional yeast. Ope, sorry, just drooled.
5. Cauliflower Gnocchi
A healthier spin on an Italian favorite. This, when cooked and prepared the correct way, is so delicious. It is still filling with a bit of cassava flour and potato starch in there, but the bulk of the recipe is cauliflower which leaves you feeling a little less lethargic than the original alternative.
Favorite way to eat: Here’s a little hack – On the back there are 3 options for how to cook. One is the right way, and two are the totally wrong way – do not boil, or microwave these buggers and then eat. It will turn into one big ball of mush. Instead, defrost in a pan with 1-2 tbsp of water and cover until they’re thawed. Then pan fry them in ghee, butter, or olive oil. After 3-4 minutes or lightly browned, flip the gnocchi. This will get them looking more like the photo on the package, and less like a giant snot rocket. Serve with your favorite red sauce or the TJ’s kale, cashew & basil pesto!
6. Frozen Veggies
I have never been a big frozen veggies girl, I always prefer to buy fresh. Then COVID-19 2020 hit, and frozen veggies quickly became a staple in the kitchen. TJ’s frozen section was a popular place to be during quarantine. Their frozen veggies and fruits (both organic and non) are much cheaper compared to their competitors. These will most likely continue to have a place in my freezer, post-Coronavirus.
Favorite way to eat: Nothin’ too fancy here. I usually just thaw out with a bit of water in a pan and then fry in ghee to char them up a little bit to give it some flavor and texture. Then sprinkle with salt and pepper and some nutritional yeast for a bit of added B vitamins. I usually will eat chicken or salmon for dinner, and these make for a great side with some brown rice or quinoa!
7. Kale, Cashew & Basil Pesto
A unique spin on a classic. We all know how much I love cashews, so anything that has the word “cashew” in the product title I instantly gravitate towards. The kale and cashews add a new and different taste to a traditional pesto but the basil brings you right back home.
My favorite way to eat: Mixed in with some Banza pasta or spread on top of a homemade bruschetta or caprese salad.
8. Peanut Butter with Flax & Chia Seeds
Think “clean peanut butter”, but better. Both chia and flax seeds are an excellent source of fiber, omega-3’s and flax seeds in particular are great for hormone support. Not to mention, they both are a key component in keeping you fuller for longer in between meals.
Favorite way to eat: One of my all time favorite snacks: a brown rice cake, this peanut butter, sliced bananas, drizzled honey and sprinkled with cinnamon. Honestly, it satisfies all of those senses that your tastebuds crave – salty, sweet, creamy, and crunchy.
9. Gone Bananas – Dark Chocolate Covered Banana Slices
These are the perfect after-dinner, bite-sized snack to cure a nagging sweet tooth. I keep a couple boxes of these in the freezer and grab 1 to 2 at a time when I’m craving something sweet.
Favorite way to eat: by the handful. But now that I’m really thinking about this, they may be great to add on top of a smoothie bowl, brb.
10. Chili Onion Crunch
Woah. This is a new-ish discovery and if you’re someone that likes adding some sort of flavor/spice to just about everything you eat, this is a great thing to have in your pantry. The best part? It’s made with all real food, so there’s no artificial ingredients or added sugars, thickeners, or oils to worry about.
My favorite way to eat: I personally love this sauce with a homemade stir-fry, but I’ve heard of many other ways to enjoy like on tacos, pizza, and with asian dishes like potstickers or a noodle bowl!
11. Just Mango Slices
A pantry staple. I love these for a quick sweet snack, and they’re a great road-trip or camping trip snack to bring along with you. I am someone who packs a bag solely dedicated to snacks when I travel, and these are always in there. They do have ones at TJ’s that are covered in sugar, so try to lean towards the cleaner version without the added sugar. Mango is a very naturally sugary fruit that will give your body the right amount of sugar it needs 🙂
Favorite way to eat? Grab-n-go, my favorite. These are a perfect hiking snack, or to chop up and put into a trail mix. Also if you like to get fancy and eat charcuterie boards, these are a great addition!
All this Trader Joe’s talk is makin’ me want to go do a big TJ’s haul! I love to hear about new product launches at Trader Joe’s and everyone else’s favorite products or go-to items from there. What are some of your favorite items that I have to try next?