Top 10 Favorite Trader Joe’s Products

I go to Trader Joe’s weekly, sometimes more. Shopping there is actually enjoyable – the “Crew” is helpful, friendly, and totally awesome with my kids. Plus, my local TJ’s offers free wine tasting after 3pm. Most importantly though, TJ’s food selection is healthier than most grocers, yet is still reasonably priced.

My appreciation for TJ’s became evident in light of recent visits to Ralph’s (due to crazy, free wine promotion). On each occasion, I struggled to weed through the many product options to find the healthiest one. It took longer, felt more stressful, and I spent a premium to buy the good stuff. Ralph’s doesn’t have it all wrong, I mean, they did give me 18 bottles of free wine after all, but Trader Joe’s still has my heart (and credit card).

Now, we’re going to try something here. I’ll tell you some of my favorite TJ’s items and then you share some of yours. Sounds reasonable, no? Here goes… while I have many items I love, I’ll stick to my top ten.

Top Ten Favorite Trader Joe's Products.

Top Ten Favorite Trader Joe’s Products.

Top Ten Favorite Trader Joe’s Products

  1. Marcona Almonds with Rosemary – These are hands down the tastiest snack. Expensive? Yes. Delicious? OMG!
  2. Steamed Lentils – The lentils come already steamed and prepared. I like to have at least one box on hand at all times, which is fine because they keep in the fridge for months. Sauté them with veggies and serve over quinoa for a quick meal. They’re also delicious mixed with TJ’s Bruscetta mix for a flavorful appetizer.
  3. Organic Tuscan Kale – The kale is washed, cut and ready to go. I prefer the texture and taste of Lacinto (Tuscan) kale over other varieties. I usually chop mine into even smaller bits before tossing it into a salad or sauté pan. And at $2.29 per 10 oz bag, I don’t mind paying TJ’s to prep my kale for me!
  4. Ezekiel Bread – You can find this brand at most grocery stores, but TJ’s sells it on the cheap (about $1 less than other stores). I love to eat it this way.
  5. Homestyle Salsa Especial – This is the good stuff – so good that it has it’s own Facebook Page (what the what?). It has enough kick to make you notice, but is still pretty easy on the mouth. I dip carrots and cucumbers in it or use it in leu of salad dressing on taco salad.
  6. Organic Arugula – I really like using arugula in my salads and I always prefer organic. TJ’s sells a 7oz bag for $2.29. No brainer. Top with lemon juice, olive oil, and your favorite accessories, and tadaaaaa!
  7. Garlic Infused Olive Oil – It has changed my culinary life. A little dash of this and you can add the garlic flavor without the peeling, chopping, and stinky fingers. A little bit goes a long way, so be careful lest you overdo it.
  8. Organic Canned Beans – While the canned bean selection may not be as wide as other natural food markets, the price is sure right ($1.20 per can). But, TJ’s has the staples: black beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, great northern beans, refried beans, popcorn shrimp, shrimp cocktail…
  9. Almond Meal – I use almond meal all.of.the.time. It isn’t cheap, whether you’re at TJ’s or Sprouts, you’re going to pay a premium to have someone grind your almonds for you. I buy at least one bag on each TJ’s run. They have cashew meal now too!
  10. Shaved Brussel Sprouts – People either love or hate brussel sprouts. I am a lover. I especially like them shaved because you can sauté them with other veggies, grains, or lean proteins. A sure fire way to knock it out of the park is to sauté them in a bit of garlic infused olive oil, and serve over quinoa with one broiled chicken sausage on the side. Yum!

Okay, your turn to dish it! Give me your favorites!

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  • Reply
    David Claudon
    01/07/2014 at 9:35 pm

    Ice cream is my favorite. I love you

    Sent from my iPhone

    • Reply
      01/08/2014 at 8:54 am

      Interesting. Would have never guessed that one, dad. Love you too

  • Reply
    01/07/2014 at 9:43 pm

    Pretty much my whole pantry and refrigerator is Joes as well! I think I first started shopping there back when we were roomies 🙂 A few of your favs, like the yummy salsa, are in my cart each week as well! Haven’t tried the garlic oil but can’t wait to! We cook with Joes coconut oil often… Make cookies with it too! Love their creamy almond butter and so does Tyler as an after nap snack with some apples. Totally agree on the bagged veggies! Washed and precut makes prep so much easier!! The edamame hummus is a huge hit in our home too. I can dip any veggie in it and Tyler will eat it up. We also use the Joes brand coconut water to make smoothies or just to drink. Don’t know the price of the top of my head but I know it’s cheaper than others!

    I like reading your blog old friend!

    • Reply
      01/08/2014 at 8:57 am

      Almond butter for sure – love the creamy salted one. Also the coconut oil. Ill have to try the edamame hummus! Yeah, not a lot has changed (well, some key things :)) since our roomie days – TJs and Growers are still staples. Let’s get together soon! Maybe I can come Crossfit with you? I have never tried it.

      • Reply
        01/09/2014 at 6:56 am

        I would love to get together! You can come try a sheFit class with me anytime! I go Mondays and Wednesdays at 9:40. The classes are Mon-Wed-Fri, but Fridays Tyler has gymnastics, so for now I skip Fridays.

        • Reply
          01/09/2014 at 3:12 pm

          Do you bring your kids? What is the childcare situation like?

          • Jenny
            01/09/2014 at 8:23 pm

            I do bring my boys. They have a girl, Carla, there to watch them in one of those playpens/gates. They usually have a kids movie on, lots of toys, but pretty much they need to be able to just hang out for an hour 🙂 I bring goldfish to help Tyler pass the time lol. Let me know when you want to join me!

          • hellodaynatalie
            01/10/2014 at 9:55 am

            Sounds like that could work! I’ll let you know!

  • Reply
    01/14/2014 at 2:37 pm

    Their low-fat organic blue corn chips. Andrew and I go through at least a bag per week. Other staples are their whole wheat pizza dough, and your choice of the cinnamon raisin Ezekiel bread.

    I am usually at TJ’s more than once a week, and after reading your post, there’s more from there that I need to try out!

    • Reply
      01/14/2014 at 2:54 pm

      I love the whole wheat pizza dough too! Those chips are delish – too good in fact.

  • Reply
    01/15/2014 at 8:04 pm

    Thought of you tonight as 4 of these staples made an appearance in dinner at the weber house!

  • Reply
    Brussels Sprout Perfection | hello day
    02/07/2014 at 2:03 pm

    […] I mentioned in my Trader Joes favorites post, I really like the shaved brussels sprouts at TJs. They are perfect for sautéing. The other […]

  • Reply
    03/30/2014 at 6:56 pm

    I just got the garlic infused olive oil and tried using it as olive oil and you aren’t kidding when you say a little goes a long way. I even eat raw garlic when I am sick and this stuff is potent!
    My fave tj’s that is always in my fridge — the chili pepper sauce, the dijon (get both seeded and not — mix them up for whatever seed amount you desire, they are like 1.79 — line your closets with dijon!), cornichons (my dad is even hooked), lucques olives, marmalade, caramel sauce, the basic peanut butter. I go for beer, wine, and staples, and I am kind of amused people forget the staples. I do get onions, fennel, celery, apples, too, all ridiculously cheap. Oh and farro, quinoa, etc.

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