My 10 Favorite Products at Trader Joe's
I used to make fun of my mom for talking endlessly about her favorite supermarket. She would go into these deep analyses about our local store, Cherry Hill, and then compare it to Costco, Stop & Shop, Whole Foods. I was like GEEZ MOM DO WE HAVE NOTHING ELSE TO TALK ABOUT. And then as I got older and wiser (lol jk) and had to buy the groceries for my household, I realized there is an art, and a science to grocery shopping. Where should you buy meat vs. where can you find the freshest produce? What pre-cut, frozen or dried items are going to save me a lot of time in the kitchen? Where can I find healthy snacks that aren't going to bankrupt me? Trader Joe's is the answer to many of those questions for me.
I love Trader Joe's for snacks, frozen foods, fancy cheeses for cheap, and cut up greens. There is nothing I despise more than de-ribbing a giant bouquet of kale, and the cost at TJ's allows me to justify buying it pre-cut. Stay with me people. Time = Money.
So without further adieu, as I know all of you fine folk are sitting on the edge of your ottoman, here we go:
1. Frozen Channa Masala: My absolute favorite thing at TJ's because it is a fast and flavor-packed protein rich option for dinner on busy weeknights. I have yet to find an awesome Indian take-out spot in my hood and honestly, this compares to some of the decent places. I love serving it over brown rice and sautéed kale with a huge dollop yogurt on top. MMMM. Did I mention it's $2.99? Like... that shit cray.
2. Organic Frozen Brown Rice: Another thing that while being easy to do, I find annoying and time consuming? Cooking rice. The frozen packs are easy to pop in the microwave when you need to make random scraps into dinner, or when you want a quick side. And honestly, they taste better than the brown rice I make from scratch. Nothing revolutionary here, but a fantastic time saver on busy weeks.
3. Organic Superfood Pilaf: Let me preface by saying I'm not someone who eats frozen food much, but if I do, I'm very particular about the taste, and I usually mix in fresh veggies. This superfood pilaf is awesome. it's quinoa + kale + sweet potato without too many additives. Love packing this for lunch topped with some grilled chicken or salmon.
4. Cauliflower and Broccoli Patties: These are new but man are they dope. So simple, just mushed veggies in a frozen patty. I cook them in the oven and then add to sandwiches, wraps or salads for an extra dose of vitamins bc flu season is coming up ya know. Also bc they're delicious.
5. Cauliflower Pizza Crust: LOL if you think I would endeavor going through the 36 steps it takes to make this from scratch. Love love love the pre-made option at TJ's and it makes a gluten-free pizza night super easy!
6. Salad Bags: They have all sorts of cool blends but my latest favorite is Kohlrabi crunch. I'm not talking about the salad kits with dressing and fried wontons and the like, but the bags with shredded veggies waiting for your magic touch! They are right near the pre-cut kale, which I've already told you is my saving grace.
7. Fancy Cheese: While I wouldn't go to TJ's for fresh mozzarella (my dad would kill me,) they do have well-priced cheeses like gruyere, parmigiano-reggiano, gouda, etc. It is much more affordable to host a wine + cheese night if you shop for the ingredients at TJ's. Oh, and don't forget the fig crisps. HOT DAMN are those addicting.
8. Frozen Fruit: Perfect for smoothies, and sometimes I like to eat half-frozen mango as a post-dinner treat. They've got coconut, apricot, figs, and more based on seasonality.
9. Everything But The Bagel Seasoning: A cult-favorite because duh. Everyone loves bagels and even more so, everyone loves tricking their mind into thinking that they are eating a bagel when really, it's a big blob of cottage cheese. Just me?
10. Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups: No description necessary! Also, the sea salt + dark chocolate covered graham crackers are divine.
Have you tried any of these ingredients? Do you have other favorites at Trader Joe's or your local supermarket that make life tastier and dinner faster? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
cover + article photo credit: traderjoes.com