I enjoy the occasional trip to Trader Joe’s. I’m not obsessed. I have a healthy appreciation for the positive things they bring me. Like a limited, but satisfactory selection that makes it easy to zip in and out. They also offer some very affordable products. Not everything is a bargain, so as with any store, you have to be selective. Another thing I love is their wide variety of unique items. Without fail, every trip I take to Trader Joe’s, I leave with something new to try. I have rarely seen store employees more friendly, or a return policy more lenient!
I wanted to recommend several products that I enjoy buying there. Admittedly, most of them are “treats.”
Gluten-Free Crispy Crunchy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Generally, my rule of thumb is that homemade is the only way to go. Occasionally, when I’m desperate, I’ll settle for a break-and-bake version. So I was a doubter when my friend told me these were amazing. But my doubts were dispelled. These are so so tasty. Quality chocolate and a great homemade tasting cookie. $3.99 for about 10 thin crispy cookies. Let’s just say that’s about 2 servings in my world. So, I reserve these for special “treat yo self” moments.
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
These are addicting. The peanut butter inside is so creamy it’s ridiculous. Don’t get the little 5 piece pouch. Spring for the tub. You’ll thank me.
If you’ve never tried Marcona almonds, they are a a real treat. These are nicely flavored with rosemary—not overpoweringly so. I am not a big chip person, but these I could eat handfuls of, and without guilt. They also make a sophisticated addition to any cheese board.
Grade B Maple Syrup
Surprisingly, Grade B maple syrup is a little hard to find. But I enjoy it for its slightly darker, more intense maple flavor. It’s also a tad thicker.
Greek Kalamata Extra Virgin Olive Oil
I hope you taste your olive oil. There is a whole world of flavors to discern, just like wine. Once you’ve tasted a few, you’ll begin to distinguish the good from the bad, and figure out your preference (fruity or earthy, etc). This one is a bargain at $8.99 for a rather large glass bottle. It has a very clean, light taste.
You will find this is the freezer section. It is fluffy, like a good yeast bread should be. All the work has been done for you. Simply pop it in the oven for 2 minutes and slather it in butter. This brings Indian food to a whole new level of yum. It is such a great price too! 4 large pieces of naan for $1.99 (the website says $2.29, but in stores it was the former). That beats the heck out of 2 mediocre pieces from Publix for $2.99.
These are a little piece of heaven. You simply set them on a baking sheet, on the counter, before you go to bed. In the A.M. they have defrosted and risen, and all you need do is pop them in the oven. They also have plain and chocolate filled croissants, but the almond are my favorite.
Creamy Toscano Cheese Soaked in Syrah
This is a great one to keep in mind for an easy hors d’oeuvre. The cheese has a pleasant nuttiness and that red wine flavor really comes through. It’s simple, but still says, “Hey, I’m fancy.”
Sauvignon Republic Sauvignon Blanc
I was grateful to find this one through Reverse Wine Snob. $7.99 a bottle. What!? Hailing from New Zealand, this has a crisp fruity profile with aromas of grapefruit.
B.Y.O.B. Raffle Ticket
So this item actually goes in your cart before you enter the store. Did you know if you bring back your reusable shopping bags you get to put your name and phone number on a raffle ticket, and once a week they give away 3 $10 Trader Joe’s gift cards? I love being rewarded for something I was gonna do anyway!