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33 Things You Absolutely Need To Be Buying At Trader Joe’s

Must Try

From drinks, to snacks, to dinner hacks, sauces, and everything in-between – these are the products I love right now at Trader Joe’s!

Trader Joe’s is one of the all-time great grocery fun-run stores!
Sure, you can buy great produce, milk and yogurt, pantry essentials, and normal practical things at Trader Joe’s.
But for this post I wanted to convince you to try some of these unique “fun run” items – the things that, if you’re making a special trip from out of town or stocking up on your quarterly trip, you should absolutely be buying here.
I split this post into three sections:

For a total of 33 items that deserve a spot on your shopping list!
If you love something that I didn’t mention here, let me know in the comments! I’m always eager to try the things that you all love and recommend.

1: Sodas – In Particular, Strawberry Or Watermelon Soda

Why I love it:

Made sweet with real fruit juice and no added sugar.
Taste is so nostalgic to me!
Perfect little skinny can size with just the right amount in each serving.

2: Nuts – In Particular, Chili Lime Cashews

Why I love it:

Tons (I mean tons) of seasoning!
A little spicy.
Great in a Thai-ish chopped salad (see here, and here).

3 – Unexpected Cheddar

Why I love it:

Tastes hard and salty and aged, like a Parm.
Eats really nicely with crackers.
A little slice melted over the air fryer chicken is *chef’s kiss* amazing.

4 – Frozen Roasted Corn

Why I love it:

It’s hard to find frozen corn that is *roasted*!
Only need a little bit in each recipe so the bag lasts forever.
Perfect in the red chile chicken taco corn dip topping (which, conveniently, is also great for eating with chips).

5 – Frozen Vegetable Fried Rice

Why I love it:

Great basic meal starter that is, as advertised, ready in 5 minutes!
Plays really well with a shot of soy sauce, oyster sauce, rice vinegar, some scrambled eggs or tofu, and a few more fresh veggies.
My kids love it!

6 – Frozen Chicken Wontons

Why I love them:

These ones are mini-size which I absolutely love.
They’re deliciously chewy / tender and the chicken isn’t weird.
They are a must for saucy wontons.

7 – Frozen Brown Rice

Several of you also recommended this and guess what? I LOVE IT. It’s a new staple for me – thanks for the recommendation! Why I love it:

It’s extremely convenient.
This is truly some of the only brown rice that I actually like – it is very soft and tender and eats more like a white rice!
Organic!

8 – Sea Salt and Turbinado Sugar Dark Chocolate Almonds

Why I love these (and have loved them for years):

THE TEXTURE ON THESE IS AMAZING.
I think they also recently may have increased the amount of chocolate around each almond? They are hefty and chunky.
They are a perfect grab-a-handful-for-a-hit-of-chocolate moment.

9 – Roasted Tomato & Parmesan Focaccia

Why I love this:

For this specific turkey sandwich.
It’s heavy and dense but also has a good amount of squish and bounciness to it? Is that possible?
The roasted tomato topping is elite.

10 – Everything Crackers

Why I love them:

They go with everything (get it?)
Such great texture.
My favorite is loading these bad boys up with the olive tapenade. I buy them specifically for that purpose.

11 – Multigrain Crackers

Why I love them:

These are an actually delicious basic cracker.
They have sunflower, flax seeds, and other good stuff in them.
My girls love them and they make a perfect kid-friendly snack starter.

12 – Trail Mix Crackers

Why I love them:

They’re just fun.
They’re loaded with seeds, nuts, and dried fruits and they eat almost more like a buttery cookie but still salty?
They don’t need any toppings whatsoever (although these with a slice of Unexpected Cheddar is a next-level combo).

13 – Salt and Pepper Chips

Why I love them:

Salty, peppery, and max amount of textured ridges.
They make any sandwichy / grilled hot dog / burger meal feel just a little more special and fun.
Amazing with a creamy dip – like, dare I say, the bacon cheddar ranch dip!

14 – Dill Pickle Chips

Why I love them:

Best dill pickle chips of all time.
Extra seasoned – like, TONS of dill pickle flavored powder on each chip.
Very substantially cronchy.

15 and 16 – Zhoug and Chimichurri

Why I love them:

99% of the time I don’t like pre-made herb sauces, but these are my two exceptions to the rule.
The chimichurri is more of a fresh and zingy herb sauce (yum)…
Whereas the zhoug has warmish spices and tends to be spicy (also yum).

17 – Olive Tapenade

Why I love it:

This is hands-down the best olive tapenade I’ve ever bought.
It’s not cluttered with any raw onions or anything else we don’t want in there. Just lots of olives, herbs, olive oil and little flecks of pimento.
It is SO DELICIOUS loaded onto those Everything crackers.

Serving size is 7, but it only takes me 2-3 passes at this to finish it all off myself. Woopsies.
17 – Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

Why I love it:

Great as a salsa.
But also great as a semi-homemade sauce starter!
I like to whisk it with their mashed avocados to make an avocado-tomatillo sauce. Add a bit of extra salt, maybe some fresh garlic if you’re feeling sassy, and it’s an amazingly fast, actually good sauce shortcut.

18 – High Protein Tofu

Why I love it:

It doesn’t require much pressing.
It’s super high protein.
It’s my go-to tofu for Air Fryer Tofu!

19 – Non Alcoholic Beer

Why I love it:

It’s non-alcoholic!
It’s mild-tasting, wheaty and golden, and just really good.
Perfect end-of-night bev when you want to chill out without the alcohol.

And The Most Loved Products By Our Community On Instagram

This is a list of a few products that didn’t make my best of list (and/or things I haven’t tried) but these were recommended over and over again by our community on Instagram!

Brookie clusters
Cinnamon Roll JoJos
Everything seasoning
Buffalo chicken dip
Elote chips
Frozen veggie birds nests
Dark chocolate peanut butter cups
Pizza crust
Kimbap / Gimbap
Scallion pancakes
Snacky clusters
Chili onion crisp
Cannoli dip

Don’t Hate Me – 3 Popular Items I Think You Can Skip
Orange Chicken

Why I DON’T love it:

The orange sauce is underwhelming. Too sweet, not enough contrast.
The fried chicken has dark meat. Not a fan.
The house always gets a weird smell when I make it.

Bambas

Why I DON’T love them:

Flavor is meh.
Texture is meh – very dissolve-y on impact.
Leaves a weird film in my mouth.

Cauliflower Gnocchi

Why I DON’T love it:

I used to love it… so, the potential is there, but maybe I overdid it and now I’ve ruined it for myself. (Also it’s easy enough to make my own!)
Smells and tastes a bit too watery and/or cauliflowery.
Never really something I look forward to eating.

Got anything to add? Give me all your best Trader Joe’s intel and I will note it for my next trip!

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