I always say that Trader Joe’s is the grocery store version of Target: it’s a black hole of temptation that we secretly love. I enter with a list of select items I need, but somehow always end up in the checkout line with a loaded basket that makes my biceps cry. What’s not crying? My wallet. If you live in New York City like me, you know that we put up with the apocalyptic chaos at Trader Joe’s because of the unmatched price (and quality) of their groceries. Because the items are so cheap, you don’t think twice about adding “just one more thing” on your way to checkout. But it’s worth it every time— that’s how I discovered these 11 must-have products (there are plenty more that could have made the list, but I had to set a limit)!
- Trader Giotto’s Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
There’s no replacement for authentic New York pizza, but when I want to take a healthy shortcut, this does the trick. With more fiber per slice, I’m feeling fuller on a smaller portion.
- Nothing but fruit and nuts (date • hazelnut • cacao)
If you’ve ever had a Larabar, these are extremely similar, but they’re shaped like little discs and are a bit denser. I keep these at my desk at work for when I have a chocolate craving.
- Marinara Sauce
It’s not every day that you see marinara sauce in a can instead of a jar, but this tastes like it came straight from a grandmother’s kitchen in Italy.
- Hi-Protein Veggie Burger
I can’t rave about these enough! The crispy coating on the outside is to die for. When I had to forgo meat during Lenten Fridays, these crushed my burger craving.
- Everything but the Bagel seasoning blend
If you scraped off all that good stuff on an everything bagel (hypothetical situation here—only a crazy person would actually do that) and add it to a spice shaker, this is what you’d get. Thanks to its versatility, I use it on fries, sandwiches, veggies, etc.
- Turkey Chili
Most chili recipes call for chicken or beef, but there’s something special about turkey that ups the comfort food factor (probably the association it has with Thanksgiving). It’s rich in protein, iron and smoky flavor, too!
- Almond Butter Turmeric salad dressing
Don’t let the name weird you out; I thought twice about it too. But it’s hands down one of the most refreshing, light and zesty dressings ever at just 60 cals per serving.
- Tortilla chips
There are several varieties to pick from, and they’re all amazing. Unsurprisingly, so are the bajillion kinds of salsa next to them.
- Cookie butter
You know those hella good cookies you get on Delta flights? Now imagine it in the miracle consistency of peanut butter. It tastes as mind-blowing as it sounds! I’ll just lie and say I totally don’t stick a finger in the jar when I pass the pantry.
- Frozen fruit
At Trader Joe’s, you’ll score a much higher volume of frozen berries, mangos, cherries, etc. for half the cost of what other stores charge. #smoothieszn, right?
- Chicken sausage
I could eat this chicken sausage with fajitas multiple times a week, rotating between flavors (although my go-to is the Sweet Italian kind). Oftentimes I’ll slice one up and add it to an omelet, salad or bowl of soup.
Tell me about your favorite Trader Joe’s product(s) in the comments!
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