The Trader Joe’s Report – vol. 2

In my previous post on Trader Joe’s I talked about my favorite “specialty” products and treats from Trader Joe’s.  Today I’m sharing a few Trader Joe’s favorites that I tend to have on hand every day:

  • Baguettes and Ciabatta Loaves – The fresh baked breads are winners.  They are baked locally and are fresh and delicious.
  • Organic Tri-colored Peppers – these bags of three colored bell peppers (one each of red, orange and yellow) are a great buy. Peppers are one of the “dirty dozen” fruits and veggies that you should always buy organic if you can.  One thing I love about TJ’s is that they make buying organic so affordable.
  • Salts and Spices – TJ’s offers good prices on a limited selection of quality seasonings.  My faves are French thyme, oregano, dried pepper flakes (some seriously hot pepperoncino – be sure to store them in the fridge to prolong their freshness), and pink Himalayan salt.
  • Frozen Cilantro Cubes – These cubes of frozen herbs are just the right size when all you need is a bit of cilantro to perk up some salsa or guacamole.  As a bonus, I reuse the cute little trays to freeze grated fresh ginger into tsp. sized cubes.
  • Frozen Diced Mango – Mangos have been all the rage for the last few years, and they are certainly appealing both health-wise and looks-wise (we eat with our eyes, yes?).  Truth is, though, I really hate fresh mango.  It has a sharp, peppery taste that is 100% unpleasant to me.  Besides, they are a pain to peel and seed.  However, TJ’s frozen diced mangos don’t have that taste, and you don’t have to prep them!  I use them in smoothies.
  • Frozen Veggies – TJ’s has great prices on high-quality frozen veggies, many of them organic.  I especially like the organic peas and corn, edamame, and especially the organic chopped spinach.  Their spinach is the best frozen spinach I have ever found.  When you defrost other brands of spinach you end up having to squeeze out a tremendous amount of water (and nutrition).  I don’t know if it is the type of spinach they use or the fact that it is organic, but TJ’s spinach just doesn’t give off much water when it is defrosted.  You get more usable product, more nutrients, and the benefits of organic produce – win, win, win!
  • Pound Plus Chocolates – These large bars of milk and dark chocolates, both with and without nuts, are great both for baking and well, I’ll admit it, simply chowing down on.
  • President’s Reserve EVOO – this is a well-priced olive oil with a fresh, not too assertive taste.  At prices like this, you can use it for everything – dipping, salad dressings, pastas and sauteeing.
  • Trader Giotto’s Balsamic Vinegar – I’m sure this is not the best stuff out there, but it is quite passable for salad dressings, cooking, and dzujing up a sandwich (I love balsamic vinegar on my Italian sandwiches!).
  • This … Walks into a Bar Fruit Bars – These are tasty little snack bars, kinda like giant Fig Newtons.  Fig is my fave year-round flavor, but in the fall I stock up on Cranberry.
  • Frozen Brown Rice – This seems like the height of lazy here, but sometimes you want dinner on the table quick and we all know brown rice takes at least 40 minutes to cook.  These pouches of cooked brown rice nuke up light and fluffy and ready to eat in minutes, and the rice has a great nutty flavor.
  • Frozen Potato Cakes – Another breakfast fave at our house.  They’re like ginormous flat tater tots.
  • Organic White Corn Tortilla Chips – John is a major nacho hound so we always have a bag of these going.  I got really spoiled on the amazing tortilla chips you get in Mexico – they are so thick, crisp and fresh tasting.  To me most American tortilla chips taste like cardboard and are soooo not worth the calories.  These are my favorite “domestic” chips – nothing like the ones in Mexico, but they have a good corn flavor and they stand up to hearty dips.

Comments are closed.

Create a website or blog at

Up ↑