Today I’m sharing all my Trader Joe’s favorites and must buy items. From snacks, ok mostly snacks, to staples (hello coffee) and more read on to see what you need to snatch up on your next trip.
I love Trader Joe’s. Who doesn’t? Sadly, I don’t get there as often as I would like as it’s about a 25 minute drive. I know that isn’t super far but when it comes to groceries I like to shop closer to home. That being said, most of the things I love from Trader Joe’s aren’t everyday staples but more often unique items and sometimes splurges. There are a couple exceptions here that are staples that I try to stock up on during my occasional trips that will either keep in the pantry or freezer.
Hands down, this pretzel stick is what I buy EVERY time I go to Trader Joe’s. And then we eat it on the way home. I think the only way one has made it into the house was when I buy an extra because Noah isn’t with us. We love pretzel bread and it’s always so soft and salty. I’m sure these would make great sandwiches or panini’s but we just love them for snacking and rewarding ourselves for not having a tantrum in the middle of the freezer aisle.
While we’re on the topic of pretzel bread, the pretzel bagels are an absolute must. I forgot to snap a picture of them but they are a new find for us and will be permanently in our cart. I plan on buying an extra package next time and throwing them in the freezer for future use.
These are Trader Joe’s versions of Fig Newtons and they are just as delicious. I don’t buy these every time I go but they are a tasty treat and there’s fruit in them so that makes them healthier. Right? No? Whatever. They are super soft and chewy and the ingredient list is a little better than the other version.
These sweet potato chips are dangerous. I try not to buy them on every trip because I know I will eat them by myself within a day or two. I have no self-control when it comes to chips. I love the ridges and there is just enough salt to keep me coming back for more. I find a lot of sweet potato chips don’t have any salt and that’s just wrong.
Speaking of chips, these tortilla chips are another must buy. Addiction much? They are the best store-bought tortilla chip I have ever had. They are super crunchy and the salt factor is perfect. Plus, they are organic. I’m just looking out for you guys.
I stock up on this double roasted salsa. Just like the tortilla chips, this is my favorite store-bought salsa ever on the planet. It’s smoky and slightly spicy and just perfect with the blue corn tortilla chips. This is something I make sure I never run out of at home.
I love their cheese selection. I always grab a couple different blocks when I go since cheese is a staple at our house and I almost always choose this Wisconsin sharp cheddar. It’s from Wisconsin and they know what’s up when it comes to cheese. Is this an absolute must buy when you shop there? No. But the quality and prices are great so I always pick up something from this section.
Mozzarella is another common cheese I buy there to go with their pizza crust. I usually grab a couple packages of pizza dough and keep them in the freezer for easy pizza nights. Looking through my photos I noticed a lot of the items I love are things I would often make at home.
Life gets busy and sometimes you just don’t have time to make certain foods by hand and I’ve found that Trader Joe’s offers the best alternative product to the homemade version. Or sometimes you just don’t feel like it. I love homemade pizza crust but on movie nights I would rather sit with my kids and watch whatever torture they have chosen for the week instead of mixing, kneading, rising, rolling and baking the crust.
And this crust is really delicious and easy to roll out and bake. We’ve tried all three varieties and we prefer the original one but they are all great products. The herb one makes mind-blowing cheesy bread.
The trail mix and nut aisle is amazing to say the least. There’s a huge selection and variety with everything being super affordable. We love snacking on cashews so that’s a common one we have in our house. I also stock up on other nuts for baking and keep them in the freezer to stay fresh longer.
This smoked turkey lunchmeat is legit. It has a rich, smoky flavor that makes it taste like it’s straight from a BBQ joint. Plus, no nitrates, nitrites or anitbiotics added. Major bonus.
We love the pumpkin pancake mix for quick and easy pancakes on school mornings. They are full of warm spices, sweet pumpkin and they get so fluffy. I don’t have a photo since it wasn’t out for the season yet when I took these photos but it’s definitely something I will be stocking up on soon.
My kids are crazy about mangoes but I don’t get along with them well. Meaning I almost chop off my finger every time I try to cut one. Seriously, I was pretty close to chopping off the tip of my finger last time when I misjudged where the pit was and the mango rolled. It wasn’t pretty.
So I buy the pre-sliced mango in the produce section at Trader Joe’s. I never buy pre-cut fruits or vegetables but I make an exception here. Make sure you check the expiration date before buying them since the shelf life of pre-cut fruit isn’t very long. Nothing too special here but my kids love it as a snack and I get to keep all my digits.
Rosé. Enough said? I’ve only recently started to enjoy wine so maybe I’m not the best judge but I love this Rosé and it’s really affordable. Remember what I just said about the dangers of slicing mangoes? Do you spy the bandaid evidence? I told you.
Trader Joe’s has a really great selection of frozen foods. But this is a food blog you say? But yes, I am advocating the freezer section. My kids love the turkey corn dogs and they have some really tasty appetizers too.
I buy frozen fruit and veggies there often to stock up. But my favorite freezer item is the Mandarin Orange Chicken. This is another one of those, yes I could make it at home and I do but sometimes I don’t have time and I want some dang Chinese food.
Or the kids drove me crazy all day and didn’t provide a second between breaking up fights to cook dinner so they ate PB&J’s for dinner and went to bed then Joel made this chicken. I keep it in the freezer for that reason. Plus it’s really really good. It gets super crispy when baked in the oven and the sauce is sticky, sweet and orangey without punching you in the face with citrus.
These turkey burger patties are another frozen favorite. When I make homemade turkey burgers they get dry and weird. These stay juicy and you can spice them up however you want. They are easy, convenient and yummy.
Yet another thing I can make at home and do the majority of the time is cold brew coffee. I received this little gem for my birthday making the process easier but if you don’t have one and don’t want to deal with the cheesecloth straining, 24 hour process of making it yourself this is the best alternative. It’s super affordable compared to other brands I’ve seen and it gets the job done. Super strong and delicious.
Don’t get me started on the candy. I may have tried many of the options but these chocolate coconut almonds are my absolute favorite. I love Almond Joys and these are so much better. The quality of chocolate is better and the ratio of almond to coconut to chocolate is spot on.
Peanut butter filled pretzels are just a no-brainer. If a sweet and salty craving strikes a small handful hits the spot. They are a great little treat in lunch boxes or while catching up on the DVR.
These teeny tiny potatoes make a quick and easy side dish to dinner. They are also great in potato salad or mini smashed potatoes since they cook up fast.
Chocolate chips are another item I never leave Trader Joe’s without. They are always stocked in my pantry. I’m definitely a semi-sweet kind of girl so these are my go to. I wish they made mini chocolate chips too since we dig them in cookies and they are just fun. Should we start a petition?
Last, but certainly not least, the beloved fruit wraps. My kids are addicts. They want them with breakfast, lunch, dinner and for snacks. I’m not complaining though since they are organic and actually healthy. I’ve made homemade fruit leathers and it’s just not the same. I still make them homemade from time to time but we prefer TJ’s version better. They are sold individually, in 4 different flavors and I stock up on all of them.
I usually buy about 30 each time I go (no joke) and I’m lucky if they last a week and a half. They are a tasty, easy, healthy snack that I feel good feeding my kids. They get a little pricy at 50 cents a pop but I’d rather spend that money there than on a bunch of empty calorie snacks with nasty ingredients.
Aaaaand, I’m done. All my Trader Joe’s favorites are now at your fingertips. I hope that you found some new things to try. Now tell me, what are your must buy items at TJ’s?
I was not compensated in any way for this post. These are just products I love and buy on a semi-regular basis that I thought you should know about.