I’m going to preface this by saying … I LOVE TRADER JOE’S.
Yes, that needed to be shouted. I love their branding. I love their prices. I love their feel-good ambiance. And can we talk about the Trader Giotto’s/Trader Jose/Trader Ming epicness? One of my favorite things to do on a Sunday is get there right when the doors open at 8:00 a.m., load up on the free coffee and samples, and discover new and different culinary delights while I blissfully stroll the still-empty aisles.
I don’t always get my produce at TJ’s, but I buy tons of staples there – nuts, medjool dates, almond butter (have you tried the raw kinds? So good dude), coconut oil, RX Bars, chia seeds, sprouted grain bread … the list goes on. This list, however, is a round-up of 20 of my favorite finds that you can’t find everywhere else.
1. Sweet Potato Ribbons: A delish alternative to pasta. Sautee with oil, salt and pepper, then toss with sauce.
2. Broccoli & Cabbage Slaw: A great way to reinvent the boring spinach or lettuce salad. Great in a cranberry and apple situation.
3. Steamed Lentils: Lentils are an awesome source of vegan protein, and these are ready to eat warm or cold.
4. Green Goddess Salad Dressing: Made with avocado, green onion, lemon juice, chives, basil and garlic. Need I say more?
5. Sriracha Flavored Baked Tofu: I love this stuff! Super firm, full of flavor and ready to eat. Chop it up and toss on a salad or grain bowl.
6. White Bean & Basil Hummus: I’m a sucker for flavored hummus (jalapeno and cilantro! Roasted red pepper and garlic! Artichoke!), and this kind is unique and a crowd-pleaser.
7. Spinach and Kale Greek Yogurt Dip: I feel like this was really “in” when it came out a few years ago, but it’s worth the hype. Try with baby carrots or as an alternative to sour cream.
8. Almond mozzarella style shreds: If you’re looking to cut down on dairy, try swapping in this almond “cheese” on top of pasta or pizza (pair with the cauliflower pizza crust).
9. Roasted butternut squash, red quinoa and wheatberry salad: My favorite of the grab-and-go salads. Hearty, healthy and only $3.99.
10. Colorful Carrot Coins: The perfect easy-to-heat side dish to add to your dinner. Warming and full of flavor.
11. Zucchini Spirals: Spiralizing your own veggies is kind of a production (what? It is!). These taste just as good as fresh, and are amazing paired with a little olive oil, pesto, garlic and nutritional yeast. They also have carrot spirals if you want to mix it up.
12. Cauliflower Pizza Crust: I always have at least one of these chilling in my freezer for easy weeknight dinners. Made with just 7 real ingredients and ready in 10 minutes.
13. Salmon Burgers: Another good one to have on standby. Full of healthy fats and omega 3s, plus their fish is wild caught and sustainably harvested.
14. Gone Bananas! Chocolate Covered Banana Slices: A delicious sweet treat that isn’t that bad for you.
15. Gluten-free Ancient Grain & Super Seed Oatmeal: If you’re an oatmeal fan, definitely consider swapping out your average oats for these fiber- and antioxidant-packed ones.
16. 10 Minute Farro: Basically fool-proof and creates fluffy, perfect farro in no time, every time.
17. Organic Brown Rice & Quinoa Fusilli Pasta: Sometimes “healthy” pasta can be soggy, weird-textured or flavorless. This stuff tastes great and holds the weight of sauces and add-ons.
18. Everything But the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend: This has been trending for a reason – it’s addictive on eggs, chicken, popcorn, roasted veggies, vegan mac and cheese …
19. New Zealand sweet apple rings: Satisfies my sweet tooth and excellent dipped in almond butter
20. 3 seed sweet potato crackers: I just discovered these and LOVE LOVE LOVE. And all that’s in ’em are: yellow corn, sunflower oil, sweet potato, flaxseeds, sesame seeds, chia seeds and sea salt. Boom.
BUT far and away my favorite thing that comes out of TJ’s is … the FEARLESS FLYER. You know, their quarterly newsletter highlighting new and featured products. It is honestly amazing and the most entertaining read ever. My favorite issues are: October (pumpkin everything), November (gingerbread everything), and December (peppermint everything). Get into it. You’ll thank me later.
Want more? Peep some new healthy TJ goodness here.