9 Cult-Favorite Foods You Can Only Find at Trader Joe’s
There’s a reason Trader Joe’s is everyone’s go-to grocer.
Often considered the multipurpose mecca for healthy and affordable food, Trader Joe’s has a cult following around the country. According to the most recent available data, there are currently 488 stores in 41 states and the District of Columbia—with new locations launching every year. What’s surprising to most loyal fans is just how long TJ’s has been around: since 1967 in Pasadena, California. Inspired by the tiki fad of the 1950s and 60s, the founder (you guessed it, Joe) wanted to offer fresh meats from locals and other lunch goods. Later, the German Aldi family bought the chain and made it into the wonderworld it is today. In fact, it’s estimated that Trader Joe’s makes $1,750 in sales per square foot, a figure that’s more than double Whole Foods.
It’s not just the budget-mindful aspect of TJ’s that quickly makes it everyone’s go-to grocer. It’s the store’s creative—and delicious!—collection of products they make and package themselves. In fact, there are hundreds of amazing foods you can only find at Trader Joe’s. Here are nine exclusive products that make it worth the trip.
Problem: you’ve had one of those no good, very bad Mondays…and you still have to cook dinner. Fix: this amazing taco kit from Trader Joe’s. It comes with everything you need—tortillas, marinated beef sirloin, guacamole, salsa, shredded cheese, jalapeno—to make a delicious meal for the whole fam in no time. We love the ease of it all, and the healthy components that aren’t always present in other stores.
For the perfect solution to your sweet cravings, these minis pair together two of your favorite things: chocolate and peanut butter and jelly. If your mouth is already watering, stock up on a few packs that will get you through late-night fixes, stress at work, or any moment where sugar is necessary.
Most of the time, this Italian favorite made of potato is served with sauce and cheese atop. With the TJ’s version, you’re getting sauce and cheese stuffed inside. It’s made in the homeland of Italy, utilizing wheat flour and potato that’s basically melt-in-your-mouth goodness.
When you head to your local watering hole with pals and order appetizers for the table, are you always Team Buffalo Wings? For those who can’t get enough of this flavor, this hummus is a healthier option. Rich in flavor and texture, add some pita chips and you’re ready for an afternoon of munchies.
Even though you love gluten, it doesn’t quite feel the same about you. Recovering from the unrequited romance is tough but this delicious—and bread-free—pizza crust will help you heal. Made of leafy greens and the perfect amount of salt, add your toppings and soon you won’t remember gluten’s name.
Too much red meat in your diet can be bad news for your heart, but not all burger alternatives are delicious. These chili lime chicken burgers from the one and only Trader Joe’s are best served fresh off the grill and topped with fresh avocado, corn, and salsa. Yum—and yum!
You’re not a big fan of ice cream but sometimes after a hot, sweaty commute back from the office or an intense cardio workout, you need a sweet treat to cool down and recover. Enter these low-in-calories chocolate-covered banana slices. With just two ingredients, it’s a healthy-ish alternative to creamy frozen treats. Just make sure you don’t eat the whole box in one setting.
Imagine, if you will, your favorite meal of all time. Maybe it was at a Michelin-starred restaurant you splurged on with your partner, or your grandmother’s kitchen table that’s been around for 100 years. More often than not, there was one star of the dish that made it all possible: butter. Used in nearly every cuisine and culture, you can experiment with your own culinary skills with this decadent—and inexpensive—truffle honey butter. Your family is already thanking you.
Cinnamon, caramel, and plenty of mouthwatering flavor, these crunchy snacks will send you straight back to your vacay in Mexico. Or at least, the last time you splurged on dessert at your go-to Mexican joint in town. Whatever the case, consider yourself warned: these are addictive, so eat with caution.