What’s New and Good at Trader Joe’s ~ honest feedback on the latest and greatest products from everybody’s favorite grocery store!
Trader Joe’s s is such a fun place to shop because they’re always innovating, and you never know what you’re going to run into on any given shopping trip. That thrill of the hunt unites foodies across America who count on TJs to liven up their weekly menus. I’ve chosen a few of my favorite new products to chat about today. A lot of their current newbies seem to be on the sweet side, don’t know what’s up with that. Maybe they go in cycles, but I can’t complain, the taste testing was fun :)
Oat & Greek Yogurt Sandwich Cookies
I rarely buy cookies unless I need them to make a crumb crust, or I’m desperate for a last minute dessert for company. I usually prefer to make homemade, but oh man are these good. The cookies have a unique soft/crisp/crumbly/melt-in-your-mouth texture, with a sweet oaty coconut flavor. And the filling has a pleasing tang that makes them unlike anything I’ve had before. I’m going to experiment with the idea for a recipe of my own, starting with a great oatmeal cookie.
The verdict: if you’re in the market for cookies, these are a must buy. They were so good I had to stash them at the back of the freezer in hopes I’d forget about them :)
I was excited to see this sauce because I adore jalapeños, and I’ve never seen a sauce like this. It’s what I appreciate about TJs, they come up with unique products you can’t find anywhere else. This is something I might have posted on my blog, if I’d thought of it ;)
The verdict: yum! It’s delicious, fairly spicy, and perfect as a dip for veggies, fries, baked zucchini sticks, etc. I think you could use it in salad dressings for green salads but also in potato, egg, and pasta salads. The flavor is fresh and pleasing, I’m a fan.
Cedarwood and Sage Multi-Purpose Cleaner
If you do as much cleaning in the kitchen as I do you’ll appreciate why I’m sharing this…I love to find biodegradable cleaners that don’t cost an arm and a leg and actually smell good.
The verdict: this one is a great substitute for a Windex type cleaner for kitchen surfaces, stainless steel, and glass. I was especially impressed that it leaves NO streaks, a pet peeve of mine with other natural type cleaners. It’s not for heavy duty grease.
Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups
It’s a no brainer when it comes to reviewing these, TJs dark chocolate peanut butter cups are possibly the best thing they’ve ever made, and I included them in my 12 Things I Never Leave Trader Joe’s Without post. I would say the almond butter cups are even better. If you have good willpower and can stop at one or two, these make the ultimate healthy-ish treat.
The verdict: I can’t recommend that you go out and buy candy, I wouldn’t feel right about that, but if you’re going to buy candy anyway, buy these!!!
Ghost Pepper Chile BBQ Sauce
One of the things I appreciate about Trader Joe’s is that they offer outlier products, products that they know won’t appeal to everyone, like this ghost pepper sauce. I bet most Americans don’t even know what a ghost pepper* is, but for those who do, this is an exciting sauce they won’t find in their regular grocery store.
*The ghost pepper from India is the 7th hottest pepper in the world.
The verdict: of course this is ghost pepper for dummies, but that’s how we want it! It’s got the sweet molasses flavor of your favorite grilling sauce, with a lingering burn on par with Tabasco or Sriracha. Nice for the daredevils at your next backyard bbq.
Dehydrated Beets and Broccoli Florets
These may not be technically new, I’m not sure when they debuted, but they’re new to me. I have to say I bought them on a whim, not expecting to like them, but I do! A lot. They satisfy my late afternoon urge for crunch and they have the most amazing true veggie flavor.
The Verdict: they have a definite astronaut food vibe, but I like them!
Organic Dark Chocolate PB &J Minis
This is another one I wasn’t sure about, but ended up loving. I’m a dark chocolate girl all the way, so I loved biting through that thick, glossy coating of pure organic chocolate. After a chew or two, I had a legit flashback to eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich as a kid. These are clever, well made with good ingredients, and would be a fun surprise in a lunchbox, or scattered on the table with after dinner coffee.
The Verdict: these are quality chocolates, and unexpectedly delicious.
Banana Date Nut Bread Crisps
One of the things Trader Joe’s is good at is coming up with foods that you’re not quite sure how to classify. These look like those Rainforest Crisps everybody loves to add to cheese boards, but they’re sweeter, and definitely reminiscent of banana bread.
The Verdict: pretty perfect with cream cheese as a snack but not so sure how they’d work as part of a cheese plate.
Spicy Avocado Hummus
The latest member of the growing TJs line of dips, guacs, and hummuses (hummi?) It’s been panned in a few reviews, so I had low expectations, but it delivered what it promises: an avocado infused hummus with a kick.
The Verdict: I’d call it more of a hummus dip than a classic hummus, the texture is definitely looser, but the flavor is there.
Milk (or Dark) Chocolate Covered Mini Pretzels
I know what you’re thinking ~ “these aren’t new, I’ve been loving them for years!” ~ but they are new, in a way. They’ve been rehabbed, and improved. What blows me away is that the first ingredient listed on my bag is milk chocolate. The second (and last) is mini pretzels. Love that.
The Verdict: yep, they’re the same chocolate coated mini pretzels you know and love, they just went to Vegas and got a little nip and tuck.