Hey! Happy Monday to ya! I just finished writing in my Five-Minute Journal and am sipping my collagen half-caff coffee. Today we’re talking about all things Trader Joe’s. If you haven’t done your grocery shopping for the week, stick around, as I am sharing some of my favorite finds from this health food mecca.
I’ve been shopping at Trader Joe’s regularly since my first year of college (ummm… that would make it about 10 years!). I’m picturing a time-lapse of my red shopping carts from 2007 until now, and just how many groceries that would be(!), and also how my Trader Joe’s staples look quite a bit different than they did then.
I was kind of shocked when I moved to Florida and realized that there is only one Trader Joe’s in the entire Tampa Bay area — one! For the past eight years, I lived a convenient 10-minute drive from TJ’s – I frequented it at least weekly, usually more, for weekly grocery hauls and last-minute items. Since the closest TJ’s is a solid 30-45 minute commute from my house, I shop there about every other week to stock up on the goods. And I learned quickly that early weekday trips are key, as they literally have someone controlling traffic on the weekends (I am not used to this congested city life!).
Why do I like shopping at Trader Joe’s?
It’s affordable. Organic items are abundant (produce aside). The staff is friendly, and they keep up with nutrition trends (i.e. cauliflower crusts and maca powder and kale pesto) that don’t break the bank. And while many of the ingredient lists on TJ’s items are way too long for my liking, you can find short ingredient lists — you just have to look for them. Read yo’ labels!
The following is by no means an exhaustive list of everything I buy at Trader Joe’s (my staples change with the seasons), but rather items I buy fairly consistently and are true and tried, affordable favorites that this foodie is fond of.
Lemons & Limes
Onions, Garlic & Fresh Ginger
Potatoes & Sweet Potatoes
Winter Squash (seasonal)
I don’t buy the majority of my produce from Trader Joe’s as I don’t find the quality superb, the plastic packaging is unnecessary, and it’s typically not grown in the U.S.
Nuts & Seeds
Sunflower Seed Spread (unsweetened)
Chia & Hemp Seeds
Nuts: almonds, cashews, macadamias, pecans, walnuts
Seeds: raw sunflower and pumpkin seeds
Condiments & Sauces
Vegan Kale, Cashew & Basil Pesto (refrigerated)
Green Goddess Salad Dressing (refrigerated)
Organic Reduced Sugar Preserves (apricot & raspberry are my favorite)
Meat & Dairy
Organic Free-Range Whole Chicken
Organic Free-Range Eggs
Canned Wild Alaskan Salmon
Cheeses: chèvre, feta, parm
Blanched Almond Flour
Organic Coconut Flour
Organic Coconut Sugar
Organic Coconut Oil
Organic Flaked Coconut (unsweetened)
Organic Cacao & Maca Powder
Misc. Pantry Staples
Organic Olive Oil
Organic Coconut Milk
Fire Roasted Peppers
Organic Guatemalan Coffee – a must if you like dark roast coffee!
The Dark Chocolate Lover’s Chocolate Bar (85% cacao)
Organic Belgian Dark Chocolate Bar (72% cacao)
Organic Brown Rice Pasta
Cauliflower Pizza Crust (frozen)
Greeting Cards – only $0.99 each!
What are your TJ’s staples?
What should I add to my red cart?