The Trader Joe's Product Discussion Thread (S/D)

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do you have to microwave that?

He grew in Pussyville. Population: him. (call all destroyer), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 03:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

s: that white cheddar w/ the carmalized onions in it (<---- my favorite shit ever)

The Reverend, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 03:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

s: mango mochi

The Reverend, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 03:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

classic:
vege medley w/balsamic butter dressing
vege medley w/potato wedges
^both great tossed with spag and oil
vegan choc chip cookies
almond caramel clusters
chocolate ice cream (some of the best ice cream and it's CHEAP)
hashbrowns
frozen vege lasagna

just1n3, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:18 (5 years ago) Permalink

i wish trader joe's was not so crowded so i could go more often and buy cheap delicious things.

yur twit (tehresa), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

their fresh fruit is shit - every time we get stuff from there it goes rotten in a couple of days

just1n3, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

no one's mentioned the dark chocolate ginger pieces...they're...delightful

dbro, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

oh i had a party and put out the dark chocolate covered almonds rolled in dark cocoa and ppl were like omg nommmmm

yur twit (tehresa), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

lacey cookies A++++++ not sure if they're TJ brand though

just1n3, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yeah, produce is generally hit or miss. I like buying their big bags o' mixed chard or "southern greens." I love cooking greens and cleaning/cutting them is such a pain, especially in my tiny-ass kitchen.

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

As far as crowds -- best time to go is 10AM or earlier on a weekend (well, excluding going on a weekday during work hours, which you probably can't do). Another good time -- dinner hours, Friday evening.

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 04:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

their fresh fruit is shit - every time we get stuff from there it goes rotten in a couple of days

the way they treat their apples makes me want to cry. you can paw through a whole shelf of apples and find none that aren't bruised

i always feel sorry for the people who are holding the signs that shepherd the line. at first i thought it was a pretty good lazy job, then i realised that it's queueing, ALL DAY LONG, never getting anywhere. when you're at the bank and there's a massive line, you always rely on that schadenfreude of other people piling up behind you and having to wait longer. but if you're the trader joe linesman ... always at the end of the line.

they also call it 'twelve items or fewer' which is nice

deveraux billings (schlump), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

I always find the cashiers super nice -- do they pay unusually well or something?

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

their bagged greens do seem to last really well - we get the baby spinach a lot, it's a big bag and stays fresh for close to two weeks.

just1n3, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:04 (5 years ago) Permalink

dinner hours?? no way. that is also known as 'after work' when everyone in the world goes!

yur twit (tehresa), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:04 (5 years ago) Permalink

omfg

can u do me a kindness (jergins), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

dinner hours?? no way. that is also known as 'after work' when everyone in the world goes!

But Friday night it seems to work, like maybe 7:30 or later.

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

good:

bread
peanut butter (also almond butter)
three cheese frozen pizza
sole filets
sharp cheddar (cheap!)
chocolate-covered edamame
tomato soup (okay, not as good as Amy's)

always disappointing:

anything salsa-related
produce

i stay away from the frozen dinners and pre-marinated crap too, and the overpriced meats.

Tracy Michael Jordan Catalano (Jordan), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

they have nicely prized frozen meats.
i prefer whole foods' frozen fishes.

yur twit (tehresa), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

cheeapest clif bars off the net!

can u do me a kindness (jergins), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

"good:

bread"

But not good, the plain-old "Whole Wheat Bread" (the one with very small slices) -- cardboardy. Same with the bread that comes in imitation Alvarado Street Bakery packaging.

It's funny how TJ will have like five different brands of the same product that are all TJ's and all knockoffs of other brands, and then they compete against each other.

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

classic x100:
free samples of coffee

iatee, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

i always feel sorry for the people who are holding the signs that shepherd the line. at first i thought it was a pretty good lazy job, then i realised that it's queueing, ALL DAY LONG, never getting anywhere. when you're at the bank and there's a massive line, you always rely on that schadenfreude of other people piling up behind you and having to wait longer. but if you're the trader joe linesman ... always at the end of the line.

Suggest Ban Permalink
― deveraux billings (schlump), Tuesday, March 10, 2009 10:02 PM Bookmark

I have never seen this

The Reverend, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

I like the "New Zealand Grass Fed Organic Cheddar" -- very cheap! (not as yummy as Cabot, but, you know, in this economy...)

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

i have never bought any of the cheese/fresh meats because the line wraps around the store and makes it impossible to get to anything in that case

yur twit (tehresa), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

I have never seen this

do you live in somewhere with a breezy, unencumbered open plan trader joe's? like one in arizona where they test out new products?

i think there is a bit on the website dedicated to regional variations, if anyone is keen for more idiosyncratic tj innovation

deveraux billings (schlump), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:31 (5 years ago) Permalink

I like the "New Zealand Grass Fed Organic Cheddar" -- very cheap!

That stuff's good -- it's a little earthy-tasting, though. I usually just get the Wisconsin sharp white cheddar.

You know what's pretty good, and new I think (at least in my neck of the woods)? The edamame hummus.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

My favorite of their hummuses is the Mediterranean Hummus

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

should be its own thread/poll, but i have come to the conclusion that all other houmouses are bullshit. i have been burned too many times. original is BEST, though red pepper is sometimes acceptable.

deveraux billings (schlump), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

Do you specifically mean Trader Joe's original or are you just against flavored hummuses in general?

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 05:59 (5 years ago) Permalink

The cioppino is the absolute most refined, delicious, and clutch frozen dinner I have ever had. Throw it on some spaghetti and you have an even bigger meal.

― throwbookatface (skygreenleopard)

One of my all-time faves too. I put it on rice at first but it's even better on pasta. And you can cook the seafood/sauce in a pan - no microwave necessary.

Also the Chicken Gorgonzola in the frozen section is classic. Make a sandwich with their cibatta.

nickn, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 06:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

A lot of their frozen stuff works in the toaster oven if you can wait around for a little while.

Bonobos in Paneradise (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 06:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

their veggie meatballs are awesome. also, their wheat tortillas are shit for everything EXCEPT making enchiladas, we discovered today, in which case they are the best tortillas you can possibly buy.

akm, Wednesday, 11 March 2009 06:35 (5 years ago) Permalink

Do the frozen stuff (entrees & such) on the stovetop with a little oil, maybe a little water--set it on medium-low and stir.

WARS OF ARMAGEDDON (Karaoke Version) (Sparkle Motion), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 06:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

best:
chocolate covered pretzels
chocolate mint hot chocolate
chocolate covered fruit
lacey cookies
brie - good price compared to Whole Foods
some of the frozen appetizers - mushroom turnovers I remember being pretty yummy, though I haven't had them in awhile
greek style yogurt
decent prices on fancy brand hard liquor
big jugs of juice
spiced apple cider

what happened? I'm confused. (sarahel), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 07:36 (5 years ago) Permalink

they have nicely prized frozen meats.
i prefer whole foods' frozen fishes.

agreed - Whole Foods has frozen soft-shell crab. They spent almost a year building a Whole Foods down my block, and I resented it a lot. Then I saw the frozen soft-shell crab. Best sandwich I've ever had was a soft-shell crab prepared burger like. Sorry to derail TJ thread with WF talk.

what happened? I'm confused. (sarahel), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 07:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

I fuck w/ the mushroom turnovers

as per diddy's twitter (The Reverend), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 07:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

i don't really buy stuff from the freezer aisle much, but the frozen naan is classic! dud: i bought some frozen egg rolls recently and they came out kinda mushy and greasy. but classic: frozen puff pastry. and their pizzas aren't half bad, esp. the roasted vegetable one.

i'm stoked that they have the winter loaf fruit and nut bread right now! it's super-delicious, esp. the bits of candied orange peel.

one of my other favorite things is the nitrate-free pastrami, which has a very beefy/briny flavor.

if i buy pre-sliced sandwich bread at all, i buy the milton's whole grain bread or the new repackaged TJ's version of it (it's cheaper).

the cheese selection is somewhat meh, but i'm all about that cotswold cheddar. and i've been keeping little hunks of their grana padano around to grate on pasta, etc.

they used to have these triple-shot cans of iced espresso at a very good price. i'm deeply dismayed that they've stopped carrying them.

NYSE:JAH (get bent), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 07:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

so many things i've had from TJs were good or great the first time, horrible the second. the veggie chorizo, for instance. i hardly buy anything but staples there these days, the occasional lazy can of veggie chili... my wife loves their frozen pizzas. i find them pretty disgusting. they got rid of a lot of my favorite stuff in the past year or so.

quinoa bread - yum. not good for toast, though, just making sandwiches. everything bagels are okay. i'm really straining to think of anything exciting... um, chili-lime pistachios.

the balsamic veggie medley - blarrgh. canned soups - blarrgh.

WEREWOLF CONGRESS (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 08:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

when has something called a "veggie medley" EVER been good?

NYSE:JAH (get bent), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 08:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

they had this half-round of sourdough bread, might've been whole wheat sourdough that was awesome.

what happened? I'm confused. (sarahel), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 08:31 (5 years ago) Permalink

when has something called a "veggie medley" EVER been good?

maybe if it was fried veggie medley, it'd be good. However, most things called "veggie medley" tend not to be fried.

what happened? I'm confused. (sarahel), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 08:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

veggie medleys/mixed vegetable mixes are never good, this is true

pretty good -
moroccan salted olives
greek yogurt
baby beets
ginger cookies, the small ones that come in a round plastic container
some of the frozen enchiladas (chicken chile verde)
relatively inexpensive walnuts, almonds, also almond butter

football consultant, oakland raiders (daria-g), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 11:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

yes:
veggie meatballs (addicted to these)
garlic hummus dip
coffee

no:
produce (obviously)
"soy nuggets"

congratulations (n/a), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 11:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

I'm still into soy nuggets, though my girlfriend has gradually lost interest in them.

Other likes, with caveats:

margarita pizza (though it's no substitute for the great goat cheese pizza, which has since been discontinued)

frozen mildly spiced vegetable burritos (though I stopped buying them after I realized how calorie-laden they are)

fresh mild salsa (though it tends to get overly acidic after a couple of days)

I guess I have no complaints about the frozen seafood I've bought there.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 12:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

My gf also just walked into the room and said, "Did you mention BRITISH MUFFINS?" I said no because I don't give a shit about them, but for posterity, I should mention that she eats the cinnamon raisin variety pretty much every day.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 12:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

^different from English muffins?

f f murray abraham (G00blar), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

Not that I can tell.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

Wait, I take that back: I guess they don't have Thomas-style nooks and crannies.

Bianca Jagger (jaymc), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

That's the Welsh influence.

f f murray abraham (G00blar), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

is it Trader Joe's corporate policy for all their stores to rearrange their shelves/products every 6 months or so, or is that just the one I shop at? They've been doing it for years, you can't tell me they haven't found the optimum shelf arrangement yet.

Οὖτις, Tuesday, 30 September 2014 19:39 (2 months ago) Permalink

My guess is that TJ's has an inventory that invites impulse buys of items you didn't intend to get when you came in the door. If they force you to hunt for your usual items, you'll be exposed to more temptation to toss something new into your basket. My local TJ's doesn't rearrange nearly that often, though.

Aimless, Tuesday, 30 September 2014 19:45 (2 months ago) Permalink

yeah that's what I thought too it's just weird, literally no other grocery store I go to does this. And I literally by the same exact two-dozen things every time I go there so it's just irritating that every few months I have to re-learn where everything is.

Οὖτις, Tuesday, 30 September 2014 19:48 (2 months ago) Permalink

by = buy

Οὖτις, Tuesday, 30 September 2014 19:48 (2 months ago) Permalink

every time you walk out of TJ's without a toblerone, you have won

GhostTunes on my Pono (Sufjan Grafton), Tuesday, 30 September 2014 19:59 (2 months ago) Permalink

or have you?

GhostTunes on my Pono (Sufjan Grafton), Tuesday, 30 September 2014 19:59 (2 months ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

the almond/coconut/whitechocolate/dark chocolate balls are amazing

just1n3, Tuesday, 21 October 2014 06:28 (1 month ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

MEDIOCRITY ALERT: the Smashing Smores (small tub of chocolate-covered graham and marshmallow squares) are just fine but not all that flaborful or decadent and certainly not worth almost $5 when you can get the dark chocolate sea salt turbinado almonds instead.

Belami Young (Stevie D(eux)), Wednesday, 5 November 2014 04:38 (1 month ago) Permalink

yeah I like that fox tea

I also really liked the dried mandarin oranges. good chewy texture and concentrated citrus.

los blue jeans, Tuesday, 11 November 2014 06:29 (1 month ago) Permalink

I made the mistake of buying gluten-free candy cane joe-joe's. They are almost inedible.

Modern French Music from Failure to Boulez (askance johnson), Tuesday, 11 November 2014 14:14 (1 month ago) Permalink

Their GF brownie mix is good though! I add some powdered Bourbon vanilla, and then as a topping I melt a few Tb of peanut butter w some butter in the microwave and then pour it over the top and bake per instructions.

Orson Wellies (in orbit), Tuesday, 11 November 2014 14:22 (1 month ago) Permalink

Kept reading that as a few lb of peanut butter and was concerned

los blue jeans, Tuesday, 11 November 2014 16:58 (1 month ago) Permalink

the pumpkin loaf mix is very nice -- notes of cinnamon and brown sugar, not too nutmeggy

Westing (By Musket Anne Sexton) (get bent), Tuesday, 11 November 2014 20:20 (1 month ago) Permalink

i think the entire store has turned into a pumpkin loaf

cross over the mushroom circle (La Lechera), Tuesday, 11 November 2014 20:38 (1 month ago) Permalink

Whoever eats pumpkin loaf and drinks 2 Buck Chuck remains in Joe and Joe in him.

los blue jeans, Tuesday, 11 November 2014 22:14 (1 month ago) Permalink

this shocking TJ fearless flyer text analysis was making the twitter rounds:

Philip Nunez, Tuesday, 11 November 2014 22:45 (1 month ago) Permalink

hahahahahah

sarahell, Tuesday, 11 November 2014 23:29 (1 month ago) Permalink

you don't need flyer discourse analysis to see that it's wall to wall pumpkin in there!

cross over the mushroom circle (La Lechera), Tuesday, 11 November 2014 23:40 (1 month ago) Permalink

Ours has a giant sandwich board outside

63
PUMPKIN
PRODUCTS

Walter MIDI (Crabbits), Wednesday, 12 November 2014 14:00 (1 month ago) Permalink

lmao

✓ out this insane nakh yall (gr8080), Wednesday, 12 November 2014 18:08 (1 month ago) Permalink

(Get the TJ's pumpkin seed oil, which is a fairly new product, anyway, because it is good and because it is nothing to do with New Age American Pumpkimania (which is all about gingerbread spices anyway).)

Three Word Username, Wednesday, 12 November 2014 19:24 (1 month ago) Permalink

io, why don't you come and bake for me one night a week?

j/k, but you need to have more parties (no pressure)

things lose meaning over time (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 12 November 2014 19:48 (1 month ago) Permalink

Tried the Dark Chocolate Peppermint Cremes and the Speculoos Cookie Butter Cups (like peanut butter cups but with cookie butter in them) and now I'm certain I'm going to gain shit tons of weight this month.

Sara R-C, Thursday, 13 November 2014 07:01 (1 month ago) Permalink

anything Speculoos, Speculoos all the time

kate78, Thursday, 13 November 2014 17:21 (1 month ago) Permalink

otm

difficult-difficult lemon-difficult (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 14 November 2014 03:47 (1 month ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

i'm actually surprised by how much i like the lamb kofta meatballs, and i say this as a fan of tj's frozen indian dishes. the masala sauce isn't perfect, but change it to one that is and you could easily see this on a restaurant menu for $10.

Highland-Camrose Bungalow Village (get bent), Thursday, 4 December 2014 03:35 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

ooh good to know

difficult-difficult lemon-difficult (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 4 December 2014 03:39 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

yeah, the sauce could be a little more unctuous and less... clove-y? less sweet? but the meatballs are delicious!

Highland-Camrose Bungalow Village (get bent), Thursday, 4 December 2014 03:40 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

Had apple and Chardonnay chicken sausages and polenta Provençal with spinach and peas for dinner. The sausage was decent but not super exciting but I really liked the polenta with peas as a side.

Free Me's Electric Trumpet (Moodles), Thursday, 4 December 2014 04:30 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

that polenta is the best.

Highland-Camrose Bungalow Village (get bent), Thursday, 4 December 2014 06:56 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

so idk what's up but the candy cane joe-joe's are pretty gross this year...the cookie part gets kinda slimy and there is too much cream (i need a proper cookie:cream ratio) and the cream is toothpastey. i didn't accidentally buy the gluten-free version or anything either. i ended up sampling some mi-del candy cane cremes at whole foods and bought them instead. more expensive but it's seasonal so i can justify it.

musically, Wednesday, 10 December 2014 18:16 (1 week ago) Permalink

I've had a totally didn't experience with the joejoes. But they are still evil.

Jeff, Wednesday, 10 December 2014 18:19 (1 week ago) Permalink

Different experience.

Jeff, Wednesday, 10 December 2014 18:19 (1 week ago) Permalink

It occurred to me after I bought a bunch of boxes at Whole Foods today that Oreo probably makes these too, and they do. That's probably the cheapest option and if anyone knows how to make a sandwich cookie it's them.

Another thing I bought from TJs...the giant danish almond kringle in the pre-made bakery/sweets area. it was amazing.

The mango chips were good too, super crunchy and tart

musically, Wednesday, 10 December 2014 23:04 (1 week ago) Permalink

the giant danish almond kringle is the best thing ever.

Bill Nighy the Science Gighy (get bent), Thursday, 11 December 2014 00:15 (1 week ago) Permalink

my 3-year-old won't eat the candy cane jo-joes

that is basically as harsh a condemnation as you can get

The Complainte of Ray Tabano, Thursday, 11 December 2014 00:26 (1 week ago) Permalink

3 year olds shouldn't be eating candy cane joe-joe's

unless the adults are all totally sick of them

Pooja Bhatt's erotic thriller Jism 2 (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Thursday, 11 December 2014 03:25 (1 week ago) Permalink

funny thing: probably more than a dozen different salsas and not a single one of them is excellent.

fgti jaq, it's chinavision! (Stevie D(eux)), Tuesday, 16 December 2014 03:06 (3 days ago) Permalink

True. I like the spicy refrigerated one next to the hummus though.

$80 is absurd and very ridiculous! (Sufjan Grafton), Tuesday, 16 December 2014 03:10 (3 days ago) Permalink

The medium refrigerated one is good! The salsa especial!

kate78, Tuesday, 16 December 2014 07:02 (3 days ago) Permalink

yeah, that's the one I meant! I guess it's not so spicy, huh. I sometimes mix it up in my head with the even thinner Santa Barbara Salsa Taquera I get from Ralph's every once in awhile. I've no love for chunky salsa.

$80 is absurd and very ridiculous! (Sufjan Grafton), Tuesday, 16 December 2014 07:35 (3 days ago) Permalink

I just want something as good as Green Mountain or Desert Pepper, why is that so hard???

fgti jaq, it's chinavision! (Stevie D(eux)), Tuesday, 16 December 2014 17:15 (3 days ago) Permalink

I enjoyed their triple ginger beer and their Porchetta Pork Roast is very good, easy to make, but a bit expensive. On the not-so-great side, we tried cooking up their frozen salmon and it came out very fishy and dry.

Free Me's Electric Trumpet (Moodles), Tuesday, 16 December 2014 18:57 (3 days ago) Permalink


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