Thursday, January 16, 2014

My Trader Joe's Grocery Review

We just recently got a Trader Joe's in the big city next to the suburb I live it. It is a big deal that they came to Texas and everyone has been talking about it for months. My friend and I took a little field trip there a few weeks ago. We both did our research looking online at the top selling products and things we HAD to purchase. We each spent just under $100 and came home with new things to try with our families. 

A couple of general comments- the store is small, but I think we are used to everything being large in Texas. It was a nice size though because I found everything I really needed there. I was amazed that everything I looked at was filled with things I could pronounce. I get headaches from corn syrup and loved having so many snack options made with real sugar! Plus, so many things were the same price or less than the everyday grocery store. I spent less, bought organic, and skipped lots of chemical junk. 

Let's talk about how it tasted!

Here is my stash we can talk through top left to right and going down....

International Chocolates- these are a gift, but I know she will love trying all the different ways chocolate is made, flavored and sweetened around the world.

Sprouted Wheat Bagels- sprouted wheat is less processed wheat, so that is a good thing.

Marinana Sauce- this was good and without corn syrup! Why does tomato sauce need corn syrup!

Sweet Chili Sauce- I love this on my cilantro chicken and it was less expensive than HEB, so I bought it. Tastes the same!

Charles Shaw wine- this wine is only $2.99/bottle. It is known as Two Buck Chuck. My husband drank it and liked it. Great to have on hand. We bought three bottles for the price on one that he normally drinks.

Let's talk about Midnight Moo- I was most excited about this. My daughter loves chocolate milk and I hate what is in chocolate syrup. This one is totally natural and she loved it. It is thick and takes a little work to break up in the milk, but worth it.

Cookie Butter- looks like peanut butter, but it is made with ground up gingerbread cookies, cinnamon, and coconut oil. AH-MAZING! No wonder this stuff has it's own Facebook page. Tastes great on waffles, bagels, animal crackers, and even ice cream!

Candy Cane green tea- this smelled wonderful and tasted great. It is strong and great for the holidays. 

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Jo Jos- these are dark chocolate covered peppermint Oreos. Enough said. We ate them just fine. :)

Chicken Tamales (under the Jo Jos)- we loved these! They were great for a quick and good dinner on Christmas eve after church. We will buy them again!

Honeycrisp Apples- these are like the cadillac of apples- super sweet and always expensive. I bought an organic bag for the price of one large apple at the grocery store. 

Strawberries- I first bought strawberries organic last summer and the difference is very noticeable. The color, the taste, you'll be able to tell!

Garlic Herb Chicken Sausage- this was so tasty and not greasy at all. Perfect protein for a busy night.

Bagged Kale- it is washed and torn and ready for this salad! Plus it was only $1.99 as opposed to $3.99 in the grocery store.

Cheese Tortellini- we ate on this bag for days! My daughter and niece liked them and they reheated well the next few days. I just tossed in a little olive oil and Italian seasoning.

Spinach Sour Cream Dip- this was all natural and tasted just like the over processed dips I would normally buy. It tasted great with carrots. My only complaint- it is best by the day after the day I bought it. I should have looked!

Edamame Hummus- Marcus didn't think this had much flavor. He tasted the bean part of the hummus more than the edamame part. They had tons of flavor options, so I'll try a different one next time.

Dark Chocolate Almonds- oh my heavens- these were awesome! Covered in dark chocolate and then sea salt and turbinado sugar. Really tasty!

Mac and Cheese- this really did taste like homemade. It was an easy side that I will buy again!

Let's talk about the taco seasoning mix. I've made my own and while it is easy, I don't always have enough on hand to make a big container for future uses, but I hate seeing all the sodium and junk in taco seasoning. Check this one out- all the things I would have put in there myself. Hooray for that! Plus, it was only 79 cents. Love that!

Mandarin Orange Chicken- this might be my favorite purchase- easy to make, tastes great over rice, and my daughter ate seconds!

Ground Beef- we used this in a casserole and it was no different from the grocery brand we buy. It just cost a little less and was in a flat container which stacked so easily in the freezer.

I love having Trader Joes nearby and am certain I will visit at least once a month to stock up on my favorites!