Trader Joe’s Must Haves: Fall Favorites and Pantry Staples
The opinions reflected in this OpEd are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of staff, faculty and students of The King's College.
Going to Trader Joe’s is an experience. I know I am not alone when I say I typically walk in with three things in mind and then walk out with a full bag of groceries. After my first trip to Trader Joe’s, I immediately jumped on the bandwagon. I’m definitely one of those people who will go ‘just for fun’ sometimes. There are so many great products that it’s hard to make a comprehensive list, but here is a list of some products I’m obsessed with:
Everything But The Bagel Seasoning Blend and Everything But The Bagel Dip: You don't realize the bagel isn’t there — and now it’s in dip form, too!
Cauliflower Gnocchi: Think of your grandmother’s traditional gnocchi, and then imagine that with half the potato, plus cauliflower. It’s both very tasty and tastes homemade. Spruce it up with some sauce and veggies and you are set.
Soft and Juicy Mango: Is it possible to not eat a whole bag in one sitting? Seriously, someone tell me how. Good thing it is so cheap.
Cookie Butter: Basically liquid Teddy Grahams. Best with pretzels, Oreo’s, and by the spoonful.
Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s: Of all the flavors, my heart will always have a special place for the Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s. They remind me a bit of my days as a Girl Scout, selling Thin Mints to my neighbors. Bring it to a dinner party or a movie night, it is the perfect snack to throw into a bowl on the go. Plus, they mean that it is Christmas season!
Sunflower Butter Cups: Dark chocolate and savory sunflower-butter. Stick them in the fridge for a bit and when you take them out, sprinkle them with sea salt. You’ll thank me later.
Gone Bananas!: Chocolate dipped bananas are timeless. If you’re stressed, they make a great go-to snack when you ‘just want something sweet.’
Fudgy Quinoa Loaf: Basically chocolate fudge in cake form. Plus, there’s quinoa. So it’s healthy, right? If you threw some Cookie Butter on this, you definitely wouldn’t regret it.
Broccoli and Kale Pizza Crust: Trader Joe’s really outdid the pizza crust alternatives with this one. Perfect for a homemade pizzas, full of cheese and pineapple (and the vegetables are built in).
Mango Sorbet: Really creamy, really sweet, really mango-y. Pairs well with fresh fruit and is worth eating even in the winter months!
Tomato and Basil Hummus: Perfect with some carrots and celery.
Matcha Green Tea Latte Mix: Perfect for movie nights, spa nights, late-night study sessions, and everything in-between. Tastes great with coconut milk and a little bit of honey (if you’re looking for something sweet).
Creamy Pink Primavera Pasta Sauce: The pink color from the beets makes for a really fun meal! You could totally try this with the Cauliflower Gnocchi!
Mini Dark Chocolate Mint Stars: Such a cute way to eat a not-so-cute amount of sugar. Andes mints more aesthetic twin.
Crunchy Salted Peanut Butter with Flax and Chia Seeds: It has been a while since I have seen this product on the shelves, but I would certainly sign a petition to have it brought back. Super crunchy and a perfect amount of salt!
Cheddar Cheese with Caramelized Onion: A blend of savory cheddar threaded with sweet onions. Goes really well on kale and apple salads.
Trader Joe’s currently has all of their fall products out right now and I am extremely excited for anything pumpkin (except for pie, oddly enough). Here are some items I have been loving this October:
Pumpkin Butter: Fall in a jar. A very versatile spread that is good on carbs in almost any form.
Pumpkin Spice Bagels: Pairs well with pumpkin cream cheese (if you really want to be that person, but no shame because I am that person too.)
Apple Cider Jam: Also fall in a jar, but the apple version. Tastes just like you went to an orchard upstate, picked all the freshest apples and made the jam yourself. The chunky jam with spices taste well with cheese and crackers.
Pumpkin Spice Coffee: The perfect balance of orange peel, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and vanilla bean, making your morning that much more enjoyable!
Pumpkin Pancake and Waffle Mix: Perfect for October brunches. You could add Pumpkin Butter to your finished product!
Autumn Harvest Soup: Super simple tomato-based soup with pumpkin and squash. This soup reminds me of being a kid and having tomato soup and grilled cheeses after a hard-core jumping session on the trampoline.
Spiced Chai Black Tea Concentrate: Homemade chai tea lattes are so easy to perfect with this mix! Try it with oat milk for a really creamy concoction.
Pumpkin Bread and Muffin Mix: Pumpkin bread, bars, muffins, cake… Endless options for your pumpkin carving parties or Halloween festivities!
Apricot Cherry Cranberry Goat’s Milk Cheese: I am really hoping this is here to stay and it doesn’t drift away with the autumn leaves. This cheese is incredible on avocado toast!
Pumpkin Tortilla Chips and Fall Harvest Salsa: A match made in heaven — chips and salsa on a new level.
There are Trader Joe’s has 11 stores in New York City, several that are nearby to student housing. I don’t really know who Joe is, but he is definitely great at convincing me to trade in my money for his snacks.