trader joe’s favorites – episode 1

Do you frequent Trader Joe’s like I frequent Trader Joe’s? It’s my #1 shopping spot now. This happened largely due to their ready-made meals that we practically lived on for awhile after I had Simona. I was not one of those people who had freezer meals made in advance before she was born, and I was (am?) also not one of those people who found the energy to cook a meal after a day of napping and eating (on Simona’s part). (Why does that take so much energy from mom?) We had the help of friends and family for some meals, but when that died down and I was on my own, Trader Joe’s came to the rescue.

Anyway, I digress.

Mr. Trader Joe is so solid for a ton of things – he keeps it fresh and interesting and pretty cheap. There’s always something new to try (which I try to do every trip), but there are quite a number of things I buy on the regular. See below for installment #1 of my favorites and stay tuned for more!

1. Minty Mallows – I don’t know if these are seasonal, but I’ve been buying them for a couple months. They are so tasty and refreshing. I’m sure they would be excellent in a cup of hot chocolate, but I’ve never gotten around to doing that because I eat them all up first.

2 & 3. Greek Style Chicken and Tzatziki Sauce – This chicken dinner (found in the refrigerated section) is really good on it’s own, but the tzatziki really amps up the awesome factor on this dish. We also add some extra crumbled feta and a couple squeezes of lemon juice. Okay so I guess we kind of doctor this one up. Like I said, it will be tasty alone, but it will be really tasty with those extras. Great meal.

4. French Vanilla Ice Cream – A staple. It’s rich and creamy and not airy like some other big brands. A nice substitute for Haagen-Dazs. I’m not saying it’s as good, but it’s pretty darn close and you get more for your money too.

5. Mushroom and Black Truffle Pizza – I am a non-truffle lover (I know I know), and I really enjoy this pizza. So I don’t really know if I need to say anything else about it.

6. Lacey’s Cookies in Milk Chocolate Macadamia¬†- I am also not a big huge fan of macadamia nuts and these are awesome.¬†It’s not like you’re eating whole nuts, they must be crushed in the caramel-y cookie part. And then there’s chocolate sandwiched in-between those wafer-thin cookies. Anyway, it tastes like toffee and chocolate and heaven.

7. Sparkling Raspberry Lime Spring Water – This is a great way to make drinking water a little extra special, and a nice halfway between water and soda. It has no sugar or calories and the flavor is really good. All the variations of this water (lime, lemon, etc) are good, but I think the raspberry lime is my most favorite. As you can see by the half-drunk bottle up there.

 

What are your favorites? What can’t I miss?