Trader Joe’s Favorites


Trader Joe’s Favorites I am pretty sure that a Trader Joe’s FINALLY opening in Chattanooga will be one of the best things to happen to all of us in 2021. I would look longingly at friends’ blog posts and recipes using all things Trader Joe’s, or the amazing seasonal items they have and wish for the day all this magic might be available to me. I thought I would crowdsource my local friends as well as Trader Joe’s veterans from other cities to give me their favorite Trader Joe’s items so I would have some direction to my shopping. When I have gone to Trader Joe’s in other cities, I have found myself overwhelmed with choices — everything looks good!

I am thankful for all the suggestions from friends to help make this list:

Produce/Fresh Foods:

  • Freshly chopped stir fry veggies
  • Whole milk yogurts
  • Pre-made salads: with lots of choices on this one, these were a big favorite.
  • Organic arugula
  • Colorful baby carrots
  • Wine Country Chicken Salad
  • Buffalo Style Chicken Dip
  • Pub cheese spread
  • Tortellini
  • Chicken Ginger Miso Soup
  • All the cheeses: many people mentioned how great all the cheeses were, with some favorites being the Cheddar Cheese with Caramelized Onions and the Unexpected Cheddar Cheese.

Frozen Foods:

  • Chocolate croissants and almond croissants: this was another item mentioned by multiple people, and one I would have probably seen in the freezer section and not thought to buy, so I can’t wait to try these!
  • Chicken and Mushroom Pelmeni: great for a quick and easy dinner.
  • Mandarin Orange Chicken: a friend said this was a favorite, and an easy one paired with the freezer rice to make a quick meal.
  • All the frozen Indian food choices
  • Wild Salmon in Yogurt and Mint Sauce with Orzo
  • Roasted Vegetable Multi-Grain Lasagna
  • Argentinian Red Shrimp: these were described as tasting amazing and “like lobster.”
  • Kibbeh: this is a Middle Eastern inspired stuffed meatball and looks delicious.
  • Mini Beef Tacos and Mini Chicken Tacos
  • Asparagus risotto
  • Cauliflower gnocchi
  • Vegetable Birds Nests: these are vegetable snacks that come with a soy-based dipping sauce.
  • Rice: with several options, the frozen rice is easy to cook in the microwave and reviewers say it is delicious and has great texture. The Japanese fried rice seems to be a favorite of many.
  • Chicken Chow Mein
  • Joe’s Diner Mac and Cheese: this one is made with four cheeses and was described by a friend as “decadent.” With some mac and cheese lovers in my house, this one is definitely on my must try list.
  • Hashbrowns
  • Gnocchi alla Gorgonzola: a friend said she adds Italian sausage and a veggie to this to make an easy meal that her kids love.
  • Small ice cream cones and other mini dessert items: great for portion controlled desserts/treats for kids and adults!
  • Mochi: if you haven’t had mochi, it is definitely worth a try and something I’m excited to try at Trader Joe’s.
  • French macarons

Pantry Items:

  • Everything But the Bagel Seasoning: this one was mentioned by many people and seems to be a big favorite to use on all the things!
  • Precooked lentils
  • Unsalted Dry Roasted Slivered Almonds
  • Roasted and Salted Marcona Almonds with Rosemary
  • Orange Flavored Dried Cranberries
  • Olive oil: TJ’s olive oils are high quality and rank high on taste tests, and the price is great.
  • Canola Oil Spray and Olive Oil Spray
  • Cornbread Mix
  • Organic Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup
  • Vegetable Soup
  • Multigrain Pita Bite Crackers
  • Classic Original Water Crackers
  • Organic Elote Corn Chip Dippers
  • Chips in Pickle Dill Pickle Chips
  • Pumpkin Pancake and Waffle Mix (seasonal)
  • Fruit and Vegetable Wash

Snack items:

  • Canned dolmas
  • Speculoos Cookie Butter: this is another fan favorite for sure! I have had it and it is really delicious and great for dipping cookies or apple slices. The kids love it.
  • Fruit strips
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups: I am a Reese’s Peanut Butter cups fan, so I was eager to try these. I was very impressed. The chocolate was way less waxy tasting than Reese’s and creamy and delicious.
  • Anything charcuterie: many people mentioned their cheese section, and you can make a mean charcuterie tray with their selection of nuts, snacks, and meats and cheeses.
  • Freeze dried mangoes
  • Almond Butter Filled Pretzel Nuggets
  • Joe-Joe’s Sandwich Cookies: friends mentioned the peppermint and white chocolate covered ones available during the holidays as well as the other seasonal options like the pumpkin flavored ones at Halloween.
  • Danish Kringles: this one is another seasonal item available during the Christmas season that I have had before and it is delicious!
  • Dark Chocolate Mint Creams
  • Cinnamon Schoolbook Cookies: this one is yummy AND what better way to practice spelling words than with alphabet cookies?
  • Triple Ginger Snaps
  • Dark Chocolate Covered Powerberries
  • Happy Trekking Trail Mix: this one has chocolate, almonds, and cranberries.  All the trail mix choices look delicious.
  • Dark Chocolate Covered Marshmallows
  • Sublime Ice Cream Sandwiches: ice cream sandwiched between two chocolate chip cookies, with mini chocolate chips along the ice cream edges…what could be better?
  • Pumpkin Spice Pretzel Slims (seasonal): I just tried these this weekend, and they are very yummy!


  • Moroccan Mint Tea
  • Yogurt Smoothies
  • Winter Wake Up Call Tea (seasonal)
  • Seasonal Single Serve Coffee Cups
  • Honey Crisp Apple Cider


  • Trader Joe’s shaving cream
  • Coconut Body Oil: this one got rave reviews because of its quality and the large container it comes in with a flip top lid.
  • Candles: Trader Joe’s has a variety of candles that are popular for their great scents and low cost. They also have popular seasonal candles like Mango Tangerine, Vanilla Pumpkin, Honeycrisp Apple, and Cedar Balsam.
  • Seasonal Body Butter: many people mentioned the body butter and TJ’s features seasonal scents like pumpkin or pomegranate that are very popular.
  • Ultra Moisturizing Hand Cream: a friend said this was the best hand cream ever!
  • Tea Tree Tingle Body Wash
  • Spray Sunscreen SPF 50+: this one was mentioned and liked because it doesn’t leave a sticky residue.
  • Pocket Hand Sanitizer Spray: for $2 and with scents like Lavender and Grapefruit and Lemon, this is a good one to have one hand in the car or your purse.


  • Trader Joe’s has their own wine brand that is super cheap and tastes great, as well as a selection of other wines and bubbly with good prices. Around the holidays they have magnum bottles of champagne that make a great gift or are fun for a holiday or New Year’s eve party!
  • Secco: with a variety of flavors and ringing in at $5.99 the Trader Joe’s Seccos are a fruity and bubbly treat that are great for mimosas or on their own.


  • So many people mentioned the fresh cut flowers that I figured they deserved their own section. The price is great, the flowers are beautiful, and multiple people mentioned how long they lasted!
  • In addition to the fresh cut flowers, they have great seasonal items like pumpkins and gourds as well as potted plants and flowers throughout the year.

This list is extensive, and I can’t wait to start working my way through it. I would like to say a very special thanks to all the friends on Facebook and Instagram that took the time to share their favorites with me. This list is a bit heavy on the snack items and I’m not sad about that! There are also so many freezer meals that sound delicious.

With as busy as we get in the fall with sports and work and school, I love having easy meals on hand so I am excited to try some of the freezer meals. Many chefs and bloggers feature easy recipes using Trader Joe’s ingredients, like this caramelized onion and fig pizza from Caroline Chambers. My mom made this a few weeks ago and it was SO good!

Hopefully this list inspires you like it has me — I am hungry already. Happy shopping!