31 Trader Joe’s Products You Can’t Live Without (updated)

My obsession with Trader Joe’s is REAL. I insta-story my way around the store on a fairly frequent basis and and it’s high time I spill all my secrets here too. So here we go…31 Trader Joe’s Products You Can’t Live Without…

(ps – quick side note – I buy very few pieces of produce from TJ’s because I find that it goes bad rather quickly! So I get produce from the farmers market and other stores. But TJ’s wins hands down for just about everything else…)

ONE MORE SIDE NOTE – if you have favorites that I missed, shout them out in the comments section so I can snag them and try them next time I pop in!

Greek Feta in the Brine. Trust me, this will change your life. You’ll be buying feta in the brine forever and ever – it’s the best.

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Port Salut – it’s the best soft and creamy cheese for your cheese boards!

Dark Chocolate Caramel Bars!! Actually, you probably shouldn’t get these if you don’t want to eat all of them in one sitting. Addictive doesn’t even come close to describing them,

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Mediterranean Hummus. Easily the best hummus TJ’s has to offer. It’s creamy, smooth and topped with some pine nuts and herbs! I like to stir in a teaspoon or so of fresh lemon juice to get it some extra pop!

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Pizza Dough! Because we can’t always be bothered to make it from scratch!

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Naturally we need Pizza Sauce for the pizza dough! Duh!


Quinoa! I buy it in bulk because I go through about 1 bag a week! They also have red quinoa and tri-color quinoa… so feel free to go crazy and buy them all.


I know I said I don’t buy produce at TJ’s but I make an exception for 2 things… one of which is avocados! I buy them when they are rock hard so they can ripen on my counter at home. And if you need to speed up the ripening process, throw them in a brown lunch bag with a banana! The gas from the banana speeds up the avocado ripening process.


Chocolate Chips!! DUH! There are never less than 10 bags at my house at all times. In case we need cookies, or banana bread, or melted chocolate… better to be safe than sorry!


These roasted red peppers are everything! Because you can use a jar and make this red pepper pasta in 10 minutes flat.


Refried Beans. DUH!! Mandatory for nachos!


Some of my favorite crackers ever – perfect for a cheese board!


Easily the best blue corn tortilla chips on the market. The salt ratio is spot on


THIS Dark Chocolate Bar is basically everything you need in life!


The other produce exception I make at TJ’s is their Broccolini! Mostly because I eat about a pound of it daily and I use it up so quickly!


Cauliflower Pizza Crust! It took me a while to get on the cauliflower pizza train but I’m into it!

TJ’s has the best nuts at super reasonable prices! Their coconut cashews are my go-to 3pm snack!


Tomato Sauce. For when you just can’t bother to make a complicated dinner and whip up a chicken bolognese!


Chocolate Covered Grahams. I mean, enough said!


Balsamic Glaze!! Mandatory for a caprese salad!


Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels. Literally my husbands life line.


Quick cooking farro – because with this dinner can be ready in 10 minutes plus a little prep time.


These savory thin mini crackers are THE BEST for dipping in hummus and my homemade tzatziki!


Coconut Milk!!! Because sometimes you gotta make a coconut curry!


Prosciutto – cause we need this for cheese boards!


Fresh Mozzarella. No explanation needed.


THIS is easily one of my favorite vinegars ever. It makes a killer salad dressing!


Don’t tell anyone but sometimes I buy this spinach artichoke dip when I’m too lazy to make it from scratch and claim that it’s homemade. IT’S SO GOOD!   IMG_9411

Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds. Go-to car food. Also are you noticing a theme? Anything covered with dark chocolate is fair game.


and lastly…. Roasted Corn!!! Use it in all of your recipes that call for corn. It’s loaded with flavor from fire roasting and I want it all day, every day!

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  1. I like having a couple of their shelf stable whipping creams in my pantry too Great for when you have a recipe calling for cream and you don’t have any in the fridge.

    1. Just got those for the first time and I wish I had purchased more than one because they are amazing!!!!

    2. I second this – hands down my favorite Trader Joe’s product! Closely followed by the flavored tofu (to cut up and put in salads) and frozen fruit (so much less expensive and perfect for smoothies), healthy fruit rolls for the kids and small Persian cucumbers (otherwise I don’t buy produce there normally either).

  2. Have you had the chocolate covered peanut butter filled pretzels, they are so so so good! My favorite thing there by far!

  3. There sweet potato chips are everything! I serve them with a roasted kale and garlic guacamole. Life changing!

  4. I can’t believe speculoos cookie butter didn’t make this list, it’s so good if you haven’t tried it! I also love the frozen brown rice – a package comes with 3 bags and they take 3 minutes to heat up in the microwave!

  5. I’m a big fan of TJ’s… Your selection has a few I’ve missed and must try..
    One product I’ve discovered is the Organic Corn Chip Dippers… A guilty pleasure I try not to overdo but, as good as the brand name ones I used to eat way too much of.. :O)

  6. I love this list, can’t get enough TJ’s! The unsweetened, dried pineapple is a great snack, the chocolate peanut butter cups are better than Reese’s and you can find a lot of different cheeses at really reasonable prices.

  7. I love love love there sweet chili sauce. We out it on everything… Salmon, po boys, stir fry.. The list goes on. It’s a must!

  8. I love how I enjoy every product you said were a must. I agree. I haven’t made or used or even eaten “Faro” excited to try it. You are awesome for doing this. You rock!!!

  9. Don’t forget the TJ Almond butter, can’t beat the price or selection.

    Also love their fresh and frozen cauliflower we rice

  10. Coconut oil, roasted coconut chips (such a great snack- not too sweet with a little salt) and balsamic vinegar -acento Balsamic di moderna. The homemade flour tortillas are delicious as are the wheat corn tortillas. Greeting cards are adorable (and cheap) too.

  11. I love their TJ’s Fat Free Balsamic Vinaigrette and Fat Free Sesame-Ginger Vinaigrette, plus the Beet Chips and Peach-Mango Salsa from the shelves. From the frozen section, their Meatless Meatballs, Quartered Artichoke Hearts, Pearl Onions and Riced Cauliflower. From the refrigerated meat case, their packages of 4 individually cryovacted grilled chicken breasts (they keep for weeks for those days when you want a single grilled chicken breast for whatever reason and they are SO juicy). From the produce section, I love their packages of two fennel bulbs! They keep forever and are the best price for nice size fennel compared to any other stores in my market!!!

  12. Dark chocolate covered cookie butter! I had to give up eating cookie butter straight out of the jar, so the bars are my go-to when I need a fix!

  13. Kale and artichoke Greek yogurt dip!
    The dark chocolate covered almonds but WITH SEA SALT!
    Cauliflower rice!

  14. +1 for the fennel – one of only 2 things I buy in the produce section (the other is the green onions package – keeps a long time). I would also highly recommend both the frozen artichoke hearts and ‘hearts in olive oil. Also in the condiment section are my favorite find by far, the Hot and Sweet Cherry Peppers. They are great on salads and sandwiches and make a quick appetizer stuffed with a cube of parm wrapped in a thin strip of salami. 🙂 Lots of great cheeses and in the meats section I always get the little container of chopped uncooked pancetta for boosting pasta and soup. Thanks for the post! Can you tell I love this kind of stuff?!

  15. WHAT I did not know they carry Kombucha now! I can’t live without my Ginger Chews – I’ve estimated that I’ve eaten probably around 15K of them in the last decade.

  16. The boxed frozen jasmine rice! Cooks perfectly in 3 minutes. Mini peanut butter cups, vegetable fried rice, Hatch chili macaroni & cheese, salsa verde, I could go on and on lol! love the Traders!

  17. Black Bean and Quinoa Chips are a must try, so flavorful! Also love their Smoked Gouda Cheese, literally the creamiest Gouda ever (pair with prosciutto for the best grilled cheese sandwich EVER). Obsessed with their frozen mini beef tacos and steamed chicken soup dumplings (which taste just like the real thing). Their fresh squeezed orange juice and tangerine juice are the cheapest around and legit so fresh.

    Not food related but their French Liquid Orange Blossom Hand Soap is amazing..

  18. dude. their corn chips are amazing. the scooper ones that are like fritos! The Cheese Puffs are Casey life line.

  19. You literally tagged all of my favorite things! That is the best TJ’s feta and the hummus is SO good!

  20. I love their almond croissants and hot and sweet jalapeños (these are new)! Fig and honey goat cheese is fabulous, even though I settled for jalapeño and honey yesterday (have yet to try it). I always get a basil plant while I am there, it seems to last awhile for me and the price is great.

    1. I just tried the Honey jalapeno goat cheese. Amazing! I slathered a little on the Ghost pepper chips (I did not think that they were that hot) and warmed them up in the microwave. It gives the chips a creamy zip and tastes fabulous. The honey jalapeno goat cheese is good on peaches too!

  21. Cookie butter! chocolate cookie butter! Dark chocolate cookie butter cups! …yes, all things cookie butter. And some honey sesame sticks because sweet + salty never gets old!

  22. My 91 year old mother is obsessed with TJ Gorgonzola crackers! Always within reach of her hand and she travels with them as well!

  23. Thanks for sharing this. I am a big TJ fan as well, but I discovered so new things with your post and everyone’s favorites. The only thing not mentioned that I like are the green tea breath mints.

  24. Try the TJ’s Hatch Chile Mac & Cheese with Roasted Chiles from Hatch, New Mexico. So creamy and full of great flavor. I’m obsessed. I eat it for breakfast sometimes!
    I also buy the frozen Organic French Green Beans and Blueberries to put as a topper for my two fur babies dog food.

  25. Love the list – it’s inspired my next blog: what to shop and have as staple items in your pantry!
    A few other must have for me from Trader Joe’s:
    1. Organic Chia Seeds – I add them to oatmeal, my muesli, and yogurt
    2. Organic Unsweetened Flake Coconut – good to have around for baking. Most recently added into my muesli.
    3. Freeze Dried Strawberries (or whatever fruit): just added this to my muesli as well (wouldn’t say it’s a must have, but they are cheaper at TJ’s)
    4. Organic Tahini – it was a new item a month or so ago, gotta try it, but the price was spot on.
    5. Creamy Almond Butter – price is right and a must have for me as a vegetarian protein source.
    6. NUTS – you said it – best assortment around. I load up every time I go.
    7. Toasted Sesame Oil – good price and flavor
    8. AkMak crackers – my local grocery store doesn’t have these, but they’re a whole grain cracker that’s packed with flavor. LOVE them.
    9. Goat Cheese Log – I made an herb crusted goat cheese and am now obsessed.
    10. BURRATA – I’m pretty sure I’m obsessed with burrata as well. The tomato peach panzanella was SO delish.

  26. Gotta love all things Trader Joes! Those peanut butter pretzels are seriously dangerous. Next time try the 5 seed almond bars – they sound lame but are totally delicious.

  27. My life-changing and dangerous obsession…their Kona coffee shortbread biscuits….HEAVEN for those who love coffee and shortbread!!!!

  28. I love all those and you should also try their Kale pre packaged salad, the Fire RoastedVegetables ,Curry Chicken tenders, and their Greek Yogurts

  29. a little late to the party! i love so many of the already mentioned items, but also love:
    coffee ice cream (idk how much of it i’ve eaten while watching “grey’s” re-reruns)
    pound plus bittersweet chocolate (i use this in basically all of my baking)
    frozen chicken gyozas (such a quick lunch!)
    frozen vanilla and chocolate macarons (better than the colorful ones)
    peppermint joe joe’s (only during winter! i stock up usually)
    belgian waffle cookies

  30. Dude their black tortilla chips are unreal. As are those chocolate caramels!! Love that you did this 🙂

  31. – try the burrata instead of mozzarella next time
    – the frozen meatless balls are a staple for me, really delicious in everything from pasta to soups to chopped and sauteed for tacos
    – chocolate coconut milk ice cream
    – soyaki sauce (sesame soy teriyaki) is a great marinade for about anything
    – cruciferous crunch greens mix, perfect sauteed for a quick side
    – triple ginger snaps, maybe the best cookie ever made

  32. I’m so delayed in responding to this post (I have a newborn!) – but I love it all. I didn’t read thru all these comments (I must tho for other great ideas!), but wanted to mention the gone bananas. I’m sure someone else has noted them in this section. They are these heavenly sliced frozen banana discs covered in chocolate. You can find it next to the Mochi! Delicious 🙂

  33. Love this! Regarding that frozen spinach dip…I love to cook, but TJ’s frozen foods are the bomb. I love the gnocchi and orange chicken!

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