For the love of Trader Joe's + A Giveway!

If you are lucky enough to live where there is a Trader Joe's near by, you have probably fallen in love with it. We have been lucky enough to have a Trader Joe's in our town for over 20 years, so my love for Trader Joe's started when I was in high school. Our Trader Joe's is close to where I went to high school & we had an open campus,  so I would often grab one of their salads during lunch.

Since becoming a mom, my love of Trader Joe's has increased times 1000. 
I thought I would share some of my favorite Trader Joe's items, things that are staples in our house & that you will pretty much always find in our fridge, freezer & pantry. 

 The first thing I love about Trader Joe's is all the flowers they have in front.

These make great hostess/teacher gifts if you need something in a pinch.
 Let's not forget about the fresh bouquets they have, always great prices.
 I love their Sunflowers during the Summer.
 Trader Joe's has THE BEST TULIPS EVER.
Once late April/early May hits, their Peonies arrive. They are incredible. 

 As much as I love their Tulips & Peonies, their Daffodils are not good. I have gotten them a couple times and they never opened up. Boo! I stick to Safeway's daffodils!
Every Spring when we plant our garden, I grab a basil plant from Trader Joe's to plant in my garden.

Let's go "shopping", shall we?


 This Mirepoix is one of my VERY favorite items because it's pre chopped celery, onions & carrots.
It is PERFECT to use for Grammy's Split Pea Soup, Chicken Noodle Soup & Chicken Pot Pie.  

 I also love these petite colorful carrots!
 If you love beets, you will love their steamed & peeled beets. 
 They recently got Golden Beets in stock, so I have been buying those also to add to my beet salad to make it more colorful :)
 Their riced broccoli and riced cauliflower are perfect to use instead of rice.
I love their bagged Brocolli because you can just pop it in your microwave to steam it & it's a great side.
  I love that they have pre-cut Butternut Squash. Once I discovered this, I started using it for my Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili.
 You can also just roast the pre cut butternut squash for a side dish. I do this a lot in the Fall & add in cauliflower or Brussels sprouts drizzled in olive oil.
 Speaking of Brussels Sprouts, I always buy this bag....so cheap!
 They also have shaved brussels sprouts which are great to add to salads:

Speaking of Salads.....
This salad is my go-to during Spring/Summer. We have it a few times a week during these months & it pairs perfectly with BBQ chicken, chicken kabobs or Steak.
 I love their organic brocolli slaw...again...so cheap! We use this for Pulled Pork Sandwiches or Fish Tacos!
 I also love their Power to the Greens Salad mix. I add it to smoothies & I also add it to their pre-packaged salads to make them go further.
 These are my 2 favorite pre-packaged salads:
The BBQ chicken salad one is also very good.

To be honest, I don't really buy my fruit from Trader Joe's.
 I have found that the quality isn't as good. Most of the fruit from Trader Joe's is from Mexico or South America. The fruit I can get here at our grocery stores or farmers market is all local to here in the Bay Area so it's MUCH fresher. 
But, there is one fruit I buy here....Organic Sliced Apples.
 Yes, I am that lazy that I buy pre-sliced apples :) 
Plus, my kids sometimes don't eat a whole apples, so it's easier for them to just grab some slices from the bag.

Whenever we have our Bachelor viewing parties or I need to make a cheese plate, I get my cheese from Trader Joe's. 
Here are some of my favorites....
White Stilton with Apricots...AMAZING.
 Their Triple Cream Brie is the best Brie ever! So creamy!
 I also loved their herb Goat Cheese. Delicious.
 I love their Fresh Mozzarella Cheese log because it's pre sliced! 
This is my go-to in the summer when I make Caprese Salad or Margarita Pizza.
 This cheese sampler is perfect for when you want a little afternoon snack of cheese & crackers. It's already pre-sliced!
Their freshly shaved Parm, Romano & Asaigo Cheese is such a good price and I buy this container all the time (we eat a lot of Italian Food)
Who doesn't love a good dip? ;)
 Their fresh Brushetta is one of my favorites because you can use it in so many ways.
I have put it on toasted bread for traditional bruschetta. In the summer, I make angel hair pasta & dump in this container along with Parmesan & fresh cherry tomoatoes from my garden. It's a light & refreshing Summer dinner. I like it served cold rather than hot. Also tastes good with shredded chicken.
Another favorite is to pour some Brushetta on plain goat cheese & serve with crackers. Delicious!

 I could eat an entire container of their Reduced Guilt Guacamole. SO good!
I also love this dip...perfect with carrots or Pita Chips!
 I found out this week that my VERY favorite Trader Joe's Dip has been discontinued.

I LOVE this dip. I would buy it every week in the summer and would have it as a dip for Sweet Potato Fries or I would use it as a spread/sauce for turkey burgers/chicken sandwiches. 

I couldn't find it at my store, so the checker told me to go to Traderjoes.com and send an email :(
I even wrote an email to Trader Joe's asking about it. 

I really hope they bring it back. If not, I need to figure out how to make it. 
Summer meals won't be the same without this dip :)

 This is my favorite yogurt...Greek Nonfat Vanilla Bean!
  I eat it with fresh berries & granola mixed in.

My kids love these yogurts:
It's the only yogurt they will eat! 

 This is a new item....SO good with tequila to make a fun drink for Cinco de Mayo.
 I also love their Spicy Chai.
 Trader Joe's also has a great wine section with really good prices!

 These are the 4 types of crackers I always have on hand to serve when we have friends over. They go perfectly with the cheeses I mentioned earlier.
Pita Bites:
 Savory Thins:
  Raisin Rosemary Crisps:
 Ak-Mak...so good with Brie!

I always keep one of these in my freezer....great appetizer.
These are also good to have on hand:

I usually get my bags of Frozen Chicken Breasts or Chicken Breast Tenderloins at Trader Joe's because they have the best prices around.
I use at least 1 bag a week, tons of my Instant Pot Recipes use Frozen Chicken Breasts/Tenderloins

I also like to have a package of their Frozen Orange Chicken and BBQ Teriyaki Chicken in my freezer.  Each of these are a good, quick meal on busy nights when you don't feel like cooking ;)
Both of these are great served over Rice or Cauliflower Rice and Broccoli as your veggie.

I LOVE these frozen rice packets. Each box has 3 rice pouches & you heat them up in the microwave for 3 minutes and BOOM! Perfect rice. I always buy the Brown Rice, but it also comes in Jasmine Rice and they also have Quinoa.

We love their Sweet Potato fries, I stock up on these during the summer.
Their Roasted Potatoes make great breakfast potatoes. Yum!

I also love their frozen mashed potatoes. They are frozen in chunks, so you can heat up whatever serving size you need. Once I do that, I will add some cream cheese/sour cream and even chives or bacon to give them more pizzazz.
 Sometimes I even sneak in some of the frozen cauliflower to get some veggies in there. These are right next to the frozen potatoes & they are frozen cubes of cauliflower so you can use as many as you need.

My family never notices when I sneak in the cauliflower ;)

They have a great selection of frozen fruits that are perfect for smoothies or pies, but my favorite is the Pineapple tidbits.
I add them to smoothies (like THIS one) & also when we make homemade pizza/calzones (we love Hawaiian Pizza)
Luke is obsessed with these bars. Strawberry is his favorite, followed closely by blueberry.
These Pretzel sticks are delicious.
Love their peanut butter filled pretzels.
Kate LOVES trail mix. They sell it by the bag, but I love the individual snack bags. Her 2 favorite kinds are Rainbow's End and Tempting Trail Mix:
I love these cashews:
These almonds are AMAZING.
Cheddar Puffs, Backed Cheese Crunchies & Veggie Sticks are staples in our house.
I love this granola to put on yogurt. (It's gluten free if you care about that kind of thing)
I like both flavors!

Cowboy Bark.....ADDICTING.
Sea Salt Butterscotch Caramels....DIVINE.
Dark Chocolate Pretzel Slims....DELICIOUS.

These Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches are really good!

Everything But the Bagel Topping:
Perfect on Avocado Toast, Eggs or a Plain Bagel/Plain Cream Cheese & this sprinkled on top.

Trader Joes' has the best selection of Turkey for turkey sandwiches & the best prices!

Their Cinnamon Rolls are the best...way better than Pillsbury brand.
I love this peanut butter (my kids don't!) I dip sliced apples in it.

This Thai Yellow Curry sauce is delicious (if you like Curry!)  I use this curry sauce when I make my Slow Cooker Chicken Chick Pea Curry.
I made up another recipe using this sauce that I need to blog soon. It's made in the Instant Pot (of course!)

I love this soup, perfect for my lunch during the week:
I add these croutons on top of the soup. SO good!
These croutons are also good in Caesar Salad.

You won't find canned veggies/canned beans for a better price....so cheap!

Same with their diced tomatoes & pasta sauces. Great prices.

I LOVE their Coconut Body Butter. It smells like Hawaii :)
It is really moisturizing when you have dry skin in the winter or summer.

Did you know that Trader Joes has an AMAZING assortment of greeting cards? There are so many cute ones and get this....only $.99!!!!!!!!
I didn't even realize they were that cheap until last year. This is now my go-to for cards.

So, there you have it....some of my Trader Joe's favorites.
What are some of your favorites?
Anything I need to buy that I missed out on?
Let me know!

If you made it through this loooong post, you deserve a prize ;)
So, how about a GIVEAWAY!
I haven't done one in a while.
How would you like a $100 Trader Joe's Gift Card?
If you don't have a Trader Joe's near you & you are the winner, you will receive a $100 Visa Gift Card!
This isn't sponsored by Trader Joe's, this is just out of the goodness of my heart and I want to spread the love of Trader Joe's :)

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Giveaway ends in a week!

I can't wait to hear what your favorite Trader Joe's products are!


Blog Widget by LinkWithin