Anyone else love Trader Joe’s? Well, it is a super popular place so I imagine there are a few of you out there who think it is kind of awesome. I probably only go once every other month and have developed a routine of favorites. However, when I am there I am always on the lookout for new gems to try out. Their value cannot be beat especially when it comes to produce. I made a pilgrimage there on Monday so I thought I would share the details of my purchases and my reasons behind them.
I do not really have a set routine for grocery shopping. I try to go once and usually on a week day. Stores are usually busier on the weekends so I try to avoid it so I do not have to be stuck in those lines! However, there is always one or two things I forgot that I find I am dashing into a store to buy. Sometimes I also like to scope out Whole Foods for specialty items and Trader Joe’s for fun. It is a little bit of a drive so it is only an occasional excursion when I can get there.
Welcome to my haul!
Trader Joe’s Haul
We go through a ton of veggies during the week between salads, roasted vegetables and quick sautés. I know there is a lot of debate as to whether or not it is necessary to buy organic. Since we all have to be aware of cost I always evaluate this decision too.
I buy organic for the top vegetables listed on the dirty dozen lists for pesticide use. I buy conventional when I can, but I always make exceptions. For example, I would normally buy regular carrots, but I have not seen any the past few times I have been shopping. The difference is not that significant so I buy the organic label.
If it is a big cost increase I will live without it or try to find an alternative. I love avocado, but if I only see organic I skip it. That cost increase is significant enough. For carrots, bananas, or lower price point items I will buy organic if conventional is not available.
- Organic Zucchini
- Organic Baby Broccoli
- Organic Baby Spinach
- Organic Beets
- Organic English Cucumber
- Organic Carrots
- Organic Peppers
- Sweet Potatoes
- Butternut Squash
Berries are not quite in season yet! They are a huge favorite of mine, but I am staying clear until we are closer to summer. Not only is it better to buy in season, but fresh berries are at a premium right now and the cost reflects their lack of abundance. So frozen it is!
- Organic Granny Smith Apples
- Organic Pink Lady Apples
- Organic Grape Tomatoes
- Organic Strawberries (Frozen)
Trader Joe’s has awesome and delicious cold brew. It is great when the weather is warmer which it already is in Austin! Plus it is a big time saver since I do not have to boil water and clean out our French press. I use a lot of coconut water in my protein shakes and the addition of aloe sounds interesting.
- Coconut Water (with Aloe)
- Cold Brew
- Green Tea
Extras & Baking
I have been making a lot of bread with almond flour using this recipe. I like to experiment and make some treats with it too. Whenever I make Elana’s bread, Scott tells me what I am an amazing baker. Flattering, of course, but I usually remind him that it is from a recipe.
Trader Joe’s is a great source for affordable baking – especially the almond meal. Those ingredients can add up quite a bit. I remember the first time I lived on my own and bought maple syrup. It was quite an eye opener at how expensive food can be!
- Organic Ketchup
- Organic Mustard
- Sundried Tomatoes
- Dried Cranberries
- Dark Chocolate
- Maple Syrup
- Almond Meal
- Wild Caught Salmon
We already had a lot of meat in our freezer so it was not a necessary purchase. However, I did grab several packages of single portion Wild Caught Salmon. We eat a lot of it and the price cannot be beat at the TJ’s. Farm raised salmon typically contains a lot of dyes and chemicals since the fish are raised in an unnatural environment. I will always seek out wild caught.
So there you have it! A little view of my Trader Joe’s Haul. This trip was fairly typical for me except for the absence of nut butter. I find I am always grabbing a jar of some kind! I always enjoy it when people share their purchases so I hope you liked this round up.
What are you favorite things to buy at Trader Joe’s?
How often do you go grocery shopping?