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This Grocery Store Beat Costco & Wegmans for the #1 Spot on the 2019 Best Employer List

At the Supermarket: Beautiful Young Woman Walks Through Fresh Produce Section, Chooses Vegetables and Places them in Her Shopping Cart. Customer Uses Smartphone while Shopping for Fruits; Shutterstock ID 1275256033; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): Taste of Home

GORODENKOFF/SHUTTERSTOCK

The top company to work for in 2019 is Trader Joe’s! Find out why it’s the best, and why shoppers love it, too.

The results are in! Forbes just released its annual report ranking the best companies to work for in 2019. In the anonymous survey of 50,000 working Americans, a grocery store topped the list. The winner is Trader Joe’s, known for its delicious frozen foods, small market charm and high-quality curated products.

Here’s why employees love to work there, and why you’ll love shopping there (if you’re not already a loyal customer).

Great Wages and Benefits

Many grocery stores start their employees at the minimum wage rate set by the law. But Trader Joe’s takes a different approach. They determine their starting hourly rates by taking a look at the local competition, setting their own wages accordingly. If they stay long enough, part-time crew members can earn up to $24.75 an hour! They also enjoy paid time off, access to health insurance and a company-funded retirement plan. Those incentives bring some of the very best workers to Trader Joe’s, which means shoppers get the very best service.

Casual and Friendly Atmosphere

Trader Joe’s employees—including the executives—wear the same uniform they’ve been wearing since the 1960s: a Hawaiian shirt and a “crew member” name tag. The result is a close camaraderie among co-workers, which makes for a fun and friendly atmosphere in the store. As you shop, you’ll feel like you’re picking out groceries with a group of friends. (Psst:You need to know these grocery shopping secrets.)

Tasty Products

Trader Joe’s is known for their unique, gourmet frozen foods and other ready-made products (including these customer favorites). Crew members join in on weekly tasting panels that actually determine what gets put on shelves, so anything you buy has been personally approved by the employees. Yep, they’ve tried the Mandarin Orange Chicken, and they love it.

It stands to reason if the employees are happy, the customers are happy and that makes execs happy. Trader Joe’s has a simple but winning workplace formula that other businesses would do well to take note of.

Article by Erica Young from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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Trader Joe’s Is Now Selling Chocolate Dessert Hummus

trader joe's chocolate hummus

VIA TRADERJOES.COM

This is proof that chocolate and chickpeas pair well together.

You love a scoop of hummus on pita chips or with fresh vegetables. But hummus…for dessert? It might not seem like the most natural treat, but once you get a mouthful of Trader Joe’s chocolate hummus, you’ll be convinced.

What’s in the Chocolate Hummus?

Like regular Trader Joe’s hummus, it’s made from a smooth base of chickpeas, tahini, canola oil and sea salt. But instead of roasted red peppers or garlic, this treat is finished with cane sugar and cocoa.

FYI: This isn’t the only dessert hummus on the shelf. You can find pumpkin pie dessert hummus at Aldi, and Costco reportedly has flavors like Edible Brownie Batter, Snickerdoodle Cookie and Creamy Vanilla Bean.

…But Is This Stuff Healthy?

Kind of! Trader Joe’s chocolate hummus has only 5 grams of sugar and 50 calories per serving. How sweet is that?

No one’s going to stop you from using pita to scoop up the chocolate hummus, though we’d recommend using salty pretzels instead. You could even stick with a healthy theme and use sliced fresh fruit or strawberries for dipping. Those who want more crunch could try a handful of banana chips.

Where Do I Find It?

Look for the hummus in Trader Joe’s refrigerated case. Priced at just $1.99, you can take home one for now and another for later. We already expect this dessert hummus to receive one of Trader Joe’s Customer Choice Awards for 2019. The winners will likely be announced next month. In the meantime, happy snacking!

Article by Krista Garcia from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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How to Make a Fancy Homemade Pizookie

Chocolate Pecan Skillet Cookie

TASTE OF HOME

What’s better than a chocolate chip cookie? How about a GIANT chocolate chip pizookie!

Straight out of the oven or topped with our favorite vanilla ice cream, the pizookie is an enormous, showstopping chocolate chip cookie creation. Whether you’re looking to whip up something new for a party or just want to impress your family with a larger-than-life, ultra-shareable cookie, this pizookie recipe is for you, and you can master it in no time with our tips.

By the way, if you’re looking for regular-sized cookies, try this chocolate chip cookie recipe.

You Should Melt the Butter—Here’s Why

Unlike the majority of cookie recipes, we’re not creaming together the butter and sugar for the pizookie. Instead, we’re melting the butter in the skillet as it heats up. That’s because melted butter creates a chewier, denser pizookie, ideal for loading it up with toppings before digging in.

Don’t miss our food editor’s baking tips for the best cookies ever.

How to Make Our Pizookie Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate baking chips
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • Vanilla ice cream, optional

Instructions

Step 1: Prep the skillet

Preheat your oven to 350° F. In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet, melt the butter in the oven as it preheats.

Editor’s Tip: For a dairy-free option, substitute shortening or a non-dairy margarine for the butter.

Step 2: Combine the sugars

As the oven preheats, stir together the sugar and brown sugar in a large bowl. It doesn’t matter whether you use light or dark brown sugar. When the butter is almost melted, remove the skillet from the oven and swirl the butter until it’s completely melted. Stir the melted butter into the sugar mixture, and set the skillet aside.

Step 3: Mix the wet and dry ingredients

Beat the eggs and vanilla into the sugar mixture. In another bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together. Gradually beat the dry ingredients into the sugar mixture.

Editor’s Tip:Make sure your eggs are room temperature before adding them. Not only do they mix into the batter more easily, but they’ll also help the dough rise more. If you forgot to grab the eggs from the fridge in advance, just put them in a bowl of warm water for 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 4: Add the chocolate

Stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. (See below for alternatives.) Spread the mixture into the buttered skillet.

Step 5: Bake it up

Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs and the top is golden brown, or about 35 to 40 minutes. It’s better to underbake the pizookie than overbake, as the heat from the skillet will continue to bake the cookie. Plus, you can’t go wrong with a molten, gooey center.

Editor’s Tip: If you’d rather not make a giant cookie, you can prepare the cookie in four six-inch cast-iron skillets. Just brush the skillets with melted butter before adding the dough. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Step 6: Serve and enjoy

Serve the pizookie warm, and top with vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce, hot fudge or extra chocolate chips—the possibilities are endless!

Fun Flavor Variations

Mix up the pizookie by adding in other sweet options. Try replacing the chocolate chips with an equal quantity of M&M’s or chocolate chunks. Or up the ante by gently folding in 1½ cup fresh raspberries after mixing in the chocolate chips and pecans. Substituting dried cherries or butterscotch chips for the pecans works well, too.

Article by Alexa Hackfort from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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Oreo Is Dropping TWO New Flavors in 2020 and We Can’t Wait

OREO Chocolate Marshmallow and Caramel Coconut cookies

VIA @OREO/INSTAGRAM

These new Oreo flavors are just what we were craving—and we didn’t even know it!

Oreos never go out of style, no matter the time of year. Summer gave us almost too much to chew on with all of these great returning flavors. And this Christmas, you can enjoy the minty sweetness of seasonal Peppermint Bark Oreos. After all that, you’d think Oreo would wind down for the winter, but nope. They’re just getting started.

Milk’s favorite cookie is kicking off the New Year with two new Oreo flavors rolling out early in 2020!

Get Your Hands on 2020’s Best Goodies

Oreo announced their new flavors on Thursday via Instagram, and fans went absolutely wild. If the overwhelming praise in the comments is anything to go by, we think these will be a definite hit.

Chocolate Marshmallow is the same ol’ crumbly cookie we know and love with a decadent chocolate-dipped marshmallow filling. Caramel Coconut is a bit wackier, with a creme we can only imagine is made up of, well, caramel and coconut. Anything tropical is the perfect complement to all things sweet, so we’ve definitely got our hopes up for this coconutty flavor.

 

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Did you guess the Mystery Oreo flavor yet? Time’s almost up.

So…When Are They Getting Here?

That’s the million Oreo question. The announcement says the two new Oreo flavors will be arriving sometime in January of 2020, but the hush-hush nature of it doesn’t include a specific date. They could be dropping as early as January 1, fingers crossed. As far as where to snag them, your best bet is major retailers. Walmart and Target are the go-tos for new Oreos, so keep an eye out when roaming the cookie aisle after Christmas.

If we know Oreo, the Chocolate Marshmallow and Caramel Coconut flavors won’t be around for long. As soon as you see these guys, grab a pack ASAP. In the meantime, we’ll just curb our cravings with Oreo candy canes and hope 2020 comes quick.

Article by Laurie Dixon from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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Oreo Creme-Filled Eggs Are Here for the Holidays and We Need Them ASAP

oreo creme eggs

VIA WALMART.COM

Eggs aren’t just for Easter anymore.

Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

It’s official, Oreo is taking over the holidays. They’ve already released so many seasonal goodies, we don’t know what to try first! Should we get started on our Oreo cookie houses? Or should we relax with an Oreo candy cane while settling down with our favorite festive Hallmark flicks?

Now, Oreo creme-filled eggs are here, and we’re making room in our stockings.

It’s Like Cadbury, But Oreo

You don’t have to wait for Easter anymore to get your hands on your favorite treat. Indulge in a decadent Oreo creme-filled egg by the fire this Christmas, and savor each chomp of chocolatey goodness. The eggs are stuffed with cookies and creme filling which includes munchable cookie bits. It’s all wrapped up in a classic, milk chocolate shell and a festive wrapper made for your candy bowl. Each package comes with five eggs, which is enough for sharing (or keeping for yourself, like we’ll be doing).

Oreo creme-filled eggs are back after their debut earlier this year during Easter. Fans fell in love so quick and so hard with this tasty treat, Oreo decided it needed to be on our candy wish list this Christmas.

Oreo is kicking off 2020 with two all-new flavors.

You Won’t Have to Hunt for These Eggs

Don’t go searching for this snack, because they’re already available at Walmart.  Each package will only cost you $3.48, which is a real bargain for all this cookies ‘n’ creamy goodness.

We’re thinking Oreo creme-filled eggs won’t be around for long, so you’ll have to pick these puppies up as soon as you see them. But don’t worry, if you can’t catch them this year, they’ll no doubt be back for Easter.

Article by Laurie Dixon from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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How to Cook Steak in Your Air Fryer

beef steak

HLPHOTO/SHUTTERSTOCK

You can—and should—use your air fryer for more than fried foods. This air fryer steak is as good as one you make on the grill.

I don’t know about you, but we’ve been swept up in the air fryer craze. Even the Test Kitchen is using air fryers! The tabletop convection ovens are amazing, circulating hot air around your food until it gets a crisp exterior—just like a fryer, but with a whole lot less oil. Faux-frying is what most people are using their air fryers for, but don’t stop there. You can cook some surprising foods in these gadgets, including air fryer steak.

Because the temperatures inside the air fryer are so consistent, your steak will turn out perfect, every time. It’s an ideal scenario when the weather isn’t cooperating and you can’t hit the grill.

How long does it take to cook steak in an air fryer?

In our testing, we found that cook times vary dramatically between brands of air fryers. As a result, we have given wider than normal ranges on suggested cook times. It should take anywhere between 7 to 9 minutes for a medium-rare steak, and 10 to 14 minutes for a medium steak. Until you know the cook time on your air fryer, it’s best to begin checking at the first time listed and adjust as needed.

The best way to know when your steak is finished is to use a meat thermometer. You want to be sure it has reached the Test Kitchen-recommended temperature.

How to Make Air Fryer Steak

Ingredients

  • A 1-inch thick boneless ribeye or New York strip steak
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions

Step 1: Prep the steak

Start by rubbing the steak all over with the olive oil. This isn’t a necessary step when cooking a steak on the grill or in a cast-iron pan, but in an air fryer, the steak’s surface has the best chance of caramelizing and creating a crust if it’s coated in oil. Sprinkle the steak generously with the kosher salt and pepper. Then, let the seasoned steak sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes to take the chill off.

Step 2: Preheat the air fryer

Some air fryers have a steak setting, but we don’t recommend using it. These settings don’t allow you to customize the cook time, and they might be calibrated for bone-in steaks, which take longer than boneless cuts. We like to preheat the air fryer on the regular setting to 400° F. Let the air fryer preheat for about three minutes before moving on.

Don’t miss the Test Kitchen’s other secrets for air fryer success.

Step 3: Cook the steak

Add the steak to the air fryer basket and cook it for about 7 to 9 minutes for a medium-rare steak or 10 to 14 minutes for medium, flipping the steak halfway through. When the steak is finished cooking, let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Wondering how to take your steak from good to great? This list will help you make it happen!

Article by Lindsay D. Mattison from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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Nestle Recalls Refrigerated Cookie Dough Due to Rubber Pieces

Don’t go dunking these cookies just yet.

As we cozy in for the coming winter, there’s only one sweet treat on our minds—cookies! Unfortunately, you’ll have to put the baking on hold for a second, because a Nestle cookie dough recall has been issued that puts your favorite flavors at risk. (That includes Fall’n Leaves and Pinch of Grinch cookies.)

The recall is due to rubber pieces that are embedded in the dough. We saw a similar recall affecting Entenmann’s Little Bites just a few months ago. The Nestle cookie dough recall was issued on October 31 and affects batches shipped nationwide and to Puerto Rico. Find Nestle’s official release here.

What products are recalled?

Buckle up, because this one’s a doozy. 26 different types of Nestle cookie dough are under recall. That includes bars, tubs and tube-shaped “chubs.” Here’s everything to look out for:

  • Simply Delicious Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (18-ounce)
  • Simply Delicious Nestle Toll House Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (18-ounce)
  • Simply Delicious Nestle Toll House Sugar Cookie Dough (18oz)
  • Nestlé Toll House Chocolate Chip Chub (16.5-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Chub (30-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Lovers Club Tub (80-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Tub  (36-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Tub (80-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Fall’n Leaves Cookie Dough (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Frozen II Cookie Dough (14-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Holiday Chocolate Chip Tree Sprinkle (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Monster Munch (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Pinch of Grinch Cookie Dough (14-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Triple Chip Cookie Dough Bar (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Ultimate Chocolate Chip Lovers (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Ultimate Turtles Cookie Bar (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House White Chip Macadamia Nut (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Bar (16.5-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Mini Chocolate Chip Bar (16.5-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bar (16-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Sugar Cookie Bar (16.5-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Bar (16.5-ounce)
  • Nestle Toll House Peanut Butter Cookie Bar (16-ounce)
  • M&M’s Everyday Cookie Dough (14-ounce)
  • M&M’s Ghouls Mix Cookie Dough (14-ounce)
  • M&M’s Holiday Cookie Dough (14-ounce)

The recall comes from an abundance of caution. No illnesses or injuries have been reported just yet, but Nestle wants to make sure these doughs aren’t hiding out in your fridge. According to Nestle, they already found the source of the issue, and all contaminated items in-house have been removed.

Get ahead of all those nasty recalls with this handy app.

How do I know if I have one of these products?

First, Nestle wants you to know morsels, ice cream sandwiches and edible cookie dough are not included in the recall. So those products are all safe.

The recall is limited only to ready-to-bake refrigerated doughs, with batch codes that begin with 9189 through batch codes that begin with 9295. You can find the codes near the “use or freeze by” date.

You can also find all of the products, batch codes and UPC codes here, complete with images of each product.

Did you know all these recalls are a good thing? Here’s why.

I have one of these products! What should I do with it?

Products affected by this Nestle cookie dough recall should be tossed ASAP. Don’t bake them—or steal a scoop or two of dough out of the fridge. If you don’t want to end up empty-handed, reach out to nestleproductinquiry@casupport.com with your proof of purchase. Chances are you’ll get a refund.

For more information, direct your questions to 1-800-681-1676 or email the address listed above.

Article by Laurie Dixon from Taste of Home. View the original article here.

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Aldi Recalls Frozen Raspberries Due to Risk of Hepatitis Contamination

Do you shop at Aldi? Then this frozen raspberries recall might affect your smoothie plans.

Make room for another recall. Fresh apples like Honeycrisp and Fuji took their place on the recall hot seat just this week, and before that, a chicken recall rocked leading grocery stores, including Kroger and Aldi. Unfortunately, Aldi isn’t out of the woods yet. The latest recall is for frozen raspberries. According to the FDA, the berries are potentially contaminated with hepatitis A.

Wawona Frozen Foods, the manufacturer for Aldi, issued the recall on October 30. The FDA quickly published its announcement on October 31. This recall affects Aldi stores across the country as well as Raley’s Family of Fine Stores in Sacramento, California. Find the full FDA statement here.

What products are recalled?

The recall specifically names frozen raspberries and frozen mixed berries. The brands include Season’s Choice, which is sold at Aldi, and Raley’s brand, sold at Raley’s stores. The recall includes these sizes and varieties:

  • 12-ounce bags of Season’s Choice Frozen Raspberries
  • 16-ounce bags of Season’s Choice Frozen Berry Medley
  • 12-ounce bags of Raley’s Fresh Frozen Red Raspberries

The raspberries were initially imported from Chile and tested positive for hepatitis A after a standard government sampling. Luckily, no illnesses have been reported in connection with the recall. You can’t be too careful, though. Wawona Frozen Foods wants consumers to be aware of the recall, and urges them to throw out any contaminated products ASAP. No other Wawona Frozen Foods products are affected.

All these food recalls could be a good thing, and here’s why.

How do I know if I have one of these products?

This recall is a smaller one, so it shouldn’t be too hard to determine if you have bad berries. Take a look at the UPC codes and “best by” dates typically found on the back or bottom of the packaging. The bag will say either “Product of Chile” or “Product of USA, Chile.”

Here’s what to look out for:

  • 12-ounce bags of Season’s Choice Frozen Raspberries with “best buy” date of June 10, 2021, August 1, 2021 and August 23, 2021. UPC code: 0 41498 12419 9
  • 16-ounce bags of Season’s Choice Frozen Berry Medley with “best buy” date of July 17, 2021, July 20, 2021 and July 22, 2021. UPC code: 0 41498 31344 9
  • 12-ounce bags of Raley’s Fresh Frozen Raspberries with “best buy” date of June 5, 2021 (lot code: 20156A04) and August 1, 2021 (lot code: 20213A06). UPC code: 46567 00754

Still need help? Find images of each package at the bottom of the FDA’s statement.

This app is the quickest (and handiest) way to get ahead of recalls.

I have one of these products! What should I do with it?

First and foremost, don’t eat these guys under any circumstances. We know they’re sweet, but it’s not worth the gamble. The FDA says you should either toss them out or return them to the place of purchase for a full refund.

For any questions concerning the frozen raspberries recall, reach out to Wawona Frozen Foods at 866-913-0667. You can also reach them through their website.

How can I avoid getting hepatitis A?

Hepatitis A, unfortunately, can be pretty hard to avoid. You’ll typically pick it up from eating contaminated food, but it’s highly contagious and can spread through closer personal contact as well. The first symptoms typically come within 15-50 days of exposure, and it can cause a whole mess of liver problems.

The signs of hepatitis A include abdominal pain, jaundice, fatigue and many more flu-like side effects. If you experience any of these issues after eating a recalled product, contact your doctor. Fortunately, most people who get hepatitis A feel sick for several weeks, but should recover completely without any lasting liver damage.

Originally Published: November 01, 2019

Article by Laurie Dixon from Taste of Home. View the original article here.