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Trader Joe’s is the place to go for ready-to-make prepackaged dinners and 2-Buck Chuck. But did you know there are lots of other cheap (and delicious) things that you should be buying at the quirky grocery store? Browse this list before your next visit to the market, and thank us as you unload the items in your kitchen later.
Nuts at Trader Joe’s are considerably cheaper than at other markets—not to mention that the store has an abundance of nutty varieties. Check out everything from slivered almonds to whole Brazil nuts, and look for smoked, salted and even sweet chili.
2. Precut Produce
Weeknights can be extremely busy, and when you’re in a pinch in the kitchen, it helps to save time by buying precut produce. Trader Joe’s has classic items like crinkle cut carrot strips and broccoli florets, and less-traditional veggies like cauliflower riceand prepared kale salad mixes, for effortless side dishes.
T-Joe’s has long been celebrated for inexpensive wines of all varieties. However, the grocery store has affordable, and high-quality, offerings in beer and liquor selection, too. Check out the Trader Joe’s Kentucky Bourbon Straight Whiskey or the reasonably priced local craft beers—the shelves are always stocked with your favorite IPAs.
Having a cheese party? Trick your friends into thinking you went to an artisanal cheese shop by stocking up on the dairy-laden goods at Trader Joe’s. From savory smoked goudas to sweet blueberry chevre spreads, the cheese aisle is the place to pick up goodies that will wow friends and satisfy your stomach.
5. Frozen Meals
Everyone should know how to prepare a few good meals at home, but sometimes you want the convenience of having a frozen meal at the ready. Trader Joe’s has a variety of tasty frozen dishes, including garlicky palak paneer and TJ’s cult favorite—the Reduced Guilt Mac & Cheese.
6. Seasonal Treats
You haven’t lived until you’ve tasted a Peppermint Joe Joe or snacked on a slice of Butternut Squash Parmigiana. The chain uses seasonal ingredients that wow in its offerings, and we won’t blame you if you feel the need to try them all. We did.
Trader Joe’s has bouquets of fresh flowers daily, including arrangements—some including orchids!—ranging from $4 to $10. Small potted orchid plants are available beginning at $8. These beautiful, exotic plants make for welcome hostess gifts or will simply look beautiful around your own home.
8. Frozen Desserts
Running late to a party? Forgot to stop at the local bakery? Pop into Trader Joe’s and pick up a sumptuous frozen dessert. From the decadent chocolate ganache torte to the tasty Speculoos cookie butter cheesecake bites, there’s an item for you that will be delicious, affordable and easy to serve.
When you’re hungry and looking for something healthy to snack on, seek out a premade lunch from Trader Joe’s. You’ll find a variety of wraps and sandwiches, usually in or near the produce section, that are filling and healthy. Check out the Cubano Seasoned Wrap or a turkey salad sandwich for a meal that won’t disappoint.
Cheap doesn’t have to mean boring. Lots of delicious, reasonably priced items are waiting for you at Trader Joe’s. Grab a reusable shopping bag and get ready to fill it up—just be sure to make room in your pantry for the ingredients to prepare one of our timeless homemade meals.
Article by Justine McGrath from Taste of Home.