Trader Joe’s yea/nay/meh 2019


Mangos will be back, don’t worry. Sometimes they forget to reorder. Last week I panicked but turns out they had just forgot to order dried baby bananas.

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Yeah, I own a salad spinner and only very rarely do I break it out. Wash lettuce leaves, leave them to drip a bit in the dish drainer then shake them out, roll loosely in a clean cotton kitchen towel. Towel into a plastic grocery bag and they’ll keep for a week in the crisper.

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It is not new but but an ongoing YAY! for the wonder that is TJ’s pre-cooked pork belly, long may it exist.


(Tom Hilton) #44

Seems like every time there’s one of these threads dedicated to evaluating the products available at Trader Joe’s, somebody pops up to say they don’t like (or never shop at) Trader Joe’s. And I always wonder why.

That said, congratulations on having the time to do lots of cooking.



Well, for me, I just don’t find any value there. It is too expensive and the products I can get elsewhere for less and just as good quality.

For another forum, I was actually going to do a produce price comparison. I went into TJs the other day just to do that. Guess what? It was impossible because everything was priced by piece rather than by pound. Example: a banana was $.019 each, rather than say $0.50 per pound like most places. A tomato was the same. LOL. I laughed, and said to myself, no wonder why people can’t figure out they are getting ripped off, they cant compare correctly to the rest of the grocery world.

I walked out with two items, cant even remember what they were due to the insignificance of them. I am pretty much done going there. I gave it a shot. I am just not interested in processed food, even if it says its organic.

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Back to the actual point of this thread…

Opal apples- I usually buy honeycrisps but these are great, not quite as sweet but great crunch and slightly less expensive

Very VERY into the thin asparagus that’s about $2 for a pound or so- tastes like spring!

Also glad to see that TJs is taking steps to reduce plastics, every bit helps and goodness knows no other grocery store in nyc is making an effort. (There is no such thing as asking for a paper bag. They don’t have them with the exception of whole foods. Default is -double bagged plastic)


(Tom Hilton) #47

I don’t really care why you don’t like Trader Joe’s. What I don’t understand is why, not liking Trader Joe’s, you would barge into a thread that is clearly by and for people who shop regularly at Trader Joe’s and post off-topic comments about how you don’t like it and don’t shop there. It just seems weird to me. I just can’t imagine why someone would do that.


(Jimmy ) #48

Dear wife and I decided long ago, “out of season” asparagus from the other side of the world was still better then no asparagus. :slightly_smiling_face:



I actually didn’t realize this thread was for ONLY people who liked shopping at TJ’s. The title makes it sound like, “hey give your opinion on TJs, yea/nay/meh”. I assumed that meant I could give me opinion on the store.

Why so defensive? So I dont like it there? Big deal, doesn’t stop you from liking it. Different strokes. Lighten up and have a glass of wine.

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One less person that we have to maneuver around. Win/Win!

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Personally, and of no real consequence, my reaction to your post was more like “whatever!”. But you’re new-ish here so it might be worth pointing out that this topic is renewed monthly and is meant for posters to comment on PRODUCTS from Trader Joe’s so others can be alerted positively, negatively, or in between. But, again, … whatever.



I participate in the Chowhound thread more actively than here. I admit I am a Trader Joe’s evangelist/addict, probably more than anyone else on these threads. At first, though, I visited TJ’s infrequently for years and each time I left the store disgusted. So I don’t have an issue with users professing their disdain for Trader Joe’s, even if it’s off-topic. And I can see how someone not familiar with the etiquette of these threads could mistakenly post a negative opinion of TJ’s in general. However, I also see how it could easily get out of hand.

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I basically agree with you (and to some extent share your opinion of the chain in general), but… these threads really are more about liking/disliking specific products, or by not great an extension, changes in specific policies or things like that when they occur, rather than “general commentary” about the chain…


(Eli Paryzer) #54

Hell yea to Trader Joe’s organic blue corn tortilla chips. I love these.


What's for Dinner #43 - 03/2019 - the SMarch Edition

Right. Sometimes I want to YAY other things, like price. For example, I purchased pears today. I weighed them at home at roughly .675 pounds each. At 79 cents a pear, that comes out to about $1.17 a pound. That’s really good even compared to Aldi.

Also, my area Trader Joe’s stores usually let me sample anything in the store. (Every now and then – maybe twice a year --an employee will be unaware of this policy.) So I wanted to YAY that today I saw a fresh figs from Mexico, I took a carton to the sampling counter, and they washed one for me so I could sample it. It wasn’t good, so I saved hassle and money.



How do you even decide what tortilla chips to get at TJs?? Seriously they must have like 20 different kinds! I just stand there kinda dumbfounded and end up with the sweet potato tortilla chips i know i love or i go for a different crunchy salty thing like the pretzel crisps or those fantastic everything crackers


(Eli Paryzer) #57

We were in the mood for blue corn chips one time, and once we tasted these we fell in love with them. Mrs. P will probably use them in her deconstructed chicken tacos tomorrow to add a little crunch.

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I feel partially responsible for the strife on this post since I originated the post.

Here’s my take : Although I live within a 5 minute walk of TJ’s and patronize it many times in any given week, there are many things I do not like about TJ’s. (1) Nearly everything is packaged; (2) the nutritional labels of most of their frozen prepared foods is (to me) horrific; (3) terrible produce/fruit, much of which, again, is packaged to within an inch of their lives. We’ve been consciously trying to cut down on the amount of plastic/packaging that comes into our house. Bagged salads make me batty.

There are some packaged things which we regularly do buy (eg canned beans when I forget / don’t have time to prep dried beans; chips [although we’re consuming less these days]; Joe’s O’s, PB pretzels without salt, juice, frozen meatballs for spring onion; cheeses; once-in-a-while frozen veggies). TJ’s carries a fair amount of items in glass containers which I love, eg yuzu hot sauce; spices which I can’t live without, eg Everything Spice, chili-lime spice; appetizer-y items like artichoke spread; many juices.

So, I’m firmly a TJ’s patron but I try to be “selective” (some would say picky).



I agree with most of your post, digga. We, too, are actively and seriously cutting down on our plastic use. We’ve been using cloth and linen bags for loose produce that needs to be weighed, and it feels so much better to dump out the produce and stash the bags for another use instead of disposing of a single-use plastic bag.

Here’s some positive news on the TJ’s front:

Let’s hope they continue to look for ways to cut down on plastic consumption. They are a sizable-enough chain to make a difference and to set a good example.


(erica) #60
Because there's always somebody who can't resist the urge to piss in the punchbowl.😉 They don't know what they're missing. More Sun Valley Heirloom Navels for those of us who know what a treasure TJ's is! 🍊😋😍