Categories: Trader Joe’s

5 Dec 2011, Comments (4)

Trader Joe’s Spiced Apple Bread Mix

Author: Healthnuttxo


I’m all about homemade baking. I’d much rather bake chocolate chip cookies from scratch than buy the prepared versions. Something about the flavor, and the, ahem, love, that goes along with a homemade cookie. However, every now and then, a prepared version suffices. I spotted Trader Joe’s Spiced Apple Bread Mix at the store and couldn’t resist. Being the apple and carb fanatic I am (oh carbs…how I love thee) I figured this would be beyond delicious 🙂

So, I preheated the oven and got mixing.

Here’s the goods! It needed 2 eggs, milk (I used skim), butter, and the mix.

See the bumps?! Don't blame my mixing skills....it's actual dried apple pieces!

*insert baking time in oven here*

And…. fresh outta the oven!

Finished product. Everything is better with powdered sugar…. 😉

So….looks pretty. How’s it taste?

It was actually pretty good! It has a very deep flavor, and I could really taste the spices. All spice and cinnamon were the most predominant flavors, and there was almost a bit of a caramel flavor as well. The bread really reminded me of pumpkin too, for the dark color and the spiced flavor. The bread was sweet, but not over the top, so I think it’s acceptable to put the powdered sugar on for some added sweetness after I was suggested to do so.

It was soft and fluffy, with crispier edges, with dried apple pieces for added texture. I didn’t think it was super apple-y in flavor, but it still was an enjoyable bread. I think I’ll eat it again with a smear of peanut butter or butter after warming it up in the toaster oven.

It also lacked fiber and was a bit high in sugar, so this bread gets a total rating of 4 stars. Trader Joe’s really never disappoints me with their products, and I hope they never do!!

What about you? Do you make mostly homemade or store-bough/semi-prepared products? What are your favorites?!

And the nutritional facts. It was kind of high in sugar.

I love Trader Joe’s. It seems like everytime I go in there, there is a new and exciting product to try. I trust Trader Joe branded products, as for the most part, they have always been really delicious and rather nutritious as well. Today’s choice? Trader Joe’s Creamy Polenta with Spinach and Carrots. I wanted something carby to go along with my chicken(less) nuggets for dinner and veggies, and felt that this fit the bill.

So, I opened the bag and was a little surprised at what I got. Giant Hershey Kisses of polenta. Oh you’ll see.

(thats a serving by the way, not the whole bag)

The polenta itself was creamy yet slightly gritty from the cornmeal. It was buttery tasting and slightly cheesy tasting as well.  The carrot and spinach aspect of the dish sort of disappeared. I couldn’t really taste much spinach, and couldn’t really taste the carrots at all.

What the polenta really needed was a pinch of salt. I added a few grinds of sea salt and out came MUCH tastier flavors. Of course, the Dietician-to-be in me yelled at me, saying I didn’t NEED to add salt to this dish that already contained a good deal of sodium per serving. Not to mention I was also having chicken(less) nuggets AND ketchup which had salt in them too. But oh well. I did it. And well, I certainly dont regret it.

Overall, pretty good. It was rather high in saturated fat ( 7 grams!!), but  I would buy it again. The serving size was a tad small for 200 calories, but, I feel all carby dishes like pasta or rice have small serving sizes too. It went great with my other sides, but really did need just an extra pinch of salt! 4 stars

Do you like polenta? How do you prepare it?


27 May 2011, Comments (3)

Trader Joe’s Black Bean & Corn Enchilada

Author: Healthnuttxo

Tonight for dinner, I was in the mood for something tasty, and something different. I remembered I bought the Trader Joe’s Black Bean & Corn Enchilada dish a while ago, and searched and then dug it out of the back of my freezer (it’s a balancing act in there with all those boxes leaning on one another!!)

According to the package, these were “wheat free” and “dairy free”, as well as being made with “organic white corn tortillas”, which I liked.

I cooked em up in the microwave, and had some steamed broccoli on the side. In the dish itself, there was crispy edges on the side and plenty of sauce surrounding the two enchiladas. Here’s how it looked when transferred to my plate.

And, here’s how it looked when I cut the tortilla to see the inside filling. There was mostly corn, tofu and black beans, with a few peppers I believe as well.

As you can see, PLENTY of corn. There wasn’t a TON of filling, but I’d say a rather good amount. The corn was very fresh tasting, and the beans were soft. The tofu was my favorite part, even though it was so tiny! Literally itsy-bitsy squares of soft tofu. I think I also saw a few peppers or some other small green vegetable, but those were rather sporadic.

The filling was stuffed inside the corn tortillas, which were very soft, and easy to cut with my fork. I liked that, for even though growing up I remember my mother telling me it was improper table manners to cut with just your fork, it’s EASY! And if I can cut with just my fork, then why not? (;  (rest assured, If I was eating at a restaurant, I would practice proper table manners. No worries!!)

Lastly, the sauce. It was very flavorful, and left a hint of spice in my mouth even when I was done eating. I liked that there was a good amount of the sauce as well.

Overall, pretty tasty! I wish that there was more protein, as both enchiladas only provided 8 grams of protein. Even though I wasn’t all that hungry at the beginning of my meal, I was hungry shortly after eating. Next time I eat these, I’ll probably have more veggies and a side of protein as well. 4 stars

So, my question is….What’s your favorite Mexican entree? Any particular brand you like?


how PRETTY is this cover?!

I’m not a big fan of cream cheese. In fact, growing up I was the type of kid that when I got a bagel out at supermarket or whatever already prepared, I would smear off a good 3/4 of the cream cheese.  HOWEVER, when I heard about this product I just HAD to go try it and buy it! (or rather, buy it, then try it!) You know me, anything food with peanut butter, and I’m down for tasting!

Here’s what it looks like straight from the container, with some of it already eaten (guilty as charged).

When I first tasted it, I thought, ooh? Is that a slight coffee flavor? It had just the hint of coffee flavor. But as I kept eating it, the flavors progressed. I could certainly taste the cream cheese aspect of this product, slightly tart and that traditional cheesy cream cheese flavor. However, there certainly WAS a peanut butter flavor! It was really unique, but really tasty too. I wouldn’t say it was a peanut butter from the jar flavor, but a sweet peanut butter flavor. My favorite part was that there were actual pieces of chopped nuts in the spread as well!

Overall, really delicious. I loved it’s thickness, and the sweet aspect to it. I had this on an english muffin with one side peanut butter cream cheese, and one side jelly, and it was pretty good! However, my preferred method of consumption was with a spoon. And no, I’m not kidding (;

4 stars

Have you tried this cream cheese? If not, if you COULD try it, what would you eat it with?

Nutritionals!

4 Apr 2011, Comments (13)

Trader Joe’s Meatless Meatballs

Author: Healthnuttxo

Last week I had a dinner of some pasta with this yummy sauce and some of these Meatless Meatballs from Trader Joe’s.  These meatless meatballs are vegan and vegetarian. I cooked them in the oven first and then ended up transferring them to the sauce to let them simmer.

However, fresh out of the oven, they crisped up nicely.Here’s how some looked

I decided to note what they tasted like by themselves, instead of with the sauce, just in case the sauce influenced any other kind of flavor. Right away, I could tell I liked the taste and the texture. They were “meaty” in texture, as in somewhat dense, yet soft, and a bit chewy. They were quite salty by themselves (they had 560 mg of sodium per serving), and also had a bit of a “peppery” flavor. There was also a good amount of detectable spice flavor. Next I noticed how they tasted after I let them cook and simmer a bit in some of the sauce. They were SO soft, and absolutely delicious. I couldn’t believe how soft they got, and I certainly did not feel left out when the rest of my family had beef meatballs and I ate my Trader Joe’s Meatless Meatballs =)

Overall, really quite delicious. I even liked how they didn’t have an overpowering soy taste, which I sometimes expect with vegetarian style foods. I will definitely continue to eat and buy these! 4 1/2 stars

6 Meatless Meatballs are 140 calories, 6 grams of fat, 8 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, 1 gram of sugar and 16 grams of protein.

Whats your favorite vegetarian style product? I also REALLY like this Smart Bacon from LightLife!

2 Apr 2011, Comments (0)

Trader Joe’s Reduced Guilt Mac & Cheese

Author: Healthnuttxo

Dinner time rolled around the other night, and I only had one thing on my mind. Mac. &. Cheese. What better a time to try out something new for me that I bought at Trader Joe’s? The Reduced Guilt Mac & Cheese. Not only does it look awesome on the box, it was completely awesome in general. For instance, here’s how this delicious-ness came out of the microwave….

Hah. I find that extra blob of cheese quite amusing.

It even smelled good. So cheesy!

Although I was slightly disappointed at the fact there wasn’t a larger portion of mac & cheese, there was a decent amount. I rounded off the meal with some veggies (any guesses? Yea, it was broccoli…), and ate.

At first bite, I was impressed. It certainly was cheesy, but had that clumpy, “baked macaroni & cheese” flavor and consistency, with crispy edges on the outside of the carton. The noodles were chewy and slightly firm, but still quite tender. It also tasted surprisingly salty. There was 540 mg of sodium in this entree, which I don’t think is that high, but it in fact, did taste pretty salty!

Overall, 4 1/2 stars. Why not 5 stars? Well, it was relatively low in fiber, only 1 star, and wasn’t made with whole grain noodles, which I prefer over regular wheat. But still very tasty, and I would certainly get it again!

1 container is 270 calories, 6 grams of fat, 40 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 4 grams of sugar and 15 grams of protein.

What’s your favorite brand of macaroni & cheese? This may certainly be one of my new favorites!

I absolutely love almond milk. I mostly have it with cereal and fruit for breakfast before going to the gym in the morning. Although it’s low on protein, I find it’s lighter on my stomach than dairy is, and I have never had a problem with it.

So, the other day at Trader Joe’s, I went to get some Almond Milk and noticed that Trader Joe’s had their own version. I’m always up for trying new brands, so I put it in my cart and bought it.

Once home, I tried it two ways. By itself, and with cereal and fruit with 1 packet of stevia sweetener, seeing as it was the unsweetened variety.

By itself, it was really creamy tasting- almost like the cream you put in coffee. There really wasn’t much vanilla flavor otherwise, but I could have totally used it as is with my cereal.

Next, with the cereal/fruit/stevia, it had a  VERY strong vanilla flavor. I was amazed at how the sweetness I added really brought out the vanilla in this almond milk. So good! But very unique, I dont think I have ever had an almond milk with that much vanilla flavor (and I add the same amount of sweetness to my cereal every morning!)

Overall, pretty good! I would get it again. Some things to note that it stated on the carton was that this is “Gluten Free”, “Lactose Free”, “Dairy Free” and “Vegan”. It’s also a tad high in sodium, 180 mg, but I’m not overly concerned with my sodium levels so I think that’s a good level for me. 4 stars

1 cup is 40 calories, 3 grams of fat, 2 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar and 1 gram of protein.

What’s your favorite type of milk? rice? almond? oat? Please let me know! 🙂

So, I went to Trader Joe’s today (ME? Go to Trader Joe’s?! When does THAT happen… 😉 ) and bought these Country Potatoes with Haricots Verts & Wild Mushrooms. I’ve eaten it before, and pretty much loved it, so I feel it deserves some recognition here on HealthNuttxo!

I put the bag’s contents in a frying pan and cooked it – here’s how it looked in the pan.

Only one thing to say. MMM.

I remember the last time I bought these I cooked them up, people in my house were asking what smelled so good and if they could have some. It indeed, smells delicious!

After cooking up, I transferred it to my plate. There was potatoes, mushrooms, pieces of onions, and “Haricots Verts” as the package states. It was a bit greasy, but so tasty that I didn’t mind. The potatoes were thickly cut, some big pieces some small, and very soft and fluffy on the inside. The green beans were tender, flavorful, and delicious. Lastly the mushrooms, which I was ok about, some were big flat pieces and other pieces were more textured. Some of the pieces were very good, and others were kind of squishy in consistency. I could have eaten a different vegetable in place of the mushrooms, but they weren’t bad.

Overall, it was a bit salty (300 mg per serving), and had a garlicy and oniony flavor. So good! This one gets 4 1/2 stars, and will be a regular appearance in my grocery cart to buy at Trader Joe’s!

110 grams is 130 calories, 6 grams of fat (2 saturated), 18 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of fiber, 2 grams of sugar and 2 grams of protein.

What’s something you buy again and again at Trader Joe’s (if you have been there) ?

16 Mar 2011, Comments (4)

Trader Joe’s Maple Leaf Cookies

Author: Healthnuttxo

Maple is definitely one of my favorite flavors. I couldn’t imagine waffles or french toast without maple syrup, and I LOVE it with scrambled eggs. So when I saw these Maple Leaf Cookies at Trader Joe’s, I just had to buy them!

On the cover, it states that it has a “smooth and flavorful maple cream filling” along with having “no artificial colors or flavors” and “no preservatives”. It already sounded like my kind of cookie 😉

Here’s what one of the cookies looked like out of the box.

Mmmm. I love cookies with a thick filling!

I took a bite. Mmm. This was delicious. The cookie part was buttery and had that soft-crunchy texture. It reminded me kind of like a shortbread cookie. The cream was absolutely delicious as well. Very sweet, with a maple/vanilla flavor. Together it was just an awesome combination. This box of cookies will not last too long in my closet  ;]

Overall, another delicious find from Trader Joe’s. I would certainly buy these again. Perfect on it’s own, or I’m even tempted to try them with a smear of peanut butter or a glass of milk. A drawback would be the 2 grams of saturated fat per cookie and that it lacks fiber, but these really are delicious! 4 1/2 stars

1 cookie is 110 calories, 5 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 16 grams of carbohydrates, 8 grams of sugar, 0 grams of fiber and 1 gram of protein.

What’s your favorite maple-flavored thing?

14 Mar 2011, Comments (1)

Trader Joe’s Breaded Chickenless Nuggets

Author: Healthnuttxo

Last night, a dinner of mashed potatoes, broccoli, and pork was served. Well, at least for everyone else. I however, swapped the pork for something new I got at Trader Joe’s, the Breaded Chickenless Nuggets. I cooked these for about 15 minutes or so. Here’s how they looked

Although they seem kind of big in the picture, they actually were quite tiny. I would say they were actually a bit smaller than a standard chicken nugget. However, when I bit into one, I noticed that they were rather thick and had a “meaty” texture, which made up for the small size.

The texture was actually one of the best parts. There was no sogginess or weird chewiness involved, and it had the texture of really a chicken nugget. The breading didn’t add much flavor, but just provided a light crispness to the outside. At first, I totally thought they tasted identical to chicken nuggets. However, as I kept eating them, I did notice a slight soy taste, which I always think tastes slightly like a barbeque flavor (who knows?)

Overall, pretty tasty. Next time I’ll probably eat them with applesauce as well as the rest of my meal. I did like that 4 pieces has 5 grams of fiber and 12 grams of protein, and 0 grams of sugar. Impressive, and certainly filling! 4 stars

4 pieces is 130 calories, 5 grams of fat, 15 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of fiber, 0 grams of sugar and 12 grams of protein.

What’s your favorite thing from Trader Joe’s? I feel like everytime I go there is always something new to try!

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