Wednesday, March 31, 2021

What I Buy Wednesday

Well, my buying this week really is only about groceries. 

Here's the thing. Everyone---and I mean  EVERYONE raves about Trader Joe's. I only went one time a few years ago (or maybe last year--I cannot keep track of time). I went that one time and said I would never go back. 

The stress started as I pulled in to the parking lot. There isn't much parking. People and cars are coming and going everywhere. Just navigating the lot feels like you are in video game of Frogger (now there's a throwback)! That feeling continued as I entered the store. There didn't seem to be any rhyme or reason as to how the store was laid out or how people were shopping in it. Now, I don't know about you, but when I shop, it's sort of like I drive. I stay on the right with my cart. Not at TJ's. The carts were every which way. I ended up picking up a couple of produce items and then exiting, vowing I'd never go back---if, I could even get out of the parking lot!! OMGosh, it was a nightmare.

As they say, "never say never." Here it is a few (or one) year later and I'm back. I learned about some things that TJ's carries that I wanted to try. Sooo, I really planned this time. I went early---8:30 a.m. I parked easily. The store wasn't all that crowded and, due to Covid, they are limiting the number of people who can go inside at one time. I went with a list, but had absolutely no idea where I might find the items on it. So, I decided that I would just take my time and try to understand how the store was laid out. 

It's still pretty confusing to me---like assorted crackers above the ice cream case. I just decided I just needed to go with the flow and not try to figure out any sort of reasoning. I found a few of the items on my list. I'll save the rest for the next trip. In the meantime, I'll share what I found on this trip--none of which we've tried yet.
I've never heard of these before, but decided to give them a try. We've been having assorted lettuce wraps, so I thought these might be a nice change. They are only 15 calories for 2! Since they advertise they are great for tacos, I'm going to try them.
Another reason I wanted to go to TJ's was that I read that they had a pretty big selection of lower fat cheese. You just about cannot find low-fat cheese in Kroger or Publix--once in awhile, but not when you really need it! So stocking up on cheese was a real win. That bottle in the back is some homemade green goddess salad dressing that I impulse bought. We did have that on our salad yesterday. It didn't taste anything like green goddess at all, but it was pretty good for a super low-fat dressing--10 calories per tablespoon. I liked it well enough.
I scored pretty big in the freezer section. The shrimp stir fry and langoustinos were on my list. I used to get the langostinos at Red Lobster years ago. I have no idea what happened to them, but I'm happy to give them a try. As for the cauliflower gnocchi---Mindy recommend them. She said that they love them. Okay, I'll give them a try. As for the andouille chicken sausage, that was an impulse buy. I'm going to use it in jambalaya and see how I like it. 

Okay, so my second experience at Trader Joe's was not so bad. If I like most of what I bought, I'll be willing to give it another try. 

What about you? Are you a Trader Joe's shopper? If so, send me your favorite purchases. Sandy told me about some of their favorites, but since I didn't write them down, I don't remember. Of course, when she told me about them, I wasn't sure that I would ever go back anyway. I wouldn't say that I am "ga ga" over TJ's, but I'm not as against it as I once was. Just goes to show that you shouldn't make a judgement on just one experience! Ahem---Butch! I'll let it go at that!!


  1. I really don't like it when I can't find something in a supermarket. They tend to often move their shelves around here, probably to make people find things they didn't realise they 'needed' while they are trying to find their regular items' new location!
    I've never found a low fat cheese that I liked, so I tend to just have slightly less of the ordinary one which I know tastes good ;-)

  2. Cauliflower gnocchi is amazing— we get the frozen turkey bolognese to put on top of it for a quick weeknight meal.
    Other things we like:
    “unexpected cheddar” (block of cheese in cheese section)
    Orange chicken (frozen section)
    Açaí packets for smoothies (frozen section)
    Cauliflower pizza crust (frozen section)
    Buffalo hummus (dips/dressings-refrigerated)
    Reduced guilt guacamole (dips/dressings- refrigerated)
    Thai lime and chili cashews (nuts)
    Baked cheese crunchies (like cheetos- chip aisle)


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