It’s fall at Trader Joe’s – IYKYK.
I’ve already made the 45-minute trek to my closest store twice. I might go again this week, because every time I scroll Instagram there’s something else I didn’t see on my last trip. We’ll see if the TJ’s fomo gets to me?
Anyways, here are some of the things I’ve tried out of my Trader Joe’s Fall Haul so far. Hopefully this helps to weed out some of the items that aren’t worth the hype, or to give you some inspiration for when you make your trip.
Oh, and I did include nutrition info for most of the items – I am a dietitian after all! But this is just for informational purposes, so don’t come for me over certain ingredients or because you think something has too much sugar. These products aren’t everyday foods for most of us, so keep that in mind and enjoy
Spaghetti Squash Spirals – 9/10
Intimidated by actual spaghetti squash? College me who almost chopped her hand off cutting into one of those bad boys knows how you feel.
Whether you’re not confident in your knife skills or just not sure how to make spaghetti squash taste good, these spirals have you taken care of. Don’t expect a spot-on spaghetti texture, but these are a fun way to get more veggies on your plate.
Vegan Buffalo Dip – 8/10
I know this isn’t a “seasonal” item but it was in my haul and I’m trying it for the first time! And it’s great for football season, which is in the fall. We’re saying it counts as a fall item, okay?!
I was skeptical about this vegan alternative to my beloved buffalo chicken dip. Would the flavor satisfy my craving? Would the texture make me gag? Having a cauliflower base can really go either way and the creaminess we all love about the original dip is hard to match sans dairy.
And guess what? It’s GOOD. Of course it’s obvious that there’s no chicken so it lacks a little heartiness, but the texture is still good and the flavor is a perfectly spicy. I really enjoyed it with the Fall Leaf Tortilla Chips (yes I know they’re just tortilla chips but they are CUTE so I can’t resist).
Pumpkin Spice Granola Bark – 7/10
These are like crunchy granola bars topped with a layer of dark chocolate. I liked them, but I think I’d like a non-pumpkin flavor even more. The chocolate also makes them pretty rich, so one piece was plenty to satisfy my craving for something sweet.
Gluten-Free Pumpkin Pancake Mix – 10/10
You need this, whether you’re gluten-free or not. The pumpkin flavor is subtle though, which I liked. If you’re looking for pancakes that taste like straight up fall, this might not be a 10 for you. Or maybe you can just add some pumpkin butter on top to give it more pumpkin flavor?
These got nice and fluffy when I made them and the recommended serving size of 2 pancakes was actually pretty filling. You could absolutely sub a little mix for some protein powder if you want to bulk these up even more.
Autumnal Harvest Creamy Pasta Sauce – 8/10
This is one Trader Joe’s fall item that I’ll be stocking up on. I love that it’s a touch sweeter than traditional pasta sauce, and how it’s perfectly creamy (but not too creamy).
Organic Vanilla Bean Paste – 10/10
Baking season is upon us, and this is my holy grail. Don’t be intimidated by it like I was for a long time! All you have to do is add the same amount of paste to a recipe as you would vanilla extract. It gives your recipe the loveliest rich vanilla flavor. And it adds those little flecks of vanilla bean… you know the ones that you see and just know something is super tasty.
My only suggestion: This bottle is small, especially for the price. I’m not using this to bake cookies on a random Tuesday. I’m saving this for the holiday baked goods and anything else I feel is deserving of “the good stuff.”
Butternut Squash Mac n’ Cheese – 10/10
Yes, 1000x yes. This is a fave for me year after year.
Pumpkin Waffles – 6/10
First, I need you to know that I am really picky about freezer waffles. I’m not a fan of Eggo – they’re thin and soggy to me. And….these remind me of Eggo. The texture just isn’t 100% it for me, and I didn’t get much pumpkin flavor. Maybe if I spread a little pumpkin butter on top?
Overall, these are fine if you’re looking for something convenient. I’ll probably make my own version.
Honey Crisp Apple Cinnamon Greek Yogurt – 6/10
First, let’s talk flavor. The sweetness was enough to balance the tartness of the Greek yogurt, and I liked the added touch of cinnamon. It’s made with whole milk, which I actually prefer for a Greek yogurt. The added fat makes it more filling and satisfying!
Nutrition-wise, 10 grams of added sugar might be more than you’d normally go for in a yogurt cup. Personally, I go for 10 grams or less and I honestly don’t stress a lot over something like this, that I’m probably not eating on a daily basis. 10 grams of protein is typical for Greek yogurt, but of course I love to see it. Combined with the fat, this is a great on-the-go snack that will actually keep you full. If you’re eating it for breakfast, top it with some fruit and nuts and/or seeds to bulk it up a little more and add fiber.
Pumpkin Greek Yogurt – 5/10
I visited Seattle a few years ago, where I experienced Ellenos yogurt for the first time. It was October, so I had the absolute HONOR of sampling their pumpkin flavor. I’m still thinking about it years later (Ellenos, I’m begging you to come to Indiana!)
When I saw this flavor at TJ’s, I hoped that it would remind me of Ellenos. As you probably guessed…it did not.
It was runny (notice this one is nonfat), overly sweet and really needed more warmth – cinnamon, ginger…something? I shared this with my 5 year-old, who LOVES yogurt (even plain Greek) and he didn’t try to steal the whole thing. And that says a lot.
Pumpkin Overnight Oats – 8/10
This one surprised me because I’m really not an overnight oats fan. It’s mostly a texture thing but I also just prefer my oats warm and cozy.
However, I guess I’m making an exception for these. Maybe the warm spices make up for the fact that the oats themselves aren’t warm? Idk but I’d definitely eat these again. I forgot to take a pic of the nutrition info (blame it on feeling awkward AF taking pics in the store), but here’s a rundown:
200 calories, 5g fat, 33g carbs, 6g fiber, 12g sugar (0g added), 5g protein
Ingredients: Water, pumpkin puree, date paste, rolled oats, almond butter, cinnamon, sea salt, nutmeg
I’d eat this for breakfast with some apple slices topped with an extra drizzle of almond butter, and/or some eggs on the side.
Do we need a Trader Joe’s Fall Haul pt. 2?!
Should I make another trip?! What other items have you seen that you’re wondering about?
Be sure to check out my list of Trader Joe’s staples too – these are my non-seasonal faves that stick around all year!