Last year, I reviewed a bunch of fall items at Trader Joe’s, and it ended up being one of my most popular posts the entire season! I wanted to do the same thing this year, but try out some new items that I haven’t reviewed before. I accidentally went a little crazy in Trader Joe’s… I don’t know if a lot of these items were brand new to the shelves, but I couldn’t resist grabbing a ton of them to try. We ended up testing more than 15 items… and there were a lot of wins! Hopefully you can find something that piques your interest, too. 😉 So let’s get started!
This pumpkin butter is delicious! It contains a lot of sugar, so I try to use only a small amount at a time. The good news is that there’s a lot of flavor packed into a small amount. I have two favorite ways to eat it: the first is to add a spoonful to plain Greek yogurt and top it with apple slices and granola – it tastes like fall in a bowl. Secondly, spoon a little bit over some cream cheese on a freshly toasted bagel for a delicious treat. 😛
Fall Leaf Corn Tortilla Chips paired with Fall Harvest Salsa
I loooove this pairing as an afternoon snack! The tortilla chips taste like normal tortilla chips, but they are cut out in the shape of fall leaves, which makes them so much fun to eat. If you have kids, I’m sure they would love these! The real winner here is the Fall Harvest Salsa, though. This salsa has great, real ingredients you can pronounce like pumpkin, tomatoes, onions, apples, butternut squash and bell peppers. It’s a little fruitier than your typical tomato-based salsa, but I really love the sweet autumnal taste of it. Beware: it’s pretty addicting!
I was surprised to find that I absolutely loved this Pumpkin Ravioli. I’ve had other ravioli from Trader Joe’s that I wasn’t crazy for, so I wasn’t sure how these would turn out. But wow! They were amazing. They’re filled with a creamy mix of pumpkin and ricotta cheese… it is quite dense and the texture almost felt meaty to me. The pumpkin is sweetened with honey and brown sugar, and all of the flavors meld together into the perfect fall dish. We topped these off with a little of the Autumnal Harvest Creamy Pasta Sauce for a satisfying, delicious lunch. Even my husband, who is not a pumpkin fan, loved these as well.
Pumpkin Butternut Squash Bisque
This is a soup in the refrigerated section of Trader Joe’s (I found it near the salads). I LOVED this soup! It tasted incredibly fresh and flavorful, and I could taste both hints of pumpkin and butternut squash, without either being too overwhelming. It has really good ingredients and only 100 calories per cup. The next time I go to Trader Joe’s, I plan to stock up on this soup, as I love having it for lunch!
Have you ever thought that a food item was so good that you actually wouldn’t buy it again? Because you lose all self-control around that said food item? These Pumpkin Spice Pretzel Thins are that food item for me. The saltiness of the pretzel combined with the sweetness of the yogurt covering is absolutely addicting. There is a slight hint of pumpkin spice flavoring, but it’s not super overwhelming. The serving size is only five pretzels (for 150 calories), but it was almost impossible to stop at five every time, so I ended up eating the entire bag in just a couple of days. And for that reason, I probably wouldn’t buy them again, even though I really, really loved them! If you have some strong self-restraint, then definitely buy these. I mean, either way, you won’t be sorry – they taste amazing!
Okay this one is a repeat from last year 🙂 But we just loved them so much last year, we had to get them again! I made them recently on a Saturday morning (that also happened to be a Clemson game day). I love these because both my husband and I agree that they’re amazing – and Chris doesn’t really like sweets! The pumpkin flavor of these is not too overwhelming, and they make our whole house smell good. If you don’t eat them all, they’re easy to store in the fridge and re-heat in the microwave whenever you’re craving one. I wish I had picked up two or three packages of them!
This is another favorite from last year! We went over to our friends’ house to watch the Clemson game and I wanted to bring a gluten-free treat (my friend is gluten-free). This was the perfect item to bring… everyone loved it, but there was still some left over so I was able to bring it home and enjoy it for breakfast over the next several mornings. The bread is easy to make and tastes great by itself, but I like adding mix-ins or toppings to make it taste even more homemade. Instead of adding chocolate chips this year, I decided to make a brown sugar oatmeal topping, and the combination was AMAZING! Here’s the exact recipe I used: combine 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, 1 Tbsp brown sugar, 1 Tbsp melted butter, 1/4 tsp cinnamon and 1/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice in a small bowl. Sprinkle it on top of your unbaked bread or muffins and bake like usual.
I tried these last year and really enjoyed them, but after tasting them again this year, I have to move them over to this category! They are really not THAT bad, but I wouldn’t buy them again. I tried a couple this year and they tasted overwhelmingly artificial to me. I’m not sure if they’ve changed the ingredients, or maybe my taste buds are more picky! I’m not sure why they tasted so artificial, but I think it’s likely due to the orange dye in the vanilla bean cream filling… I’m not sure. Either way, I ate one and then had to throw the entire box away.
If you guys follow me on Instagram at all, then you probably already know that I LOVE the vanilla Hold the Cone ice cream cones from Trader Joe’s. I have been pretty addicted to them during pregnancy, and I usually always have a box in my freezer for when the craving hits. I was super excited to try to the pumpkin ginger flavor, as so many people rave about them! However, I HATED these! You know those really strong smelling pumpkin candles from Bath and Body Works? Now, imagine biting into one of those. It had a waxy, artificial taste that I could only equate to eating a Bath and Body Works Candle. Weird, I know. I think I’m in the minority here, but I really did not like them! I did not even finish the ice cream cone before I tossed it, and the box, away in the trash.
I didn’t hate this one at all, but I’m listing it as a “miss” because I wouldn’t buy it again! While I appreciate that it’s organic, these were nothing special. I couldn’t really taste the pumpkin spice element at all, and they were so hard to bite into that they hurt my front teeth! They tasted okay, but if I’m going to splurge on some chocolate, I want it to be delicious, indulgent chocolate… not these lackluster granola bites.
What are your favorite Trader Joe’s fall foods?! Let us know in the comments!