Thanks to cult-classics like Cookie Butter and Candy Cane Joe Joe’s (both of which deserve to be staples in everyone’s kitchen, BTW), Trader Joe’s doesn’t always get the health-food store reputation that it deserves. America’s sweetheart of grocery stores not only offers organic options at much more affordable prices than other stores, but they recreate genius alternatives of some of our favorite foods with cleaner ingredients and plant-based nutrients. There’s a reason Trader Joe’s is a go-to for nutritionists, dietitians, and wellness experts alike. Whether you’re plant-based, vegan, gluten-free, or just looking to make your diet a little bit healthier, here are 15 easy, delicious, and oh-so-nutritious items at TJ’s that wellness experts pull of shelves:
1. Green Goddess Salad Dressing
Many salad dressings (especially creamy Green Goddess dressing) contain sneaky processed ingredients, added sugars, and unhealthy creams, so wellness experts love this list of clean ingredients (avocado, fresh herbs, apple cider vinegar, garlic, etc.). Bonus hack: it’s not just for your salads. Try it as a dip or pasta sauce to sneak in some nutrients for little picky eaters (and no shame if “little picky eaters” means you).
Try if: you’re over boring salad dressings.
2. Unsweetened Açai Puree Packets
While many açai bowls you can get at smoothie shops or restaurants contain added sugar, Trader Joe’s Açai Puree Packets are unsweetened. If “açai” sounds like a different language to you, the superfood has a wide range of health benefits and tastes delicious. Add to smoothies or make your own açai bowl and top with fruit, nut butter, and coconut shreds.
Try if: you’re a sucker for an Insta-worthy breakfast bowl.
3. Cauliflower Thins
Made of cauliflower (over 60 percent), eggs, parmesan cheese, and deactivated yeast, these cauliflower thins are a delicious alternative to bread, tortillas, etc., for anyone who’s avoiding gluten or trying to sneak in more veggies. Spread avocado on top, pile on veggies and hummus, or DIY your favorite sandwich for healthy, delicious, and easy meals.
Try if: you’ve never been able to say goodbye to sandwiches for lunch.
4. Organic Coconut Aminos
This healthy alternative to traditional soy sauce is free of gluten and soy, making it the perfect option for people with food sensitivities or allergies. It also has one-third the sodium content of traditional soy sauce, is plant-based (made from coconut), and certified organic, which are all labels that wellness experts cannot get enough of. Order it online here.
Try if: you’re a sushi lover who wants to make your takeout order a little healthier.
5. Riced Cauliflower Stir-Fry
This cult-favorite stir fry is made with cauliflower instead of rice. The plant-based rice is mixed with chopped veggies and nutritious flavors like tamari, sesame oil, and ginger. Simply reheat the mixture over a skillet, and you’re good to go! Pro tip: add egg, tofu, or chicken if you want a little extra protein.
Try if: you don’t time/energy/motivation to cook, but still want a delicious, plant-based meal.
6. Organic Ginger Turmeric Herbal Tea
With turmeric to reduce inflammation and ginger to aid in digestion, this tea is basically a wellness expert’s dream tea. And it’s certified organic!? You’re going to want to stock up on this tea before all the health nuts sell it out.
Try if: you want a warming go-to drink that doubles as an extra dose of nutrients.
7. Veggie Spirals
Whether you’re craving pasta with tomato sauce, pad thai, or any other noodle variation, the veggie spirals are the perfect way to squeeze in some extra nutrients. These pre-spiraled frozen packages make healthy eating easy; simply heat them up and add to any recipe or top with any sauce for a way healthier version of your favorite noodle dish. You can either use them as a replacement for noodles or add them to the noodles you already love.
Try if: you live for a good noodle dish.
8. Hi-Protein Veggie Burger
With an impressive 26g of protein, a simple ingredients list, and 40 percent of the daily goal for iron, these plant-based vegan burgers are a dream for meat-free diets. The texture is more like a falafel than a chewy burger, which means you can eat with your favorite burger toppings or put it into salads and wraps to get some extra clean protein into your lunches. Order it online here.
Try if: you want to add more protein in your diet.
9. Organic Tahini
The only ingredient in this creamy butter alternative is ground sesame seeds. High in fiber, protein, iron, magnesium, and a variety of other nutrients, tahini is officially a staple in health experts’ kitchens. Add it to salad dressings to make them creamier, use it in baked goods recipes to up the nutrition, or drizzle over fruit for a decadent (and healthy!) treat. Order it online here.
Try if: you want to hack your baked goods.
10. Kale Gnocchi
Of all the infamous Trader Joe’s gnocchi (cauliflower, sweet potato, chocolate), the Kale Gnocchi has got to take the (very healthy) cake. With a simple ingredients list of potato starch, chickpea flour, sea salt, olive oil, and, of course, kale, it’s the perfect way to sneak in some extra greens.
Try if: you never remember to eat your greens.
11. Juice Shots
You already know that fancy juice shots are a must-have in the fridges of bougie wellness experts and health influencers. The problem for us normal people? Juice shots can be hella expensive (and for literally one sip…?). Luckily, the shots at Trader Joe’s are the cheapest I’ve ever found, while still being certified organic and full of superfoods and nutrients, making them wellness-expert approved.
Try if: you’re looking to upgrade your wellness game.
12. Chocolate Hummus
I know what you’re thinking: chocolate…hummus? While I fully trust and respect the Trader Joe’s powers that be (AKA whoever names the genius products), I think of this less as a chocolate hummus and more of a chocolate frosting or dip that sneaks in some healthy ingredients. With a base of cooked chickpeas and tahini, dessert just got a lot more nutritious. Use as a frosting for baked goods or as a dip with apple slices when you’re craving something sweet.
Try if: you have a serious sweet tooth.
13. Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Perhaps one of the most beloved Trader Joe’s products of all time, the cauliflower pizza crust revolutionizes drunk food and pizza cravings by replacing greasy crusts and processed flour with nutrient-dense cauliflower and gluten-free cornflour. Try the Margherita variety for the days where “cooking” means sticking something in the oven, or the bare crust to get creative with toppings.
Try if: you live off of frozen pizzas (AKA everybody RN)
14. Organic Popcorn with Olive Oil
The only three ingredients in this delicious snack are popcorn, extra virgin olive oil, and sea salt. Made with organic kernels and olive oil (instead of more processed oils or butters), this is basically as clean as a store-bought popcorn is going to get. Plus, it contains fiber, protein, and healthy fats. Order it online here.
Try if: you want a nutrient-dense replacement for potato chips.
15. Vegan Kale, Cashew, and Basil Pesto
Because even wellness experts love pesto. Not only is this option dairy-free, but it’s also more nutritious than the traditional version by incorporating kale and cashews in addition to the usual ingredients like basil, lemon juice, and olive oil. Use the decadent sauce on top of bruschetta, with your favorite pasta, or as a dip for veggies.
Try if: you need a go-to sauce that’s as healthy as it is delicious.
What are your go-to healthy Trader Joe’s products? More