Top 13 Plant-Based Trader Joe’s Staples
Trader Joe’s has everything you need, from organic produce to veggie-burgers, so check out this guide to the top 13 plant-based Trader Joes’s staples.
If you’re like me, you just can’t live without Trader Joe’s. That cool, little food market has everything you need, from organic produce to veggie-burgers to soy ice cream to hummus, all with an easy-access, hip-casual vibe. Their plant-based offerings have always been fabulous. That’s why we’re sharing our ultimate guide to the top 13 plant-based Trader Joe’s staples.
Top 13 Plant-Based Trader Joe’s Staples
1. Trader Joe’s Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus
I love hummus, especially with cilantro and jalapeño! There’s just something about that flavor combination that feels really exotic, and brightens up a meal or snack. This delightful twist on the traditional bean spread makes a fantastic pairing with flatbread/pita chips, tacos, or for on-the-go plant-based sandwiches with whole grain bread, tomato and lettuce for something fresh and filling!
2. Nutritional Yeast
I know what you’re thinking, “Yeast, really?” Yes really! These fabulous flakes are so versatile and pack an insane nutrition punch, especially for plant-based eaters. Two tablespoons of nutritional yeast can contain up to 8 grams of protein, which is more than one ounce of beef or one large egg. Not to mention that serving also contains over 100% of your daily need for vitamin B12, an essential nutrient that people who consume a plant-based diet may be seriously lacking in. I love to enjoy nutritional yeast sprinkled over popcorn, mixed into vegan pesto, in cashew cheese, or in a faux “mac’n’cheeze”.
3. Organic Chia Seeds
I am forever amazed by the capacity for meal and snack combos with chia seeds! Want to add a small crunch to your oatmeal? Chia. Looking for an egg substitute? Chia. Want a dessert or snack packed with omega 3’s? CHIA. Need to pass your finals? Pour some chia on ‘em! Just kidding, but seriously these little seeds are packed with fiber and energy as well as essential fatty acids you need for top-notch brain function. Maybe it actually CAN help you pass your finals then? Check out these recipes for super berry chia pudding and chocolate chia pudding.
4. Everything But the Bagel Seasoning
There is a reason this condiment is so popular on social media these days! This seasoning makes the perfect flavor addition to avocado toast, but it also can be used for so much more. Use this low-sodium seasoning to add a new flavor to your stir-fry, baked veggies or home-made breads (this would be amazing sprinkled on fresh-baked whole grain buns or pretzels, don’t you think?).
5. Organic Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cup with Chia and Flax Seeds
There’s that chia again! Have I mentioned that I’m obsessed with chia? I usually try to make sure I’ve got breakfast prepared for busy mornings, but life doesn’t always go as planned and these little ones are a fantastic staple to keep around the house for those early mornings at the gym or on your way to work/class when you just need to grab something. Packed with fiber from the oats and seeds and just the right amount of sweetness from the maple, this is perfect to start your engine and keep it running all morning.
6. Raw California Walnut Halves and Pieces
Walnuts take their brainy-shape in line with all of the brain-healthy omega-3 fatty acids they contribute to, no matter what you choose to add them to. You can grab a handful of these beauties for a simple snack, toss them into a salad, or try them in this delicious muffin recipe!
7. Trader Joe’s Creamy, Unsalted Peanut Butter
I am a nut butter fiend. Nut butters are great sources of plant-based protein and healthy fats, plus they are one of the most versatile ingredients I use. I use nut butter in everything from my morning oats to a Thai peanut stir-fry.
8. Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
9. Frozen Sweet Potato Frites
I love to keep these handy for nights when I’m craving fries, but I don’t have the time or attention span to make them from start to finish with love. They’re also perfect to have with a plant-based burger, like this Chipotle Black Bean Quinoa recipe, for a nutrient-dense spin on an American classic: burger and fries.
10. Frozen Colorful Carrot Coins
These are fast and easy additions to so many meals, from stir-fry to a veggie side dish. Adding color to your diet can sometimes be a challenge, but Trader Joe’s makes it easy with their selection of colorful, frozen produce.
11. Frozen Shelled Edamame
Edamame is a delicious, plant-based, protein-rich addition to salads, stir-fry, spring rolls and soups. I like to get the shelled edamame for convenience, but TJ’s also carries edamame in the shell if you prefer for snacks or side dishes. Frozen, shelled edamame is perfect for making Ancient Grain Veggie Burgers, just let them de-frost first! You can also add them on top of a delicious plant-powered grain bowl for an additional source of protein. Learn more about edamame here.
12. Roasted Seaweed Snacks
I love these salty, crispy little treats. Seaweed has both soluble and insoluble fiber, which makes it a great helper to your gut bacteria, not to mention these snacks make a great substitution for chips and come conveniently packaged in portable 2-serving containers! Some for now and some for later.
13. Frozen Broccoli Florets
As with the previously-mentioned frozen vegetables I ALWAYS keep frozen broccoli in my house. Broccoli is SO versatile, it can be baked for a vegetable side dish, added to soups, Asian-inspired entrees, pasta dishes, casseroles and so much more. Broccoli is packed with vitamin C and even has a little bit of plant-based protein in it to boot!
For other tips on plant-based eating, check out the following:
Written by Kennedy Johnston, Dietetic Intern, with Sharon Palmer, MSFS, RDN