When you walk in, you are greeted by fresh, cheerful flowers and a nice selection of pre-potted houseplants. These make great hostess gifts and I've bought two for myself. The containers are so stylish. Oh, and I forgot to mention the sanitation station for the shopping carts. Also, the carts are smaller than the average grocery cart. I like it because it feels more "market-y" than grocery store and they are easier to maneuver.
Some of my all-time favorite items are:
1. 99 cent GOOD pizza dough
2. Chicken/provolone/sundried tomato meatballs that takes my spaghetti from drab to fab on a regular basis
3. The bananas are 19 cents each...that's 5 bananas for under a dollar if you're counting. Parks frequently asks for a banana to eat while we shop.
4. The asadero marinated chicken. It's so delicious and I'll get it, lay it on my hot grill pan, slice up some onion and red pepper and we've got tasty fajitas in about 10 minutes. Delight.
5. The apple/carrot crushers. These are in the baking aisle and Parks loves them. They come in a cool pouch that you squeeze into your mouth.
6. The corn bread mix is great.
7. Hollandaise sauce. They sell this by the eggs and this pregnancy I've craved eggs benedict. I buy this sauce and enjoy eggs benny for weekday breakfasts in no time! It's great.
8. Cinnamon Rolls. Goodbye Pillsbury! You have forever been replaced in our home. These are the BEST cinnamon rolls out of a can you will ever eat. Jackson and I have eaten all manner of canned cinnamon rolls throughout our marriage (not a fact that I'm especially proud of) and these are by far the best. They have a great homemade taste to them. We now have them every Sunday morning as a little family tradition.
9. Honey-wheat pretzel sticks...tasty snack. Parks loves them.
10. Cheap, tasty wine! I haven't been enjoying this for the past 6 months but they have a great selection of very affordable and good tasting wine and beer. I look forward to enjoying a glass of wine in 3 months!
Those are my favorite products at Trader Joe's. I also love the sample station in the back. I usually always go see what the sample is and try it. They are usually great and twice I've actually purchased the products they were showcasing after trying them. The employees there are so friendly too, everyone smiles and asks if they can help you. It's like walking into an alternate universe. They also hand out stickers to all the kids and Parks loves getting his TJ stickers.
I will say if you are new to the TJ's, it may be slightly confusing or challenging at first. I felt like Whole Foods was like that at first too back when we lived in Charlottesville. You need to take your time and go when you aren't in a rush the first few times. If you would like a personal guide, I'm available.
What are your favorite grocery stores? Do you enjoy a trip to grocery store or loathe it?