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Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - June 2014 [OLD]

Summer is right around the corner-grills will be ablaze, patios will be lounged on until the wee hours of the morning, and pools will host daily cannonball competitions.

What have you tried recently and would you rate it a YAY, MEH, or NAY?

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  1. YAY! Toasted pumpkin seed oil, $9.99. Appears to be made by la tourangelle, like the holiday nut oil trio. I used it to dress a grain salad, and it was fantastic. Can't wait to try it in other applications.

    3 Replies
    1. re: ohmyyum

      Silly question, but does the oil taste like toasted pumpkin seeds?

      1. re: Boston_Otter

        It does taste nutty and delicious. It's a specialty in southeastern Austria and in Slovenia. The salad bars in Slovenia always had it. A common dressing for the salad was pumpkin see oil and yogurt. I grew to like it and created my own concoction when I moved back home.
        Pumpkin seed oil, yogurt, pumpkin seeds, and cut-up celery.
        It can also be used to dress a pumpkin soup.

        1. re: shoo bee doo

          It also tends to be a bit darker than other oils, but yes, very delicious and unique tasting. Love in salads.

          --Dommy!

    2. YAY.......TJ's is one of the few places I can find Grade B Maple syrup. It's supposed to be for baking, but I like its richer flavor and thickness

      11 Replies
      1. re: FriedClamFanatic

        Our Publix sells Springtree Grade B Pure Maple syrup...8.5 ounce bottle for around $5 or $6? Can't remember what I paid for it...will have to compare TJ's to it next time I'm there...thanks!

        1. re: Val

          that would be a good price! a rough rule of thumb, GradeB should be 70-80% of the price of Grade A, regardless of vendor.

          TJ's sell a bigger amount....but not that cheaply

          1. re: FriedClamFanatic

            I thought grade b was more expensive than grade a, am I mistaken?

              1. re: angelo04

                Grade B usually is 20% cheaper.at least

                1. re: angelo04

                  I've never seen Grade B sold cheaper than Grade A, but I live somewhere where I buy it straight from the producers (whether this means I'm getting a good deal on Grade A or gouged on Grade B, I don't know). My experience in the last eight years living in New Hampshire has been that the price of Grade B relative to Grade A has fluctuated a lot year to year - demand has gone up (I grew up making maple syrup, and few people had any idea what Grade B was back then, much less sought it out) and the supply doesn't always match it. I paid at least $5 more for a half gallon, two or three years ago when the sugaring season was truncated. A couple times I've missed it entirely and had to wait for the next season.

                  Looking at prices online for a few places, I see that at the moment, they're all selling A and B at the same price. If I had to guess, I suppose I've probably been paying a premium for the privilege of knowing where my syrup comes from, like with local apples, strawberries, etc. But I can at least confirm you're not crazy for thinking Grade B costs more.

                  1. re: okaycheckitout

                    I heard from some friends in Vermont that part of the reason for these fluctuations has to do with the naming - calling the darker syrup "Grade B" implies that it's inferior to or less desirable than the lighter stuff. As real maple aficionados know, that's not the case at all - so in places where people tend to be "in the know" (like maple-producing regions), Grade B costs the same or more than Grade A, typically. Elsewhere, Grade A is more expensive.

                    All of this is soon to become moot, though, from what I hear - Vermont is going to be changing their labeling soon (to be more in line with Canadian/International standards), and I would assume the other maple producing regions in the US will do so as well. Don't worry, though, we'll still be able to get the dark stuff! It will just be called Dark/Very Dark or Strong/Robust. http://www.thekitchn.com/no-more-grad...

                    1. re: okaycheckitout

                      Lucky you!..when I lived in Milford NH, local syrup was an option....and a very welcomed one, regardless of price.

                      Nowadays, I get what I can get.......and the Grade B tends to be cheaper, but damn near impossible to find

              2. re: FriedClamFanatic

                I agree - grade B is my fave!!! Have not tried it from TJ's but I love grade B in general.

              3. Yea - Organic Polenta (shelf stable). Cooked and packed in a plastic skin like a thick sausage. Cut off a couple of slices, sauté, and have as a breakfast side dish.

                Yea - Roasted and Salted Sunflower Seeds. At $2 for a 16-oz bag, a bargain alternative to nuts as a snack. A bit heavy on the salt (TJ also sells roasted and unsalted sunflower seeds, same price), but I like salt.

                Yea - Skipjack Tuna in Water (canned). This smaller fish is promoted as a sustainable alternative to big tuna, which are being overfished. Tastes like tuna to me! It would be better if packed in olive oil.

                Meh - Multigrain Country Bread. Currently TJ's cheapest sandwich loaf. Firm even texture, but not very different from white bread in flavor, and unbleached white flour is the top ingredient.

                Yea - Shepherd's Bread. Another firm-textured sandwich loaf, a couple of dimes more expensive but worth it. Pleasant wheaty flavor that goes well with pretty much anything. Not for fans of Wonder Bread.

                Nay - Steak & Ale Pies (frozen). All the fat and cholesterol aside, the crust is tough and neither it nor the filling have much flavor. Reminds me of the bad old days of English pub grub, which may actually have been better.

                Older items featured in the current Fearless Flier:

                Yea - Sweet Potato Frites (frozen). Delicious. You don't have to fry them yourself, just heat them up in the toaster oven.

                Yea - Vegetable Masala Burgers (frozen). Really vegetable patties, with potatoes as the main veg and peas, corn, green beans, etc. added. A staple for me since my very first visit to TJ's. I wouldn't eat them in a bun as that would mute the flavor.

                Nay - Uncured Chicken Hot Dogs (refrigerated). Not a good substitute for beef or pork; the flavor is off and the texture is rubbery and floppy. The uncured beef hot dogs are great; accept no substitutes.

                32 Replies
                1. re: John Francis

                  Wholeheartedly agree on the chicken hot dogs and same goes with the turkey hot dogs that they sell - neither are very good. I cannot eat beef and am always struggling to find a decent hot dog substitute. Oh how I wish they would start to carry bison hot dogs!!!

                  1. re: littleflower

                    TJ's chicken sausages are good. Maybe a little thick to eat in a bun, but we can adjust. :-)

                    1. re: John Francis

                      I agree with you on the chicken sausages. I'd like them a whole lot better if they were organic but whatever. They were sampling them in my store on Friday and I was so impressed I ended up with eight packages in my cart!! Two packages cooked up with one jar of the marinara, lots of peppers and onion and it is sausage sandwich heaven, They used the frozen pepper/onion mix and no sauce.

                  2. re: John Francis

                    I regard the Veggie Masala Burgers as the best hash brown potatoes ever, so I also use them topped with a fried egg and a sausage patty, on a bun, as a breakfast sandwich.

                    1. re: greygarious

                      And speaking of hash browns, another golden oldie:

                      Yea - Hashbrowns (frozen). Not the bagged product, 10 patties to a package. Ten minutes baking in a toaster oven or less than that sautéing on the stovetop and breakfast is 1/3 ready.

                        1. re: John Francis

                          I was just thinking about those! I see them in TJs and they remind me of McDonalds hashbrowns which are a weakness of mine. Will definitely pick some up.

                          1. re: Fromageball

                            Those are pretty good. I took some on a trip and cooked them on a flat top griddle on a propane barbeque at the drag races and they turned out nice and crispy on the outside.

                            1. re: Fromageball

                              Amyone know how they compare to the supermarket brand, Cavendish? I used to like the onion version but nowadays I only see the plain ones. They are in a frozen sleeve, I think 10 per package. Same size/shape as McD's.

                          2. re: greygarious

                            I just tried these tonight - really good! I agree that they are like the inside of a samosa.

                            1. re: greygarious

                              I wound up buying them today, and my lunch was one of these under a fried egg. Dee-lish!

                            2. re: John Francis

                              The Multigrain Country Bread is awful. Like fldhkybnva, bread is an every so often treat, and this was dreck.

                              The Masala burgers are good. Sad I can no longer eat them. They are kind of like naked samosas.

                              Thanks for the heads up on the sunflower seeds. I love them sprinkled over coleslaw or a salad with bleu cheese dressing.

                              1. re: MplsM ary

                                I have tried a few different kinds of TJ's breads and the only one that I have liked is the Tuscan Pane. I personally have only tried the regular Tuscan Pane but have heard rave reviews on both the regular and whole wheat version. It is especially good when toasted!!

                                1. re: MplsM ary

                                  If you like a bit of a heartier wheat, the Sprouted Wheat and Sprouted 7-Grain are both great. Similar to Ezekiel, but in my opinion, better tasting. They freeze really well too.

                                  1. re: huntandharvest

                                    I like both, also - AND because I don't use bread that much, I do also keep mine in the freezer. PERFECT way to not waste and it defrosts the same as a fresh!

                                    1. re: huntandharvest

                                      I really also love TJ's Sprouted 7 Grain bread...great stuff!

                                      1. re: Val

                                        Makes a stellar grilled cheese ( along with the double cream Gouda)!

                                    2. re: MplsM ary

                                      Why can't you eat the masala burgers? Look up veg cutlet or aloo tikki recipes if you'd like to try rolling your own version.

                                      1. re: Scrofula

                                        I guess I could eat the masala burgers for a special, higher carb treat. But they'd probably sit for a while.

                                    3. re: John Francis

                                      Thanks for taking one for the team RE" Steak and Ale Pies... that was my fear...

                                      And you are correct, the Skipjack tuna is wonderful! I still prefer some of the higher end tunas, but for the price, it's great for tuna pasta salads and anything you really want a nice meaty canned tuna...

                                      --Dommy!

                                      1. re: Dommy

                                        I rather enjoyed the steak and ale pie I had this morning. I added a bit of butter, salt, and pepper. I probably don't know what a good one tastes like since I've never had one.

                                        1. re: shoo bee doo

                                          I agree about the steak and ale pies- I have had some of the best of many different cuisines in the world, but one of the few I have not have much of is British. My SO and I both love these things- in fact, we are going to get more shortly before they disappear.

                                      2. re: John Francis

                                        Stupid question (?): what do you do with the rest of the polenta if you just slice off a couple of slices? I'd like to do this but I'm not sure if it can be stored...

                                        And the vegetable masala burgers are delicious (I wouldn't have expected them to be, but they were sampling them at my local TJ's--now a must-buy!).

                                        1. re: wintersweet

                                          Good question re polenta. Without preservatives, once opened I would think it would spoil pretty quickly...no?

                                            1. re: wintersweet

                                              I haven't actually done it, but it seems like it would freeze well?

                                              1. re: wintersweet

                                                In my refrigerator, which runs very cold, the polenta lasted 2 full weeks. I sliced it all at once, then put it into a rubbermaid container. I finished the package last night and it still tasted as good as it did when first opened. I didn't notice any texture change before cooking, either.

                                                1. re: wintersweet

                                                  I put what's left in a ziplock bag and store it in the refrigerator. Seems to keep indefinitely, though I've always used it up in a week or so.

                                                2. re: John Francis

                                                  Those veg masala burgers have been my favorite for years...!! I have them ontop of a salad most often but also loved them chopped up as a taco filling

                                                  1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                    Just had my first one tonight...Definite YAY!

                                                    1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                      Taco filling is a great idea! I love them in a pita stuffed with iceberg, tomatoes, sweet onions and tzatziki or crumbled in a butter lettuce wrap as faux laab.

                                                    2. re: John Francis

                                                      I agree on the steak and ale pies. I am British and these pies are a poor take on the idea. There was almost no meat present. I thought the gravy was OKish and too much veggies in them. If price is an issue I would rather pay a dollar more to have a decent amount of chunky steak in there and a more prominent ale flavour. Also, British steak pies tend to more often have flaky pastry, not the shortcrust. But I do applaud TJs for trying to introduce USA to British style pies.

                                                    3. New to me,fresh organic lemons 5 in a pkg, for $1.99 I believe. I cut a half every morning and seep it in hot water for 2 minutes like tea. I love that they are organic yet reasonably priced.

                                                      www.saffron215.blogspot.com

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: mcel215

                                                        That IS a good price ...organic lemons are usually $1 a piece if you can even find them!

                                                      2. Haven't cracked it open yet, but I purchased raw fermented sauerkraut in the refrigerator section!

                                                        40 Replies
                                                        1. re: Savour

                                                          That's exciting news! Time to grill some brats or kilbasa to go with that kraut.

                                                          1. re: Savour

                                                            Do you mind checking the ingredients list? Is it anything other than cabbage and salt? Also, how is it packaged?

                                                            1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                              Fingers crossed for no preservatives...I can't find a real sauerkraut anywhere

                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                I'd be very surprised if there were added preservatives. Although preservatives very rarely sneak into a TJ's product, the company has a pretty strict no preservatives policy.

                                                                1. re: josephnl

                                                                  The policy is "artificial preservatives" which leaves a lot of wiggle room. There are plenty of natural preservatives.

                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                    Very interesting. Their written policy states: "No artificial flavorings or preservatives". This wording is ambiguous. It could mean "no artificial flavorings and no preservatives" or as you suggest it could mean "no artificial flavorings and no artificial preservatives", meaning that "natural preservatives" are allowed. Has anyone tried to definitively clarify this with TJ's?

                                                                    1. re: josephnl

                                                                      That's a tough one to mail down. Sugar and salt are both natural preservatives. Should jam say the sugar is a preservative? Should olives say that salt is a preservative?

                                                                      1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                        Only if you are really, really anal-retentive about "preservatives" and things like "organic, gluten-free, farm-raised, MSG,HFCS, etc etc"

                                                                        Oh....but I guess the TJ/WF following does get a bit more "cautious".....thereby missing out on a world fo delights. May they live longer and prosper

                                                                        1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                          I'm not fanatical but with fermented products (like the sauerkraut mentioned above), I prefer they not contain preservatives which is what started this discussion. I eat plenty of other preservatives every day. There are a list that I try to avoid but I haven't blacklisted them all.

                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                            The new sauerkraut looks good, just salt, but strangely includes cucumber. I fear that is to make the prodct sweeter which is why I haven't tried it. Bah.

                                                                            1. re: JudiAU

                                                                              I didn't find it to be sweet at all. But it's not overly fermented either.

                                                                              1. re: AmyH

                                                                                I put a coffee filter over the top with a rubber band and left it on the counter for a couple of days to develop some funk. Perfect! (not sweet at all, thankfully.)

                                                                                1. re: AmyH

                                                                                  It was too salty for me. MEH. Anyone who likes it should look for Poland's Finest Mixed Garden Salad. I find this at Ocean State Job Lot. It contains cabbage, cucumber pickle slices, carrot, red pepper, and onion. The salty brine is similar so I both dilute and sweeten. $2.99 for the quart-ish oval jar.

                                                                            2. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                              I love tjs and whole foods. I much prefer Cheetos to "baked cheese crunchies." I miss out on no delights. :-)

                                                                          2. re: josephnl

                                                                            The turkey burgers have "rosemary extract" which is a natural preservative. It's in nearly 90% of ground turkey products. Grab a jarred item off the shelf and many of them have preservatives. The last thread had a discussion about dried apricots and sulfur dioxide which I think is also a natural preservative. I think the word artificial applies to both flavorings and preservatives.

                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                              TJ's carries dried apricots both sulfured and unsulfered dried fruits, so I conclude that natural preservatives are allowed.

                                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                We found the turkey hot dogs pretty awful - overly chewy, and with a sweet-ish taste imparted by the rosemary. We had to douse them in ketchup. Sad.

                                                                                1. re: dori_pm

                                                                                  Are you speaking about the turkey hot dogs or turkey burgers? The burgers have the rosemary in them and we eat them on a regular basis. The turkey hot dogs however are another story - they are dreadful. Bought them once a long time ago, ate one and threw the rest out.

                                                                                  1. re: dori_pm

                                                                                    Picked up a package today and them back after seeing the nutrition facts and long list of ingredients. Tart cherry powder?

                                                                                2. re: josephnl

                                                                                  On their website under "want to become a new vendor" it specifies that Trader Joe’s brand products do not contain synthetic colors, artificial flavors, artificial preservatives, MSG, added trans fats, dairy ingredients from rBST sources or genetically modified ingredients. So this leads me to believe that natural preservatives are allowed to be added to their products.

                                                                                  1. re: littleflower

                                                                                    That sounds correct and reasonably definitive. Now as others have said many things from salt, to sugar, to rosemary extract are natural preservatives. So...bottom line, are there any natural preservatives which are significantly harmful and should be avoided? I mean really, although I'm not a fan of heavily processed foods, I don't think many folks are keeling over from even artificial preservatives, so I can't imagine that natural preservatives can be so bad.

                                                                                    1. re: josephnl

                                                                                      I'm not sure if it's a preservative but I avoid HFCS which since sugar is probably also is. I also avoid gums when I can which serve multiple purposes in most foods. It's not a big issue for me since most of the foods I eat don't have labels.

                                                                                      1. re: josephnl

                                                                                        I simply clarified a statement above about TJs policy, I didn't intend to make a public health statement.

                                                                                        1. re: josephnl

                                                                                          Can't help you with Baddy naturals........and not sure anyone here knows about Goody artificials.......it's just easier to attach a label

                                                                                3. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                  My wondering what the other ingredients are doesn't have anything to do with preservatives. I'm curious to see if it's actual, real fermented sauerkraut and not fermented and then jarred and pasteurized which kills the probiotic bacteria. My kitchen is too hot to make my own this time of year.

                                                                                  1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                    Yes most of these products contain preservatives which has been a useful marker.

                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                      I'll try to remember to look if I get to swing by there tonight (somehow we have run out of every kind of oil and butter all at the same time!) but I know I'll be short on time.

                                                                                      1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                        I didn't see it but I still don't know what kind of packaging I'm looking for. The store was busy and I didn't have time to grab an employee away from stocking. Next time!

                                                                                  2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                    Bubbies.
                                                                                    Ingredients: cabbage, salt, water.
                                                                                    Look for it at whole foods, its refridgerated. And awesome
                                                                                    http://www.bubbies.com

                                                                                    1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                      Bubbies is ok but is flash heated which kills off some of the cultures. (Otherwise the jars would explode.)Given the choice I'd rather have one that isn't but Bubbies is good when I can't find anything else. And the jar is the *perfect* size to make mayo with an immersion blender.

                                                                                  3. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                    Cabbage, persian cucumbers, salt, garlic. That's it. It's in a clear plastic jar.

                                                                                      1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                        And I can give the sauerkraut a Yay. Nice and sour, I like the added cucumbers. I love keeping fermented sauerkraut in the fridge as an easy veggie to eat with dinner.

                                                                                        1. re: Savour

                                                                                          I tried a sample tonight of this sauerkraut in the store. They served it over a small slice of their all beef hot dog. I liked both items. I bought the sauerkraut (not the hot dogs, although they were yummy...but dang, so unhealthy!). The sauerkraut tastes very crunchy and fresh...not sad and wilted! LOL

                                                                                          1. re: Savour

                                                                                            Snagged that raw sauerkraut the other day...VERY VERY delish!

                                                                                    1. re: Savour

                                                                                      A YAY for the new sauerkraut. I paired it with TJs Bavarian Bratwurst for a tasty dinner.

                                                                                      1. re: chinchi

                                                                                        We also enjoyed the new sauerkraut. Very nice and not too strong.

                                                                                      2. re: Savour

                                                                                        I finally got to try it, they were sampling it when I was there. Its good but really mild. I think it would benefit from being put in a glass jar with a coffee filter rubber banded over the top and left on the counter for a couple of days to ferment a bit more.

                                                                                        1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                          How long should the sauerkraut last in the fridge after it has been opened? It's hard to tell if what's left of mine smells fermented-funky or past-its-prime-funky.

                                                                                          1. re: chinchi

                                                                                            i don't know sauerkraut is bad until i see mold. ;-).

                                                                                      3. New to me: Cambozola cheese - Yay! Loved the hint of blue flavor without being too overpowering.

                                                                                        Nay - whole wheat bread. Slabs of sytrofoam. Bleah.

                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: NonnieMuss

                                                                                          Love the Cambozola. Try it on the TJ's rosemary-raisin crackers--it's a great combo.

                                                                                          1. re: NonnieMuss

                                                                                            I totally agree on that bread...ick! I only bought it for the one day a month that I actually eat bread. I usually just buy the store brand with a reasonable list of ingredients and don't give it much thought. I strayed from my usual WF brand since I was at TJs but I'll be returning to the WF brand. I actively dislike this bread :)

                                                                                          2. YAY for the Mini Pie Medley! Delicious little morsels - I have a feeling all six will be gone by the end of the day.

                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: aching

                                                                                              I've got a box in the freezer - looks like they're made by the same producer as those delicious mini pecan pies from last fall.

                                                                                              1. re: emily

                                                                                                Oh no! I deliberately did not ask that question because I was afraid of the answer. I LOVED those - little bites of heaven... :)

                                                                                                1. re: emily

                                                                                                  Those mini pecan pies are among my favorite things ever from TJ...are they included as one of the 6?

                                                                                                  I would be so excited!!!

                                                                                                  1. re: brilynn79

                                                                                                    No - there are two each of blueberry, strawberry, and peach.

                                                                                                2. re: aching

                                                                                                  I bought the mini-pies (peach, cherry, blueberry) last week and thought they were awful. Ate two and threw the rest away. The crust was OK but the filling is not fruit---it's like a small smear of jam.

                                                                                                3. YAY to "Just Sauce" Turkey Bolognese -- Shockingly good, especially since it's a frozen product. The herbs were actually distinct! I ate it by itself.

                                                                                                  1. While I usually make my own pie and tart shells, I tried TJ's frozen pie crusts and was quite pleased. They won't likely be a regular item around here but I'll give them a Yay over all other frozen crusts.
                                                                                                    CP

                                                                                                    P.S. I wish they would bring back the almond croissants. I really miss those.

                                                                                                    20 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                      The almond croissants are gone??? Oh no! I hope just on back order and not discontinued. They have to be big sellers.

                                                                                                      1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                        Just saw them restocking the almond croissants at my local TJ's. The are definitely not d/c'd!

                                                                                                        1. re: josephnl

                                                                                                          Very glad to hear it! Maybe that will be this Sunday's breakfast.

                                                                                                      2. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                        Do you think the pie crusts taste better than the refrigerated fold-out types sold in other stores?

                                                                                                        Also, is there any sweetness to the dough, or would it work in savory applications?

                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                          TJ's crusts are slightly sweet so 'nay' to a savory. But they are thicker than other brands and still very light. With a big box of blueberries, a sprinkling of flour and sugar on the berries and a few dashes of allspice, you got PIE!
                                                                                                          CP

                                                                                                        2. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                          Just saw almond croissants at our local TJ's in southern CA. Don't think they've been d/c'd.

                                                                                                          YAY for the Corn Salsa. Nice kick, but not too much! Delish.

                                                                                                          1. re: josephnl

                                                                                                            *Sob* I guess they didn't sell well enough in suburban Philly (except for me) but I loved them. Maybe I can twist an arm now that I know they are still around. Thanks.
                                                                                                            CP

                                                                                                            1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                              I agree, the almond croissants are great...even better IMHO than the chocolate which are also delicious. I can't imagine a Sunday morning without TJ's croissants...they are pretty wonderful!

                                                                                                              1. re: josephnl

                                                                                                                So much better than Maison Girard's that Chowhounds love to overpraise!

                                                                                                                I melt butter with (Grade B!) maple, brush it on, then
                                                                                                                add TJ's dry roasted slivered almonds on top and drizzle more beurre and maple and bake on parchment.
                                                                                                                The big problem is REMEMBERING to put them out
                                                                                                                to proof the night before, which would be the only reason we don't have them every Sunday.

                                                                                                              2. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                Are you sure they stop stocking at your local TJ, or just ran out?

                                                                                                                The store I go to put the almond ones together in the same column as the chocolate ones..I have to pay attention to make sure I grab the right one, since the box are so similar.

                                                                                                                1. re: gnomatic

                                                                                                                  I was told (4?) years ago that they had been discontinued and I haven't seen them in my Devon, PA store since. Be glad you still have them.
                                                                                                                  CP

                                                                                                                  1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                    You may want to ask your store manager if they can order it for you. There have been a few items that disappeared for a couple of months, and when I asked the store mgr. they gladly ordered it for me (as long as it was "orderable" in their computer system) and a small shipment arrived at the store within a couple of days.  It's worth a try!

                                                                                                                    1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                      The Almond croissants were introduced around June of 2012. I think they had the chocolate first, then the mini plain croissants...then the almond, and most recently the (seasonal?) pumpkin croissant.

                                                                                                                      Definitely ask your stock if they can bring it back (or special order?). If that fails, it's made by Galaxy desserts, which is sold (for a lot more $) at William-Sonoma http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc...

                                                                                                                      1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                        bakery items are regional for tj's, so….bear that in mind.

                                                                                                                        1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                          I think they are talking about the frozen croissants, though.

                                                                                                                  2. re: josephnl

                                                                                                                    I can eat that Corn Salsa with a spoon. I have a tomato allergy too so it's a total godsend.

                                                                                                                    1. re: huntandharvest

                                                                                                                      I do too...I can go through a jar in an hour!

                                                                                                                  3. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                    I saw the almond croissants at the Minnetonka, MN TJ's this past Saturday.

                                                                                                                    1. re: justalex

                                                                                                                      They're in Palm Beach County Florida also.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Alfred G

                                                                                                                        Saw them in Asheville, NC today.

                                                                                                                  4. Yay: the Brooklyn Brine Co. Whiskey Sour Pickles. A nice, balanced pickle. Not too salty (like the organic kosher dills) and not too vinegary. They don't have the snap and fizz of the refrigerated Ba-Tamp-Te half sours that I love, but they're very nice for a jarred pickle.

                                                                                                                    1. YAY to the mango gummies. Although I wish I hadn't learned about them. :)

                                                                                                                      YAY to the "Just Mango" dried mango. I love the texture of the "soft and sweet" variety but don't need all that added sugar. These are good and the chewiness satisfies my gummy craving.

                                                                                                                      MEH to the burrata. I'm not sure if it has to do with the age of the product or what, but mine was not liquidy in the center at all. It was just a mozza ball through and through. Disappointing, as I wanted to love this. As others have had better luck, I might try again.

                                                                                                                      YAY to the Schramsberg California sparkling wine. It's made in the methode champenoise and very tasty. The person pouring tastings mentioned that it's what the White House serves to showcase American sparkling wine. One taste and you know why.

                                                                                                                      ETA:

                                                                                                                      NAY to both the frozen turkey meatballs (mealy, rubbery, icky), the Carolina mustardy BBQ sauce (way too sweet), and the bean burritos (totally flavorless and mushy). All three were sampled in my local store recently, and I was not persuaded at all.

                                                                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                          Speaking of TJ's store samples, they were giving out sunflower seed butter with manuka honey drizzled on top.

                                                                                                                          OUT.OF.THIS.WORLD delicious. I was tempted to buy the manuka honey but it was a bit pricey for my grocery budget for the week, so it will have to be a future purchase.

                                                                                                                          1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                            The manuka honey is awesome. It saved me when I was sick and my throat was so swollen and sore I could hardly swallow. I highly recommend it if anyone finds themselves in a similar situation.

                                                                                                                            1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                              Agreed! When I feel something coming on, I will eat a bit of the honey mixed with 2 drops of Thieves essential oil. I'm a completely different person in 20 seconds.

                                                                                                                          2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                            We like the turkey meatballs in our house. I usually simmer them in spaghetti sauce as they do get rubbery if you nuke them.

                                                                                                                            1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                              I'm in love with tj's labrusco as a sparkling. The red is more fruity and both are a bit sweet, perfect ice cold for summer and around $6!

                                                                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                I do the buratta all the time. It always has the cream center,
                                                                                                                                so you should try again. The buratta is more than $2 cheaper than the supermarkets.

                                                                                                                                Thanks for the heads up on the Schramsberg. Did not know
                                                                                                                                that TJ's carries it. What is the price Christina?

                                                                                                                              2. YAY -- TJ's Costa Rica Terrazu Coffee. Very dark, very oily, very perfect morning coffee. Delicious!

                                                                                                                                YAY - Most of TJ's specialty cheeses. Very competitive prices on specialty cheeses, esp. French Brie. Have found some cheeses up to $3 and $4 dollars less per pound than others stores.

                                                                                                                                YAY -- my all time favorite TJ's offering: Good ol' tomato soup in a box.

                                                                                                                                -Cam

                                                                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: KombuchaCam

                                                                                                                                  Have you tried the roasted pepper and tomato soup?

                                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                    For mother's day my daughter brought home from school a card that said, "I love my mommy because she makes me grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup." I make many, many things, and I cook a LOT from scratch, but it's the red pepper and tomato soup from TJ's that earned me the card.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Savour

                                                                                                                                        awww...that is so adorable...and now I'll have to try that soup!!!

                                                                                                                                      2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                        Yes! Much better than you-know-who's condensed brand.
                                                                                                                                        Their Cioppino Seafood Stew is pretty good too.

                                                                                                                                    1. YAY to the price of the 750ml Three Philosophers beer
                                                                                                                                      YAY to peanut butter cup caramel ice cream

                                                                                                                                      1. MEH - Rice Pudding. Maybe my expectations were too high but it was just solidly mediocre. I'm sure with some cinnamon, raisins, and a twirl in the microwave, it could be a totally different story.

                                                                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: huntandharvest

                                                                                                                                          Yea for me. It's the custardy kind, not what you'd get in a luncheonette, but I like it a lot.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: John Francis

                                                                                                                                            i'm with you. love tj's creamy rice pudding as is, or with a dribble of cream on top.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                Add me to the Rice Pudding Fan Club. We also like the Tapioca pudding in our house too. :)

                                                                                                                                              2. re: John Francis

                                                                                                                                                I like it with Orange juice added, or even better, with the juice from a Blood Orange.

                                                                                                                                              3. re: huntandharvest

                                                                                                                                                I'll give it a yay too. I'm a Kozy Shak guy, but TJs is good to.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: huntandharvest

                                                                                                                                                  I love the rice pudding! It saved me in the first few months of my pregnancy when I had terrible morning sickness. It's very easy on the stomach in my opinion.

                                                                                                                                                2. Just FYI, the organic popcorn kernels are back

                                                                                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                    They are! I just picked up 3 bags of organic kernels yesterday $2 a piece. Great price and love the non-gmo, organic kernels. I pop mine in coconut oil.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: KombuchaCam

                                                                                                                                                      I picked up a bag of the popcorn this week (read about it here) and thanks for the suggestion about the coconut oil!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                        Oh yes coconut oil is a must! Then the nutritional yeast goes on top :)

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                          Pop corn popped with corn oil is incredible and tastes
                                                                                                                                                          just like buttered, but better! No one can believe it isn't totally buttered.

                                                                                                                                                        2. re: KombuchaCam

                                                                                                                                                          I picked up one tonight, too. Great price!

                                                                                                                                                        3. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                          Thanks for this! It was my favorite popping corn and then it disappeared. I was told last year that there had been a "bad crop". So glad it's back!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                            I'm so excited this has returned...I may have to make a trip just for this!!!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                              OK, Maybe I'm nuts (strong possibility), but this years popping corn doesn't seem quite as good as it's past iteration. It doesn't seem to pop up as fluffy. Don't get me wrong - it is still very good and a bargin at the price (much better than its WF bulk equivalent). Maybe my memory is just playing tricks on me (wouldn't be the first time).

                                                                                                                                                            2. I bought the Mango Stilton cheese last night as recommended by this and the May thread - delicious!!

                                                                                                                                                              1. YAY - Isle of Man Cheddar, nearly as good as my favorite Collier's Cheddar

                                                                                                                                                                YAY - Applegate sliced roast turkey, I've been eating this for years but why have I been buying at Whole Foods, FYI cheaper at TJs

                                                                                                                                                                YAY - Raw sauerkraut, delicious and I like the addition of pickles! Thanks for the recommendation Savour

                                                                                                                                                                MEH - English Farmhouse Cheddar with Truffles, it was OK but as I've read on other threads not as good as the Italian Truffle Cheese

                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                  NAY - TJ's Curry Chicken Tenders. They're more turmeric flavored than curry and even a generous dose of barbecue sauce and a squirt of Sriracha couldn't save them.

                                                                                                                                                                  NAY - Many Clove Garlic Cooking & Simmer Sauce. No one loves garlic more than I do, but I found this sauce a big disappointment. There was something weird about the flavor. Also, it's low fat and I think it needs the boost of flavor that only good butter or olive oil can provide.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MysticYoYo

                                                                                                                                                                    I'm on the opposite side on the garlic sauce...but admittedly, seldom use it , "all by itself"

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MysticYoYo

                                                                                                                                                                      We tried those Curry Chicken Tenders last night, and I would give them a MEH. Not terrible, but not great either. They have a slightly bitter aftertaste that wasn't all that tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. sardinian parchment crackers -- good but very thin (hey.."parchment!") but for $4 for that small package? nah.

                                                                                                                                                                    10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                      When I first saw them, I was going to try them but it seemed pricy. Then I read some reviews and everyone likes them. So I bought a couple boxes and we brought them on an impromptu picnic last weekend.

                                                                                                                                                                      Verdict: Everyone likes them, but at $3.69 for a few ounces, they are indeed pricy.

                                                                                                                                                                      So: On quality alone, yay. Factor in value, and that drops to a meh.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                        Bob W -- on the Sardinian parchment ("music paper") crackers, I agree the value/lb may not seem present -- at first.

                                                                                                                                                                        But I gave up long ago measuring specialty/treat food items by that standard. I purchased them for the first time recently and now they are going on my "regular rotation" list for as long as TJ's has them. Damn -- that's a nice "cracker."

                                                                                                                                                                        If the value/lb factor always swayed my decisions, I'd never enjoy a lobster roll again. Thank goodness there are tasty indulgences available to keep us entertained when we decide we want to treat ourselves.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                          Interesting comments, Dave, and funny you mention lobster rolls. We will be taking our annual trip to Maine in a couple of weeks, and I plan to eat many lobster rolls. I eat them only in Maine. The local lobster roll food truck here in DC may put out a good product, but for me it's not worth it. I'd certainly put it in the affordable luxury category, but for me part of the pleasure from a lobster roll comes from eating it while looking out on the Maine coast. (and in some cases eating it after watching that lobster get hauled onto the docks).

                                                                                                                                                                          Conversely, the Sardinian crackers, while to me overpriced, are an affordable luxury that I will indulge in from time to time. They are very good crackers!

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                            I am exceedingly accomplished at justifying a high price for something delicious. I don't run through fast food windows and I rarely eat in restaurants, In return, I treat myself to some finely prepared deliciousness at home. These crackers are on my list for this week (two boxes trusting everyone's rave reviews). Now to decide what the perfect pairing will be....I'm leaning toward thin slivers of cheese and fruit. Open to suggestions.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                              I enjoyed them with raclette and red grapes and as a stand-alone snack with a glass of wine. I think that they would also be nice with thinly sliced fresh mozzarella and prosciutto or with a thin white bean spread.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: EM23

                                                                                                                                                                                Since scapes are in season, I think I'll try the bean spread idea first. I have a great recipe for canneloni beans, scapes, lemon & parm.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                                  I love a good bean spread. Can you share yours?

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: EM23

                                                                                                                                                                                    Sure - here it is.

                                                                                                                                                                                    CANNELLINI BEAN DIP WITH GARLIC SCAPES

                                                                                                                                                                                    http://andreasrecipes.com/2010/07/05/ cannellini-bean-dip-with-garlic-scapes

                                                                                                                                                                                    16 servings.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Equipment
                                                                                                                                                                                    food processor

                                                                                                                                                                                    Ingredients
                                                                                                                                                                                    15 ounces (425 g) cannellini beans, canned, rinsed and drained
                                                                                                                                                                                    1/2 cup garlic scapes, chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                    1/2 cup (100 g) grated Parmesan cheese
                                                                                                                                                                                    1/2 cup (120 ml) extra virgin olive oil
                                                                                                                                                                                    2 teaspoons lemon juice
                                                                                                                                                                                    1/4 teaspoon sea salt
                                                                                                                                                                                    1/8 teaspoon black pepper freshly ground

                                                                                                                                                                                    SERVE WITH
                                                                                                                                                                                    whole grain crackers
                                                                                                                                                                                    sliced baguette
                                                                                                                                                                                    grape tomato halves

                                                                                                                                                                                    Preparation
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Add the beans to the bowl of the food processor and pulse 3 or 4 times. Add
                                                                                                                                                                                    the garlic scapes and olive oil and process for about 30 seconds.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Add the lemon juice, sea salt, and black pepper and process until the dip is
                                                                                                                                                                                    thick and creamy. If the dip is a little dry, add 1 to 2 more tablespoons of olive
                                                                                                                                                                                    oil and process. Serve with whole grain crackers or sliced baguette.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Variations
                                                                                                                                                                                    You can also use about 5 or 6 fresh garlic cloves instead of garlic scapes.

                                                                                                                                                                                    If your scapes are very spicy, you can reduce the amount or add some flat leaf
                                                                                                                                                                                    parsley to balance the flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                          The only reason these are a NAY from me is that the first time I bought them, I flat out ate the whole package. They are terrific, but I won't buy them again!

                                                                                                                                                                        3. It was a new to us product, but a Yay to the Tempura chicken from the frozen section. Probably would have been better if we had tossed it in the sauce, but I knew it was more than we could eat so dipping sauce (big hit with the kiddo)

                                                                                                                                                                          Yay to Garlic Naan

                                                                                                                                                                          Meh to the shredded Manchego in the deli cheese cups.

                                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: autumm

                                                                                                                                                                            We love the Tempura chicken in our house. I make that with a veggie stirfry and rice for a quick weekday meal for the family. Much better than takeout. We love that it's made with white meat chicken instead of dark meat like most prepackaged chicken items.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: autumm

                                                                                                                                                                              Is the sauce similar to a sweet and sour sauce?

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: autumm

                                                                                                                                                                                But TJ's regular wedge of Manchego is better than any other market in L.A.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. YAY - Soy Creamy Cherry Chocolate Chip. No words are needed. Tears of joy.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. YAY - The frozen Shepherd's pie. I saw this a couple weeks ago and picked one up for a quick work lunch. Eating it as I type. I wish it had a bit more beef gravy in it, but otherwise it's very good. Lots of meat.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. a big NAY to TJ's for discontinuing the turkey kielbasa at the same time that they started selling fresh sauerkraut. WTF??? That stuff was great and perfect for those of us who don't eat pork. I had to buy turkey kielbasa at the grocery store and was not happy about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                    14 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                      Oh no, I really liked that kielbasa. I think it's the same Wellshire brand that Whole Foods sells.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                        Our first Whole Foods is opening on June 18 so I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                          Hope you like it. Personally I feel that WF is the most over-rated and overly expensive market around. Yes, I go there occasionally for things I cannot find elsewhere, but for weekly shopping for produce, meat, fish, dairy it's definitely not my chosen destination. My local market + TJ's is much easier to deal with, has equal or better quality, and is much less expensive.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: josephnl

                                                                                                                                                                                            That was my revelation this past year since I discovered TJs. I used to go to WF literally every day. Now I pop in for items that I can only find there and my grocery bill has been cut in half with no real sacrifice in quality.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: josephnl

                                                                                                                                                                                              I actually wasn't planning on going there too often. I'm very happy with limiting my Saturday morning shopping to TJ's, the farmers market when in season, the local co-op, and then the supermarket for what I can't get at the others. But I'll check out WF to see what, in addition to the turkey kielbasa, they have that I can't get elsewhere. I'm the same way about Fresh Market.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                The appeal of WF is beyond me...........Fresh Market I enjoy..and TJ, of course

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Now that Albany is where we shop at TJ's we were happy to see WF coming. Can't beat their quality of meat and fish (when there is a sale) and you will find a few favorite items. If I lived in Albany (I do not- I am in Mass) I would go to the opening as they are quite generous with bells and whistles type of things when they open a store. (we lived a block away from a new one when we were in Boston)

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks, but I won't be able to get there today, and I'm not sure I would brave it even if my schedule permitted. And after reading comments about WF's CEO on All Over Albany http://alloveralbany.com/archive/2014...
                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm not so sure I want to shop there at all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I was a very hard sell for years on WF. The prices and many of the customers put me off but once I succumbed to the meat counter I was a regular. I only go with a short list and after I've been to TJ's, where I allow myself impulse buying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                        CEO sounds awesome. I look forward to patronizing the new WF opening in Nashua.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: josephnl

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I agree 100% with the over-rated over-priced, plus there is a WF near me that is as snotty as a country-club lunch.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love their organic cottage cheese and cream cheese. Pretty much the only reason I stop in. And I can get the sushi guy to make me up a four-piece fresh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: josephnl

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Once the WF clerks were really snotty so I made out my check (back when they ACCEPTED checks), I made it out to A-Whole Foods and they made me change it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Is it definitely discontinued? It went off the shelves for a while, last year I think, then came back. Fingers crossed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: John Francis

                                                                                                                                                                                                    the clerk checked the computer and told me it said discontinued but with no explanation (apparently sometimes they do put explanations).

                                                                                                                                                                                                3. YAY for the Sunflower Seed Butter. Really yummy, and a nice change from peanut butter. I do wish it was crunchy instead of smooth - maybe they'll do that next (hint, hint).

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: aching

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think SunButter makes a crunchy version but just not at TJs. I also love Sunflower Seed Butter. Another great brand is Once Again which I prefer since it doesn't have added sugar. Sunflower butter is great on nearly anything, enjoy :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I've been eating on Fuji apple slices - delish!

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Yay .. 4 pack of white nectarines .. I think this keeps them from getting soft brown spots.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Nay .. Organic Sour Cream .. not half as good as Knudsen and the non organic has guar gum.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yay .. Shrimp nuggets paired with the sweet chili sauce. Not half bad, good to keep on hand. (I only risked buying them because other posters approved!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I agree about the sour cream, but Knudsen is the best I've found.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                        **There now, you mentioned TJ's Sweet Chili Sauce. I swore this was one month I wasn't going to mention it but, since you already did...it turns ordinary fish sticks into something like at a Thai restaurant. Just a bit hot, sweet, and $1.29 for a big bottle. A winner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. YAY/MEH - Frozen turkey burgers. Thanks for the recommendation to try these burgers, they are perfectly good, not awful not great. Good to have in the freezer, but for me not much more convenient than regular ground turkey.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        How do people prefer to cook them?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Saute in frying pan with a little oil, about 4 minutes on each side until well browned. Eaten in a toasted English, er, British muffin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: John Francis

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I do the same except I keep it in the pan 5 minutes per side (I like to get some good carmelization going for even more added flavor) and use just a little sprinkling of garlic salt on both sides as well. My bread delivery of choice is a hamburger bun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Old YAYs, new application:
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sandwich a thin schmear of the Cookie & Cocoa Swirl Speculoos Butter between two of the pringle-shaped Belgian Dark Chocolate Crisps. Nibble it slowly to make it last. Definitely more than the sum of its parts. OMY(Oh my yay)!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. NAY: Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds. I keep picking these up on impulse at the checkout, and then I finish them within a day. It's terrible. Someone should stop me from doing this. DO NOT BUY THESE, lest the same thing happen to you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: TVHilton

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Agreed, though for different reasons. My husband likes them but I think the "chocolate" has a horrid floral taste and aroma and won't eat them. Yuck, for what could have been a terrific product.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: HillsofBeverly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Have you tried the dark chocolate covered almond BITS? It's a cleaner, truer chocolate flavor. I agree with you that the whole almonds' chocolate is strange.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                My "homemade" antioxidant snack mix is a toss-together of 5 TJ products: whole raw almonds (Andrew Weil and others say roasting ruins the benefit), dark chocolate-covered almond bits, dark chocolate-covered dried pomegranate arils, and sweetened dried cranberries. I had bought the whole dark chocolate-covered almonds too, not sure which was best, so they are in there too but I will not include them in future batches. The almond itself tastes better because it's roasted but since I know the raw (which makes up 3/4 of the volume of my mix) is the important part, I'll skip it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: HillsofBeverly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Interesting, I didn't get that. If I hadn't eaten them all up yesterday I'd try one right now to see.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: HillsofBeverly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I bought these for my aunties and they didn't care for them. They said the chocolate was waxy and had an odd flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: EM23

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I was there today and noticed there are several kinds of whole chocolate-covered almonds so we may be talking about different ones. My original container is gone but I am pretty sure I had the 24 oz that has both milk and dark chocolate covered. I did think some were darker in color than others and tasted different. There were other containers in the same, and smaller, size, one 73% cacao. Another had sea salt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        These were in a plastic box with a red label, IIRC, and just dark chocolate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: EM23

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've been getting the small packet (not the big plastic box), dark chocolate only.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The ones with the dark chocolate, sea salt and sugar are delicious. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: kt1969

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I know salted sweets are all the rage these days but to me, the salt totally ruins them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              To me, it is a welcome trend. I have been salting my brownies ( much to my mother's chagrin) for 50+ years. I love those almonds!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: kt1969

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yep! Bought these for a vacation snack... SO EVIL!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              --Dommy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Yay/Meh (sort of) - the sweet potato tater tots....good but not a ton of flavor, would need a better dipping sauce i think

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And have I already mentioned how good the corn salsa is???

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jenscats5

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It must be good...the corn salsa shelf at our TJ's was almost bare on Friday. I snagged a jar but haven't tried it yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Think it would be good on grilled fish or chicken?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Leepa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Corn salsa is great with everything...fish, chicken, salads, just by the spoonful. Haven't yet, but am tempted to try it on vanilla ice cream!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: jenscats5

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Are you talking the corn salsa that is called cowboy caviar? If so, it's too spicy for me. I'd love something with less heat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Leepa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh thanks for the pic!! I'll definitely try this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Has anyone tried their frozen Swordfish? I'm a bit leery of TJ for fish.....and leery of frozen swordfish in general.but at $8.99/lb.....it's tempting

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              On the topic of TJ's fish, I was excited to see in the new flyer Seasoned King Salmon complete with its own cedar plank! Then was equally as bummed when I saw in small print that it is only available in the Pacific Northwest!! I guess no luck for us here on the east coast!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Three new to me products that I will try from the flyer are the Lemon Zinger cake, Pomegranate Limeade, and the Turkey Corn Dogs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like those Turkey Corn Dogs a lot. Not health food or anything, but yummy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've tried other frozen fish there but not swordfish. Swordfish especially I try to eat fresh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I have tried the frozen swordfish and found that it was quite good. The stuff in my supermarket is frozen and then thawed for display, so I figure I'm better off doing the thawing myself so I know how long it's been thawed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks for the comments...........WHEN I can get Fresh Swordfish around here, it can be great.......but at $16-20/lb, it has to be a special treat

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Frozen, for the most part, is usually meh....a little known fact.....for many years, shark meat was passed off as Sword.......once frozen, the "experts" could hardly tell. Then gourmets "discovered" Shark and the price went thru the roof.....exceeding Swordfish

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I may give it a try......if not that great, the leftover cooked swordfish makes a nice alternative to tuna in a sandwich..although a bit pricier

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'll be interested to see your thoughts on the frozen swordfish when you get around to trying it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    TJ's swordfish is very good. We were really surprised and went back for more the next week. We do remove the skin and any bloodline. Do not be concerned. Try them.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There is less need to be leary of frozen fish than fresh.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The mahi mahi is also very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: VenusCafe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The skin and bloodline are my favorite parts :) I agree, the mahi mahi is very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I picked up the flyer on the way out but didn't peruse it yet. I had the stack of spice blends in my hand but managed to hold my condimentia in abeyance. I once bought zaatar and rarely think to use it. I have other spicey blends on hand to use up. But I DID like the little containers and think it would be a nice gift.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I succumbed to the cuteness of the stack of spice blends and brought it home tonight. I'm a spice-a-holic, I admit. $6.99 - good price for a lot of product, assuming they taste good. I haven't used them yet but will soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4. YAY! for the Tarte aux champignons. 9.45 oz, frozen, flatbread with different kinds of cheese and mushrooms.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Perfect size for lunch with a salad, very tasty, crust thin but slightly chewy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I can't believe I never tried this before since I usually have a pizza or two from TJ's in the freezer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Picked this up for dinner last night solo while the kids and DH are out of town and wow. Delicious! Thanks for the recommendation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. As an only occasional poster I'm so happy to get to participate in this post! I went to TJs and actually shopped for the first time recently! (im from FL but have recently moved to Oregon.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      YAY:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      canned Cuban black beans: a have a bit of a salt-tooth. So delicious.... makes me feel like I'm back in FL eating some Cuban-inspired food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Plaintain chips- " " ditto above.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      chocolate/turbinado cugar/sea salt almonds- holy smokes....get these away from me! I eat the whole package.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The fruit and nut gluten free granola- I'm not even GF and this stuff is delicious! I think its a copy-cat or just repackaging of the udis granola which I love but can't find on the west coast.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      pepper jelly- <333 served over cream cheese as suggested.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      NAY-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      packaged heirloom baby tomatoes- just....no. hard as rocks and just about as flavorful.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      corn on the cob- very very starchy. Could be a fluke though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: carlee134

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That's not a fluke on the heirloom baby tomatoes. I've had them like that, and I've seen other posters mention the same.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: carlee134

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yeah, the Cuban black beens have a nice flavor. I like to use them in nachos.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've bought their unpackaged loose ears of corn on the cob, and they were pretty good. Haven't tried the pre-packaged, pre-shucked kind. Not sure which you had, but in any case it could be different suppliers between Oregon & California.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          By the way, foolproof method of cooking corn on the cob (learned from my late mother): put it in cold water with a little milk in it, bring to a boil, then turn off immediately. Let it sit in the hot water for about 4 minutes. Tender & succulent every time. (Extra good if you put it on the grill briefly after preparing it like this.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Yay - bought the nectarines available in th 5 lb box this weekend (no peaches yet). They were pretty firm the day I bought them, but were sweet and delicious - my kids inhaled them and we went through all 5 lbs in 2 days.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. I went on a TJs run the other day. It was a quick trip and I bought things that have been discussed on various TJs threads, so no need to duplicate. All were awesome, btw. These TJs threads are very useful when I'm making my shopping list. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I bought the dark chocolate peanut butter cups on impulse and good lord, they are the devil!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I ended up giving most of them to my elderly neighbor. He's a famous candy fiend and he really
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            loved them. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I bought the pkg of uncured bacon ends & pieces but haven't tried it yet. I'm making pizza tomorrow and I'm going to try this as one of the toppings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The plain pizza dough was ok but hubby said mine from scratch is better. :D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            He knows what side his bread is buttered on, I guess. ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. The microwave bags of popcorn have also returned. I picked up a couple boxes in case they disappear again. Not for everyone I guess, but the ultra salty, artificial-tasting without any artificial ingredients, satisfies my junk food cravings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Huge Nay - TJ's Frozen Deep Dish Pepperoni Pizza.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Skimpy on cheese, crappy, low quality sauce, and a crust that's simply dense and devoid of deep-dish flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. YAY YAY YAY - Lemon Zinger Cake: Moist with big lemon flavor, this is one of TJ's best bakery items that they offer. Tastes homemade and I really like the lemon icing that is drizzled on top. If you like lemon baked goods definitely give this one a try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  YAY - Pomegranate Limeade: Tart with just a little sweetness. Good to drink on a hot summer day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There aren't enough lemon flavored desserts, at least not enough that don't taste like Lysol. Looking forward to trying this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rilke

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I like the frozen lemon bars. Teensy little bite size pieces of buttery sweet tart goodness. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Rilke

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Rilke I think you will enjoy this cake then - no fake lemon flavor here, in fact you can taste bits of lemon zest in each piece. Yum!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Rilke

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've never tasted the lemon bars but when I was in costco they were sampling these tiny little lemon tarts - they were good and had a hint of coconut. The guy kept saying there were better than Trader Joe's and GF (both of which didn't really matter to me).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          So not sure if you may like them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I am excited to try the Zinger cake

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Tried the Lemon Zinger Cake today. It's a small round pound cake with a nice lemon icing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. YAY - Chunky Olive Hummus. I wasn't sure at first, but it's really grown on me. It's NOT chunky though - actually quite smooth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: aching

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I think that's my favorite of their many hummuses. (Is that the right plural?) Also like the roasted garlic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. YAY! Some Enchanted Crackers...great texture and seeds in them, very tasty!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          YAY! Creamy Polenta with Spinach and Carrots (frozen)...comforting, creamy, and delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          YAY! Quinoa Teriyaki mushroom rolls. Refreshing and tasty! It comes with a little packet of ginger, which is a really yummy condiment!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          MEH Trader Giotto's Pesto alla Genovese. Just okay, maybe too salty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          MEH Superfood Pilaf (Sweet Potatoes, Kale, Carrots). A frozen meal that was very underwhelming. Seemed bland and as if the vegetables were undercooked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          NAY! Pad See Ew. This was just full of fibrous vegetable pieces that were hard to chew. The flavoring seemed to be overpowered by garlic. A bad frozen item.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          NAY! Spelt Risotto. (frozen) Watery and not worth it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. yay to the reduced guilt guacamole with greek yogurt. I was skeptical, but it doesn't taste like yogurt. I make my guac without a lot of add-ins and the only thing I didn't love about this was sometimes the raw onion came through a bit stronger than I'd like. Will be good mix-in to make a lazy side dish if mixed with black beans, sweet white corn, and tomato.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Sorta YAY to the new Cowboy Bark. At first my friends and I were in heaven with this stuff -- dark chocolate chunks mixed with nuts, pretzels, and even bits of Joe-Joes, plus a sprinkle of salt. But after a half-dozen or so sizable chunks of bark, the rest of the bag is filled with tiny bits of nuts, seeds, and pretzels. So, half of a big YAY and eehhh.. to the rest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              YAY to the Isle of Man Cheddar. Great cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Boston_Otter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'd save those tasty bits to sprinkle over ice cream...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: BeeZee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That is precisely what they're going to be used for! Great minds, etc etc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. RESOUNDING YAY to the marcona almonds with rosemary. Absolutely delicious. Pricey, though. $6.99 for six ounces. I wonder if I could find the marcona almonds somewhere and make these myself using fresh rosemary, or maybe thyme.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I also picked up the chèvre with honey from the Fearless Flyer but haven't tried it yet. Will report back!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Crack nuts! I think the price went up but I'm hooked. Whole Foods usually sells unseasoned Marcona almonds wish TJs did as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: FlyerFan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That's awesome - I will look! Thank you!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ohmyyum

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I agree. Plain and sort of dry-roasted. Not good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Leepa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I've found the Costco Marconas make a good blank canvas for spices. As much as I like the flavor of the TJ's rosemary Marconas they can be a bit too oily.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: FlyerFan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Good to hear. How do you do this without risking burning them (if you roast them or whatever)?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Leepa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I combine a little oil and the herb/spice/salt mixture in a bowl, toss the nuts in and stir until coated, place in a single layer in a skillet on medium heat and toast until fragrant, stirring occasionally. Works great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: FlyerFan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I looked for them at Costco today but did not find them. (Nanuet, NY)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I will keep looking. I would like to buy them and then roast them with rosemary or thyme at home. : )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: ohmyyum

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Costco's regular roasted salted almonds aren't nearly as good as TJs either. As a matter of fact, they're awful by comparison.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. ??? - Mostly Mesquite Honey (from Argentina). The same price as Clover Honey and a dollar less than Mesquite Honey, which it has replaced in my store. I don't taste any definite flavor and it's very sweet, like candy. Also very thick. Haven't decided how to rate it, but probably I'll go back to the clover honey, which would make it not a Yea.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Uncured apple wood smoked bacon and the Sweet & Hot mustard. Oh, and yay to the small plastic tub of Candied Pralines, they should be a controlled substance. I put them on my "low-fat" vanilla-caramel ice cream :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        YAAAAAAAAAAAAAY

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: SharynT

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Those candied pralines are insanely good!!! I can polish off a container of those in no time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: SharynT

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I love the Sweet and Hot mustard with smoked sausage, cheese and crackers or to dip pretzels in. So good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: SharynT

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              There is no better bacon for sale anywhere!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Not a new item but YAY to the sunflower seeds. They sell three varieties of shelled sunflower seeds: raw, roasted with salt, roasted unsalted.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I bought one bag of roasted with salt and one bag of roasted without. I dumped them into a large bowl and mixed it up - thus cutting the overall salt of the batch. They are excellent. And only $1.99 for a very good sized bag!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Maybe I will try raw next time. : )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If you like sunflower seeds, I highly recommend the sunflower seed butter - I just polished off my first jar and I'm hooked!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: aching

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I used to work in a bakery that would make sunbutter frosting for cupcakes. It was one of the most amazing, simple cupcakes in the word, chocolate & sunbutter or maple and sunbutter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We also used to make maple sunbutter sunday cupcakes: vanilla cupcake, maple cream filling, sunbutter frosting. So good! Now I want cupcakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: adventuresinbaking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Would you share the recipe if you have it? Damn, that sounds good. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    sunflower seeds have become a pantry staple for me! great snack as is, but also a good flavor boost in the last loaf of bread that I baked. might I also suggest the tub of chocolate covered sunflower seeds? (think tiny peanut m&ms). and apologies if it's TMI, but I find that in addition to being tasty, sunflower seeds help keep…things moving through. teehee.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rynnyb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      They are an everyday addition to my salads. Love them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. YAY - Mahi Mahi burgers. I wasn't expecting much but these are fantastic!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Halfway through June, I am wondering how people are liking the addition of MEH in this thread. It seems to have been used by some people. Are those who have used the MEH designation finding it useful? If it really isn't, perhaps MEH should be avoided next month. What do you think?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      17 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        +1 for MEH.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        MEH is good for several types of products: things that (1) are good but not a good value, (2) are good in small doses or just occasionally, (3) you might eat if offered but just wouldn't buy again, (4) have some positives but also flaws.. etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I also am all for keeping the option open to rate a product MEH. It is another way of saying the product is "just okay" rather than really good or downright awful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Adding it into the title of the thread allows for people who are new to posting here to know that there is an option in between good and bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'm not sure why it was requested to be added as people seemed to use it without specifically including it in the title. It was a simple change to make, so I didn't bother to disagree.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm not seeing the issue. If people want to use it, do so. If not, do that. Is this something we have to come to consensus on?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Leepa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Nope, hence why when it was mentioned before I just added it. I planned to continue to include it until this post came sort of out of nowhere :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It's been common for a year or more, hasn't it? Seems useful to me. But I don't think it needs to be spelled out in the thread topic. The Yeas and Nays are more informative and are worth encouraging.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    MEH? Nah. Makes the threads less searchable. If I'm looking for YAY/NAY, I'm good, and a quick review of this thread shows that less than 10% of posts included "Meh". Even fewer led with that word.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I would rate this comment as a yay-minus, if it wasn't so MEH.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Please~ add 'yummy' and 'yum' as terms to be avoided.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: VenusCafe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Trite, but not as annoying as "awesome" or "amazing".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I like the term amazing, but would ban the pretentious "good" and equally annoying to me "quite good."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Had the hummus wrap and give it a nay based on taste (bland) and calories per entire sandwich (nutrition labels it as 2 servings),

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: brilynn79

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            There aren't going to be any words left that are allowed!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: VenusCafe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          VenusCafe:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "meh" is at the top of the list.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Nay - Ricotta Spinach Cannelloni - too salty, pasta too soggy - sauce runny. Not for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Meh - I am saying meh since I think I just got a bad one - the Lemon Zinger Cake - NOTHING moist about this sucker! Fell apart as I was cutting it - very dry. Icing nice but never again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yay - Balsamic Chicken - lovely flavour - haven't had this in a while.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Don't know yet/can't remember why I stopped buying - Carne Asada. Bought it for this weekend - will report back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The pre-cooked chicken burgers - fridge section - anyone had these? Any good? Any "wtf was that" crunchy bits? I'm very cautious about prepared foods with TJ.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        20 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My Lemon Zinger Cake was the same. It's a pound cake. Not a moist cake. The icing was fine, but not worth the calories IMHO.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'll third the Meh on the Lemon Zinger Cake. Liked the icing, but the cake wasn't super flavorful and had a bitter aftertaste.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I just bought the chicken burgers yesterday. I haven't tried them yet but will report back when I do. I also buy few prepared foods there but I've had great success with burgers of all things - mahi mahi and turkey burgers so I'm hoping the chicken burgers are the same.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I like the frozen chili lime chicken burgers, but I've never gotten around to trying the refrigerated fully cooked chicken patties. They just look weird.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Mine was extremely moist but I think I know why...I asked the lady stocking up in that section where the lemon zinger cake was, and she gave me one that she had just unpacked so it was very fresh. My thinking is that just like some other TJ's baked goods is that they do not have a very long shelf life due to the lack of preservatives. You may have picked one up that had been on the shelf for awhile. Just a thought.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If it's basically a pound cake, it should freeze well. Slice it first and then eat it still frozen or toast it with butter. I like pound cake toasted with butter best of all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I thought the refrigerated chicken patties/burgers were kind of meh tasting, I ate the two in the package but it did not become a repeat purchase for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ok, thanks. Good to know re: chicken burgers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Had good luck so far with the frozen turkey burgers so will stick to those.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Well, regarding the Zinger cake - I don't usually buy bakery items from TJ's but due to yays here plus description in the fearless flyer "It's a moist lemon cake, made with both lemon and orange juices, so the effect is tantalizingly tart, with a sweetness that’s sensational"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And yes, it did not taste fresh - good thing really, when I find something I really like I overdose.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Like someone else noted - not worth the calories.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That pretty much sums up every 'Bakery' item at TJoes (with the exception of some frozen bakery items--like the macarons).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I plan to try the chicken patties tonight so we'll see...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I agree on the meh for the chicken patties. I bought them for a quick lunch and found them good, just pricy for what they were. I would instead buy the roasted chicken breast. pricier, but more versatile and you get a lot more meals per.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      --Dommy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Dommy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Agree but I just found one in the freezer. Too good to toss too meh to eat so I froze it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          LOL!! Next time you have some left over pita or some of the TJ's Naan... Get that as your base, then spread your favorite hummus over and crumble the chicken patties with sliced tomato and onion. Eat up. No longer Meh. ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          --Dommy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Balsamic chicken - is that a frozen item?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: pugsam

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        No, in the fridge section. Chicken breast. Balsamic OR Lemon - both very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I used to like the Balsamic and the 'Just Chicken' kind.. then one time I bit into it, and it was entirely uncooked.. raw.. blood.. etc. I had been a vegan for years, and after biting into that chicken, I went back to being a vegetarian.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It was beyond disgusting. --So just check on both sides and look inside it (cut it a few times?) to make sure that it is actually cooked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GraceW

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I always cook it in the microwave before eating it. It's not meant to be eaten straight out of the package, is it? Nonetheless, it sounds like you got a funky one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: aching

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The label says it's fully cooked so technically I think you can eat it straight from the package, but I also choose (and much prefer) to reheat mine in the microwave.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I always heat mine too. Cut it into pieces and heat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  GraveW - OMG - I'm so sorry that happened to you - how disgusting!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've had my share with their foods - I can't even write them they still freak me out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'm very cautious with TJ's pre made foods now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. A modest Yay for the current spotlight cheese; Isle of Man cheddar @ $6.99/lb.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        While I adore most any decent, aged cheddar, it's generally hard for me to get "excited" about cheddar. Good cheddar is always appreciated however and this one is quite good IMO. I'd move from a modest Yay to a strong Yay if it was priced just a bit lower, then making it a great value buy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        On the subject of 'Spotlight' cheeses, now that I've become more familiar with TJ's I will ALWAYS try the new spotlight cheese, regardless of the type/style..... just to see what TJ's came up with through their sourcing. I have a difficult time imagining TJ's putting something sucky out there as a Spotlight cheese. There have been several wonderful cheese discoveries because of the "Spotlight," ---- cheeses I otherwise probably would have never tried. Red Leicester comes to mind.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I actually really liked it but it was missing this week.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              missing again this week, perhaps it's officially gone

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              So a modest YAY is still above a MEH?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                <<So a modest YAY is still above a MEH?>>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Absolutely, Bob W. For those of us who read between the lines, TJ's/Chow YAY/NAY thread is probably more like a five-point rating system. For example, a MEH + or a soft YAY (or YAY minus) would probably be something like 3.3 to 3.7 stars.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                *Making it convoluted and confusing on purpose, just for the fun of it ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                For the record, anything (in my book) equal to or above a MEH is worth trying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Agreed. Accounting for differences in tastes, your MEH might be my YAY and visa versa. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                YAY for the Isle of Man cheese from me too. Nice flavor and texture.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                NAY to the Red Leicester cheese with red bell pepper and chili. The red bell pepper was very overpowering, and I didn't care for the soft texture. It was barely touched on my cheese plate I had put out for guests, so apparently I wasn't the only one who didn't care for it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. YAY - Canadian bacon. I have no idea why I bought this but likely because I was hungry while shopping, but I'm glad it made its way home with me. Very meaty, not overly salty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  How does it compare to other canadian bacons you've had in the past? I have always found cb to be kind of wet and that turns me off. I might try it if you think this is better than what is typically found in average supermarkets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I read your post and started laughing...it's pretty wet. It tastes like a pretty good chunky ham, probably not too much better than average markets but I've only tried a couple.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It makes a nice addition to an egg and cheese english muffin sandwich. I just fry it next to my egg in a non stick pan coated with TJ's canola spray while the muffin is toasting and pile everything plus a slice of TJ reduced fat cheese in the muffin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. NAY - roasted chicken patties

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I agree with littleflower, these are sort of blah. For me, it's both the taste but more so the texture (very spongy). It reminds me of those standard school cafeteria chicken nuggets without the breading. I'll definitely eat the other patty but probably won't buy them again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yes when I bought those they were spongy and had gristle in them. Yuck.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Bugsey34

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yup, the describes it. I still haven't eaten the other, I guess I'll freeze it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Bugsey34

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Well that settles it - thanks for the info.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I was thinking of buying but it's the gristle, spongy, wtf bits that I usually find with prepared TJ's food that put me off in the first place.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Nope, don't waste your time. There are many products that I don't like that I think others would but not this one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Whoever touted the "Hold the Cone" mini ice cream cones, know that you have done me in. I am powerless against these damnable things. When you find me huddled in the corner licking a corner of my shirt where a shard of dark chocolate may have bounced before melting onto my lap, take pity on me. And I hope you find no peace, knowing my pitiable condition is partly your fault!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yeah, it's pretty hard to beat a Hold the Cone (I am partial to the vanilla ice cream filled one myself)...one of TJ's best frozen treats!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I feel this way about the vanilla ice cream bon bons.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And their plain vanilla ice cream is quite good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            These are probably one of my top 5 items at TJs. The vanilla ones are my favorite.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. YAY to the Chèvre with Honey, sold in a log in the cheese section. It is sweet but not overpowering. Texture is perfect. I am eating it now with a juicy, sliced peach. What a great combo!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I love it on salads, especially spinach salad with strawberries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              --Dommy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Dommy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                YES! Great on salads and wonderful with fruit. I also bought some of the TJs rosemary raisin crackers. Haven't opened them yet but they will be good with this chèvre, I think.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Those crackers are fantastic w/ goat cheese.