Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Trader Joe's

I love Trader Joe's. I usually do my weekly grocery shopping on Sunday afternoons and I always try to make a stop at Trader Joe's. One of my favorite things to do is wander through store looking for new items and samples to taste! Many of my favorite items I discovered through friend's recommendations so I wanted to pass them along to you.

One of the best things about TJ's is their wine selection. You can always find a great wine for an affordable price. I enjoy tasting the samples they have to offer and usually end up buying a bottle or two. About a month ago I came across a great Pinot Grigio that I highly recommend. It has a little fizz which makes it very refreshing. I think it's the perfect summer white wine, but even now that we're approaching cooler tempertatures I still recommend buying a bottle (~$7.99).

Contadino Pinot Grigio

If you love dijon mustard like I do then  you're in luck. They have the absolute best I've ever tried. Warning- it's has a wasabi kick to it!

Buying your lunch on a daily basis can add up quickly, so I usually try to pack mine during the work week. There are times where I get burned out on Lean Cuisines and Smart Ones so a co-worker of mine introduced me to TJ's black bean and corn enchiladas. They are wonderful and are fairly low in calories and fat. For a nice touch add a dollop of 0% Fage greek yogurt on top. Yum!!

Have you ever tried a chai tea? My husband introduced these to me a few years ago when were dining at one of our local thai restaurants. Basically it's milk combined with a spice tea concentrate (cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, fennel seeds, peppercorn and cloves). At the thai restaurant they use a coconut milk to mix with the tea and serve it over ice. It's basically like drinking a milkshake! One afternoon at TJ's I came across a chai tea latte concentrate and decided to give it a try. Mix half a cup of the concentrate with half a cup of milk (I used skim milk) and voila, you have your own chai tea latte! This drink can be served hot or cold. The other evening I warmed mine in a big coffee mug and it was the perfect dessert drink to make me nice and cozy on a cold night.

Oregon Chai Tea Latte Concentrate

Last but not least is the pumpkin bread and muffin mix. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I'm obessed with anything pumpkin right now. Pillsbury makes a pumpkin quick bread mix; however, I've looked in the stores for weeks now and haven't been able to find it. Two weeks ago I came across TJ's mix and I almost started jumping up and down in the store I was so excited. Needless to say I stocked up on a few boxes for the season. If you're looking for a lowfat version of the recipe that still tastes great, subsitute the eggs for egg whites and the exact amount of oil for unsweetened applesauce (thanks Kim). I promise you would never know the difference and it saves you calories and fat.

So these are a few of my favorites. I hope you'll try them out and let me know what you think.

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