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The Healthiest Snacks At Trader Joe’s


It can be expensive to eat healthy, so it’s no surprise that the incredible prices at Trader Joe’s reel us in every time.  I made it my mission to find the absolute healthiest snacks there, and my standards were strict.  You won’t find the Roasted Seaweed Snack, for instance, which, despite being great for your gut and high in iodine, contains inflammatory expeller-pressed canola oil.  What you will find: delicious picks that are good for your body—AND your wallet.  Read on for my top picks.

1. Freeze Dried Blueberries and Strawberries

I try to stay away from dried fruit, as it contains a ton of sugar from the fruit itself and, more so, the juice used in the drying process (and the TJ’s dried fruit is no exception). Freeze-dried fruit, however, contains only one ingredient—the fruit. The TJ’s ones are unsweetened, unsulfured (another part of processing dried fruit) and totally delicious. I love the crisp crunch and sweet-tartness whether I’m just munching these plain or using them as the best-ever oatmeal topper. ($3.49 each)

Photo: Miachel Breton / mbg Creative

2. Vegetable Pakora

Unfortunately, many of the foods in Trader Joe’s insanely delicious freezer hors d’voures section contain unsavory ingredients, from oil types to sugars and processed flours. These vegetable pakoras, though, have an amazing ingredient list, with chickpea flour, cauliflower, spinach, pomegranate seeds and more. They taste like the best Indian takeout, and, if you heat them up in the oven, your friends will think you can cook. Win! ($1.99)

3. Grainless Granola

While granola is a great, quick snack, it’s often laden with sugar—many brands have more than a candy bar, which is not a great way to start your day. This contains no added sugar, with a simple ingredient list of dates, dried bananas, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews, cinnamon and vanilla. You can use it to top oatmeal or hot quinoa, over yogurt, or just munch it by the handful for a quick energy boost. ($3.99)

4. Cold-Pressed Green Juice

Yes, Trader Joe’s sells cold-pressed green juice. This one is a blend of kale, spinach, apple, cucumber, celery and lemon, containing tons of skin-boosting Vitamin A, calcium, iron and a fair bit of protein. It’s a super hydrating way to get your greens, and costs far less than a comparable product at a juice bar. ($4.99)

5. Zesty Nacho Kale Chips

With superhero packaging and pretty darn super ingredients, these chips are a real winner. The ingredients are incredibly healthy, with simply kale, cashews, sunflower seeds, carrot powder, red bell pepper, onion powder, apple cider vinegar, sea salt, lemon juice, garlic powder, and chipotle powder—no inflammatory processed oils, no strange preservatives. They taste savory enough to satisfy any chip craving, and even offer 6g of protein and 3g of fiber per serving! ($3.99)

Photo: Miachel Breton / mbg Creative

6. Raw Sauerkraut

Alright, I know what you’re thinking—that’s not really a snack! But hear me out: sauerkraut is one of my absolute favorite foods for busting sugar cravings. Often, when I’m thinking of reaching for a chocolate bar at 3pm, I’ll reach for a bite or two of sauerkraut instead (yes, straight for the jar) and the craving will completely subside. It’s also super good for your gut, and the TJ’s one is raw and unpasteurized, meaning all of those friendly bacteria are still fully intact. ($3.99)

7. Unsalted Sardines in Spring Water

Consistently cited by doctors as a top anti-inflammatory food, sardines are a convenient health food that many people overlook. They’re one of the world’s best sources of Omega 3s, and they also contain Vitamin D and B12. These are wild-caught and packed only in spring water. Try them on crackers for a quick and filling snack. ($1.39)

8. Organic Blue Corn Chips with Sprouted Amaranth, Quinoa & Chia Seeds

Alright, so these are cooked in sunflower oil, which is a mildly inflammatory, Omega 6-rich oil that’s found in most packaged snacks. While that’s not great, everything else in these chips is amazing, with nutrient-rich blue corn, and sprouted quinoa, amaranth and chia adding an extra boost of protein. Bottom line—if you’re going to go for some chips (and you should, sometimes, if you enjoy them, because we have one life!), these are a great choice. ($2.99)

Photo: Miachel Breton / mbg Creative

9. Organic Hummus

Everything in this hummus is organic, from the chickpeas to the tahini to the garlic and sea salt and lemon juice. Chickpeas are one of our favorite snacks around here—if you put this out with the blue corn chips and some crudité, you have an easy, healthy appetizer everyone will enjoy. ($2.29)

10. Organic Beef Jerky

Beef jerky is a great high protein snack, but many brands include a ton of preservatives, and use low quality beef, which is worse for the environment and your health. This beef jerky, though, uses organic (not grass-fed, but we’ll take what we can get) beef with soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, paprika and other seasonings. There is a bit of sugar (not a ton) but at a whopping 11g of protein per serving, these are still a great, satiating pick. ($5.99)

11. Organic Popcorn with Olive Oil

This popcorn is notable less for what it does contain and more for what it doesn’t. The kernels are air-popped, rendering hydrogenated oils unnecessary, and then topped with organic olive oil (which is never cooked, allowing it to retain its nutrients and not become rancid) and sea salt. The result? A perfectly poppable snack. ($1.99)

Photo: Miachel Breton / mbg Creative

12. Organic Dark Chocolate with Almonds

While a lot of the sweets at TJ’s include copious amounts of sugar and emulsifiers you’d likely rather not have in your body, this 70% dark chocolate has a simple ingredient list, and not a ton of sugar. The dark chocolate does contain antioxidants (not as much as raw cacao, but pretty decent) and the addition of almonds ups the protein to 4g a serving. Overall, a good pick if you’re trying to satisfy a sweets craving. ($1.99)

13. Almond Butter

Ah, almond butter, one of the most beloved and expensive products in the health food world. The TJ’s almond butter clocks in at $6.99 (less than half the price of many brands), and, perhaps more importantly, contains only almonds. Many brands add oils to get that creamy texture, or sugar because, well, what doesn’t have sugar in it these days? With an appealingly creamy texture, it’s no wonder this almond butter is a staple in the mbg office. ($6.99)



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