Top 5: Trader Joe’s Products


By: Kevin Larrabee, CSCS

Why I Shop at Trader Joe’s

Last week I was reminded by podcast listener and online client Tim that I never wrote that Trader Joe’s Top 5 article that was promised months ago. Well, here it is. I talk about Trader Joe’s on the FitCast, a lot. I do about 80% of my grocery shopping there every week. I recommend all of my clients do the majority of their shopping there as well? Why? Because they have the highest quality organic products around at very competitive prices.

Every time I go to Trader Joe’s there are a few select products that I always seem to be picking up. These range from frozen vegetables, to meat products, to green tea, to eggs and egg whites, to peanut butter, and sometimes the occasional peanut butter filled pretzels. Now without further ado, here is my top 5.

1. 96% Lean Hamburger Patties : I am a huge fan of these 96% lean burgers because they are quick and easy to prepare and they taste great! Trader Joe’s does all of the work for you by packing the meat, separating them, and weighing them to make counting calories even easier. I will eat two of these a day, everyday. Who says you can only eat chick breasts on a low calorie diet? They are also pretty cheap, $4.50 for a 4-pack.


2. 50% Salted Almonds: The 50% salted almonds are the perfect balance for those who need some quick fuel on the run. I haven’t found better tasting almonds since discovering these while in California. I always keep a bag of these in my gym bag for when I need to keep hunger at bay in between clients.They are priced at $4.69


3. Low-Fat Cheese: Who doesn’t like string cheese? Again, this is another great item that is easy to grab on the go for some quick protein.Also the shredded 3 cheese blend works perfectly in your morning omelets.


4. Egg Whites: Again, another purchase to make life easier. These past few weeks I have been eating mostly egg whites for breakfast. having the egg whites all ready separated in a carton makes dieting a little less stressful.


5. Bottled Green Tea: I drink at least one of these a day. Having chilled green tea helps me keep energy up between and while training clients. On my non-training days (no Spike days) I usually have two bottles. One client has recommended mixing the tea with seltzer water as well and squirting in a lemon.


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15 Responses

  1. jorn says:

    #6. Quinoa, baby, quinoa! 🙂

  2. J.B. says:

    TJ’s almond butter is awesome, and about 50% of the price of the stuff a the normal grocery store.

  3. Joe says:

    Here is my top 5 list in no particular order

    1. Very Green Supplement
    2. Natural Peanut Butter with Roasted Flaxseeds. (My favorite)
    3. Turkey Jerky
    4. The Orange Chicken
    5. Chicken Verde Burritos

  4. Seth says:

    Great article, haven’t been to TJ in a while, but maybe it’s time to ditch Whole Foods for a spell and check it out…

  5. How about the Ground Buffalo in the frozen section. I LOVE me some buffalo!

  6. Amanda says:

    Also don’t forget 80cal fat free salmon patties (in the frozen section) and best price on Ezekiel bread (Fage yogurt too). Here in WA they also carry a local brand called Isernio’s which makes chicken sausage.

  7. Chris says:

    Hey Kevin I had that tea and I used to mix it into my oatmeal. It is great if you mix:

    1. a serving of that tea
    2. 1 cup of dry oats
    3. 1 Banana
    4. Teddy’s PB (Which is the best peanut butter ever!!)

    True Breakfast of Champions!

  8. Kevin says:

    The lean ground beef is even less expensive at my area TJ’s; it’s easily $1/lb. less than the 93 percent lean in other grocery stores. The only downside is that its Newport News location is not very convenient to my home or the office.

  9. Mark says:

    Any word on a Utah location…?

  10. Seth-

    Trust me it is worth the extra time. My Trader Joe’s is 20 minutes away. That is 40 minutes of driving to do 5 minutes of grocery shopping. It is worth it.

  11. Mark-

    Use this, it is the Trader Joe’s store locator:

  12. Andrew says:

    Hey Kev,
    Have you seen the turkey chili? Put that w/ some quinoa and some low-fat mozzarella cheese…reallll good

  13. Chase Karnes says:


    I have heard a ton about Trader Joe’s through your FitCast and have always been jealous. Well thanks to your store locator you posted I found that there are 2 in Indiana. Since I will be visiting Mike Roberston next weekend at iFast I may have to make some extra time to check out Trader Joe’s.

  14. Roland says:

    Great article, Kevin. I hit up trader joe’s at least once a week.

    1 – eggs for $1.49 per dozen (4 packs a week)
    2 – bags of apples. They are small enough to be just right for me and the kids
    3 – basil. homemade pesto and just a great herb for lots of flavor
    4 – cherry or grape tomatoes – whichever ones look good when I’m there
    5 – 1 lbs packs of ground beef – $1.99

    Honorable Mention

    6 – crumbled cheesed – Bleu cheese and feta have a TON of flavor so you just use a bit on a dish.