It’s time to shop fall items at Trader Joe’s!
This was literally me as I prepared to go into the store, on a Sunday (scary), searching for seasonal items. I had my list, plus my 5-year-old with a mini cart by my side for extra space and support.
Indy is often behind when it comes to receiving new items so I was pleasantly surprised to find almost everything I was looking for. Go Indy!
Shopping the big seasonal drops at TJ’s is an experience, and often an overwhelming one. If you’re wondering what to look for without looking totally lost in the store, here’s what was in my Trader Joe’s Fall Haul. We’ll start with seasonal items that I look forward to all year, new items that I’m trying, and some honorable mentions.
The items I wait for all year
Here are the items that were at the top of my list, added to cart without hesitation, sometimes in multiples.
Butternut Squash Mac n’ Cheese
Hands down the best frozen macaroni and cheese ever created. It’s creamy, the pasta is perfectly cooked, and the flavor isn’t overpowering. If you see this in stock, grab it.
Pumpkin Pancake Mix
I always grab two or three boxes of this. I’m not gluten-free, but there’s something about the texture of these that I love. They get a little crispy, kind of like a mochi pancake! And pumpkin?! Obsessed.
Fall Leaf Tortilla Chips
I know, they’re just tortilla chips in different shapes. It’s FUN, okay?! Imagine serving these at a fall party or Sunday Night Football group hang. It’s little details like leaf-shaped chips that set the vibe.
Actually, these chips are an unintentional tradition for my husband and I. Every year, we have these with TJ’s buffalo chicken dip while we watch one of the first games of the NFL regular season.
Autumnal Harvest Soup
I can eat soup all year, no matter the temp outside. But fall is officially soup season and this is a good one.
Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Either these weren’t at my store yet or I missed them because the freezer aisle was unhinged. These mashed potatoes are frozen into cubes, and the only ingredient is sweet potatoes. You can heat up as much as you need, add whatever you like, or keep them plain. Amazing for meal prep!
Maple Oat Beverage
FYI, this is pretty sweet. My favorite way to use it is in oatmeal.
Vanilla Bean Paste
You need this for the holiday baking season. Or just always. The rich flavor makes it hard to go back to store-bought vanilla extract. Plus it just feels fancy.
Brussels Sprouts Saute Kit
This is one of my favorite meal prep hacks. I use this kit to make this sheet pan recipe all the time in the fall and winter. If you’re on the fence about Brussels sprouts or even hate them, try this kit. Trust me.
Please PLEASE learn from my mistake and don’t forget that this gnocchi needs to be refrigerated. Mine ended up in the pantry overnight and I had to throw it out. Probably making another trip just to buy more. It’s that good.
I fell in love with these last year! They’re warm (temperature warm and flavor warm) and perfectly spicy.
New Fall Items (New-new and new to me)
I love a good taste test.
Roasted Cauliflower and Orzo
This one met my expectations, meaning I’m usually disappointed when we sub cauliflower for rice…or in this case, orzo. It wasn’t bad, but the cauliflower texture was a little mushy.
Murasaki Sweet Potatoes
I know these aren’t exclusive to fall or even Trader Joe’s but they are exotic enough that they’re not a common grocery store find here in Indiana. I cut these into wedges and roasted them with salt, pepper, and paprika and they were *chef’s kiss*.
Pumpkin Sticky Toffee Cakes
Kelsey from Trader Joe’s Food Reviews gave these a 9.5/10, so I had to get some. I haven’t tried them yet but I’m pretty confident they’re going to be delicious.
Honeycrisp Apple Granola
I got this for my kids but when I tried it myself I realized the right thing to do is make apple crisp with it. Yum.
Butternut Squash Lasagna
This had me at béchamel sauce.
Spatchcocked Sweet & Savory Chicken
Don’t be weirded out by the name, which just means it’s butterflied so it can cook more quickly (win #1). It’s also pre-marinated in a blend of maple syrup and Dijon mustard (win #2).
Pumpkin Brioche Twist
Buy this and make French toast with it! Tip: You can freeze the entire loaf or individual slices for fall French toast whenever the craving strikes.
The fall items at Trader Joe’s other people love and I feel more so-so about. I might buy them if I see them, but I might not. Depends on my mood while I shop!
Don’t come for me! These are good, but I bought two bags last year and burnt myself out pretty quickly. I’d rather have a plain bagel, with the pumpkin cream cheese (wait, this should be on the must-buy list).
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Croissants
These ARE good and worth a buy at least once. But the box only contains two and that just moves them down my priority list.
Frozen Pumpkin Waffles
These are fine, but nothing compared to the GF Pumpkin Pancake and Waffle Mix.
Caramel Apple Mochi
Funny story. I bought a box of these, completely forgetting that I didn’t love them last year. Someone will eat them and life will go on, but I wish I had grabbed the Salted Maple or Pumpkin Ice Cream instead.
Pumpkin Spiced Teeny Tiny Pretzels
They were sampling these in my store during my visit and they were good, but not mindblowing. I skipped them this time!
Spooky Bats & Cats
I can appreciate how fun these are, but they’re not as good as the Super Sour Scandinavian Swimmers. I’ll die on this hill.
What did I miss?
What do I need to grab on my next trip?! Tell me in the comments and I’ll add it to my list.