Seasoned and rookie Trader Joe’s shoppers: WHY is the seasoning section so enticing? Even when my spice cabinet is literally overflowing to the point of avalanche, I can’t resist. If there’s an interesting flavor I haven’t tried, I must buy it.
And most of the time it will inevitably sit in my cabinet for weeks until I work up the creative energy (or courage) to actually use it. Does anyone else do this? Am I the problem?
The Ultimate Guide to Trader Joe’s Seasonings
There must be others like me who bought the Trader Joe’s seasoning they saw someone rave about on TikTok only to stare at it for months. The solution? I bought them ALL so I can help you decide what’s worth buying, and the best way to use them.
Okay, maybe not all of them because it’s hard to keep up! If there’s something missing on this list that I need to try, let me know in the comments!
Everything but the Bagel
Savory, salty, garlicky.
Starting off with the most classic Trader Joe’s seasoning to ever exist. The perfect example of a must-buy item for TJ’s rookies. If you’ve had an everything bagel, you know what this tastes like. It’s salty, garlicky, and slightly oniony.
I like to press a little of this into the buttered side of my grilled cheese before I cook it. It creates a nice crust and adds a ton of flavor.
It’s perfection on avocado toast, salmon, roasted veggies, salad, and that viral pepper cucumber salad everyone made this summer.
Everything but the Elote
Cheesy, smoky, and slightly spicy.
One of my favorites! It’s super flavorful, with hints of cheese, chipotle powder, and cumin. I’m always discovering a new way to use it – sprinkled on popcorn, in guacamole, in eggs, or sprinkled on top of a burrito bowl.
Ketchup Flavored Sprinkle Seasoning Blend
Tomato-y, sweet, tangy.
Ketchup seasoning seems gimmicky, but ketchup in sprinkle form that doesn’t make things soggy is actually genius. You have to try it on eggs, hash browns, or French fries.
Green Goddess Seasoning
Bright, herby, and versatile.
How can this one not catch your eye? This seasoning lifts the flavor of anything you put it on. And you can do SO MUCH with it.
- Sprinkle on roasted veggies (or even raw veggies)
- Top a baked potato
- Season chicken before roasting
- Make salad dressing (recipe is on the label!)
Did you just discover a new staple? Maybe.
Mushroom & Company Umami Seasoning Blend
Savory, slightly earthy, elevated
Funny how one of the most universal seasonings is for some, one of the most intimidating. If you’re not into mushrooms or just weirded out by a mushroom seasoning, trust. I don’t like mushrooms and I adore this seasoning.
We have 4 traditional categories of taste: sweet, sour, salty, and bitter. “Umami” is a fifth category, meaning “pleasant savory taste” in Japanese. The flavor typically comes from MSG, but you won’t find any of that in this TJ’s seasoning. The umami flavor actually comes from the mushrooms!
Use this on basically everything. Sprinkle on roasted veggies, mix it into a turkey burger, or add it to panko for a yummy breading. You can even add this to avocado toast, soups, and sauces.
Cuban Style Citrusy Garlic
Bright, zesty, garlicky.
This one is bright and flavorful. Garlic + citrus is just ✨chef’s kiss✨.
I love using it to season chicken and fish, but I also read you can use it on rice or beans? Trying that ASAP.
Sweet, smoky, salty.
Anything with smoked paprika gets an immediate yes from me. I’ll be honest: I haven’t actually tried this on salmon yet but I have tried it on chicken. It packs a ton of flavor and I can confidently say it would taste great sprinkled on salmon before popping it into the oven or air fryer. Yum.
Nori Komi Furikake Japanese Multi-Purpose Seasoning
Crunchy, salty, mild
I’m not sure why I slept on this for so long. Now, I can’t remember life without it.
If you’ve ever had poké and some types of sushi, you’ve likely had Furikake seasoning. It’s made up of tiny strips of nori seaweed, black and white sesame seeds, salt, and kelp powder. I love it on so many things, like rice, ramen, sushi, potstickers, and soup dumplings. I also read it’s delicious on eggs, but haven’t tried for myself (yet).
Ranch Seasoning Blend
Zesty, garlicky, herby.
This is like those Hidden Valley packets, but better. You can make your own dressing or dipping sauce with this using yogurt or sour cream. I actually prefer to use this straight from the jar. This on popcorn? Perfection. A shake (or ten) on your baked potato or roasted veggies? Mouth watering. Salad, pizza, chicken, pasta, homemade croutons… I feel like I could go on forever.
Pizza Sprinkle Seasoning Blend
Zesty, tomato-ey, herby.
This is a great example of a TJ’s seasoning that I had to have and then did nothing with for way too long. The flavor is good and who hasn’t wished they could bottle (or jar in this case) the flavor of pizza? But really, I didn’t find it life-changing. I could take it or leave it.
If you decide to buy, try it on French fries, or eggs, or add it to canned tomato soup to give it some life.
Sriracha Sprinkle Seasoning Blend
Spicy, garlicky, peppery.
Sriracha Lovers rejoice (especially if you’ve been suffering through the shortage)!
Add this to anything that needs a little spice – Noodles, veggies, popcorn, tofu, chicken, salad, or boiled eggs, just to list a few ideas.
In my opinion, this isn’t quite the same as the sauce and I found it very spice-forward. So consider that before you buy!
Chile Lime Seasoning Blend
Spicy, tangy, bright.
This seasoning is similar to Tajín but tastes sightly different. The tangy-spicy flavor is perfectly balanced. My favorite ways to use it are sprinkled on watermelon (seriously, try this) and on the rim of a margarita.
Other ideas: Other fruits like mango or grilled pineapple, on a salad, on chicken, salmon or shrimp, or in guacamole. Delish.
Green & Red Hatch Chile Flakes
Spicy, slightly sweet, sharp
I’m salivating just thinking about this. Hatch Chiles are red and green chiles serving as a major staple of New Mexican cuisine. The first time I tried anything Hatch Chile was in Colorado and not to be dramatic, but it changed my life.
Obviously, the dried version isn’t exactly the same as an authentic southwestern dish, but it’s nice to have if you live nowhere near this region (like me). These chile flakes are slightly spicy and more flavorful than traditional chili flakes. A little goes a long way!
You can sprinkle this over veggies, nachos, or anything that could use a little crunchy spice. I prefer to add it to foods with more liquid like chili, mac n’ cheese, or scrambled eggs. The liquid rehydrates the chiles and really brings out the flavor.
Herbes de Provence
Savory, herb-y, aromatic.
Using this seasoning makes me feel a little fancy. The jar it comes in is beautiful (that cute spoon!), and there’s just something about cooking with herbs that really makes me feel like I have my life together.
This seasoning is especially tasty on roasted chicken, pork tenderloin, in soups, stews, and casseroles, and on root veggies like carrots.
Taco Seasoning Mix
Spicy, salty, bold.
The first time I tried this, I was not a fan. I thought it was way too spicy. Later on, I learned that I’d made a rookie mistake – I used too much seasoning. The trick here, especially if you’re a mild-medium spice girly like me, is to use ¼ to ½ of a packet per pound of meat when you’re making tacos.
You can use this seasoning in other foods too, like chili or burgers.
What are your go-to Trader Joe’s seasonings?
Which one do you stock up on in fear that TJ’s will decide to discontinue it?