5 Not-to-Be-Missed Trader Joe’s Groceries That Just Hit Stores, According to a Former Employee

published Jul 6, 2024
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A Spring display in Trader Joe's. The sign says "Feeling adventurous? Check out our new items. We search high and low to bring you exciting new products."
Credit: Jaclyn Vernace / Shutterstock

Like the maple pancake puffs and ketchup sprinkles that came before, many of the newest Trader Joe’s groceries to hit shelves sound a lot like your favorite Wonka-esque creations. Evoking edible bubbles, pearls, and even pillows, these items might not necessarily solve any of your dinner decisions (or have multiple uses), but they do bring something almost as crucial to the table: They are truly tasty, a little silly, and fun to eat. 

Sometimes that’s good enough! Here’s what I grabbed (and loved!) this month.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

1. Green Tea and Yuzu Spread, $3.99 for 7.57 ounces

Much like Trader Joe’s ushers in many things ube, mango, and cookie butter-filled, it’s giving the same ubiquity to yuzu, and I’m SO here for it. Just like last month’s new yuzu kosho, this latest yuzu-infused item takes the tart, citrusy floral flavor of the peel along with earthy, herbal green tea to make a marmalade-like spread you’re going to want to pick up STAT.

Let me tell you, this spread is versatile. Upon the first spoonful, I immediately thought, “This would be amazing in a grilled cheese!” I’ve since imagined adding it to baked brie and savory marinades, or even swirling it into a sorbet or ice cream (why not both?). In short, it’s destined for way more than its humble jar suggests.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

2. Bubble Waffles, $4.49 for 7.05 ounces

A popular street food (and bubble tea shop accompaniment), Bubble Waffles are like if a waffle and bubble wrap had a love child that was slightly sweet, nutty, and crispy yet delightfully chewy. If you’re a big texture person, you’re going to love the Bubble Waffles, which have the crispy ends of a freshly made waffle that gives way to a chewy mochi-esque pocket in each “bubble.” 

Truth be told, these waffles really need no embellishment — they’re slightly sweet and have a nice, tropical coconut milk backbone already. Though they’d also be a great canvas for all kinds of sweet or savory toppings, like whipped cream and strawberries, a fried egg with cheese (à la McGriddle), or simply a scoop of ice cream.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

3.  Peanut Butter Pillows, $2.99 for 5 ounces

Keeping with the spirit of all things fluffy and light, Trader Joe’s is bringing us Peanut Butter Pillows. Each one is a crunchy, layered toffee-esque mouthful of a candy that’s the shape of a pillow small enough for a baby mouse. Cute! 

If you have the patience, letting one of these sweet and salty candies linger is pure bliss. If you’re like me, though, they’re so fun to crunch into one after the other. I’m personally sneaking a few handfuls of these into my next bucket of movie popcorn, homemade trail mix, as well as crumbling them into some cookie and brownie batters.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

4. Organic Peanut Butter & Cocoa Crunch, $3.49 for 10 ounces

I know this might be sacrilegious to ask, but has Trader Joe’s made possibly the best chocolate and peanut butter cereal … ever? It just might have, and I can back up my claim! You see, each individual pebble of the newest Organic Peanut Butter & Cocoa Crunch cereal is firing on all cylinders. The chocolate pebbles? Rich, and creamy. The peanut butter pebbles? Perfectly salty and nutty.

Basically, it’s not just a pile of brown and tan balls that all form a monotonous mishmash of the classic flavor duo. No, this cereal is pure harmony, where each bite is ever so slightly different. Plus, it really earns the word “Crunch,” holding its own against milk right to the end of your bowl.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

5. Tropical Green Tea Instant Boba Kit, $4.99 for 10.59 ounces

Though it’s usually hard to pick my monthly favorite, I do feel pretty confident saying that the Tropical Green Tea Instant Boba Kit is my No. 1 pick of the month, if not the entire summer season. In my eyes, this is the most perfect drink. The tart-sweet passion fruit and mango purees taste SO fresh and sunshiny on the tongue, the tea is ever-so-slightly tannic, and there’s plenty of pert, chewy boba pearls to make this feel like a tropical daydream in a glass.

As a kid, did you often draw pictures with the sun wearing sunglasses? I love how so many of us did that and yet it made no sense! Either way, that’s basically how I looked after one glass of this new boba tea — cool and summer-ready like a sun wearing sunnies, with a bubble tea and perhaps a Bubble Waffle in each hand. 

Which new Trader Joe’s items are you adding to your cart? Tell us in the comments below.