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

published Jun 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

I’m a highly seasonal eater. I don’t necessarily eat in accordance with what is in season, but I have very seasonally specific taste buds during the year. For example, I really only eat fruit when it’s warm and summery out. I know, I know — it’s probably something my doctor would like to speak to me about. FWIW, I’m Team Vegetables all the time … that is until summer hits and I eat multiple baby watermelons a week, bags of juicy oranges, macerated strawberries by the bowlful, and, well, the list goes on.

Trader Joe’s seemingly runs on a similar seasonal calendar. You see, the newest items this June are all jammed to the RAFTERS with fruity flavors. Hot sauce! Granola! Cream cheese! Desserts! Drinks! All that’s missing is a new candle/soap/body scrub, which will probably hit shelves any day now. Until then, these are the fruit-flavored finds I’ll be consuming all month.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

1. Organic Freezer Pops, $3.49 for 15 milliliters 

Personally, I think most things can be solved with a Popsicle. Tummy ache? Popsicle. Not quite hungry, but want something to occupy your taste buds while you scheme about what’s for dinner? Popsicle. Want to spruce up a glass of Champagne or Prosecco? Put a Popsicle in it. But not just any Popsicle, of course. They’ve got to be truly fruity, not just cloaked with sugar and what I call “Default Berry Taste #5.” 

So it’s my pleasure to announce that Trader Joe’s Organic Freezer Pops more than meet my criteria. Each bag contains three flavors (cherry limeade, berry, and orange), all made with 100% fruit juice and it shows. The berry is tart-sweet and made with a cranberry base, the orange is sweet and citrusy, and the cherry limeade is tangy and refreshing. Truth be told, I will be hiding the cherry limeade ones from anyone who comes over. Sorry! They’re mine. 

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

2. Passion Fruit Granola, $3.99 for 12 ounces

As the great Spice Girls once sang: Spice up your life. When you have a choice between regular ol’ granola and a passion fruit granola, why not go the more passionate route? That’s what got me to pick up a bag of Trader Joe’s newest Passion Fruit Granola. Each crunchy cluster is folded with passion fruit purée and punctuated with freeze-dried raspberries.

That being said, I think we could go a bit harder on the passion fruit flavor in the future; the dried raspberries steal the show a bit. Still, it does make for a deliciously tart tropical granola I’d buy again. It’s great in a yogurt bowl or for topping an acai bowl, of course, but I plan on saving half the bag for further crumbling and adding to a summery fruit crisp or crumble (maybe with pineapple — or cherries?).

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

3. Peaches + Cream Cream Cheese Spread, $2.79 for 8 ounces 

Once again, Trader Joe’s is merging together flavor profiles that are so Big Duh I can’t believe it’s taken this long to formulate. In this case it’s peaches and cream … cheese. Say less, right? It goes without saying that this jammy, peach-speckled cream cheese is a winner.

It’s not overly sweet, and has a fresh peach flavor that pairs well with the tang of cream cheese. Immediately, I got to thinking about how many other things that this cream cheese needs to enhance besides bagels: whipped into a cream cheese frosting, used as the base for summery ice cream, and slathered onto a prosciutto and basil panini.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

4. Super Strawberry Sorbet, $3.99 for 16 ounces

Trader Joe’s naming conventions can often be pretty literal. This is especially true with its newest Super Strawberry Sorbet, which really does taste like pure, unadulterated strawberry flavor. For this sorbet, a sweet-tart, smooth strawberry base is then loaded with more strawberry pieces to really simulate the full experience of biting into a peak summertime strawberry.

This pint is admittedly a bit more icy than some of the sorbets I usually get at the store (just let it thaw a bit on the counter before scooping), but I wouldn’t say that’s a bad thing. It immediately reminded me of getting the first water ice of the season at the shore, with a sunburn budding across my cheeks (oops).

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

5. Yuzu Kosho, $3.99 for 3.17 ounces

A recent trip to Japan confirmed something for me: If Americans collectively freak out for pumpkin spice-everything each year, the Japanese have a similarly passionate obsession with all things yuzu. The citrus fruit is mostly prized for the tart flavor that comes from the zest, which can be added to basically any dish that needs a bit of brightening, something that becomes almost too easy to do with Trader Joe’s new yuzu kosho.

A popular Japanese condiment, yuzu kosho is the ultimate “secret sauce,” and that’s true of Trader Joe’s version. This chili-yuzu paste really has a bit of everything; it’s tart, salty, spicy, vinegary, and even a bit savory (just to keep you guessing). So far it’s been my preferred chili paste to add to my morning fried rice bowls. It’s also an easy way to add zip to salad dressings, pickled vegetables, hot wings, and chicken skewers.

Credit: Mackenzie Filson

6. Blueberry Elderflower Beverage, $3.29 for 16 ounces

One of the main things I love about Trader Joe’s? When I spot a product that no one really needs. Does one need a Blueberry Elderflower Beverage? Absolutely not. But am I glad it exists, in all its floral, juicy, just-sweet-enough beauty? You bet!

So many of the drinks these days have a job; they’re there to hydrate you, calm you down, wake you back up, and more. Consider me refreshed (literally and figuratively) to find a new, warm-weather drink to throw in my purse that’s for joy alone — and mixing with gin. (Okay, fine. Maybe it has one job.)

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