Kitchn Love Letters

The $5 Target Snack I’m Gifting to Myself This Valentine’s Day

published Jan 29, 2023
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Person walking down the street with their Target bag.
Credit: Joe Lingeman

Valentine’s Day has never been a holiday I prepare for in advance. If I’m buying a gift at all, I don’t usually order it weeks (or even one week) ahead of time like I would for, say, a loved one’s birthday. And if the gift is for me, it’s probably a same-day or day-after affair. Find me in the section with the half-priced heart-shaped chocolates on February 15!

But this year is different. You see, I recently learned Target is launching dozens of new groceries for the holiday. The mega retailer has plans for all sorts of pink- and red-hued breakfast items, snacks, candies, cookie house kits, and more. I tried as many of them as I could find and then wrote about my favorites (let me know if you’ve tried any yet in the comments!). 

Among the many, many products I sampled, this Strawberries & Crème Trail Mix was a surprising standout. I mistakenly left the bag within arm’s reach on my desk. Now, I’m rationing the remaining bites until my next Target run

Credit: Mara Weinraub

What’s So Great About Favorite Day Strawberries & Crème Trail Mix?

I wasn’t expecting to like this trail mix this much or, if I’m being honest, at all. The package clearly states it’s an indulgent trail mix, and after reading through the half-dozen different items in it I could see why: two kinds of candy-coated pretzels, M&M’s, sprinkle cookies — even the fruit and nuts are candied. It sounded like it might all be too much together, like leaving the house without removing a necklace (or, in my case, FaceTiming my sister so she can tell me what to ditch). 

Credit: Mara Weinraub

But, in the name of research, I set my assumptions aside and attempted to sample the mix with an open mind. It worked! While the new trail mix is most definitely one of the sweetest to hit Target shelves, I enjoyed every component, both individually and in various combinations. 

The candy-coated cranberries provide a nice, chewy contrast to the crunchy sweet crème almonds and the bite-size sprinkle cookies with shortbread-like tendencies. Those pretzels I mentioned earlier? The heart shapes, dotted with nonpareils, bring their own snappy crunch, while the pink-hued balls add a softer, crispy bite that’s reminiscent of a malt ball. (I wouldn’t mind a whole bag of just those orbs.) And who doesn’t love M&Ms?

The absolute best thing about this snack, though, is another thing I didn’t expect: It reminded me not to be so quick to pass judgment on something (or someone) that’s new-to-me. 

Buy: Strawberries & Crème Trail Mix, $5.49 for 8 ounces at Target

What’s your go-to Target snack? Tell us in the comments below.