This $2 Trader Joe’s Find Is a Must-Have for Fall Baking

published Oct 29, 2022
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Trader Joe's groceries in canvas bag on kitchen counter.
Credit: Sarah Crowley

I’ll admit, I can’t go into a Trader Joe’s without scanning the latest product releases. Crunchy snacks! Unexpected dinner shortcuts! Limited-edition seasonings, including one I wait all year for! There’s a lot to get excited about when I’m weaving through those carefully curated aisles. Pro budgeting tip: You may want to leave a blank space on your shopping list in case one of these eye-catching items ends up in your cart.

One of my favorite finds, though, is one of TJ’s lesser-known staples. Tucked away in what some might call the store’s most underrated section is an absolute essential for fall baking: Trader Joe’s Uncrystallized Candied Ginger.

Credit: Jessica Prudenti-Montalvo

What’s So Great About Trader Joe’s Uncrystallized Candied Ginger?

Trader Joe’s sells both crystallized and uncrystallized candied ginger. When I want that extra sparkly sugary crust, I’ll pick up the crystallized version to use as a garnish. But in terms of a must-have ingredient for fall baking, the uncrystallized ginger rules in my kitchen.

The uncrystallized cubes are smooth and coated in a fine sugar that complements the spiciness of the ginger without veering into too-sweet territory. The flavor is concentrated and the texture is chewy and delightful. It adds an unexpected zing to fall cakes, cookies, pies, and more, and is one of my favorite post-lunch or -dinner snacks.

Credit: Jessica Prudenti-Montalvo

What’s the Best Way to Use Trader Joe’s Uncrystallized Candied Ginger?

Fall is the best time for baking, if you ask me, and this candied ginger adds just the right amount of warm spiciness to seasonal bakes. Each piece — roughly the size of a quarter — is soft, making it easy to chop and toss into batters. I love to welcome the changing leaves with an apple crumb cake. The bits of ginger enhance the flavor of the apples in a way that screams fall.

It also adds a pop of texture and a lively flavor when tossed into streusel toppings for apple crisps or coffee cakes, and is undeniably delightful in gingerbread. All too often a cube or two won’t even make it into the recipe and somehow finds its way straight into my mouth instead.

Find it in stores: Trader Joe’s Uncrystallized Candied Ginger, $1.99 for 8 ounces

What Trader Joe’s grocery is a must-have for your fall baking? Tell us in the comments.