Sure, you can get milk, eggs, and bread at Trader Joe’s, arguably L.A.’s most interesting grocery store. And then there are those incredible items that Trader Joe’s carries that we find ourselves craving every week. But did you know you could buy real vanilla beans at Trader Joe’s? And that they’re exactly half as expensive as the ones at Ralph’s? It’s true! Here are 10 products you didn’t know you could buy at Trader Joe’s.
1. Kouign Amann
This French breakfast delicacy, known at some L.A. bakeries as a buttercup, is as flaky as a croissant covered in caramelized sugar. You won’t find this hard to pronounce pastry in the bakery section at TJ’s. Instead, check the freezer aisle. There, they come in boxes, ready to proof overnight and bake fresh in the morning.
2. Vanilla Beans
Trader Joe’s has always carried vanilla extract, but you used to have to visit another grocery story to find real vanilla beans. Not any more. In the baking aisle Trader Joe’s is now selling two plump vanilla beans for just $3.99—it’s a full $4 less than what they go for at Ralph’s or Whole Foods.
3. Peeled Pearl Onions
Have you ever tried to peel a pearl onion? If yes, then you’ll know why this product is brilliant. If not, don’t—just buy these. They will save you 1,000 headaches.
4. 10 Minute Farro
You want to eat whole grains, you do, but they take so darn long to cook. Not if you buy them at Trader Joe’s! The indie retailer has tidy packages of farro that cook in just 10 minutes. Boom.
5. Cream Top Milk
We have it on good authority that this delicious dairy product is one and the same as Straus Organic’s cream top milk. No, Trader Joe’s doesn’t sell it in a glass bottle, but hello: check out that price difference!
6. Marcona Almonds with salt and rosemary
We didn’t think you could improve upon the perfection that is a Marcona almond. And then Trader Joe’s started selling these.
If you think English muffins are crumpets, you’re mistaken. Trader Joe’s crumpets are, according to our English friends, the closest thing to British-style crumpets you can get L.A.
8. Belgian Chocolate
Those pound plus bars Trader Joe’s sells in milk, dark, and semi-sweet? An insider tells us that they’re actually Callebaut. The packaging is much less attractive than what the fine Belgian maker usually puts out, but the quality and consistency is there. Also, check out that $4.99 price tag.
Near the box of Kouign Amann in the freezer section you’ll find regular and chocolate croissants. These are not the crescent rolls you’ll find near the butter. They’re made with real butter and are rolled and frozen into shape. Want freshly baked croissants in the morning? All you have to do is proof them at room temperature the night before. They’ll be puffed and ready to bake by 8 a.m.
The cookie base for cookie butter is exactly what you should be dipping in said cookie butter. It’s also the same sweet biscuit that Delta airlines is famous for handing out as a mid-flight snack.