Just the Tip Tuesday–Where TJ’s Misses the Mark

You guys know I am a fan of Trader Joe’s. I’ve been shopping there regularly since freshman year of college when I went through  my vegan phase and realized the local carniceria doesn’t carry soy chorizo.

My Trader Joe’s Must Haves post is full of TJ’s products I LOVE.

But, sometimes ol’ Joe misses the mark.

Today my just the tip are TJ’s products you can skip.

Exhibit A:

Trader Joe’s Mayonnaise. I’ve tried this a few times now, hoping maybe I’d like it the second, third or fourth taste. Nope. IMG_5378 (533x800)

Best Foods really is the best, or at least significantly better than TJ’s mayo. Maybe they should call it Better Foods?IMG_5380 (800x533)

The deciding factor is that the nutrition stats are very similar:


IMG_5382 (800x533)

Better Foods:

IMG_5381 (800x533)

So just buy the good stuff and enjoy.

Exhibit B:

Trader Joe’s conditioner made my hair feel dry and brittle.  Not a fan. Skip it. IMG_6032 (533x800) (533x800)

Question: Want to put your tip in?

Trader Joe’s product you think we can skip?


  1. Rishenda says

    I totally agree on the conditioner. I now use my full bottle as shaving cream for my legs (it works surprisingly well for that task).

    Cranberry Walnut Gorgonzola salad dressing changed my life and made me actually like salad. I can’t recommend it enough!

  2. Blair says

    I think it’s red pepper and artichoke bruschetta. Sounded delicious, absolutely disgusting.

    On the flip, their “lean cuisine” mac & cheese is f’ing delcious. Add some frozen spinach/veggies and salsa and you have my dinner 3 nights a week. Kind of sad. Whoops.

  3. Tabatha Rhodes says

    We don’t live near a TJs anymore :(, but when we did I could not get enough of their tzatziki! So good!

  4. Bugg says

    Their guac is totally gross. It’s the 2-pack that has 2 flat trays of it. Disgusting.

    Love: frozen mac n cheese, the low calorie lemonade (tastes like the stuff you get at the mall but tres cheap and only 40 calories), chocolate peanut butter cupcakes, kettlecorn cookies, their almond milk is good and way cheaper than Almond Delight.

  5. says

    I really haven’t tried any bad TJ’s products yet! I guess the only thing I would say skip is their produce since most of it is kinda blehh. The only other ones I try to skip from time to time are ones I typically overdose on since I’m way too obsessed with them- Gone bananas (frozen dark chocolate covered bananas) They are too addicting.

    • Dynamics says

      Someone else who thinks their produce is blehh. Plus the produce has a very short span before molding or going inedible. I have tried three different TJ’s and they are all the same. I keep trying and last night bought sweet potatoes and onions.

      I do love their hard-boiled eggs (yes, I am HB egg challenged and cannot make them. I hate the green ring I give them.)

      • kait says

        Agreed! TJ’s produce turns very quickly.

        @Dynamics- here is a FOOLPROOF way to make hard-boiled eggs: submerge eggs in cold water and bring to a rolling boil. Once the water boils, remove from heat and set a timer for 15 min. Once the time is up, submerge eggs in an ice bath (ice and cold water) and you’ve got perfectly cooked eggs.

  6. Bugg says

    OMG how could I forgot the taco seasoning??? Last week I made chicken Santa Fe (chicken breast, tomatoes, salsa, black beans, corn, and a packet of taco seasoning, crock pot, 8 hours) and it turned out horrible. Only difference was TJ’s taco seasoning. I poured the whole packet in and it was so spicy I had to throw the whole thing out. I their defense the back may have said to only use a tbsp or 2 (I don’t know I’m used to throwing the whole thing in) per recipe. Again I didn’t read the back so I’m not sure. but it was hell on a plate.

  7. says

    Thanks for the reminder I needed mayo, on the list now. Um skip the chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches – they are TOO good and you will eat them all and get fat. I speak from experience.

    I actually hadn’t shopped there in forever and went last weekend, forgot how much I love that store. Too many yummy treats though!

  8. says

    I really didn’t like their avocado hummus- super bland. I am, however, currently obsessed with their little tiny, crispy chocolate chip cookies. It’s becoming a problem and I will never buy them again- so addicting.

  9. Maren says

    haha just the tip…too funny! Love that movie. I don’t really care for their shampoo and conditioner either, but until recently, it was the only sulfate-free, affordable shampoo and conditioner! My fiance has to have it because his scalp is so sensitive. I just use a different brand and he doesn’t seem to mind it. I absolutely LOVE their dried “just mangoes”. SOOO good.

  10. Denise P. says

    I decided to skip my usual sweet potato tortilla chips and try the reduced fat tortilla chips. Blech. I’ll be back to the others with my next trip.

  11. Leah says

    I am OBSESSED with their new Svelte ice cream sandwiches. Same nutrition facts as Skinny Cow, so much better. I also really like their 100 calorie dark chocolate bars, they give me the self control I don’t actually have. I don’t really like the quinoa tortilla chips. Love quinoa, love tortilla chips, but apparently not together.

  12. says

    I don’t shop at TJ’s very often, but my fiance LOVES their marinated mozzarella cheese…adding it to a frozen pizza makes it taste gourmet!

    Also, you can’t beat their wine prices. I stock up and buy about 6 bottles at a time for about $35. The Joseph Handler is awesome for a super sweet red (if you have beginner red wine drinkers coming to dinner).

    Oh, and their frozen chicken burritos are super delicious and filling, too. Guess I need to make a trip to TJ’s soon!

  13. says

    I was really confused when you mentioned “Best Foods Mayonnaise”, because out here (in the east), it’s Hellmann’s Mayonnaise. Same tag line and label.
    I don’t shop at TJ’s, but it’s fun to read the other reviews.

    • Elizabeth R says

      I thought the same thing when I saw that (Northeast)! No TJs ANYWHERE near me (no Whole Foods either) so I will just be envious and drool at all the reviews.

    • says

      I KNOW! I was like … “Look at that, a knock off version of Hellmann’s” but then I saw the Unilever logo on the back! Nope its the same thing.

      The worst TJ’s thing I had was the frozen salmon crepes … I know it sounds delicious too 😉 . I spit that thing out and dumped the rest of the box, nasty.

  14. says

    TJ refresh conditioner is no good but there is a spa conditioner that is great!

    The horseradish hummus is great!

    Not a fan of the avocado hummus. Just like regular guac. If you don’t eat right away it goes brown.

    The tj near me supposedly has chia seeds now. Interested in knowing the price. I usually get chia seeds at ocean state job lot for super cheap

  15. Joyce says

    Ever seen the site whatsgoodattraderjoes.com? they rate different products and are actually pretty spot on. i have only never finished one thing from trader joes and that is the peanut satay sauce. hoping you get the awesome peanut sauce you usually get from Thai restaurants and getting poop instead was one of the greater disappointments in my life.

    • Heather says

      I totally agree on the peanut satay satay sauce. It was awful. And it was one of my first purchases from TJs when it came to our area (by which I mean 40 mins from my house). Luckily I picked up lots of other great items, lol. Worth the drive :)

  16. Sarah says

    I know you’ll hate me for this, but I didn’t like the TJ’s cilantro salad dressing. Too sweet for me.

    I love their yellow curry sauce. It’s the only way to get my husband to eat tofu without complaining.

      • Sarah says

        I didn’t like the peanut dressing much either. It was also too sweet for me.

        It might be my taste-buds’ fault for hoping it would be just like a lower calorie thai peanut sauce for my salad though… And that I would then be able to eat it like soup without any dire consequences. A girl can dream.

  17. says

    Love their pumpkin butter, Sunflower Seed butter, hummus, corn salsa

    HATE the seaweed snacks. I so wanted to like them. Also the pineapple salsa – Like the taste but too watery to dip in, maybe better as a marinade? And the black bean dip thingy. I always want to like it but I just don’t but I forget I don’t until I have covered a chip in it. oh and also didn’t like the Goddess dressing that everyone seems to die over.

  18. lanie says

    TJ’s cottage cheese is the absolute best! And I have not really found anything I don’t like there, except for the taco seasoning, it’s super spicy and can really catch you off guard. Remember, if there is anything you don’t like, you can take it back, opened, for a full refund.

  19. Alex says

    I like their product and vitamin section at my local TJ. Has anyone tried their chocolate? Delic.

    I’ve read these segments before and still chuckle at the subject heading.

  20. Caitlin says

    I just have to comment and agree with you about the TJ’s mayo! It is horrendous and now it is just lurking in the back of my fridge because I feel too bad about throwing it out. Now I think I might have the courage, knowing I’m not the only hater! 😉

  21. Ellen says

    The minty shampoo and conditioner is awesome!! Try that! Its my go-to now.

    I’m always amazed with how much packaging they can add to their produce. Like, one eggplant, on a plastic tray, wrapped in cling wrap. Or the garlic in little individual net bags. Produce doesn’t need packaging!

  22. says

    Three things:

    So nice to see you yesterday! Thanks SO MUCH for the ride!

    Love the title of this post.

    I should have warned you about the shampoo and conditioner. I was tricked into buying it once and it’s horrible! Try Garnier Fruitis conditioner!

  23. says

    I love TJ’s (vegan chicken) Crispy Tenders; they’re delish and also cheaper than Gardein brand. I also like their horseradish hummus.

    BTW, I am a vegan and I make a point of trying not to act smug and/or self-important about it. I like your blog so I assume you were just joking, right? :-)

  24. Lala says

    I have to say I usually skip their chocolate chips! They create so many delicious chocolate-covered-somethings, but for some reason I feel I can do better in the chocolate chip department.

  25. says

    Honestly I can’t say I’ve had anything from TJ’s I don’t like! But, that said, I’ll steer away from the mayo and shampoo now :)

  26. says

    I actually like the Nourish shampoo and conditioner for my fine hair – it’s the moisturizing one, so maybe it works better than the one you pictured? I don’t really like their produce, except for the pearl tomatoes, and we tried their burger patties once and were completely grossed out by the texture. But I rarely find stuff I don’t like at TJ’s!

  27. says

    Pub cheese!!! So good, and addicting… So be careful! I really do live their cheese selection.
    I AGREE about the mayo, no bueno.
    But their s’mores ice cream sandwiches…

  28. says

    Trader Joes Spicy Flaxseed Chips FTW! Love their Mini Mint Ice Cream Mounthfuls, Falafels, and Dark Chocolate + Sea Salt Caramel bars, too. Their no-bake lasagna noodles…. not so much. Will steer clear of their mayo — thanks for the tip!

  29. megan says

    i wish i hadnet been so busy earlier in the week… just bought TJ’s shampoo and conditioner for the first time yesterday….

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *