I recently posted on my Instagram that I did a Trader Joe’s haul and came out with Paleo approved groceries for almost two weeks under $135 (3 meals for 3 people per day + snacks). I should mention I actually make meals for 4 people but my husband eats two servings since he is extremely tall and very active.
Keep in mind we live in Minnesota. You know, where it always winter? Produce and food in general run pretty high here so getting groceries to make Paleo meals for roughly $1.36 per meal is pretty darn good. Can you find cheaper here? I am sure, especially if you have an Aldi or something similar around you . For us, we love Trader Joe’s . The price, the quality and the variety are above anywhere else (in our opinion). They have so many Paleo/Whole30 options that make our lives a lot easier with a lot less prep.
Here are my favorite products from Trader Joe’s and how I use them!
Fully Cooked Pork Belly – These are amazing for quick meals. All you have to do is take them out, brown them on a skillet for a minute and then throw them with whatever you want. I like them on salads or plain with a side of dipping sauce and veggies. They have zero carbs + no sugar and are a good source of fat (21g) and protein (13g) to fit your macros (if you track). Ingredients: Pork belly , water, sea salt. You really can’t get any more simple than that. I grabbed two of these. One for a full meal and then the other for Sea to snack on throughout the week.
Fully Cooked Carnitas – These are Sean’s favorite. He loves to pair them with some salsa, avocado and toss them on a spinach salad or lettuce wrap. All you have to do is microwave them for 2 1/2 minutes and cut them how you like (we prefer shredding but you can cube them). Again, simple ingredients ( 8g fat, 1g carb, 0g sugar, 12g protein).
Simply Sliced Roast Chicken Breast – This is a bit spendy at $6.99 but the convince for me is worth it. It is roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper. I hate touching / cooking chicken so if I can avoid it, I will. I throw these on salads and they are great little lunches for Payton. I sometimes will pan fry these with cauliflower rice and a little coconut aminos + one egg and it makes a really great chicken fried rice dish. Again, no sugar or any funny business in there.
Kettle Cooked Chicken Soup – This is so, so good. It is such a comfort food for me and gives me my chicken noodle soup fix. I currently have a cold so this is what I have had for breakfast the last two days and it is heaven (soup for breakfast? yes! ) I grabbed two of these as well. I take one to work and eat on it throughout the week and then the other serves as a side (usually with a big salad) for a meal at home. They also have amazing beef stew but it does contain Roux (rice flour, corn oil). We did buy one because it is so good and we shoot for 90/10 Paleo but no, it is not Paleo. I wish they would make it Paleo though! Maybe I need to write them.
Prosciutto – I love wrapping tenderloin, cod , chicken or brussel sprouts / jalapenos in prosciutto and the TJ brand has been my favorite! Pro tip : leave it in the fridge until you need it because if you leave it out even for a minute it is harder to get off the paper. It is cut very thin (which I love) but tends to stick more when it is not super cold!
Chile Lime Chicken Burgers – I can’t say enough about these. They are so delicious, amazing ingredients and they never get old. A great way to spice up a lunch or breakfast.
Salsa – They have a lot of compliant salsas. My favorite has been the Harrisa Salsa but there hasn’t been any that I wouldn’t buy again. All are very good!
Hot sauces – The habanero hot sauce has great taste but it is REALLY hot – you have been warned! I also love the Yuzu hot sauce. It is spicy but citrusy and delicious! It is a must try , I believe it is only like $1 , too!
Cauliflower Rice- I have tried making my own and it is a mess. An annoying, time consuming mess. I have also tried multiple brands of cauliflower rice and nothing even comes close to price or quality of TJ . It is cheap and it cooks up the best. Not watery, no weird flavor. Must have! I love making fried cauliflower rice or using it in a chicken Marsala recipe! Get the TJ coconut aminos too- the best sub for soy sauce!
Marinara sauce– great price for a HUGE can of marinara sauce. I add some diced tomatoes and a few diced jalapenos and make a great spaghetti sauce (over spaghetti sauce or broccoli!)
Frozen Wild Blueberries – These little things are bursting with flavor and taste so fresh. Payton loves that they are tiny and you get so many in a bag. I throw them on salads, in smoothies, use them as a snack, make syrup with them. They are good for anything and everything!
Coconut Oil + Coconut Oil Spray – I never realized that olive oil had a pretty low smoke point. Coconut oil has one of the highest and I found it tastes better. I use Coconut oil and avocado oil more than olive oil now. I combined these two into one because…well I don’t know. It felt right. Get both of them, they are worth it. Also get the olive oil because that is great, too!
Mixed Nut Butter – I had a really hard time letting go of my sugary peanut-butter. I think most almond butters are gross to be honest but this mixed nut butter is amazing and I actually prefer it to peanut butter now. Payton also loves it and it is an easy way to add in some good fat and hide the nasty taste of raw celery.
Almond Flour – I use almond flour to bake Paleo treats and to “bread” meats. It is super versatile and the one at TJ is much cheaper than I have found anywhere else. If you plan to bake or bread anything (or make meatloaf) get this!
Canned Tuna – These are a really great protein source and an easy emergency food. I keep some at work just in case I forget lunch. I like to through some buffalo sauce and primal kitchen ranch on the tuna and lay it on a salad!
Ghee – AKA clarified butter. You get all the goodness with none of the bad stuff. I love the taste- reminds me of that melted butter you get at restaurants with your crab legs. It is great on top of steak and I love using it to fry up some onions/mushrooms.
Avocado’s Number Guacamole – 5+ avocados per container…you can’t buy and make your own guacamole for that price (at least not here) and it tastes great. I love to top my fajitas with it, taco salad or just dip some plantain chips in there.
Fruit Sauce Crushers – These are great for my preschooler. She loves all the flavors and I feel good about giving her this treat. She even loves the apple carrot flavor, which makes me happy. They are also an easy way to make a smoothie if you are running short on time!
Crinkle Squash Fries- I’m too lazy to make my squash look like crinkle fries so I prefer to buy them that way. I toss them in some coconut oil and season them with TJ seasoning (it’s coming up on the list, hold your horses) then pop them in my air fryer for 5-7 minutes.
Spices/Seasonings – They have an amazing selection of clean seasonings/spices. The must haves for me are the Everything But the Bagel seasoning and the all purpose seasoning (red top). Most days I fry two eggs (or hard boil them) and top with the EBTB seasoning for breakfast. The all purpose seasoning reminds me a lot of Lowry’s , without the junk!
Cage-Free Hard-Cooked Peeled Eggs – Umm , hello! Have you seen the name of my site? Of course I love these eggs. But really , I do . My hens aren’t laying eggs yet and I have zero patience or time to boil and peel eggs. For now, I buy them. I have bought the pre-cooked eggs at Hy-Vee and they were so rubbery and overcooked. The ones at Trader Joe’s are always perfectly cooked and last a long time. Totally worth it!
Bagged Nuts– they have any kind of nut or nut mix you could think of honestly .
Produce – All of their produce is good. I recommend their bagged green apples, avocados, purple sweet potatoes, asparagus, fresh fruit (ESPECIALLY the pineapple) , peppers and their leafy greens.
Lara Bars / Rx Bars / Fruit strips – They have a pretty decent selection of flavors and Payton loves the fruit strips .49 a piece!
- Cheat Meal : Goulash
- Mexican Beef + Zucchini Skillet
- Paleo Recipes to Try (Main Dish)
- Trader Joe’s Haul : Paleo Edition
- Clean Wedge Sald w/ Balsamic Reduction + Dump Ranch
- Greek Lemon Chicken Skewers
- Stupid Easy Clean Tzatziki Sauce (No Cucumber)
- Easy Peasy Avocado Eggs
- Road Tripping When You’re Paleo
- Oven Carrots