- I'm a busy 24-year-old dietitian living in the Washington, DC, area.
- I shop at Trader Joe'severy week with fast, easy, healthy, and affordable meals in mind.
- The store has a great selection of foods, such as freeze-dried berries and shredded hash browns.
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As a busy Washington, DC-based dietitian and freelance nutrition writer, I work long hours in and out of the hospital.
With all that juggling, I prioritize making things simple and convenient wherever I can — especially when it comes to grocery shopping.
Trader Joe's is my go-to Sunday stop for quick, easy, and nutritious foods that keep me fueled during the week.
Here are my favorite staples this month that keep me coming back.
I always throw Trader Joe's wild blueberries into oatmeal.
Wild blueberries are the adorable miniature version of the regular berry and contain more fiber and antioxidants.
They're the same price as the regular frozen blueberries at my local Trader Joe's, so I always opt for wild.
I sprinkle them into oatmeal, smoothies, or yogurt during my typical busy week. Sometimes I even just pour them in a bowl with some cold milk for a quick snack.
When I have more time on the weekends, I cook them down on the stove to make a blueberry compote I can drench my pancakes in.
Frozen pineapple chunks make the perfect sweet treat.
In my opinion, Trader Joe's frozen pineapple chunks are the only ones that taste ripe and sweet every time. No need to go cut up a pineapple when you have these on hand.
They go great in smoothies, but they're also flavorful enough to eat on their own.
Frozen hash browns save the day when it comes to meal-prepped breakfasts.
Trader Joe's frozen hash browns are the ultimate blank canvas for breakfast.
I like to cook an entire bag of shredded potatoes on Sundays with eggs, black beans, and various spices to have a ready-to-eat breakfast hash for the week.
In the mornings, all that's left to do is top it with sour cream, salsa, or guacamole.
Roasted seaweed is a hit for crushing salt cravings.
Roasted seaweed is my snack of choice for when I want something salty and crunchy.
Seaweed is a fantastic source of iodine and a convenient way to boost nutrition in your meals and snacks.
I love to have a pack or two on the side of stir-fries, fried rice, warm soups, and tuna salads. You can't go wrong with eating it right from the package, either.
Trader Joe's wheat noodles are my favorite for stir-fries.
Sign me up for any noodles that I don't have to boil.
There's no easier way to make a quick Asian-inspired salad, stir-fry, or soup than with the help of Trader Joe's Thai wheat noodles.
Just tear open the package and throw it into whatever you're making.
Hearts of palm 'pasta' is a cheat code for eating more veggies.
If you struggle to eat enough vegetables, Trader Joe's hearts of palm "pasta" is an easy solution.
Though it's no Barilla, the high-fiber noodle alternative is packed with beneficial antioxidants and is significantly lower in carbohydrates in comparison, if that's your thing.
I like to use it as a base for my meal-prep pasta salad. I usually just add regular pasta, whatever protein and vegetables I have on hand, and Italian dressing.
I can make anything I want ranch-flavored.
The ranch seasoning has seriously elevated every dish I've put it on.
I'm a big fan of using it to season chicken or popcorn, or I'll mix it up with Greek yogurt for a delicious high-protein dip to dunk my veggies in.
The store's fiber-filled oats are a breakfast must.
Trader Joe's version isn't your standard, everyday bag of rolled oats.
The organic rolled oats with ancient grains and seeds are packed with amaranth, quinoa, chia seeds, and flax seeds, giving you even more fiber and heart-healthy fats than a standard variety.
I like to use the earthy oat blend to make a savory oatmeal bowl topped with egg, guacamole, and hot sauce.
Coconut water is the perfect 3 p.m. pick-me-up.
Whether I blend it in my smoothies or drink it straight out of the bottle, Trader Joe's coconut water is a hydration staple.
The tropical drink is full of electrolytes, such as potassium and magnesium, that can help fight midday fatigue.
I drink a bottle in the middle of the day or after hitting the gym to make sure I'm thoroughly rehydrated.
Freeze-dried berries are a convenient way to eat more fruit.
I will always sign up for fruit that doesn't require a fridge, especially when the price point is lower than fresh.
Berries are rich in gut-healthy fiber and antioxidants, which is why I opt for Trader Joe's easily portable freeze-dried berry medley.
I like them sprinkled over yogurt or ice cream and use them in my homemade berry-granola bars.
Lentil soup is my go-to, no-cook dinner on busy nights.
On nights when cooking simply isn't in the cards, Trader Joe's lentil soup saves the day.
The high-fiber, heat-and-serve soup pairs unbelievably well with grilled cheese, but it's also good with just a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of chives.
Click to keep reading Trader Joe's diaries like this one.
I am a seasoned nutrition expert with extensive experience in dietetics and freelance nutrition writing. Having worked long hours in and out of hospitals in the Washington, DC area, I understand the importance of maintaining a healthy and convenient lifestyle. My expertise lies in simplifying nutrition and making informed choices, particularly when it comes to grocery shopping.
Now, let's delve into the concepts used in the article about the favorite staples of a busy 24-year-old dietitian at Trader Joe's:
- Health Benefits: Mentioned as an adorable miniature version of regular berries, wild blueberries contain more fiber and antioxidants.
- Usage: Used in oatmeal, smoothies, yogurt, and even cooked down to make a blueberry compote for pancakes.
Frozen Pineapple Chunks:
- Quality: The article suggests that Trader Joe's frozen pineapple chunks are the preferred choice for being ripe and sweet.
- Usage: Great in smoothies and flavorful enough to be eaten on their own.
Frozen Hash Browns:
- Convenience: Trader Joe's frozen hash browns are described as the ultimate blank canvas for breakfast.
- Meal Prep: Used to cook a ready-to-eat breakfast hash for the week, paired with eggs, black beans, and various spices.
- Snacking: Roasted seaweed is presented as a salty and crunchy snack, providing iodine and nutritional value.
- Versatility: It's enjoyed on the side of stir-fries, fried rice, warm soups, and tuna salads or eaten directly from the package.
Trader Joe's Thai Wheat Noodles:
- Convenience: The noodles are praised for not requiring boiling, making them easy to use in quick Asian-inspired salads, stir-fries, or soups.
Hearts of Palm "Pasta":
- Veggie Alternative: Positioned as a cheat code for eating more veggies, hearts of palm "pasta" is a high-fiber noodle alternative lower in carbohydrates.
- Meal Prep: Used as a base for a meal-prep pasta salad with regular pasta, protein, vegetables, and Italian dressing.
- Flavor Enhancement: The article highlights how ranch seasoning has elevated various dishes, including chicken, popcorn, and Greek yogurt-based dips.
Trader Joe's Fiber-Filled Oats:
- Nutritional Value: These oats with ancient grains and seeds provide extra fiber and heart-healthy fats compared to standard rolled oats.
- Usage: Used to make a savory oatmeal bowl topped with egg, guacamole, and hot sauce.
- Hydration: Trader Joe's coconut water is recommended as a hydration staple, rich in electrolytes like potassium and magnesium.
- Usage: Blended in smoothies or consumed directly for a midday pick-me-up or post-gym rehydration.
- Convenience: Freeze-dried berries are praised for their portability and lower price point compared to fresh berries.
- Usage: Sprinkled over yogurt or ice cream and incorporated into homemade berry-granola bars.
- Convenience: Trader Joe's lentil soup is highlighted as a go-to, no-cook dinner option on busy nights.
- Pairing: Suggested pairings include grilled cheese or simply with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of chives.
These concepts showcase a mix of nutritional knowledge, culinary convenience, and practical meal solutions tailored for a busy lifestyle.