Category Archives: Trader Joe’s

Chia Seeds

If you haven’t tried chia seeds yet, please do!  They have many nutritious benefits and are easy to incorporate into your diet.

Chia SeedsSalvia hispanica, commonly known as chia, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family, Lamiaceae, native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala.  Remember the chia pets in the 80s?

Chia seeds are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, fiber and antioxidants.  One ounce (about 2 tablespoons – which is about what I try to consume daily) contains 139 calories, 4 grams of protein, 9 grams fat, 12 grams carbohydrates and 11 grams of fiber, plus vitamins and minerals.  And these days, they’re going mainstream.  You can find them at Trader Joe’s, Costco and most grocery stores.

Typically, I mix chia seeds into my smoothies.  That way, you don’t really notice them.  It’s easier for our bodies to digest chia seeds vs. flax seeds.  We sprinkle chia seeds on cereal and oatmeal or just as a snack.   They have a mild nutty taste.

Chia seeds can also be used as an egg substitute.  We’ve been inching closer to vegan/plant-based eating and chia seeds have been great for those baking recipes that call for an egg or two.  Here’s the best chia egg substitute recipe for baking that I’ve found.  This is the equivalent of 1 egg:

1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds  and 3 Tablespoons Water

Combing and let sit until the chia seeds look more like a gel substance (about 10 minutes) and use as you would an egg.

Give it a try and let me know how it goes… oh and if you have any favorite recipes with chia seeds, do share…

My Favorite Things from Trader Joe’s

Since moving to Phoenix, one of my most favorite things about this place is the easy and more affordable access to healthy food.   Here, capitalism is at play in the healthy food arena!  There are several stores offering organic, healthy food and they even have weekly circulars like you’d expect from a traditional grocery store.  But by far, my favorite place to shop is Trader Joe’s.  No, you can’t get EVERYTHING there….but I come pretty close.  And, it takes me at least 4 bags to break the $100 mark here…crazy.

My friends and family back in Kansas City will soon be enjoying their own two Trader Joe’s locations and I thought I’d give them a preview of all the yummi-ness to come.

(in no particular order)…

  • Roasted Seaweed Snack (see recent post)
  • Hummus: At least 20 kinds of Hummus — I love the Eggplant, White Bean and Mediterranean.
  • Yummy Fresh Salsas: Salsa Especial – this has a kick, but if you have salsa lovers in your family, buy at least TWO containers of this each time you go (it doesn’t last long in the fridge)
  • Cheap, Really Good Wine: A reason to go to the Ward Parkway store, KC, TJ’s has awesome wine and it’s cheap. While I’m not a huge fan of the Charles Shaw (2 Buck Chuck), I’ve found many yummy wines, usually in the $5-$8 range.  Favorite: MGM Pinot Noir
  • Fresh Produce: While you might not be able to find EVERY veggie at Trader Joe’s, you’ll find most.  I love the convenient packaging (a bag of broccoli florets, for example) and they always have awesome berries (hope that’s not just b/c I’m closer to CA)
  • Cookies: My favorite would be Meyer Lemon Cookie Thins (see photo). So. Good.
  • For your doggie friends, I highly recommend their Chicken and Brown Rice Sticks. Charli loves these…and turns into her instinctive, canine self when she smells them.  She’ll do every trick she knows just to get another bite.
  • Fresh Ravioli Packs: We love the butternut squash and arugula/cheese one…
  • Aluminum-Free Deodorant: Yes, I know…if you follow this blog, you know I’m always searching for the most effective, non-toxic deodorant.  I do still love the Lavanila products, but I’ve also found that TJ’s Aluminum-Free Deodorant with Cotton works well too.
  • And then….I can’t forget the items that I’ve always loved at Trader Joe’s when I was just visiting and had to limit my purchases to the non-perishables and what would fit in my suitcase:  Salt Water Taffy, Ginger Pear Tea, great coffees and anything you could possibly imagine embraced in dark chocolate ( I love the pomegranates, and Power Berry Pack the best).

Roasted Seaweed

There are so many health benefits we can gain from seaweed – both as food and skincare products.  Seaweed contains a broad spectrum of vitamins and minerals include anti-inflammatory B vitamins, iron and iodine.  Seaweed also has detoxifying and hydrating qualities.  The key is finding a seaweed that you can eat and enjoy!

My favorite is Trader Joe’s Roasted Seaweed Snack.  It’s become my snack of choice vs. chips or candy, at least when I’m in my “healthy wellness junkie mood.”  The seaweed snack is vegan and gluten-free and really cheap: $.99!

To learn more on the BENEFITS of SEAWEED

Note: This will be one of many future posts highlighting my favorite products at Trader Joe’s. Having just moved to an area with the store close, it’s been a real treat trying all the great products and the even more amazing prices…and for my friends back home in Kansas City, these posts will give you a preview for when you get your stores this summer.

Do you have a favorite seaweed snack? Tell us about it.