Hello. My name's Nathan, and I love Trader Joe's. My wife Sonia does too. She's a great shopper, has excellent taste and knows good value when she comes across it. As many of you know, Trader Joe's is unsurpassed in the world of good-value grocery stores, so we spend a lot of our time and money there. Although the store fairly consistently delivers great taste with its own unique line of food products, there are definitely some big-hits, and unfortunately, there are some misses...

After doing a couple of internet searches for reviews of TJ's food items, Sonia discerned an apparent dearth of good, quality reviews for the store's offerings. So, at her suggestion, we decided to embark on a journey of systematically reviewing every Trader Joe's product, resulting in the blog you are about to read...

A couple of months into our Trader Joe's rating adventure, an old college friend, Russ, who unbeknownst to me had been following our TJ's blog, decided that I had been slacking in my blogging duties (which, of course, I was) so he decided to contribute his own original TJ's reviews to the blog, thus enhancing it, making it more complete and adding to it a flavor of his own. He and his wife Sandy are also avid TJ's fans and, as you will soon discover, he is an excellent writer and is nearly as clever, witty and humble as I am.

Seriously though, Russ: You go, boy!

So here it is: "What's Good at Trader Joe's?"

Search This Blog

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Trader Joe's Gluten Free Crispy Crunchy Chocolate Chip Cookies

We're always getting review requests here at WG@TJs. It's often for random individual products that people are too scared to try...but there are two categories in particular that people always want us to check out: vegetarian/vegan stuff and gluten-free stuff. Lately, it seems like gluten-free has been more popular than ever. Since Sonia and I are both sensitive to gluten, we've tried a handful of TJ's gluten-free products just for our own benefit. (We usually just go ahead and eat regular wheat products and suffer the consequences). But we're also trying to help people who really have to do the gluten-free thing out of absolute necessity.

And thankfully for sufferers of Celiac Disease, there are a few products out there that make gluten seem downright unnecessary. This is one of them.

Sonia and I were both amazed by the taste of this product. Really amazing chocolate chip cookie taste. They're very, very chocolatey, with a strangely home-made quality for being super-crispy, packaged in plastic, and well...wheat free. There's a picture of what appears to be some colonial type bakers cooking up a batch of these things. Who knows? Maybe the gluten-intolerants of the seventeenth century whipped up batches of crispy rice-flour cookies all the time. Or maybe they were burned at the stake because their intolerance of wheat was assumed to be some sort of divine retribution for witchcraft. Whatever the case, I'm happy Trader Joe stumbled upon this tasty recipe.

The texture is exactly as described. Crispy and crunchy. And how! It usually seems like it's harder to nail the texture of a gluten-free product than the flavor, as was the case with Trader Joe's Gluten Free Brownies. If you really like the crunchy feel of crispy cookies like I do, these are spot on—but I do have to admit that I'm an even bigger fan of gigantic, warm, soft chocolate chip cookies. We may have to wait a while for them to uncover the magical formula that can yield a gluten-free batch of those. Until then, I'll be happily crunching away on these puppies. They reminded us of the little Famous Amos crispy cookies you get out of vending machines. But better.

Overall, I was very impressed. I'll give them 4 out of 5 stars. Sonia does too.

Bottom line: 8 out of 10.


  1. You did it! You reviewed my favorite item from TJ's. I don't know why, but this made me very happy. It's not like I make the cookie, or own the store that sells it. My nieces are big fans of these cookies, just like their auntie.

  2. This is the BEST gluten free cookie I have ever tasted. The aroma, flavor, and texture of these cookies is also better than any chocolate chip wheat cookie I've ever had. They are fantastic, even those who aren't gluten intolerant love them.

  3. I just tried these cookies and am jonesing to take another trip to TJ. I have loved them for the variety of gluten free products they carry, although not all are created equal (let's not mention the GF snickerdoodles.) Have been diagnosed with Celiac, TJ is really a go-to store.

    These cookies are far and away the best GF product they carry. I don't think my home made cookies are even this good. My boyfriend is not GF, but does everything he can to ensure the food he cooks is safe for me. He loves to try every new product I bring home. I had to cut him off when it came to these cookies. Seriously. He would have eatten my whole bag.

    Dang. Now I want to go there after woork.

  4. Now I really want to try these. I'm not gluten-free, but I have a bunch of friends with gluten issues and like finding stuff they can eat. :)

    Random side note - the people on the front are mid-15th century European, most likely French or English around 1470 (+/- 20 years or so).

  5. I was delighted to discover these cookies on a mundane errand run to TJ this morning. Can't wait for the kids to enjoy these cookies.

  6. Too bad Trader Joe's sense of "gluten-free" is not really appropriate for celiacs. None of TJ's products are certified gluten-free; they only label them as such for people who are sensitive or wanting to avoid it for diet reasons. Celiacs beware; many of their products seem to have cross-contamination issues, and I speak from personal experience.

  7. It caused my teeth so much pain with this rotting the teeth feel. Told my friend and she said the cookies made her gum bleed with clots. I'm still freaked out by how it or it could've damaged my teeth till now. I think the cookie is made majorly by sugar and it can just mess up ur teeth with cavities in a sec.

  8. These are the BEST Ever! I miss baked goods the most and haven't really found anything that is baked and gluten free that I like. I love these!! My whole family likes them and they don't like anything gluten free. I can't keep enough of these stocked up in the house.

  9. Love these cookies. Taste just like homemade with plenty of choc chips. I get a bag on every trip to TJs.