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?"

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Saturday, February 25, 2012

Trader Joe's Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels

Peanut butter pretzels. It'd be pretty hard to screw these up. Pretzels = good. Peanut butter = good. Peanut butter pretzels = good x 2. I have met a handful of people that don't like peanut butter in my day, though. I'm guessing these wouldn't be winners with those special people. But other than that...of course these are gonna be good. But ... the question is: how good?

Well, as I've mentioned many times before, we've come to expect more from TJ's than just meeting expectations. If regular grocery store brands could make a decent peanut butter filled pretzel, then we expect TJ's to make something absolutely killer. Trader Joe's does offer both salted and unsalted varieties of this product. (We're only reviewing the salty kind right now). But just the fact that TJ's thought of people on low sodium diets shows that their thinking is a little different. A good different.

But to be perfectly honest, I'm not sure they did everything they could with these. They could have messed around with the texture of the peanut butter a bit. Each pretzel had a sort of peanut butter nugget-thing inside of it. It wasn't particularly creamy. It was just kind of a ball of semi-firm peanut butteriness. And the pretzels were...just pretzels. Nothing particularly special.

Now, in their defense, there's really nothing in particular wrong with them either. I've eaten these in my car on my way to work now just about every day for the past month or so. They're bite-sized, highly snackable, happy little morsels. So, it might seem like I'm being harsh on a perfectly tasty product, which I am...but if these were among the best of the best TJ's products, I would certainly not have been nibbling on a few of them each day for a month...because they would never have lasted in our pantry for more than a day or two. All in all, you get peanut butter in a pretzel. No more, no less. If you're at TJ's and you have a particular hankerin' for some peanut butter-filled pretzels, by all means, you should pick some of these puppies up...But don't make a special trip for them.

I give them a 3. Sonia does, too. (She has tried the unsalted kind and likes those slightly better for some strange reason).

Bottom line: 6 out of 10 stars.

7 comments:

  1. These are such an old tj product... My kids grew up on them... As far as the unsalted ones, I like them too... You get more of a pretzel taste out of them... Too bad the peanut butter is kinda dried out- guess the pretzel draws out the moisture? Yes, they are a good snack in the car- no mess! :)

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  2. You MUST try the TJ's chocolate coated PB pretzels...they are AMAZING. Seriously. These are good but chocolate + salty pretzels + PB...need I say more?!?!

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  3. YES to the chocolate covered PB pretzels! I reviewed them here, and they're amazing! http://traderjoesreviewer.blogspot.com/search/label/Trader%20Joe%27s%20milk%20chocolate%20covered%20peanut%20butter%20pretzels

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  4. Hm. I love these...the salted ones. I'm surprised you guys dont like them more! I don't have high standards for peanut butter. if its peanut butter, its good.

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  5. Gia, they're certainly not bad! Good snackin'...and yes, Megan and Tracy...I really wanna try the chocolate covered ones!

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  6. Your review is spot on. The peanut butter is not creamy, yep a nugget. But it's hard not to get addicted to the salt/pretzel/peanut butter combo. Guaranteed to make you gain weight like crazy!

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  7. I am with you here. Even though these little guy are a staple of my Trader Joe's shopping excursions, I do find the filling to be lacking. This is surprising given the wide variety of high quality jarred peanut butters the chain carries (the organic Valencia with sea salt is my favorite).

    That being said, the shell itself is lovely. As a pretzel-item, it is top-notch. I love the big chunks of salt... they hold on to mustard well (I know... I'm gross... but what can I say, I'm a combiner).

    P-butter pretzels are in their glory when they are floating o top of apple sauce. But I've also enjoyed them mixed in to slightly softened Double Rainbow vanilla ice cream (which they still sell... just under the TJ brand label)

    Finally, I will give five out of five parrots to the choc. covered pnut butter pretzels. They are so good, I regret finding them because I can easily eat an entire bag in my car on the way home!

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