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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Thursday, June 13, 2013

Trader Joe's Barbeque Popped Potato Chips

Picking up on the success of PopChips, TJ's has, predictably, offered their own version of a "popped" chip. And I must say I'm just as much a fan of Trader Joe's brand as I am the original. They're neither baked nor fried. They're simply popped in a pressure cooker of sorts. The back of the bag says they take potato slices and "apply heat and pressure." The same could be said for the butt of my pants every time I sit down—minus the potato part of course—but that's never generated anything as snacktacular as these little BBQ chips.

The chips are very round and flat, and they're super-crunchable. They're light, airy, and they do taste slightly of actual potatoes. You know, I really wish they would call them POPtato chips. I think that's the proper way to market these fellas. "Poptato Chips." Yep. I will expect my check in the mail, TJ's. You're welcome for the idea.

But the best part about these little guys is their barbecue flavor. It's really tangy, and it mixes well with the potato taste. Somehow it's way better than the taste you would get just by dumping a bunch of barbecue sauce on a baked potato. Just recently, I had the misfortune of sampling a really, really revolting BBQ flavored chip, so these, in contrast, seemed even more tasty than they might have without the Honey Barbecue Ribs Chips as a reference point.

TJ's has done potato chips in the past, but these aren't traditional chips. Plus, these guys won't weigh you down. They're relatively low in fat and calories for a potato chip, and that's something my gut and I are always thankful for.

Sonia was blown away by them, too. 4.5 stars from her. 4.5 stars from me.

Bottom line: 9 out of 10.


  1. I found these a few years back and ALWAYS have a bag in the pantry just in case! Around here they are known as "crack chips" and the bag is always consumed in full. :) Recently, our local grocery store started carrying them, and although I try to buy them exclusively at TJ's, it's nice to know I have a more local source if I get in a bind.

  2. Nice, Lynn! I assume it's a different brand at your local grocery store? Is it the PopChips brand?