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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Monday, May 2, 2016

Trader Joe's Chicken Spring Rolls

Although not quite as traditionally 'Murican as chicken soup or chicken pot pie, these chicken spring rolls are new to TJ's and review-worthy, so let's take a brief look, shall we?

The flour wrapper comes out nice and crispy when cooked according to the instructions. And I did. Aren't you proud of me that I didn't try to use the microwave? 

The filling is a nice soft blend of chicken, cabbage, and seasonings, with a detectable amount of sweetness, too. I've had spring rolls and egg rolls before, and I've never noticed anything sweet in the appetizer itself—perhaps in a paired dipping sauce, but not in the roll. Perusing the ingredients, I noted "sugar" right there in between green onion and basil. Interesting. Don't get me wrong, it's not excessively sweet by any means. Overall, the flavor is savory, salty, and somewhat successful, in my opinion.

Also, wouldn't these be egg rolls? After a brief Google research session, the main qualifications I found for something to be a spring roll were "not (usually) fried," "with no chicken or meat," and "with a thin translucent or transparent rice wrapper," none of which apply to these happy little snacks. 

And before someone scolds me for not knowing that all spring rolls have sugar in them or the reason why these are spring rolls and not egg rolls, let me remind you that I'm the dude that just asked you to praise me for using the stove top instead of the microwave a couple paragraphs ago. I'm not exactly a gourmet cooking authority.

But if you want my opinion on these rolls, I say they're teetering on the brink of "not bad" and "really darn good." Three and a half stars from me. Four stars from Sonia will push this in the direction of "really darn good." Her only complaint is that they don't come with a dipping sauce.

Bottom line: 7.5 out of 10.


  1. 'Overall, the flavor is savory, salty, and somewhat successful, in my opinion.' Your adjectives are getting more descriptive!.. haven't seen these-- I agree w/ Sonja- they need dipping sauce... btw did u know they discontinued the sweet & sour mustard?? I was talking to a couple of employees at ti's and they're upset as well.

    1. Lol have my adjectives been vague in the past?

      Yes, some sweet and sour mustard would have gone well with these.

    2. Not vague--- u now sound like a seasoned expert! :-)

    3. It's good with the sweet chili sauce!

  2. I really liked these as well. Ditto on the dipping sauce, though!