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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Friday, February 3, 2017

Trader Joe's Multigrain Blend with Vegetables

Ladies and gentlemen, from the team that last Friday brought you Organic Tricolor Quinoa, this Friday we present...Trader Joe's Multigrain Blend!

...with Vegetables!

Man, do we know how to get our audience primed for the weekend or what?

All kidding aside, have you tried Trader Joe's Multigrain Blend with Vegetables? Is this new? Newish? No idea. But it's never been on our menu until this past week, and if it's been around for a while, I really, truly regret not discovering it sooner.

It's a ridiculously simple concept. Even easier to make. And it's gooo-ooo-oood. 

Take a smattering of some different grains - barley, corn, wheat. Add in some assorted rices - ermes, ribe and venus (or in layman's terms, red, Italian long grain, and black). Logically, what this creates is a solid, hearty base, a real stick-to-your-ribs concoction that's earthy and nutty with different pockets of texture here and there, yet seem generally cohesive in the end. It's a pretty delectable hodgepodge in its own right, especially with a little salt and EVOO added giving a slightly buttery taste.

The veggies mixed in are of the typical freezer variety - peas, carrots, zucchini, onion - which help lighten and freshen up the overall vibe some. It's all good quality stuff, for the most part, and goes well with the aforementioned grains.

It comes fully cooked as is, so all you gotta do is let it defrost for a while. Just leave something on the counter? I usually get yelled at for stuff like that....but that's the actual dinner prep! Nice!

We neglected to take a picture of the actual product, most unfortunately, but save for the cilantro/parsley spring depicted, the final dish looks pretty exactly like what's on the picture on the bag. Which points to my one, smallish complaint: Instead of salt for flavoring, I'd prefer something more herbal. Do you really need added sodium to make things taste good? Na!

Regardless, I loved it. I scraped my plate clean, then unabashedly devoured what my kids left on their plate too. My wife Sandy enjoyed as well. The grain blend is definitely going into our dinner rotation. For my enjoyment, I'm going 4.5 while Sandy slides in a little lower at a 4. Now do we know how to party or what?

Bottom line: Trader Joe's Multigrain Blend with Vegetables: 8.5 out of 10 Golden Spoons


  1. This has been around for awhile, but I had completely forgotten about it. We used to love it (and the fact that it's so easy to get on the dinner table). Thanks for the reminder on this great product! We're moving within a mile of a TJ's in a few weeks, and can't wait to try out more of your recommendations.

  2. Yeah, this has been around for a year or maybe even two. My husband sometimes takes it to work because it can't be easier to prep, just yank it out of the freezer on his way out the door. He likes it with a can of tuna or salmon mixed in.

  3. This looks like it might be good with an egg on top? I like the tuna/salmon idea, too.

    1. If you get the fish packed in oil, it adds a little body and flavor to the blend, kind of like Russ's suggestion to add salt and olive oil.

  4. I add some of this to their boxed tomato and roasted red pepper soup to make it heartier. It's delicious!

  5. I love this grain mix! I add in some edamame and often a bit of soyaki or sesame oil and then i put the hot mix over fresh baby spinach so it slightly wilts for an easy meal