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Monday, January 13, 2020

Trader Joe's French Onion Soup Bites

Baby Yoda. I just have to start off this post with a lead-in about Baby Yoda. I'm warning you right now, I don't have a decent segue into the food review part of this blog post, but I still have to find a way to work him in here. 

You see, Sonia and I just binge-watched The Mandalorian. It's darn good—all the production value of a Star Wars film in a one hour television show format. And for those of you who aren't aware, there's a character called "The Child" that looks just like, you guessed it: a baby version of Yoda. Of course, it can't be the actual Yoda, because he's dead by this point in the Star Wars timeline, so it must be another member of Yoda's unnamed race. Yes, we're geeks. 

But that's not the point. The point is that he's absurdly cute. Just Google him if you don't know what I'm talking about. I'm already on high alert trying to curb my lovely bride's inclination to accumulate all things Baby Yoda. I found a Trader Joe's-themed Baby Yoda tweet last week. It doesn't even make sense. He never drinks wine on the show. In fact, all he consumes are frogs. I feel like that might be my cue to tie in the French part of this product somehow, but nah. We won't go there today.


I will point out, however, that like fresh swamp frogs, these appetizers are slimy. I guess "greasy" would be a more accurate word—but they're so liquidy in the middle that it almost feels like a dollop of actual soup surrounded by some crusty bread. The onions and cheese are slick, silky, and slippery. The bread part ranges from soft and crumbly to crispy and crusty. The overall mouthfeel is a little too gelatinous for my taste.

The flavor, on the other hand, is very nice. You can taste lightly sweet caramelized onions, swiss cheese, and rich buttery bread. Trader Joe's French Onion Soup Bites are salty, savory, and oh-so-onionny—and we're both big fans of onions. There's a "vegetable base" listed on the ingredients, and I want to say you can taste that, too. There's a vegetable soup essence to the flavor that works seamlessly with the taste of the onions and cheese.

I found it difficult to remove the apps from the oven-safe tray without mangling them beyond recognition. The photo included here represents my three least-disfigured specimens.

$4.49 for 12 appetizers. In the end we'll both give a thumbs up to the taste and a meh to the texture of these French-inspired hors d'oeuvres. Three and a half stars a piece.

Bottom line: 7 out of 10.

8 comments:

  1. I'm surprised you rated these so highly. I also tried them but was highly disappointed. The crusts on mine were gummy and uncooked while the tops looked tasty. Also I agree they were hard to remove from the container they're baked in.

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  2. I really liked the flavor of them but I agree the true downfall of them was how impossible they were to get out of the packaging. I had to run a knife down the sides of all of them and push from the bottom and a few definitely got a bit damaged in the process. I'd rate them somewhere in the 8/9 range if eating them wasn't such an ordeal.

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  3. Same here..Gummy, and hard to get out of package..

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  4. Maybe baking longer or turning on the broiler would help texture?

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  5. I think TJ's should sell caramelized onions alone then you pile it on the brioche toasts. Top off with shredded cheese and broil it. Maybe it would be better.

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    1. Your Brioche Toast (a regular item on my TJ's shopping list) concoction is a wonderful idea.

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  6. 7 stars is way too high. After retrieving partial globs for sampling... Not bad enough for a refund, but never to be purchased again.

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  7. I had problems removing most of the from the package as well but damn what a flavor. I'm already on package #4.

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