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Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Trader Joe's Corn Poblano Chowder

I must have walked past this little box a half a dozen times on my last Trader Joe's haul. I'd been looking for it in particular since I'd heard good things. I finally had to ask the friendly clerk where it was. I guess I was looking for something a little bigger...? And I wasn't sure if it was in the refrigerated section or not. Turns out it's totally shelf-stable, so it was over by the cans of chili and stuff. Most of the obligatory Trader Joe's cashier conversation where they compliment at least one thing you've purchased revolved around this selection. The bagger expressed her utmost approval as well. If both cashier and bagger chime in on the same item, it's a safe bet you won't be too disappointed.

Our "use by" date was in November of 2021—a year and nine months from now. That's long enough to ride out half of the apocalypse. And this isn't a bad food to have on standby in the pantry. At $1.99, it's affordable, the little boxes are stackable, so they won't take up much room, and the chowder is pretty hearty and appetizing, as well.


Taste-wise, it's salty, savory, and creamy. There's plenty of corn flavor backed up by a nice blend of garlic, pepper, and onion. The poblano peppers are both visible and tastable in the mix. Heat-wise, they're not game-changers—the spice factor is relatively mild.

I'm truly surprised how chunky it is. I'd say corn and potato are the most prevalent elements, and the broth is plenty thick. It's the perfect cold weather winter lunch. Heats on the stovetop in six minutes, or about a minute and a half nuked.

On the down side, there really aren't two servings in the 17 ounce box. One person could put this away pretty easily, but that's generally par for the course with Trader Joe's nutrition labels. If you do consume the whole thing by yourself, you're looking at about half a day's worth of sodium. Better sea salt than some weird chemical preservative, but still. High blood pressure's no joke. 

And one more small complaint before I close: the corn had a slightly stiff texture. It wasn't awful, but there was just a hint of waxiness to most of the corn kernels that I'm not accustomed to that was ever so slightly off-putting. It won't be a deal-breaker, though. I'm still thinking this will be a repeat buy for us. The convenience factor, value, and overall flavor are all big positives here.

Sonia gives Trader Joe's Corn Poblano Chowder four stars. I'll throw out a matching score this time.

Bottom line: 8 out of 10.

4 comments:

  1. The FDA, not Trader Joe's, sets the serving sizes that food manufacturers must reference.

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    1. Your line about the apocalypse was quite prophetic.
      I quite like when corn has that waxy texture!

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  2. I think the Poblano Corn Chowder is fantastic. Since discovering it two months ago, I'm certain I've gone through a dozen cartons so far. If you nuke it in the microwave - get it nice and hot - it things out a bit. I add 5 or 6 thawed cooked shrimp. I'm going to also try it with lump crab meat and with cooked lobster. I LOVE THIS SOUP. (and, I hope they continue to carry it!)

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