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Friday, September 8, 2017

Trader Joe's Curry Cauliflower Quinoa Salad

It's official. Cauliflower can join coffee, mango, pumpkin, and cookie butter as the fifth great love of Trader Joe. He's clearly got an obsession.

Cauliflower is a product that has proven its extreme versatility repeatedly, particularly in the past year—plus it's arguably the healthiest of "The Big Five." 

Quinoa is still working on its star status, but it has played some interesting roles in the past, too, generally as a supporting ingredient, but rarely a main attraction.

Curry is...well, curry is usually awesome...and this product is just another great example of its awesomeness.

Throw cauliflower, quinoa, and curry together, and you have this unique creation. I'm not sure why it works...or even if most of you will agree with me that it does. But I devoured this tub like it was going out of style.  Sorry. That's a really weak mixed metaphor. But yeah. I devoured the tub like it was...expiring soon...even though it wasn't. That's a better metaphor. But it sounds even dumber for some reason. You feel me, though? I loved this stuff.

There are a lot of calories in there, for what is essentially Indian-spiced rabbit food. But curry always packs a high calorie count. I guess I'd rather be eating curry powder and canola oil than some goofy trans fats, though. The quinoa and cauliflower were just so fresh and hearty that I just kept craving this salad over and over. It was very filling, and I think you could space this small tub out to even more than three servings, as suggested on the packaging, particularly if you're just having it as a side dish or a between-meal bite. It makes a great tide-me-over, pick-me-up type snack. If you're having it as a stand-alone meal, like for lunch or whatever, then three servings is probably too many to expect from the tub, however.

The curry isn't overpowering. It's there, but there's still plenty of room for the nuttiness of the quinoa and the caulifloweriness of the cauliflower to come through. What is that actually called—caulifloweriness? Gardeniness? Plantacularity? I don't know. But it tastes more like actual cauliflower than many of TJ's experimental cauliflower derivatives, and that's not a bad thing if you're okay with the taste of cauliflower.

Sonia thoroughly enjoyed it as well—like four and a half stars kind of enjoyment, her highest score in quite a while. Her only complaint is the price. $3.99 for the tub. It's not outrageous, but she thinks she can somehow approximate the mixture herself by purchasing quinoa, cauliflower, and curry individually. Seems like a lot of work to save a buck or so. But if you're so inclined, go for it, wifey.

I give it four stars. Again, I don't know if this will have the universal appeal that some other Trader Joe's cauliflower offerings have had—I'm guessing there will be a significant faction of haters on this one, but I'll go out on a limb and tell you that if you think it sounds good at all, you should probably give it a try.

Bottom line: 8.5 out of 10.


  1. Oooooh, remember their curry chicken salad? They pulled that product, and I'm hoping this will fill the curry-shaped hole in my heart.

  2. I totally loved this too!! It was a little heavy on the oil for me, but i figured out it was best ontop of a bowl of salad greens and i added in some canned chickpeas to make it a tasty lunch.
    So the quinoa cauli salad, my salad greens and chickpeas were about $7 for three lunches. Cheap and almost (there's honey) vegan! :))
    I will definitely buy it again, but if- when- it's discontinued i don't think it would be difficult to make myself
    My bets are on frozen cauliflower "wings" as the next cauliflower item! (Like chicken wings made with cauliflower)

  3. I LOVE this stuff!!!! I eat it on Trader Joe’s Norwegian crackers. Delicious!!!!

  4. I buy the Trader Joes Naan bread (brown packet, not the garlic one) One minute in microwave to soften the Naan. Add heaping teaspoons of the salad, and fold like a burrito. LOVE LOVE LOVE it...

  5. I Loved this Salad~! However, I will never buy it again. I wasn't paying attention. They use CANOLA OIL!! Big Mistake and Bad Idea! I'll have to start making my own going forward.
    CANOLA OIL is being used in everything now! Not Healthy!!

  6. They discontinued this!!! :(:(:(


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