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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Trader Joe's Almond Butter Coconut Greek Low Fat Yogurt

There's a few classic blunders and major pitfalls out there. You know most of them already: reading the comments on almost any Internet article (except here, y'all are great), getting involved in land wars in Asia or going up aginst a Sicilian when death is on the line. No duhs on any of those.

Another one or two is true in our house; Sandy and I have a rule we don't really talk about anything too in depth before we have coffee, and to not nag her for a bite of anything she's eating, especially on a busy morning after she's refueling from a marathon training run, and before she has a long hot day with our kiddos. Plus, please, our kids always want to eat what she's eating, so she doesn't need me to ask her for a bite of anything...

...except a smallish blunder was made on her part, when she bought only one cup of Trader Joe's Almond Butter Coconut Greek Low Fat Yogurt. I needed something to review, and apparently this stuff has been all the buzz on TJ's related Instagram, so I broke all sorts of household rules in order just to get two measly little bites from which I am basing this entire review, along with help from my lovely bride.

This TJ's Greek yogurt is much like others: creamy, a bit tangy, appropriately thick. Kinda par for the course in that regard. In my albeit limited tasting, the flavor strayed a lot more towards coconut than almond butter, which to me makes sense given the general comparative richness of the two. Almond butter has always been a very sublte flavor for me. But, definitely heavy on the shredded coconut. Along with some fruit and coffee, I could see this being a very filling breakfast, though perhaps not one I'd be inclined to do too often. I'm just not cultured enough to be much of a yogurt guy.

Sandy, though, disagrees with me. She said the almond butter is a much stronger flavor, whereas shemore "felt" the coconut. That doesn't jive with my experience, but I'd be more inclined to believe her many spoonfuls to my few.

But we both agree it's good, not earthshattering yogurt. Perhaps it was her endorphins winding down or her caffeination not quite kicked in yet, but Sandy was pretty ho-hum about it. "It's good," she said. "I'd definitely buy it again, but it's not going to be my new go-to yogurt." Make of that what you will, and before any more blunders are made, let's wrap this up.

Bottom line: Trader Joe's Almond Butter Coconut Greek Low Fat Yogurt: 7 out of 10 Golden Spoons

Monday, July 9, 2018

Trader Joe's Almond, Cashew & Macadamia Nut Beverage

If you're looking for a delicious drinkable dessert, look elsewhere. If you're looking for a nut-tastic vegan alternative to animal milk, this might just be the product for you.

On the plus side, the beverage is surprisingly NOT chalky. It's smooth—and it's about as nutty as I ever imagined a beverage could be. Both Sonia and I wanted to call it "creamy" at first, but after thinking about it, we realized it's a much thinner liquid than anything we'd call "creamy." Not a bad thing. Just not as thick as other types of "milk." Maybe that's why it's a "beverage" and not a "milk." Color-wise, it's...well, milky—but perhaps a bit grayer than other milks and nut beverages.

Taste-wise? It's not sweet at all—like regular cow's milk with its lactose milk sugar is significantly sweeter to my tongue than this stuff. No sweeteners in that ingredients list at all. At only 30 calories per cup, I don't exactly think Trader Joe's is targeting the cookie butter crowd with this one. 

I will say that it works well on cereal, especially if the cereal is a sweet one, or one that's already got a nutty flavor to it. It'll tone down the sweetness of a super-sweet cereal, and in the process, the nut beverage will get a little tastier with that cereal sugar on it, making it even better when you slurp the excess from the bowl. Nut-based cereals with this beverage on them shall be elevated to ├╝ber-nutty status.

I was surprised to see there's very little protein in the beverage, since nuts tend to have a good bit of it. I guess all the protein gets squeezed out in the liquefying process..? 

Soy milk seems to be on the decline as far as alternative milks go. And filling the void are cashew and almond beverages. Combine those two and add macadamias? Brilliant. It's a little difficult to detect all three nut flavors individually. Sonia seems to think she detected macadamia the most. I felt like they all just blended together. At $2.29 for a quart, it's priced comparably to other alternative milk products. I probably wouldn't reach for this after a day out in the 100 degree summer heat, but I'd be perfectly happy pouring it on my corn flakes or in my coffee. Four stars from Sonia. Three from me.

Bottom line: 7 out of 10.

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