Cooking With All Things Trader Joe's

If I was taken away to a desert island, one of the things that I would miss most from my "urban world" would be Trader Joe's. It is such a wonderful place! If you do not have a Trader Joe's in your local vicinity, I am so sorry. Really, I am. Because it is this truly special place where the employees are happy, and the food is cheaper than the normal grocery store. But, the food is gourmet and high quality. They do not allow any products made with partially hydrogenated oils to sit on their shelves. And, they have some of the best products ever! So, I am a big fan of Trader's.

Well, how excited do you think I was when I was walking through my local Barnes & Noble bookstore and I read this title on a big stack of books on display:

I am not going to lie to you. There was a moment of intense jealousy as I thought, "Why didn't Kristen & I think of that first?!" Because almost every one of our recipes is comprised of Trader Joe's ingredients! But, then I got over myself and began to flip through the recipes. Jackpot! Ka-ching! This book is a gold mine. Amazing recipes that make you want to eat the pages that they are written upon, but made with quality ingredients from Trader Joe's. The added bonus is that most of the recipes are very quick to put together.

We wrote to the writers of this book, Deana Gunn & Wona Miniati, and expressed our great enthusiasm for the book and begged for them to share it with our readers! And, guess what, Mamas, we were able to cook up a giveaway so that two lucky mamas can get their hands on their own copy of this book. It would be an ideal Christmas gift for any woman in your life who happens to cook and live near a Trader Joe's! So, to get in on this giveaway, leave us a comment answering this question:

What is the one food item that you always seem to run out of?
(in my house it is bananas!)

This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to Bonnie and Sally!!

And, just to give you a taste of the tasty morsels that fill this book, here is a recipe I love (you should be able to make this even if you do not have the beloved Trader Joe's store within reach):

Honey Mustard Chicken
(recommended side dish: Orzo Pilaf or mashed potatoes)

4 chicken breasts or 6 thighs, bone-in or boneless
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 c flour (I have also substituted almond meal)
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/2 c honey
1/2 c dijon mustard
2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 375.
2. Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Mix flour with salt and pepper. Coat chicken pieces with seasoned flour, shaking off excess. Brown chicken on all sides. Transfer to a baking dish.
3. Mix honey, mustard and basil. Pour the sauce over chicken and bake for 30 minutes. Midway through the cooking, turn and baste chicken pieces once.

prep time: 10 minutes
Hands off cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves 4


  1. I was just at Trader Joes's yesterday...had their peppermint cookies???-sandy toes

  2. Well, besides running out of Joe Joe's (don't even get me started on the dark chocolate covered Joe joe's, we can't seem to keep milk or yogurt in stock over here. :) Julie Lawrence

  3. Well, besides running out of Joe Joe's (don't even get me started on the dark chocolate covered Joe joe's, we can't seem to keep milk or yogurt in stock over here. :) Julie Lawrence

  4. Coffee Beans, it is always coffee beans. Even if I don't win this giveaway I am totally getting this cookbook for a friend for Christmas!!!

  5. We always seem to be out of lactose-free milk! Both kids have dairy problems and I always seem to underestimate how much milk they drink. LOVE TJ's! The cookbook is a great idea. I'd been going to a website with recipes people had posted using TJ's items but this is even better.

  6. I LOVE their peppermint joe-joe's! I have used them in a "Mint Chip Ice Cream cake". If you put them in a ziplock and crush them, and then make them the bottom layer of your ice cream cake, you will want to marry them!


  7. Apple juice! My girls drink a lot of apple juice. (even though I water it down we seem to burn through it!)

  8. We never have enough juice in our house! My kids are juice junkies!

  9. definitely milk. I think because of growing up in a house where we didn't really drink milk, I still can't seem to buy enough. Just wait til our little boy becomes a milk drinker too (well, non-breastmilk drinker).

  10. What a fun idea! Thanks for this giveaway! We can't seem to keep the tofutti ice cream cuties in our house for very long! (they are sooo good...I think they are even better than "real" ice cream sandwiches) and I am not a huge non-dairy product fan! Thanks for sharing the cookbook with us...I may need to go pick one up for my sister in law.

  11. in our house it is milk. and it's not from kids... it is from the man of the house... he can go through a gallon a day.

    i heart trader joes! :)

  12. AMAZING idea!! So amazing... Here are the items we're always running out of.
    -Trader Joe's Organic Applesauce
    -Trader Joe's strawberry kefir
    -Trader Joe's Cats cookies(for people)

  13. I have 6 kids. I am always out of milk. Yogurt. Applesauce. Snacks. And Toilet paper.


  14. My sons are banana junkies so I am usually out of those. I used to be out of milk and eggs too but I just took care of that by getting a milk man!

  15. I am ALWAYS out of milk. We buy it in small portions because we use Rice Milk for cereal, and the regular milk for tea and coffee. I must drink lots of tea because suddenly, when I want it the most, we have none, and the rice milk just does not do the trick!

    pick me! :)

  16. We always seem to run out of strawberries and kefir. My kids can't get enough of either one.

  17. We run out of milk because the baby just switched from formula. Makes me want to buy a cow.

  18. Oooh I LOVE Trader Joe's and I think I am going to LOVE this cookbook! We just moved and most of my cookbooks are still in storage.

    The one thing we seem to run out of all the time in our house is milk! We all drink different kinds, too. Me with the rice milk, husband with the 2%, daughter with the Vitamin D.. Someone is always running out!

  19. I moved from Sacramento to Spokane a year ago and, sniff, there is no TJ's here. Every time we have visitors we ask them to bring us boxes of Trader Joe's cornbread mix and bottles of their enchilada sauce. Thanksgiving was not the same this year without their cranberry sauce either!

  20. We run out of rasberries faster than anything...including bananas. I would need to buy 5 packages at each shopping trip to last a few days. My daughter could eat an entire package in one sitting if I allowed it.

  21. Milk. Its a bit ridiculous because I have to buy Lactaid Free for myself, Lowfat for my hubby and Whole for my son. Luckily Trader Joe's has all 3!

  22. For us, we always seem to be running out of milk...we go through at least 3 gallons a week.

    Thanks for the chance!

  23. OK Al-

    I have lusted after this book for a couple of months AND visit their website for recipe ideas before every TJ shop. (That should count for something????) The item we are always running out of is banannas or milk.

  24. Well, I just made a TJs run yesterday for the two items we can't be without for very long:

    -- Spicy chai latte mix
    -- Blueberry waffles

    Of course, then I added several other "necessities" -- Joe-Joes, juice, fruit leathers... :).

  25. Yes, JOes-joes are one of them at the holidays... I thought I was stocking up when I bought two boxes... but they are gone!In two days!
    The usual is milk and bananas as well.
    What a cool book!

  26. What a fab book idea!

    I am always running out of bread and bananas.

  27. I don't have a Trader Joe's near me, but my sister does. I would love to win this for her!

    We are forever needing milk and oatmeal. They are our morning staples.

  28. it's gotta be milk for us, but omigosh this book looks awesome! We spent a year in a state with NO TJ's and we even had to drive 5 hours to visit one once!! But now I'm back in TJ-land and couldn't be happier. :)

  29. I always run out of butter or milk in this house. Thank-you.


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