13 PALEO SNACKS YOU SHOULD BE BUYING AT TRADER JOE’S
Just because a product looks healthy, doesn’t mean it is. Avoid health-harming foods with these 13 clean eats at Trader Joe’s!
Why do you love shopping at Trader Joe’s?
Is it the super low prices? The fun, whimsical branding? The smorgasbord of unique and convenient products? Or because there are so many seemingly healthy options?
If your reasons include the latter, there’s something you need to know: many of the products at Trader Joe’s contain highly processed industrial oils that will wreak havoc on your health.
Seemingly innocent ingredients like soybean oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, palm oil, and peanut oil (just to name a few) actually cause inflammation and oxidative stress in your body, which overtime, can lead to a number serious health problems including obesity, diabetes, chronic digestive issues, cardiovascular disease, alzheimer’s, and cancer. That’s scary stuff. And it’s the reason industrial oils are not part of the Paleo Diet.
Now don’t get me wrong – I don’t want you to stop shopping at Trader Joe’s! I love Trader Joe’s! But if you want to feel good and look great, you can’t blindly trust your favorite brands – you have to become a label detective! That means before putting something into your shopping cart, taking 5 seconds to look at the ingredients list with a critical eye to identify industrial oils that are detrimental to your health.
These are the health-harming industrial oils you need to avoid:
- Corn Oil
- Cottonseed Oil
- Soybean Oil
- Canola (Rapeseed) Oil
- Peanut Oil
- Vegetable Oil
- Safflower Oil
- Sunflower Oil
- Palm and Palm Kernel Oil
- Cottonseed Oil
- Grapeseed Oil
- Conventional Mayonnaise
- Hydrogenated Oils
That’s a long list! Now that you’re avoiding all these pro-inflammitory oils, what’s even left to eat? Don’t worry, there are still plenty of delicious and convenient foods at Trader Joe’s that are good for your gut!
Here are 13 grab ‘n go paleo snacks at Trader Joe’s that you can feel confident about putting in your shopping cart.
1. FRUIT BAR (APPLE + COCONUT)
INGREDIENTS: Apple, Coconut
WHY IT’S AWESOME: It costs less than a dollar and is made up of just 2 simple ingredients! Plus, it comes in 3 other flavors to keep your palette entertained (Apple + Banana, Apple + Strawberry, Apple + Mango). These bars are a convenient natural source of carbohydrates when you need a boost!
2. JUST BEETS
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Forget the raw carrot sticks! Now you can get your serving of veggies in the fun way. The name says it all – this snack is literally just dehydrated beets. Crunchy and slightly sweet, these make a delicious and nutritious chip substitute!
3. RX BAR (CHOCOLATE SEA SALT)
INGREDIENTS: Dates, Eggs Whites, Cashews, Almonds, Cacao, Cocoa, Natural Chocolate Flavor, Sea Salt
WHY IT’S AWESOME: You’ve never tasted a protein bar this good! Seriously, it’s like eating dessert! And yet the ingredients are simple, natural, and each of these bars has 12 grams of protein to keep your energy steady when your tummy starts rumbling. Trader Joe’s carries several other flavors including Coconut Chocolate, Blueberry, and Berry for the best price I’ve seen in a store!
4. FREEZE DRIED BLUEBERRIES
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Yet another product in the Trader Joe’s line up that is a fun twist on one simple ingredient. These freeze dried blueberries are additive-free and have a sweet, satisfying crunch! Just try not to pound an entire bag in one sitting – though one bag is a single serving, it contains 25 grams of sugar, which may leave you sugar crashing. For a tarter crunch, look for TJ’s freeze dried raspberries!
5. COCONUT WATER
INGREDIENTS: Coconut Water
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Single origin, one ingredient, totally refreshing, and packed with essential electrolytes to keep your body functioning smoothly. And it comes in a single serving bottle, making it easy to keep your portion size – and consequently, your sugar intake – in check.
6. EPIC BAR (BISON)
INGREDIENTS: Bison, Uncured Bacon – No Nitrates or Nitrates Added (Pork, Water, Brown Sugar*, Salt, Vinegar, Celery Powder, Sea Salt), Dried Cranberries (Cranberries, Apple Juice Concentrate), Lactic Acid (not from milk), Celery Powder, Sea Salt
* The brown sugar is part of fermentation process to cure the bacon. It serves as food for the bacteria curing the meat so the actual brown sugar content is minimal in the final product. I consider this acceptable, but others may have varying opinions.
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Trader Joe’s sells these bars in several different flavors including Chicken Sriracha. They’re a convenient and delicious source of protein, made with 100% natural bison. And to give you some warm fuzzies, Epic is committed to sustainability and recently partnered with a Northstar Bison to purchase 1,000 baby bison with the mission to eliminate waste and honor nature by using every part of their bison.
Beware of the Chicken Sriracha bar… its got a serious bite!
7. GRAINLESS GRANOLA
INGREDIENTS: Dates, Dried Bananas, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Dry Roasted Cashews (Cashews, Sea Salt), Cinnamon, Vanilla Powder
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Is friggin’ delicious enough of a reason? It’s lucky I’ve got some self control or I’d inhale an entire bag in one sitting. One thing that makes this granola unique is the dried bananas, which is an ingredient I haven’t come across in other paleo granolas. Besides being tasty AF, this is also the cheapest paleo granola I’ve found at about half the price of its competition.
8. GT’S KOMBUCHA (GINGERADE)
INGREDIENTS: 100% G.T.’s Organic Raw Kombucha (Organically Produced), Fresh Pressed Ginger Juice (Organically Produced)
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Kombucha is a sweet, slightly carbonated, fermented tea that’s packed with probiotics, making it great for your gut and digestion (among other things). This drink is sweet, flavored to perfection, is deliciously refreshing, and is so good for you! Trader Joe’s carries the Gingerade flavor and Synergy Trilogy flavor (a more fruity flavor) at a price that beats every other retailer in town.
9. JUST MANGO SLICES
INGREDIENTS: Dried Mangos
WHY IT’S AWESOME: One natural ingredient, no additives, with slices can be sweet or tart, but always perfectly chewy! Other dried fruits at Trader Joe’s also fall into the paleo snacks category, so if you’re not feeling mango, just check the label and make sure the only ingredient is the dried fruit (no additives or preservatives allowed)!
10. FANCY RAW MIXED NUTS
INGREDIENTS: Cashews, Almonds, Brazil Nuts, Filberts, Pecans
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Sometimes trail mixes are filled with more junk than actual nuts… but not this one! This bag of mixed nuts contains only the good stuff! Nuts are a great source of healthy fat and protein and a handful can be the perfect solution to take the edge off when hunger strikes. But do try to keep it to a handful – nuts are calorie dense and even though I don’t promote calorie counting, it is important to be aware of what you’re consuming.
11. LARABAR (APPLE PIE)
INGREDIENTS: Dates, Almonds, Unsweetened Apples, Walnuts, Raisins, Cinnamon
WHY IT’S AWESOME: Larabars are a convenient and tasty way get some quality carbs in your body. Trader Joe’s sells a variety of flavors including Cherry Pie and Cashew Cookie. You may also see other peanut containing flavors, but heads up – peanuts are legumes, and legumes are excluded from the Paleo Diet, so those flavors are not considered paleo.
12. NUTTY SEEDY FRUITY BAR
INGREDIENTS: Almonds, Sunflower Seeds, Walnuts, Date Paste, Brazil Nuts, Pumpkin Seeds, Coconut Oil, Coconut Nectar, Chia Seeds, Dried Coconut
WHY IT’S AWESOME: This bar is packed with nuts and seeds meaning it’s full of healthy fats! Unlike the Larabar and Fruit Bar, which are composed of carbohydrates, these Nutty Seedy Fruity Bars will keep your blood sugar stable, giving you steady energy. These bars aren’t sweet, but instead, have a nice toasted, nutty flavor!
13. ORGANIC FRUITS & VEGETABLES
INGREDIENTS: Depends on what you pick!
WHY IT’S AWESOME: When in doubt, choose an organic fruit or vegetable to nosh on! Trader Joe’s sells a large variety of organic produce at very reasonable prices. They’re tasty, they provide your body with quality carbohydrates, and are packed with important vitamins and minerals! You can go wrong with a food that was grown the way nature intended.
SHOP SMARTER TO LIVE BETTER
When you become a label detective and start paying attention to the ingredients in pre-packaged foods, I’m not going to lie – it can be overwhelming. You’ll start noticing health-harming toxins like industrial oils, hidden sugars, and other random chemicals in so many products you never would’ve suspected. But don’t bury your head in the sand and turn a blind eye to these discoveries.
When you eliminate pro-inflammatory ingredients like these from your diet, you set yourself up for drastic health improvements including, but not limited to: eliminating bloating and gas, fewer stomach aches, better skin complexion, less achy muscles and joints, and even loosing weight!
To beat back the overwhelm of detoxing the food you’re eating, start small. Start by swapping your regular snacks for any of the 13 paleo snacks at Trader Joe’s. And with each grocery shopping trip, pick 5 products that you’re going to be a label detective for. If you notice an industrial oil you should be avoid, put the food product back on the shelf and find an alternative! After a few months, you’ll have eased into a new grocery shopping routine full of clean foods to set you up for an effortlessly healthy diet!
Still overwhelmed by the hidden ingredients on product labels? Don’t worry! Take the guesswork out of label reading and put yourself on the fast track to eating clean with my Triple Peak Kitchen Cleanse and Personal Grocery Store Tour. Click here to find out more!
I am in no way affiliated with Trader Joe’s. These are solely my own recommendations based my own shopping, research, and use. The prices and availability of the products listed here may vary depending on your location.
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