The best Trader Joe’s products for Memorial Day are all right here. And I know, because I spent forever combing the aisles (real and virtual) to find everything from quick sandwich toppers to flavor-packed marinades. They’re perfect for easy cooking, snacking and entertaining over Memorial Day weekend, and all summer long.
People often think because I’m a professionally trained cook, everything I do has to be from scratch. But having two young children paired with the desire to actually, well, party at my parties, I often take advantage of the smart Trader Joe’s products that help me do just that.
Because c’mon, everyone loves a good TJ’s shortcut – myself included.
The Best Trader Joe’s Products for Memorial Day…
and the Rest of Summer
1. Organic Coleslaw Kit
Bring on the sliders! Whether they’re burgers or slow cooker pulled chicken, or even pork, top with this crisp, triple-washed Trader Joe’s Organic Coleslaw Kit or served on the side. The slaw is a mix of chopped red and green cabbage and shredded carrots and comes with an organic dressing (on the side). Or skip the dressing and just toss with lime juice or apple cider vinegar, and oil.
2. Trader Joe’s Pre-Marinated Chicken
My best friend swears by the Trader Joe’s Spatchcocked Lemon Rosemary Chicken and I recently noticed they have a new Trader Joe’s BBQ Seasoned Spatchcocked Chicken just in time for summer. Not only does spatchcocked chicken cook evenly and beautifully on the grill, but it also looks quite nice for entertaining. If you have space, grill two at one time.
3. Sparkling Watermelon Juice
Can you even make a Trader Joe’s Memorial Day shopping run without thinking of delicious, summery new beverage ideas? I love this Trader Joe’s Sparkling Watermelon Juice as a festive mocktail or even as a mixer for cocktails. Cut up some fresh watermelon for garnish, and taste the beginning of summer. Hell yes!
4. The Hybrid BBQ Sauce that my husband is obsessed with
This lucky find, Trader Joe’s Organic Sriracha and Roasted Garlic BBQ Sauce, is a recent hit with my family. A combination of tangy, smoky barbecue sauce and spicy sriracha, it’s a boon for almost any meat you want to throw on the grill making it a great Trader Joe’s product for Memorial Day weekend. The flavors give a delicious depth of flavor but it does have a kick so you may want to keep this one for the grown-ups. Bonus: At $2.99 a bottle, it’s about half of the price of regular supermarket sauces.
5. Affordable Cheeses
A fun cheese board with all the fixings is the perfect party app, whether for a pot luck or to prep ahead of time. Cheese, fruit spreads, cured meats… the sky’s the limit on what to include. But alas, my budget does have a limit and cheeses can really add up. Thankfully, TJ’s has a number of high quality, affordable ones like Trader Joe’s Unexpected Cheddar and Toscano Cheese (a delicious mix of aged parmesan and creamy cheddar) that are fabulous.
And while you’re filling up on platter essentials, don’t forget their impressive selection of reasonably priced nuts, especially in large containers that last.
You can even find an affordable Trader Joe’s burrata here if you want to get fancy; serve with chopped tomatoes, flaky salt, good olive oil and boom, you’re done. It’s a great reminder that the best Trader Joe’s product for Memorial Day aren’t only about grilling.
6. Trader Joe’s Vegan Pesto
If you know you’re entertaining a vegan guest or two — or you’re vegan yourself — you can make it easy on yourself with a grill full of Pesto Portabello Burgers. Grill a few portabello mushrooms before you put any meat-based burgers on the grill, and top with Trader Joe’s Vegan Kale, Cashew & Basil Pesto. It’ll give the burgers an extra special something (without much effort on your part) and you can still prep the buns, lettuce – anything else you would for the beef burgers.
Plus, it’s perfect on pasta, of course or to spread over crostini before adding chopped olives, sun dried tomatoes, or roasted red pepper strips. Because it’s pesto!
Photo: Jane Sweeney for Cool Mom Eats
7. Salsa, salsa, salsa!
I’ve been a longtime fan of Trader Joe’s Salsa Verde. It’s rare to find a bottled salsa that doesn’t contain a lot of crap, and this version is not only fresh and made with just a handful of ingredients, it’s also just really good. This salsa works as a great shortcut for the slow cooker (I like to use with chicken thighs or a pork shoulder), as a marinade, or mixed into guacamole for an extra zing of flavor.
TJ’s also has a nice Corn & Chile Tomato-less salsa for any tomato-haters who have been living salsa-free for too long!
8. Mini ice cream cones for your minisTJ’s Hold The Cone! Mini Ice Cream Cones are a favorite of mine, and my kids don’t complain when I bring them home either. I love that this grab-and-go treat is the right portion size for kids, and my girls are just happy that they get chocolate, ice cream, and a cone all in one tasty treat.
It’s easy to see why these are a repeat winner in the annual Trader Joe’s customer choice awards — and maybe in your own shopping cart for summer.