What is all the buzz about Trader Joes Dinner? If you are like me, you are always asking around for quick and easy dinner ideas. Sometimes, I just do not feeling like cooking or I am too busy to cook or just tired of my usual meals. When I need inspiration to cook dinner, one of the best ways for me to get inspiration is to go to the Trader Joe’s (TJ’s) near me. Take a look at these amazingly tasty and easy products to get a quick, healthy meal on the dinner table in minutes.
Trader Joes Dinner Ideas
The Trader Joe’s near me just happens to be in Annapolis. I pass several grocery stores on my way to TJ but it is always worth the trip.
What do dietitians like about TJ’s?
- How versatile the frozen food items are and how you can mix and match different frozen meals together. For instance: I like to microwave the frozen fried rice and top it with the frozen breaded cod and sriracha sauce). This is such quick and easy meal!
- Cooking instructions on the bag!! I think this is so awesome because I haven’t seen this in other grocery stores. It makes me feel super confident when making their items.
- Trader Joe’s has a limited number of items so it is not overwhelming like a superstore
Top 5 Trader Joes Dinner Favorites
We are starting this series with frozen foods that take zero cooking skills. Basically these are like a bit fancier and tastier than expected frozen foods. They work perfectly for when time is tight and so is your budget. These are so much cheaper than eating out. Some of these foods will probably end up stocked in your freezer at all times. I buy several of these frozen foods at a time when I shop at Trader Joe’s so I always have an extra one on hand when needed.
These photos were taken “on the fly” right before we sat down for dinner on a weeknight to illustrate how easy these are to prepare.
We received no compensation for this shout out to Trader Joe’s, we are doing it because cooking does not have to be difficult and TJ’s is a great resource.
#1 Trader Joes Mandarin Orange Chicken
For fans of Asian takeout, this orange chicken does not disappoint. Just like I asked for added broccoli in my takeout from a local Chinese restaurant, I do the same with my TJ Orange Chicken. I simply cook up some frozen broccoli while I am heating up the chicken.
And here is a photo of the completed dish which just took minutes to prepare, easier than waiting for take out.
In addition to the Orange Chicken, BBQ Chicken Teriyaki and Beef and Broccoli options are also available.
If you would rather cook healthy takeout recipes that are a bit more complicated, take a look at this. 15 Healthy Copycat Recipes that you can make at home.
#2 Trader Joes Turkey Meatballs
These are a tasty treat to keep on hand for appetizers with BBQ sauce, teriyaki sauce or your favorite meatball sauce.
Add turkey meatballs to your favorite spaghetti sauce for a quick and easy dinner.
Remember, you don’t have to make homemade meatballs or sauce to have a delicious meal.
#3 Trader Joes Chili Lime Chicken Burgers
TJ’s has a variety of burgers in the frozen food section of the store. In addition to the traditional angus beef burgers, they have chicken burgers, salmon burgers and veggie burgers. Here is the latest on that I tried.
And it was a tasty alternative to a beef burger with a bit of guacamole on top.
My favorite burgers is the salmon burger.
Ideally topped with some TJ pesto sauce on a bun. Here is another way to eat it simply on a plate with some side dishes.
When I was at Trader Joe’s yesterday, I found an old favorite of mine and I cannot wait to get it on the grill. Its Quinoa Cowboy Veggie Burger.
And here it is, a veggie burger with a bit of avocado on top. Another meal in minutes.
#4 Trader Joes Tilapia Filets
Nothing better than serving this with some TJ Fried Rice. See the fried rice under #5.
#5 Trader Joes Fried Rice
Love this fried rice which is ready in 5 minutes. Add your protein of choice to this meal for dinner in minutes. I like to add tofu, you can add leftover chicken, sausage or another favorite of mine, shrimp.
Added some leftover chicken and broccoli to my vegetable fried rice. Looks like my puppy is certainly interested in this meal.
Here is the sriracha tofu available at TJ that I cut up in cubes and add to the fried rice! Yummy!
And here is one of our team members favorite. She used TJ organic chicken sausage and scrambled some eggs to add to the vegetable fried rice for a tasty meal.
Trader Joe Meals Grocery List
- Mandarin Orange Chicken and don’t forget to buy frozen broccoli and even frozen rice to make it extra simple
- BBQ Chicken Teriyaki
- Beef and Broccoli
- Turkey Meatballs
- Frozen Broccoli
- Chili Lime Burgers
- Salmon Burger
- Veggie Burger
- Hamburger Buns if desired
- Vegetable Fried Rice
- Frozen Broccoli
- Sriracha Tofu
- Chicken Sausage
More meal ideas if you don’t feel like cooking:
For other recipes for those who don’t feel like cooking, take a look at this popular blog including the Lentil Salad inspired by the famous one minute Trader Joe’s lentil salad recipe.
For more information on technique cooking:
Our book, Nourished: 10 ingredients to happy, healthy eating will take you down the path of nourishing your body from start to finish. Explore how you eat now and how to adopt the principles of intuitive eating. We guide you through nutrition concepts and what normal eating can look like. Next we take you step by step of putting that knowledge into practice by organizing your kitchen, meal planning, grocery shopping, meal prepping, and eating out. Not only will this workbook help you improve how you feel but it will give you confidence in eating.
In our book, we focus on technique cooking which basically means thinking about cooking in terms of the method used for instance: baking, boiling, frying, etc. On our website, in our recipe database, we focus on these cooking methods:
- Air Fryer
- One Dish Meals
- Pressure Cooker
- Sheet Pan Meals
- Slow Cooker Meals
Using this way of thinking, it makes it much easier to mix and match ingredients to increase the variety in your foods without having to make tons of different recipes. Here is an example of sheet pan cooking with foods cut up and ready to cook in the oven. You could substitute any kind of meat or vegetables on the pan, bake it food and then enjoy dinner!
This not a sponsored ad. We simply love Trader Joe’s and hope this blog series inspires you to give some of these frozen foods a try.
Rebecca Bitzer loves to empower Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) and their clients. Co-author of Welcome to the Rebelution: Seven steps to the nutrition counseling practice of your dreams and Taste the Sweet Rebellion: Rebel against dieting.