It's easy to be vegan at Trader Joe's. They've got vegan versions of seemingly everything, from chorizo to mozzarella to animal cookies. And while MamaSezz is all about making mealtime easy, some of the popular vegan convenience foods at Trader Joe's don't quite make the whole food cut. Is Trader Joe's still worth the trip if you follow a whole food plant-based diet? Heck yes! We've rounded up some of our favorite vegan food at Trader Joe's to create the ultimate whole food plant-based grocery list.
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While we try to choose local in-season produce whenever possible, there are a few great staples we pick up at Trader Joe's each time we go, including:
- Avocados (the bag of 6 are usually a great deal)
- Bananas (19 cents per banana!)
- Organic broccoli slaw
- Organic grape tomatoes
We're big fans of keeping a well stocked plant-based pantry and when it comes to finding vegan food at Trader Joe's, the canned goods aisles are always fruitful. Here are some of our favorite whole food plant-based pantry items to add to your cart:
- All beans
- Applesauce, unsweetened and jarred
- Artichoke hearts
- Black bean rotini (gluten-free!)
- Brown rice and quinoa fusilli
- Canned corn
- Canned green jackfruit in brine (and definitely make this BBQ pulled jackfruit sandwich recipe!)
- Cacao powder
- Coconut flakes, unsweetened
- Coconut milk
- Coconut aminos
- Date sugar
- Dried dark sweet cherries, unsweetened and unsulfured
- Ezekiel 4:9 bread
- Fat free refried beans
- Fire-roasted tomato salsa (low salt!)
- Lara bars
- Maple syrup, 100%
- Medjool dates
- Nut butters, no salt and no oil variations
- Nutritional yeast
- Olives (in water)
- Pure vanilla extract
- Organic unsweetened soy beverage (just soybeans and water for ingredients!)
- Quick cooking farro
- Quick cooking barley
- Raw and unsalted nuts: almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, etc.
- Raw and unsalted seeds: chia, flax, hemp, sunflower, etc.
- Red lentil sedanini (gluten-free!)
- Soba noodles
- Sun dried tomatoes (in water)
- Tahini sauce
- Udon noodles
- Vinegars: apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, brown rice vinegar, white rice vinegar, white wine vinegar
- Whole grain crispbread (like crackers!)
- Whole wheat oil-free pita bread
There is a ton of frozen vegan food at Trader Joe's...they're actually a kind of famous for it. But again, a lot of the convenience foods, however fun they may sound, might not jibe with your whole food lifestyle. Good news: you can keep it whole food plant based with these frozen food items:
- Cauliflower rice
- Broccoli florets
- Colorful carrot coins
- Edamame (shelled and lightly salted in the pod)
- Fire-roasted corn
- Organic quinoa
- Shredded hash browns (no oil!)
- Spiralized zucchini
Finally, we almost always pick up some of these fun finds when we're grabbing vegan food at Trader Joe's:
- Eggplant hummus (oil-free)
- Everything but the bagel sesame seasoning
- Miyoko's cream cheese
- Organic tempeh
- Organic tofu
- Roasted seaweed snacks
We've got nothing against making mealtime easy. Heck, it's why we do what we do (take a look at the MamaSezz ready-made meal bundles and see for yourself). But when it comes to convenience foods, it's best to check the labels to ensure it fits with your whole food plant-based lifestyle. Not sure what to look for? No worries. We've laid it all our here with our blog post on the correct way to read a nutrition label.
- It's easy to be vegan at Trader Joe's, even if you're following a whole food plant-based diet!
- While convenience foods are big time savers, be sure to read the nutrition labels to ensure the item fits with your whole food plant-based lifestyle.
- After you stock your pantry, you can make meal time even easier with ready-made meals from MamaSezz.
By Ali Brown
Ali is a mom, wife, and nutrition and lifestyle writer and editor. She has her Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.