This week’s Trader Joe’s Item Reviews!


I make my own Honey Dijon Vinaigrette for my salads and saw this today for $1.99 and figured “why not?!”  I tried this out in my vinaigrette and it worked… however this is a bit runny- not as thick as Dijon Mustard.  I left honey out of my vinaigrette and this did well. Click here for the recipe.





A while ago- maybe 4 years now- I tried whole bananas covered in dark chocolate that TJ’s was selling.  I was not a fan.  The banana was way too hard and when you bit it the chocolate would fall off.  Found these cuties today and got them for J (my son).  We put them in the freezer for a bit and then gave them a try.  These slices are the perfect size for one bite eating.  The chocolate is not overly sweet, banana is perfectly ripe (a bit on the green side so perfect in my preference) and NOT HARD on the teeth.  I’m a fan!


J was with me today (which I normally don’t do because a growing boy will easily add $20 to your cart!) and he tried this mix out at the coffee counter. J loves yogurt and especially those danimals cups with the cookie crumbles.  Each item was $2.99 so together $6… those danimals cups are 4 for $6.99.  This is a great cheap and organic alternative.

Budget your groceries

20130413_191041Since January 2013 I have been on a mission to cook all of my own foods to become debt free. Since starting this journey I have been paying more and more attention to the nutritional value and “bang for my buck.” I started out spending $100 or more for 2 weeks worth of groceries. I am now at $75 and under, if I do go over it is usually because I buy meat other than chicken, which is rare.  Now the question is how do I do it and buy enough to feed myself and my son…. I am going to explain.

  1. Once you set your grocery budget plan your meals.
  2. Stick to your grocery list
  3. Save your receipts

Now after a few weeks’ worth of receipts do the following:

  1. Check how often you buy the same thing (i.e. ketchup)
  2. Write out what goes into your meal and cost it (add the ingredient prices and divide by how many servings you get from it)
  3. Plan your trips based on these recipes and items

This may seem boring or as if you are buying the same thing over and over but as you keep doing it you will get better at it.