Last week we got the Trader Joe’s Fearless Flyer in the mail outlining their October specials. This month they have literally everything pumpkin you could possibly imagine! Pumpkin bread, coffee, cereal, pancakes, waffles, cinnamon rolls, ice cream, seeds, pies, yogurt, cream cheese, soup, chai tea, beer, ravioli, croutons…and that’s only half the list!
Since I’m a big fan of everything pumpkin (see these recipes I shared in a previous post) I had to restrain myself from buying out the whole store. Most of the times I try to visit Trader Joe’s in the middle of the days on weekdays to ensure easy parking. Since I went on a Sunday afternoon, it was crazy! Cars were lined up waiting for spots to open up in their small lot. I’ve never had a problem the other dozen or so times I’ve visited though...just maybe avoid going at peak times if possible.
My friend Thu had sent me a photo of her cooking their Pumpkin Ravioli last week, so I added that to my shopping cart, along with a variety of other fall goodies. About half my cart ended up with pumpkin flavored foods, but they have a ton of other fall flavors that I’m excited to try – Carrot Ginger Soup, Organic Tricolor Quinoa, Toasted Coconut Pancake Mix, and Creamy Toscano Cheese with Cinnamon.
When I got home, I snacked on the cinnamon cheese with Pumpkin Cranberry Crisps. I loved the flavor, but I still prefer their Raisin Rosemary Crisps. The Toscano with Cinnamon would be nice to pair with fruit, but I really like their Toscano with black pepper and the one soaked in Syrah wine – both have bolder flavor than the cinnamon kind.
I splurged and bought their Dark Chocolate Speculoos Cookie Butter Cups – had they been milk chocolate I may have been able to resist, but I love dark chocolate. They are like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, but filled with cookie butter instead! I think this may be my new favorite candy. It’s probably a good thing that they’re individually wrapped; otherwise it would be too easy to grab a handful of them.
Our friends Tony & Katie hosted a BBQ party at their home last night for the season premiere of The Walking Dead. I’m not a fan of the show since I’m scared of blood and zombies, but I got to spend some time with all our friends which was fun. Our friends Pate & Katie work at Pane Rustica, so they brought by some spooky treats from their bakery.
I threw together a salad I had bought that afternoon from Trader Joe’s. The Harvest Blend comes with baby spinach, kale, lettuce, broccoli, and cauliflower. It also includes roasted pumpkin seeds, dates, raisins, pumpkin cornbread croutons, and pumpkin vinaigrette. It wasn’t an overload of pumpkin, but it was a nice hearty and crunchy salad. I may buy some of the Pumpkin Cornbread Croutons on their own since they sell them separately.
I also brought the Kennebunkport Brewing Co. Pumpkin Ale – and both Katies had other pumpkin beers as well! We made a sugar rim for our glasses with 3 T brown sugar, 1 T white sugar, 1 T cinnamon, and 1 tsp nutmeg. The sweet rim made it taste like we were drinking pumpkin pie! Although all our drinks were pumpkin, they were 3 different shades. The Kennebunkport ale was actually a very light pumpkin beer, while the Blue Moon Harvest Pumpkin Ale was the darkest. The Southern Tier Brewing Company Pumking was rated #3 best pumpkin beer recently on Thrillest.com (#1 was made by our local Cigar City Brewing). According to this article, sales of pumpkin beers have gone up 1500% in the past 10 years!!! So I'm sure many of you out there are enjoying pumpkin beers this fall as well.
Looking forward to trying all the other things I bought yesterday!
Trader Joe's is located at 3808 W Swann Ave, Tampa, FL 33609 and is open 8am – 9pm every day.