You’ll love this list of Whole30 compliant items from Trader Joe’s! A free printable grocery list to go accompany you on your next trip!
For all of my Trader Joe’s loving readers, this post is for you! I have been wanting to do this post FOREVER, and I finally had some time this past week to take some photos at my Trader Joe’s. Oh, and I took a ton of time to study the labels of these items to ensure they were Whole30 compliant! So I give you this handy list of Trader Joe’s Whole30 items.
Please keep note that I do update this post frequently with new additions that I find! I have updated with the latest finds in January 2021!
What is Whole30?
So let’s back up a bit. For those of you who need a bit more background on Whole30. Whole30 is a nutritional program that helps you to reset those unhealthy eating habits and cravings, restore a healthy metabolism, heal your gut, and re think the way you eat food! For 30 days you focus on eating REAL foods: all with ingredients you recognize, or those foods without ingredients!
Think healthy portions of lean proteins such as beef, poultry, seafood, pork, and eggs. Plenty of fresh vegetables and some fruits, healthy and natural fats, and plenty of spices, herbs, and seasonings. What’s not included? Processed foods, sugar, alcohol, grains, dairy products, legumes, soy, and baked goods. To read more, check out the Whole30 website.
Whole30 with Trader Joe’s
So let’s get back to Trader Joe’s. My favorite grocery store because of the convenience, creative foods, and informative and friendly staff. I love that I can get in and out of that store so quickly; even when buying more than a few days of groceries!
Trader Joe’s is also super convenient for busy people; many of the foods you can purchase are already prepped for you (think riced cauliflower, spiralized veggies, seasoned meat, frozen entrees with minimal ingredients that are ready to be re-heated, you get the idea). They even have several fun healthy snacks, sauces, marinades, etc that are all Whole30 compliant. So let’s get started!
Most everything in the produce section is Whole30 compliant because you are simply stocking up on vegetables, fruits, and herbs. Keep in mind that salad dressings or sauces will most likely not be compliant (exception of one listed below)In my printable list, you’ll find some of my favorites, but feel free to include more. I am not much of a fruit person, especially on Whole30, so most of my list includes veggies. I should highlight a few of my absolute staples:
- Butternut Squash Zig Zags
- Sweet Potato Ribbons
- Cruciferous Crunch
- Asparagus Saute
- Green Goddess Dressing (the only dressing I can find that is compliant in the entire store)
- Spiralized Zucchini
- Roasted Cauliflower
- Jarred Napa Cabbage Kimchi (NEW!!)
- Healthy 8 Chopped Veggie Mix
- NEW and fantastic for tacos, wraps, etc: Jicama Wraps
Not everything in the meat and seafood section will be Whole30 compliant, quite the contrary! Many meats have extra additives and sugar that are not compliant. Look for items with just one ingredient, or that do not have processed ingredients. Ground beef, steak, chicken, salmon, ground turkey, pork loin (without marinade), pork chops, etc will all be compliant. When looking at the packaged or flavored meats, it’s more complicated. For example, it’s very difficult to find pork products that are compliant. Some of the chicken sausages are compliant, but not all! I am highlighting those that are so if you wanted to purchase something simple that can just be re-heated, this will come in handy!
- Poultry: chicken thighs and breasts are compliant. The following sausages are compliant: Organic Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage, Spicy Chicken Sausage, and Roasted Garlic Sausage. I checked every other chicken sausage in my local store and they contained sugar. Ground Turkey, Turkey breast cutlets, and Turkey half breast are also compliant.
- Beef: Organic ground beef, all of the steak cuts (sirloin, rib-eye, filet mignon, etc), Grass Fed Beef Sirloin Roast, Applegate Organic Uncured Beef Hot Dog. The NEW Beef Peppered Hanger Steak is technically Whole30 (although it contains canola oil which is not the best option for oil marinade).
- Pork: Pork Tenderloin (without marinade), Center Cut Pork Loin Chops, and Pork Belly (newer item)
- Seafood: Salmon Fillets, Wild Sockeye Smoked Salmon, Smoked Salmon Trio, Fresh Sea Scallops, NEW Everything But the Bagel Seasoned Smoked Salmon and Hardwood Smoked Ahi Tuna
- BACON!! There is a new addition: Trader Joe’s brand of No Sugar Dry Rubbed Uncured Bacon. I’ve added the photo here so you know what to look for:
Trader Joe’s frozen sections might be my favorite section in the store! I love their frozen vegetables, and meats. If you are looking for reasonably priced seafood, you can also find it here.
- Meat: You can find plenty of options of Grass-Fed frozen beef here. Also, 4 different types of pre-made burgers (the seafood burgers are not compliant): Chili Lime Chicken Burgers, Turkey Burgers, Grass Fed Angus Beef Burgers, and Uncooked Buffalo Burgers.
- Seafood: Several different types of shrimp, plus plenty of fish fillets: ahi tuna, swordfish steaks, and sockeye salmon.
- Vegetables: as mentioned above, a ton of good options here: spiralized zucchini and carrots, riced cauliflower, grilled cauliflower, beet chunks, organic rainbow cauliflower, bell pepper medley, crushed ginger, crushed garlic, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, green beans, mashed cauliflower, mashed sweet potatoes, and many more. The only caveat here, is that some of the vegetables come with sauces that contain dairy or sugar. Get the veggies without sauce. Some new additions include: Root Vegetable fries and Colorful Carrot Coins.
Sugary beverages and alcohol are completely off limits on Whole30; this also includes any sweetened drinks and “diet” drinks. Coffee and tea are completely fine, without any sugar or sweeteners. For those who are trying to kick a soda addiction, there are plenty of good options to try such as sparkling herbal water, or Kombucha without sugar. Luckily, Trader Joe’s has several good choices!
- Coffee: the many flavors of Instant Coffee, ground coffee, or coffee beans are all compliant. The Organic Cold Brew is the only “pre-made” coffee drink that is compliant. There are plenty of different types of Cold brews that are compliant! As long as it contains just coffee and water, you are good. Any of the latte powders are NOT compliant.
- Teas: Plenty of herbal, green, and black teas to choose from. This category is similar to the coffee category in that any of the powdered mixes (such as a Matcha Latte mix) are not compliant. The canned Matcha Green Tea is. TJ’s also has new bottled unsweetened green teas. One flavor is a Blueberry Pomegranate and is delicious! New in late 2020 is the cold brew tea drinks!
- Water: Lemon Ginger Herbal Water, Lemongrass Spearmint Water, King Coconut Water, and Coconut Water are all compliant.
- Kombucha: The Trader Joe’s Kombucha drink contains added sugar, but the GTS Gingerade and Trilogy are compliant, as well as the Brew Dr. Kombucha.
- Almond Milk: The shelf stable Unsweetened almond milk is a good option as a coffee creamer or used in recipes that call for dairy-free milk.
Trader Joe’s has no shortage of fun flavorful dips, sauces, and spreads. Most of them are off limits during Whole30, but I was pleasantly surprised with some newer options that I think you guys will love!
- Salsas: I found 4 salsas in the snack aisle, and 2 in the refrigerated section that were compliant. Salsa Authentica, Hatch Valley Salsa, Salsa Verde, and Pepita Salsa are all next to the chips. The Pico de Gallo and Salsa Especial are in the refrigerated section. You can also find 2 different gaucamoles here: Avocado’s Number, and the Chunky Spicy (one of my favorite items!)
- Dips: I am excited about the new dip I found! Jalapeño Lime Almond Dip would work well with veggies. The Vegan Kale, Cashew, & Basil Pesto and Zhoug Sauce are also great additions! New in 2020/2021: Garlic Spread Dip, Romesco Dip, and Italian Bamba Hot Pepper Sauce.
- Other condiments: Spicy Brown Mustard, Napa Cabbage Kimchi, Raw Sauerkraut, and Prepared Horseradish. Just a note on the Prepared Horseradish. Check your labels, a reader told me that at her TJ’s the Prepared Horseradish had soybean oil. In my store, it is compliant and doesn’t have soybean oil. One of the TJ’s employees told me that some refrigerated items are prepared differently in certain parts of the country. So while it might be compliant in Virginia, it may not be in California!
Definitely the biggest section of items! I buy so many of my staple items here, but once again, check labels. For example, did you know that only the chicken broth and vegetable broth are compliant? The TJ’s beef broth contains sugar, and this is true in many broths in other stores! Some things that I absolutely love: cornichons, marinated artichokes (use these in salads and for snacks), marinated tomatoes (also use in salads), Everything But the Bagel Sesame Seasoning (so perfect on eggs), Seasoned Buffalo Ghee, and many more below.
- Canned goods: San Marzano Tomatoes (my favorite for spaghetti, chili), Organic coconut milk and cream, canned marinara sauce (not the jar), canned tuna, salmon, oysters, and anchovies. Diced tomatoes and the fire roasted diced tomatoes are also a staple in my house. Finally, I always keep the Tomato Paste on hand, I love the tube option!
- Nuts/nut butters: Any of the plain nuts are compliant (except for peanuts), just stay clear from any trail mix. The Thompson Seedless Raisins are also Whole30, you can use these in recipes such as my Chicken Biryani. Chia seeds and hemp seeds are also great options for salads and texture on foods. I love TJ’s cashew butter, any of the almond butters, and the mixed nut butter. No peanut butter. I also love the Marcona Truffle almonds as a snack!
- Oils/Vinegars: Avocado oil is another staple in my house, ghee (the new buffalo seasoning one is really yummy), olive oil, and coconut oil. The three vinegars I buy here are the organic apple cider, red wine vinegar, and balsamic vinegar. Stay away from the salad dressings.
- Spices/Seasonings: The Herbs de Provence is fantastic on French style dishes or just with chicken, also LOVE the Everything But the Bagel Seasoning for eggs, and the new Mushroom & Company Multipurpose Umami Seasoning. All of the spices are great options although the selection is not as great as you would find at a traditional grocery store.
- Jarred: cornichons (love these as a snack!), marinated artichokes, any of the olives, capers, minced garlic, sun dried tomatoes, Giardiniera (pickled vegetables), Jalapeño pepper hot sauce, and the Harissa sauce. Many other items here are not compliant.
- Snacks: RX Bars (compliant flavors include the chocolate sea salt, coconut chocolate, mint chocolate, mixed berry, and blueberry chocolate), Larabars (the only compliant flavor I found at my store was the cashew cookie), Chomps bars, Epic Bars, and the Organic Turkey Bites.
- Random: Almond flour, coconut aminos, nutritional yeast, antipasto cherry tomatoes, antipasto mediterranean vegetables, ginger paste, cooking sprays (coconut oil or olive oil), organic chicken stock, chicken broth, vegetable stock, and vegetable broth. You can also find bone broth (a newer product) in the refrigerated section near the meat and seafood!
Trader Joe’s guacamole actual has Greek yogurt in it making it not whole 30 complaint
Hi Rocco, there are actually 3 different types of guacamole at Trader Joe’s. The one with Greek yogurt is called “Reduced Guilt Chunky Guacamole” and is not pictured or talked about in this article. Thanks for letting me clarify that there could be some confusion. Only buy the Chunky Spicy Guacamole (pictured above) or Avocado’s Number.
Marie Ho says
Is there a list of TJ’s products that you show above? Hard to see some of the pictures.
Hi Marie! I just updated the post so that the PDF file contains everything mentioned. Before it was 1 page, now it’s 2 pages that has everything. Hope that helps!
Nancy Sanabria says
I thought the Jalapeño chicken sausage and the Sweet Italian had sugar in it! I think it’s the spicy Italian chicken sausage that is compliant. I’ll double check the label when I go later today. Thanks for your list. Can’t wait to try that pesto. Also the Zhoug Sayce is compliant and us a really yummy spicy herby sauce.
Hi Nancy, i’ll have to check again on the Jalapeño when i’m In the store! But, I am pretty sure it was fine. The spicy Italian might also be good, but my store could have been out. Also, kind of seems funny that the “sweet” Italian Sausage doesn’t have sugar, but it didn’t. I’ll have to see if I can find that sauce, sounds yummy!
Hi Amy! I can confirm the Jalapeño chicken sausage does have sugar. I used your list for my grocery shop on Monday (thank you!) but did notice this morning that the sausage includes sugar.
Thank you, Chelsea! I saw it too the other day, and meant to take it off. Just took it off and updated! Thank you for the reminder, and so glad you found the list useful!
Robyn Lynn says
Hi Amy. Unfortunately the prepared horseradish has soybean oil in it; not Whole 30. Wish we could find horseradish prepared with avocado oil. I love horseradish!
Thanks for letting me know. I went in to my Trader Joe’s store and found out it doesn’t have soybean oil making it compliant! I did talk to one of the employees who told me that some refrigerated items are prepared differently in certain parts of the country. So maybe yours is different? I think it’s important for me to make note of that above. I had no idea!
How much did everything cost on your grocery list fr Trader Joe’s?
Hi mavi! I really don’t know the answer because I don’t buy all of these items at the same time for one large trip. I will say that I found Trader Joe’s pricing to be better than most grocery stores.
The Trader Joe’s near me has cauliflower gnocchi which is incredible and only has 5 Whole30 approved ingredients! Not sure if it is SWPO because I prefer this to regular pasta but it goes great with dairy free W30 pesto!
This is a great list thanks so much. So helpful!
You’re welcome! The cauliflower gnocchi is soooo good. It would be considered SWYPO and not approved, but I definitely love it when not on Whole30!
Thank you so much for hard work! What a generous and kind deed for you to offer the world — and not charge for it! As a new mama I have followed your recipes for two years now and my heart is overwhelmed with gratitude for how you have helped me nourish my family.
So sweet, Karen! Thank you!!!
Dora Swan says
Interesting about the RX Bars – chocolate is not Whole30 compliant until it’s cacao, no?
Hi Dora! Yes, the Chocolate Sea Salt flavor is Whole30 compliant because it only contains cacao. But as with other Whole30 snacks, if eating to curb a sweet tooth, it’s not recommended. More for an emergency snack, travel, etc.
Sandy Fox says
Amy, Do you know if their Organic completely cacao chips are compliant? They’re 100% cocoa beans. I’m wanting them for the chocolate taste not to curb a sweet tooth. My favorite chocolate bar is their 100% cocoa bars especially the one with almonds and sea salt! That contains chocolate liquor so I’m sure that’s not compliant.
As long as you weren’t using it to curb a sweet tooth, it would be compliant.
Thank you for this lovely and awesome post. Really enjoyed reading it
Starting my whole 30 journey and find this very useful. Is the garlic spread dip whole30? It says it contains canola oil and when reading some say its off limits and some say its okay in moderation. I can’t seem to find anything else about this online. Just wanted to see what your thoughts are. Thanks!
Is the Trader Joes coconut creamer Whole30 compliant?
Amy Rains says
I am not sure as I haven’t seen it in my TJ’s store! You can post a picture of the label here and I can look at it.