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Sep 20, 2016

Trader Joe's 2016 Vegan Pumpkin Products

Before telling you about  Trader Joe's 2016 Vegan Pumpkin Products we gotta go to that good ol' disclaimer: Housevegan.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

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Pumpkin season is finally here! You know it's official when Trader Joe's starts softly stocking their pumpkin items.

My store had oodles of pumpkin stuff on the shelves, but nothing advertising that fact. Fine by me! That meant I had less people like me to deal with while shopping. I walked down every aisle multiple times to check out the pumpkin items currently available. If it was vegan I put it in my cart. If it wasn't vegan I made a note of it, pouted, and moved on.

Should more pumpkin items pop up over the season I will edit this post accordingly. Until then, here are my reviews of every Trader Joe's 2016 Vegan Pumpkin Product currently available (ZOMG!):

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Trader Joe's Pumpkin Rolls w/ Pumpkin Spice Icing
Package description:
No description on packaging.

Price (in TX)
$3.99

Thoughts:
My husband and I both thought these were delicious. It seemed like most of the pumpkin flavor came from the icing which was quite sticky and sweet. The sweetness is expected, but the stickiness took us aback. Nevertheless, we gobbled these up.

Fair warning to those easily annoyed by hard-to-open packaging: Opening these will annoy you. I seriously had to stab the tube with a knife at least 20 times before it popped. Oof!


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Trader Joe's Pumpkin Bagels
Package description:
"Our Trader Joe's Pumpkin Bagels are just bursting with pumpkin! They are made with pumpkin flour, which is milled from fresh pumpkins, and the addition of the intoxicating pumpkin pie spices of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and ginger."

Price (in TX)
$2.49

Thoughts:
We've really been enjoying Trader Joe's Pumpkin Bagels. They're a little sweet like cinnamon raisin bagels, but not quite that desserty. For instance, you could make savory breakfast sandwiches with these, and it wouldn't be weird. However, they are quite large so that sandwich would be huge. We've been eating half a slice each with tofu scramble for breakfast, and it's been perfect.

We probably won't buy these again because we're not big bagel eaters, but if you are a big bagel eater then they're definitely worth stocking in your fridge. 

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Trader Joe's Pita Crisps with Cranberries and Pumpkin Seeds
Package description:
"Trader Joe's Pita Crisps with Cranberries and Pumpkin Seeds are made just for us in a small, family owned artisanal bakery. We love these crisps for all kinds of reasons; they're made with whole grain wheat and seeds; they're toasted, not fried; they're a bit sweet and salty. They're also ridiculously delicious and can be paired with many cheeses, dips, or served on their own. We know you will love them as much as we do!"

Price (in TX)
$2.69

Thoughts:
I don't love pita chips, and my husband doesn't love sweet chips therefor we didn't really expect to like these too much. To our surprise they were quite lovely. They are a bit sweet, but still went well with savory hummus. They were also crunchy and filling, and didn't leave us feeling like we just ate a bunch of bread (which is my issue with pita chips - I'd rather just eat bread.). I liked these just fine, and thought they would be great on a fall-inspired vegan cheese plate, or served with some kind of roasty dip. 

My husband liked them a lot, and was content to eat them dipless.

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Trader Joe's Pumpkin Bread and Muffin Mix
Package description:
No description on packaging.

Price (in TX)
$2.99

Thoughts:
This product was the only dud, but I'm willing to give partial blame for its blahness to the egg replacer I used. The recipe on the box calls for 2 eggs, and I chose to use flax eggs because that is what I almost always use to bind quick breads. However, these muffins retained a lot of moisture even when they were unquestionably cooked through. They were almost moist to a fault. 

The other miss for me was on taste. The muffins I made weren't bad, but they were very sweet and tasted rather generic. I feel the same way about Trader Joe's Banana Bread Mix. Neither product is bad, but they're not great either. If you're used to homemade pumpkin bread, then this mix probably won't satisfy you.


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Trader Joe's Pumpkin O's
Package description:
"Round like pumpkins (rounder actually) and fun like Jack O' Lanterns (maybe more fun since you can eat them) Trader Joe's Pumpkin O's are the cereal sibling to the Original Joe's O's. The pumpkin wizards whipped these up with a stroke of their pumpkin-shaped wands, and because pumpkin-shaped wands are challenging and difficult to control, the wizards were only able to conjure up enough of these O's for pumpkin season. If pumpkin is your passion, and cereal is your cause for celebration, Pumpkin O's are for you. Hold on to this box, lest the pumpkin goblins grab them all."

Price (in TX)
$2.49

Thoughts:
Did these live up to their super silly description? I think so! 

These O's are quite a bit larger than other O cereals, and they're crunchier too. They're also sweet, but not too sweet, and the pumpkin flavor is present, but gentle. And except for a lingering bit of cinnamon in the aftertaste, there is almost no spice. It's just a really lovely and inoffensive little cereal.

PS. They're gluten free if you're into that.

PPS. How do they know that I'm not a pumpkin goblin?

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Trader Joe's Pumpkin Spice Rooibos
Package description:
"Trader Joe's pumpkin beverage is warm and inviting, evoking nostalgic memories of autumn with every sip. A carefully selected blend of rooibos is combined with natural pumpkin flavor, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves to create a naturally aromatic, wonderfully flavorful beverage, delicately packed in a pyramid-shaped sachet."

Price (in TX)
$3.99

Thoughts:
This Pumpkin Spice Rooibos is such a nice tea for the season. It's strongly pumpkin-spiced, but the natural flavor of rooibos is still able to come through. It really does evoke nostalgic memories of autumn, and it's comforting in a way that most teas just aren't for me. If you know me at all, you know that I'm a coffee girl through and through. 

While I don't love this tea quite as much as I love Trader Joe's Harvest Blend Herbal Tea, I do see myself enjoying it throughout the fall season. It's not as intense as the Harvest Blend tea which I definitely appreciate.

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Trader Joe's Pumpkin Tortilla Chips
Package description:
"Made with real pumpkin puree and pumpkin seeds, these corn tortilla chips are crunchy and sturdy - ready to meet any salsa or even a yogurt-based dip. They're sweet, with a kick of cinnamon & nutmeg to amplify their prodigious pumpkin profile. If autumn had a signature tortilla chip, Trader Joe's Pumpkin Tortilla Chips would certainly be the one."

Price (in TX)
$1.99

Thoughts:
Oh boy, these are not for the faint of pumpkin-spice heart! When people make fun of us pumpkin-spice lovers it's because of products like this.

These chips are salty and corny on the first bite, but get pumpkiny real quick. After the pumpkin flavor comes in you get a very noticeable bit of cinnamon and nutmeg. Don't even consider trying to pass these off as not pumpkin-spiced because it will not work.

Does this make them bad? Hell no, these chips are tasty if you like pumpkin spice. I love pumpkin spice, and have been enjoying the chips thoroughly. The cinnamon and nutmeg in these actually make for a really interesting flavor when paired with the correct salsa (like roasted varieties). Think mole, and go with it. 

PS. These are also gluten free!

See Also: Salsa Roja

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Trader Joe's Pumpkin Joe Joe's
Package description:
"Ready the wheelbarrows, and haul out the hay... the harvest has been bountiful! It's brought forth Trader Joe's Pumpkin Joe Joe's, crispy pumpkin cookies with pumpkin cream filling sandwiched in between. Autumn never tasted so good."

Price (in TX)
$2.99

Thoughts:
Halloween Joe Joe's are my all time favorite sandwich cookie, but these Pumpkin Joe Joe's are also quite scrumptious. They're very very sweet (sugar is the first ingredient), but they're boxed cookies. They should be sweet. The cream is super soft and luscious, and the whole cookie is well spiced. Despite the fact that there is actual pumpkin puree (and organic pumpkin powder) in the cookies, they still have a little bit of an artificial hint to them. But again, they're boxed cookies. It's not too surprising.

While they're not as perfect as Halloween Joe Joe's, they're super yummy all the same.

Trader Joe's 2016 Non-Vegan Pumpkin Products
While there are a ton of vegan pumpkin products at Trader Joe's right now, there are a ton of non-vegan products too. The products below contain at least one non-vegan ingredient like milk, butter, honey, etc. so make sure to skip these when you go to stock up:
  • Pumpkin Cookie Butter
  • Pumpkin Pancake & Waffle Mix
  • Pumpkin Butter
  • Pumpkin Soup
  • Autumnal Harvest Pasta Sauce
  • “This Pumpkin Walks Into a Bar” Cereal Bars
  • Organic Frosted Pumpkin Toaster Pastries
  • Pumpkin Spice Chai
  • Pumpkin Chai Spice Loaf
  • Pumpkin Biscotti
  • Pumpkin Seed Brittle
  • Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Salted Caramels
  • Fall Harvest Salsa
  • Chocolate Mousse Pumpkins
  • Pumpkin Caramel Kringle
  • Pumpkin Spice Cake
  • Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
  • Pumpkin Waffles
  • Pumpkin Pie Mochi Ice Cream
  • Mini Ginger Pumpkin Ice Cream Mouthfuls
  • Pumpkin Ice Cream
  • Pumpkin Spice Caramel Corn
I believe in going big or going home, and I appreciate that Trader Joe's adheres to this idea with their seasonal products. This is also why I believe in immersing myself in pumpkin stuff for as long as possible. Christmas stuff will start showing up before you know it, y'all. I don't know about you, but that thought gives me serious Fall FoMo. Luckily, I can ease that with more of these pumpkin snacks. Thanks, Trader Joe's!


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