Every year, right after Thanksgiving, something magical happens. No, we’re not talking about Black Friday, we’re talking about that enchanting moment when Trader Joe’s graces us with their new, limited-edition holiday foods. This year, Trader Joe’s went above and beyond by adding a whopping 84 products to their holiday lineup. Of course, we went to pick up these new products as soon as we could.
The amount of products and goodies Trader Joe’s has available is overwhelming so we decided to pick out the best-looking sweet treats in the store and rank them from our least to most favorite. That way, when you head into Trader Joe’s to grab some of these tasty confections, you can have a good idea of what to stock up on and what to maybe skip.
We grabbed way too many holiday sweets for one person to consume so I assembled a taste-testing crew of experts (read: friends) and we began the arduous task of sampling all of these goodies. Ahead, you’ll find the complete ranking of our favorite Trader Joe’s holiday sweet treats.
Peppermint Mini Marshmallows
There was nothing particularly bad about these mini marshmallows that caused them to earn the bottom spot on our list. They taste fine, they’re nice on top of a cup of hot cocoa but they’re not going to knock your socks off either.
Pomander Orange Cake
We found this cake to be too dry but the flavors were delightful. You would definitely need to pair it with a coffee or some espresso because it’s not quite moist enough to eat on its own.
Chocolate Peppermint Loaf
Peppermint mocha is my favorite hoilday flavor combo so this was one of the first things I picked up during my Trader Joe’s haul. It was easy to make, nice and moist and while it was definitely chocolately, there wasn’t as much pepermint as we would like.
Scandinavian Tidings Gummies
Are you a fan of Swedish Fish? Then you may enjoy these more than we did. They taste pretty much exactly the same but are ever so slightly more gummy in texture.
Gingerbread Dog Treats
OK, I did not taste these myself so I could not ethically place them too high on my list but my seven-month-old Bernese Mountain Dog puppy taste-tested these and gave them two paws up.
Just in case you didn’t believe me, (or because I will not pass up any opportunity to share a picture of my dog) here is photographic proof of Sully enjoying one of those Gingerbread treats. Now, we’ll continue with our countdown.
Unlike the loaf, these had plenty of peppermint. We tried them straight out of the box and they were tasty, but they are much better as a topper to your hot cocoa. The box also suggests using them in s’mores and althogh we didn’t get around to trying that, it certainly sounds delicious.
Boozy Little Truffles
If you participate in a secret Santa gift exchange at work, these would make an excellent little gift. The white chocolate was too sweet for our taste but the other three were wonderful and you defnitely get a nice hit of the infused booze. They are filled with London gin, Scotch whisky, navy rum and prosecco.
When I need a quick snack during the day, I routinely grab a handful of some type of fruit and nut mix so I was pretty excited to try this festive version. It’s filled with roasted almonds, cranberries, pumpkin pie spiced pecans, pepitas, pistachios and white and dark chocolate-covered pretzels. This mix is delicious but it is overwhelmingly sweet. It’s too sweet for me to want to grab for a quick snack during the day but I would definitely chow down on this as a quick dessert after dinner.
Peppermint Bark Popcorn
We’ve already established my love of all things peppermint but what I have not told you yet is that I am much more of a savory food fan than a sweet food fan. I personally found this too sweet but our tasting group loved it so we ranked it right in the middle.
Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti
Biscotti is such a controversial treat but we had no complaints about these mini chocolate hazelnut cookies. We dunked them in espresso and enjoyed every bite.
Apple Cranberry Tart
Finally! A dessert that isn’t cloyingly sweet. The cranberries added a nice bit of tangy sourness and it wasn’t overpowered by a bunch of extra sugar. The pasry was buttery and flakey and the apple flavor was perfectly balanced.
We first tried this served cold and it was just OK, but we heated some up in a sauce pan and it was transformed into the perfect holiday libation. It’s similar to warm apple cider but definitely has a lot more spices and a nice tangy flavor from the black currants.
Dark Chocolate Mint Stars
These were cripsy, chcoolatey, minty and topped with cute sprinkles to add a little extra hoilday flair. They are everything you would expect them to be and are definitely the first thing I reach for when I’m craving something sweet.
Cinnamon Crumb Coffee Cake Mix
This too was super easy to bake and although it is pretty sweet, that’s to be expected from a coffee cake. Everyone in our tasting group agreed that we would eat this with a cappuccino any morning.
This is definitely an indulgent treat and you only need a small bite to satisfy your craving but the flavor is incredible! It’s perfectly crunchy, sticky and chocolatey.
Salty Honey Toffee Chocolate Crackers
And finally, our unanimous favorite was by far these toffee-covered crackers. They combine the delicious of Trader Joe’s English toffee with a salty cracker to balance out all the sweetness. It is the ultimate sweet and savory holiday indulgence and you better believe we’ll be stocking up on these so we can nosh on them throughout the year.
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