Jumping for Joe’s

Reviewing new seasonal Trader Joe’s sweets


Like during most holiday seasons, Trader Joe’s released new items for that post-holiday season and pre-valentines day part of the year. I tried some of the most popular unique sweets right now to see if Trader Joe’s can uphold the proclaimed supereminence I have for them.

The first thing I tried was the Rice Corn Maple Pancake Puffs. I immediately knew that these would be my favorite thing out of all the snacks. Maybe eating them for breakfast was a bad idea, but the maple pancake flavoring was on point. They taste similar to the Buc-ee’s Famous Beaver Nuggets but not as sweet; despite this, they are better than the Beaver Nuggets.

Next, I tried the Dark Chocolate Almost Butter Pretzel Nuggets, and I was initially skeptical of the almond butter because usually, the trio is peanut butter, chocolate, and pretzels. Still, the almost butter was slightly sweeter but not too sweet, so the flavor clashed with the chocolate. The ratio of pretzel to chocolate and almond butter balanced out. The choice of dark chocolate rather than milk chocolate was for the better.

The Cocoa Truffles were something other than what I would usually try, and the first bite reminded me why. The first taste I got in my mouth reminded me of wet socks, but the truffles were delicious after that. Cocoa isn’t a favorite taste of mine, but the more I ate, the more the cocoa blended with the chocolate, and the two flavors complimented each other.

The Triple Ginger Pretzels intrigued me because ginger isn’t a taste I usually enjoy, but these changed my mind. The white chocolate, ginger, and pretzels all taste good on their own, so it surprised me how good they tasted when all together. However, I did feel like the white chocolate was too sweet at times and that more ginger was necessary to balance out the flavors.

The Dark Chocolate Covered Pretzels are a classic. Chocolate, dark chocolate specifically, and pretzels are such a good combo that there is no possible way to go wrong with them; they are not overly sweet or overly salty.

The Belgian Chocolate Hearts are the most festive item on this list, but not my favorite. I do not regularly enjoy Straight Milk Chocolate, but the Belgian chocolate is more buttery and a little more bitter than a Hershey’s milk chocolate bar. I would eat more because it’s chocolate, but I don’t see myself repurchasing these.

The Peanut Butter and Banana dog treats were the only thing my dog could enjoy on this list. However, it’s not the same for my Dad, who tried half of a treat. “[The treat] was bland and didn’t have much taste… more smell than taste,” he said. This makes sense because, according to the American Kennel Club, “dogs can actually taste foods through their sense of smell with a special organ along the dog’s palate.”