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Trader Joe'S
Trader Joe'S
Jocelyn Hsu / Spoon

Trader Joe’s Staples for College Students

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Pitt chapter.

Consider this your next grocery list. 


Listen, I was never an oatmeal person growing up, but I can now confidently say that I make it best. The key is making it exciting: cook it in milk, throw in some cinnamon, a bunch of nut butter, honey, top it with banana… perfection. It never gets old! I have truly been in my oats phase for years. It’s not even a phase at this point. TJs has a huge variety to choose from, and you can even get refrigerated overnight oats for when you’re running late to your morning class.


In the cold, rainy Pittsburgh weather, a warm bowl of Trader Joe’s soup is the only cure. I highly recommend the chicken noodle, tomato feta, unexpected broccoli cheddar, and harvest chili. Throw in one of their bakery baguettes while you’re at it.

Frozen Meals

If you take away anything from this article, it’s this section. Not to be dramatic, but the frozen section saved my life this year (sorry, Eatery). My toxic trait is thinking that Trader Joe’s can’t make a bad frozen meal. A few of my absolute favorites would have to be the orange chicken bowl, mac and cheese (obviously), vegetable samosas, and fried rice. You obviously can’t forget the waffles, pancakes, and hash browns for breakfast too!


Whenever I go grocery shopping, I always need to get myself something sweet. My favorites from Trader Joe’s would have to be their “peanuts for chocolate” ice cream, cookie ice cream sandwiches, or their “hold the cone” ice cream. Can you guess my favorite dessert?!🍦 They’re only there seasonally but if you can get your hands on their apple cider donuts too you won’t be disappointed.

Frozen Veg

I love to keep frozen veggies in the freezer to throw on rice bowls. I definitely do not eat enough vegetables on a daily basis, so this is a really convenient way to get them in! Luckily, TJs frozen veggies are not too expensive, so I love to stock up whenever I go. My favorite is the roasted potatoes that you can just toss in the microwave!

Pantry Staples

Microwaved rice packets, beans, nuts, trail mix, granola bars, pretzels, chips, breads, bagels, cereals, pastas, sauces. Got all of that?

Coffee. Specifically the “electric Buzz” k-cups.

Is this too niche?

Alright, don’t blame me if your Trader Joe’s grocery bill is tripled from now on! 😬

Julia is a sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh studying Media and Professional Communications with a minor in Gender, Sexuality, & Women's Studies. She loves to go thrifting, grab a coffee with friends, and go on walks with her dog!