Friday, February 27, 2009

A Trader Joe's Barbecue Sandwich

Let me preface this post by saying that I'm not a big fan of Trader Joe's.  Yes, they're good at what they do.  But I really don't need to buy 6 different flavors of cashews, apples wrapped in cellophane, and ready to eat frozen dinners.  In other words, they have great packaged novelty "foods", but not a lot of real food.  

Disclaimer over.

I was scoping out their store in Woodbury last week because we're getting a Trader Joe's just down the street from my house and I need to know what to expect.  And, of course, I ended up spending about $35 on fun treats while exploring.  I couldn't resist trying the Trader Joe's private label "Chicken-Less Pulled Chicken in Barbecue Sauce".  
How could I resist?  It's vegan and it has barbecue sauce- SOLD!  It's too bad it's not organic, but I bent my usual rules for the sake of the promise of "...homestyle barbecue, a little smoky, a little sweet..."  

So I heated up this soy protein and wheat gluen based dish,  sandwiched it between whole wheat bread, Veganaise, and sweet pickle relish, and served it with coleslaw.  

The verdict:  WEAK!!!  I like an intense barbecue flavor and this just did not deliver.  The box said that it would leave me wanting more.  And I did want more... flavor.  But once I added a bit of Pickapepper Sauce, I happily gobbled down the meal.  I'm a bit (ha!) picky about my barbecue sauce, so others might like it.  If you're not a big fan of spicy barbecue, then it might be perfect.  

The texture was a bit softer than I'd like, but it did end up being a pretty tasty meal.  And the "chicken" has 17 grams of protein and 45% of your iron, so that's pretty nice.

I doubt I'd get it again, but it was fun to try!


eliser1028 said...

I totally agree - I was so excited to try this, and found that it had little bbq flavor at all - just 'smoke,' I guess? Hard to explain what was missing, but generally disappointing :(

allularpunk said... LOOKS good. but i do like a spicy bbq. anyway, it's a moot point, as i'm lightyears away from ever going to a trader joe's (silly wv).

Vegyogini said...

As of this past Sunday, my TJ's didn't have that product yet. I don't eat a ton of faux meat, but it's always fun to try new vegan things. I'm with you, though; I like a spicy, flavorful barbecue sauce.

The Voracious Vegan said...

Great review. I'm jealous you are getting a Trader Joe's by your house. Here in Bahrain it is hard to even get the basics regularly!

Sorry about the weakness of your bbq. I, too, and picky (snobby?) about my bbq sauce. I do NOT like sweet sauce, it needs to be smoky and spicy to make my stomach happy.

Jess S. said...

Oh thank goodness I'm not the only one with snobbish reservations about TJ's. I go there to get nuts (unflavored, thank you) because they're cheaper there than most places, and I guess I can see why someone would appreciate the time saving quality of pre-cooked lentils, but really? Lentils only take like 20 minutes to cook, and you don't even have to pay attention to them.

Lily Girl said...

Thanks for the review. I saw it last time I was there, and while I wasn't dying to try it now I know. I'll skip it an make my own. I wasn't particularly enthused by their chicken-less or beef-less strips either for that matter.