Where Local and Global Appetites Collide
Dear Pumpkin Face Trader Joes

Dear Pumpkin Face Trader Joes

Trader Joes pumpkin month
It’s pumpkin season

Today I received your mailer and am O.D.ing on pumpkin products. How many pumpkins had to die? Let’s see there were 48 pumpkin products and you have a gazillion stores in 40 states and counting. What were you thinking?

When I grew up (decades ago) there were few pumpkin products. We, of course, had real pumpkins before Halloween. Mostly my dad did the jack-o-lantern thing because sharp knives and children with small hands did not pair well. Then there was the occasional pumpkin pie and perhaps a sophisticated aunt would serve pumpkin bread. End of story.

But fast forward decades and your stores run amuck with pumpkin products. Someone is definitely guilty of raiding the pumpkin patch. Where do all these pumpkins come from? I bet the pumpkin council is pumped with joy.

Trader Joes pumpkin month
plentiful pumpkins

For those of you who don’t live near one of the gazillion stores, here are the 48 available Trader Joe’s pumpkin products:

1. Pumpkin bread mix
2. Pumpkin tortilla chips (According Fearless Flyer® TJ’s admits to, “It’s true. We’ll add pumpkin to anything.”)
3. Organic pumpkin toaster pastries
4. Honey roasted pumpkin ravioli
5. Organic canned pumpkin (Around December, leftover cans are placed in the dog food section.)
6. Pumpkin cranberry crisps (These are addictive; buy with caution.)
7. Kennebunkport Brewing Co. pumpkin ale
8. Pumpkin bagels
9. Pumpkin cream cheese muffins
10. Pumpkin spice granola
11. Nonfat Greek pumpkin yogurt
12. This pumpkin walks into a bar (most clever name ever)
13. Pecan pumpkin instant oatmeal
14. Pumpkin cranberry scone mix
15. Pumpkin spice rooibos tea
16. Gluten free pumpkin pancake mix
17. Pumpkin butter
18. Pumpkin bar baking mix
19. Pumpkin pie spice cookie butter
20. Pumpkin waffles
21. Pumpkin cheesecake
22. Pumpkin seed brittle
23. Pumpkin panettone (How dare you take panettone in vain?)
24. Pumpkin biscotti
25. Belgian chocolate pumpkins (According to the Fearless Flyer® a chocolatier in Belgium has been perfecting the chocolate pumpkin for more than 30 years. Really? Get a life. )
26. Dark chocolate pumpkin spice salted caramels
27. Pumpkin pancake & waffle mix
28. Raw pumpkin seeds
29. Pumpkin rolls with pumpkin spice icing
30. Pumpkin bread pudding
31. Mini pumpkin pies
32. Pumpkin macarons
33. Pumpkin pie mochi ice cream (This has gone too far. Reprimand the person who thought of this idea.)
34. Pita crisps with cranberries and pumpkin seeds
35. Pumpkin spice chai
36. Pumpkin body butter (not edible until someone tries it)
37. Pumpkin flavored dog treats (my two rescued greyhounds approve)
38. Pumpkin Joe Joe’s
39. Pumpkin ice cream
40. Decorative mini pumpkins (edible but only if you’re desperate)
41. Pumpkin cornbread mix
42. Pumpkin cream cheese (sounds gross)
43. Pumpkin spice coffee in single serve cups (one is enough)
44. Pumpkin spiced pumpkin seeds
45. Gluten free pumpkin bread & muffin baking mix
46. Pumpkin spice coffee (so not good)
47. Joe’s pumpkin O’s
48. Orange pumpkins – the kind you carve for decoration

Trader Joes pumpkin palooza
the mini the merrier

Your stores already brim with products. My fear is that you will remove the other flavors and products leaving us with pumpkin palooza. What about your shoppers who are allergic to pumpkin or simply dislike it? I envision entire football fields overrun with pumpkins and staff waist deep in pumpkin puree.

There should be equal time for other fruits, vegetables and flavors. What about the humble pear (think pear body butter, pear crisps with cranberries and pumpkin seeds, pear bread pudding or nonfat Greek pear yogurt? Or chocolate…the world always needs more chocolate cornbread mix, chocolate panettone, chocolate spice chai, chocolate bagels and chocolate tortilla chips.

What are your favorite and least favorite Trader Joe’s pumpkin products?


  1. We loved the pumpkin tortilla chips last year–they were excellent for nachos (especially with my refried bean-style sweet potatoes and a smoky-sweet sauce). I don’t think I have a least favorite!

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