15 Trader Joe's Favorites That are So Authentic You'll Think You're in Italy

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Trader Joe's offers fantastic Italian foods for both your pantry and freezer.
Updated Jan. 31, 2024
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friends eating pasta at home dinner party

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You don’t have to go further than your local Trader Joe’s to find great Italian cuisine that will make you feel like you're dining in Italy.

These foods might not be exactly like enjoying an Old World, made-from-scratch meal from your Italian grandmother’s kitchen. Still, there are some exceptional choices on store shelves and in the freezer section at Trader Joe’s that would make Grandma proud.

Check out these 15 Trader Joe’s favorites that can help you save money on groceries while providing you with a great Italian meal.

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Truffle Burrata

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Truffle burrata Trader Joes

Trader Joe’s Truffle Burrata is a must for any Italian table. The cheese feels silky, and you’ll get plenty to top a homemade pizza or sprinkle on your favorite baked pasta dish.

Or, use some of the best crusty bread you have, a bit of roasted tomato, and the best Italian meats with a few slices of this cheese to make a filling lunch.

Sliced Prosciutto

Courtesy of Trader Joe's sliced prosciutto Trader Joe's

To make that sandwich, you’ll need the perfect savory, salty meat. Trader Joe’s Sliced Prosciutto is one of the best.

The super-thin slices are the perfect bite of savory, thanks to the prosciutto being slow-aged for at least 10 months. It’s made in the U.S. by an Italian salumeria.

You can also wrap a piece around a fig to enjoy a fabulous sweet-and-salty combination for a snack.

Organic Italian Cascatelli Pasta

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Organic cascatelli pasta Trader Joe's

The fun shape of Organic Italian Cascatelli Pasta creates the perfect curves to hold onto a thick sauce.

This version has a nice bite to it when cooked properly, and it's filling, especially if you serve it with a nice turkey-based Bolognese sauce.

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Italian Roast Ground Espresso

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Italian ground toast espresso Trader Joe's

Without a doubt, you need the perfect cup of coffee after a hearty meal. The Italian Roast Ground Espresso is an excellent choice. It has a full-bodied flavor and invigorating scent.

It’s made with 100% Arabica beans. Make sure you have an espresso machine to brew this cup perfectly.

Pro tip: Buying these Italian food items at Trader Joe’s can save you cash over dining out at a restaurant, and that can lower your financial stress

Cacio e Pepe Ravioli

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Cacio e pepe ravioli Trader Joe's

For a quick meal that’s bursting with authentic flavor, pick up Cacio e Pepe Ravioli.

You don’t need anything more than a simple butter sauce to complete this meal, along with a sprinkle of cheese. Trader Joe’s ravioli is excellent, with traditional durum wheat semolina-based ravioli made with ground pepper.

The ravioli also includes a savory blend of ricotta cheese, cream, and Pecorino Romano.

Bolognese Style Tomato & Beef Pasta Sauce

Courtesy of Trader Joe's bolognese style sauce Trader Joe's

Trader Joe’s Bolognese Style Tomato & Beef Pasta Sauce is a truly authentic option. It is rich, hearty, and offers a nice meaty flavor profile.

It’s made with imported Italian tomatoes to create a bit of a sweet flavor that’s less acidic than most American-grown tomatoes. Trader Joe’s has also improved the beef ratio, making this an even denser option.

Sicilian Selezione Extra Virgin Olive Oil

olive oil Trader Joe

A small amount of Sicilian Selezione Extra Virgin Olive Oil, a bit of freshly ground pepper, and a piece of crusty bread are all it takes to create the perfect appetizer before your meal.

This dressing offers a fruity note that makes it a good topping for fish, salads, and vegetables. You’ll love that it’s made of three types of olives that are grown, harvested, and pressed in Sicily, making it one of the purest of options.

Organic Hearty Minestrone Soup

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Minestrone soup Trader Joe's

Whether you’re not feeling well or you simply want a healthy soup on the go, Organic Hearty Minestrone Soup from Trader Joe’s is a solid choice.

The soup is packed with vegetables, and the tomato base has been cooled for a long time to bring out the earthly flavors of the carrots, tomatoes, kale, and peas. The kidney beans and cannellini beans — along with orzo — make this a hearty meal.

Outside-In Stuffed Gnocchi

Courtesy of Trader Joe's stuffed  gnocchi Trader Joe's

This may not be something you find in the restaurants of Tuscany, but Trader Joe’s Outside-In Stuffed Gnocchi is outstanding.

This potato gnocchi is stuffed with mozzarella and tomato sauce. When you warm them up in a pan right from their frozen state, they become decadent little bites of joy. They're the perfect option to keep in the freezer for last-minute meals the kids will love.

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Focaccia Bread with Roasted Tomato & Parmesan

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Focaccia bread Trader Joe's

Fresh bread is a must on any Italian kitchen table, and warming up Trader Joe’s Focaccia Bread with Roasted Tomato & Parmesan in the oven will have the whole home smelling wonderful.

This version has a crumb texture inside and a dense crust on the outside, with a few bites of roasted tomatoes and parmesan topping it.

Italian-Style Wedding Soup

Courtesy of Trader Joe's wedding soup Trader Joe's

Trader Joe’s has some outstanding soup options with wholesome ingredients. The Italian-Style Wedding Soup in a jar offers authentic flavor with tender beef meatballs and a salty, thick soup base.

It’s made with small, round pasta called acini di pepe and has a lot of vegetables in it for a healthy twist.

Sweet Italian Sausage

Courtesy of Trader Joe's sweet Italian sausage Trader Joe's

Trader Joe’s has several Italian sausage varieties, although this version of Sweet Italian Sausage made with pork is easily one of the most traditional options.

It may even be better than other varieties because it’s made with all-natural ingredients, no antibiotics, and no added hormones.

Figo! Half Dipped Chocolate & Vanilla Sandwich Bars

Courtesy of Trader Joe's Figo sandwich bars Trader Joe's

Italian treats like the Figo! Half Dipped Chocolate & Vanilla Sandwich Bars may make you think you’re walking along the streets of Rome and enjoying gourmet sweet treats. These are small, snack-sized bites with decadent chocolate and creamy ice cream.

Gluten Free Pizza Crusts

Courtesy of Trader Joe's gluten free pizza crusts Trader Joe's

If you want to make your own pizzas — you can find all of the ingredients you need at Trader Joe’s — check out the Gluten Free Pizza Crusts.

These thin pizza crusts create a crispy bottom when you put them into the oven. This is a simple, hands-on dinner the kids will love creating on their own.

Rosemary Sfogliette Crackers

Courtesy of Trader Joe's rosemary sfogliette crackers Trader Joe's

Trader Joe’s Rosemary Sfogliette Crackers are a must for your pantry. They have a strong rosemary flavor, making them perfect for dipping into a tomato-based sauce or topping them with an olive mixture.

They're a bit salty and crispy, so they can be the perfect replacement for chips.


Bottom line

FornStudio/Adobe dinner party

Trader Joe’s offers many fantastic Italian-inspired foods that you can enjoy at just about any time of the day. Check their large selection of pasta, many of which are imported from Italy.

They also have fantastic wines available at some locations, which are the ideal complement to any Italian meal. And when you make your purchase, consider using a great rewards credit card that will help you earn cash back or other perks.

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Author Details

Sandy Baker Sandy Baker is a has over 17 years of experience in the financial sector. Her experience includes website content, blogs, and social media. She’s worked with companies such as Realtor.com, Bankrate, TransUnion, Equifax, and Consumer Affairs.

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