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Trader Joe’s Grilled Eggplant and Zucchini Melange

Trader Joe's Grilled Zucchini and Eggplant Melange

Goony cousins, zucchini and eggplant, make good.

Maybe it’s just me, but I’m not a big fan of melanges in general. They’re a cut above medleys, to be sure, but I’ll take a combo, mishmash or salmagundi over them any time. Nevertheless, Trader Joe’s Grilled Eggplant and Zucchini Melange is a credit to the name – a tasty, tangy, cheesy mixture of two of the vegetable world’s least celebrated members.

You could not blame the average consumer for passing up this awkwardly named side dish. Eggplant and zucchini aren’t the world’s most popular veggies individually, let alone together, and a passerby could be forgiven for assuming this mixture of the two is aimed to please the health-food nut more than the mother of three. Such is not the case however. Following a brief jaunt in the microwave, the dish is surprisingly pleasing – hiding it’s big veggies in a thick tomato based sauce. Though not noted in the product title, a judicious helping of cheese, both mozzarella and parmesan, appear in the dish which gooifies the sauce without dominating the vegetables (unlike Trader Joe’s Chile Rellano).

Eggplant and zucchini, despite their frumpy reputations, actually serve very well in this dish. Both veggies have a mild taste that complement each other and the sauce they come in, while providing enough heft to make for a satisfying mouthful. That said, nothing is done to ameliorate the texture of the large, floppy eggplant slices, which remain, as ever, a bit mealy and soggy.

Overall, the result is a tasty and healthy side, that fills you up without laying on the fat. The downside, for me, were the relatively small portions. The bag, though quite ample, shares the same large bag problem of the cioppino. Though it promises you four servings, I found that it what you get after cooking is more realistically described as two.


The Breakdown

Would I Recommend It: Yes, to all but the eggplant haters.

Would I Buy It Again: Absolutely, it’s a great side for many an entree.

Final Synopsis: A veggie side that takes the middle ground between steamed broccoli and fried potatoes.

Trader Joe's Grilled Zucchini and Eggplant Melange - Nutrition Facts

Trader Joe’s Grilled Zucchini and Eggplant Melange – Nutrition Facts


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3 Comments on “Trader Joe’s Grilled Eggplant and Zucchini Melange”

  1. Linda says:

    Well, I liked the chewy rubbery Eggplant and wished there were more big pieces. It was like chewing a piece of meat except for taste. The spices were a little heavy so I added a bit of chicken broth and served it over steamed rice. I am not a big eggplant fan, zucchini yes, but I keep trying eggplant to see what everyone loves about it.

    I, also, get really frustrated going to Trader’s and finding that the “special, delectable” dish has “been discontinued”; “not till next season”; or whatever. i now usually call to see if they have what I want before making the trip. Otherwise I go to my neighborhood store that really does have organic veg and fruits, bulk items (not pre-measured bags), and organic dairy. And non GMO’s always labeled.

    • Laurel says:

      Linda, although I agree with being frustrated when an awesome item is discontinued, you should look into your facts before criticizing TJs for GMO products…ALL TJs-label products are non GMO, as stated on their website. 🙂

  2. […] easy thanks to Trader Joes grilled eggplant and zucchini melange. They’re pre-seasoned and precut and makes putting together a lasagna a cinch. I use them in […]


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