Posted: May 20, 2016
I’ve dedicated this blog to in-depth, clear-eyed analysis of the strangest, most intriguing and generally hardest to fathom products Trader Joe’s brings to market. The things, in other words, that make you go “Huh – I wonder what that tastes like?”
|What it is:||Really good marshmallows.|
|Price:||$2.99 for a 10 oz. bag|
|Worth it:||Yes. Dense, sweet and creamy.|
If I see, say, a can of pumpkin seed oil, or a bag of fried parsnips, I’m pretty much going to grab it immediately. That sort of stuff is irresistible to me. On the other hand, some new type of milk chocolate caramel, or whatever, is simply a bore. Without even tasting that I can tell you exactly how good it is. It’s really, really good. You don’t need me to tell you that milk chocolate and caramel taste good. Maybe if you throw a little quinoa in there, I’d be interested. Maybe drop some pumpkin pie spice on it and I’ll perk up my ears. So why, you may be wondering, am I bothering to review something as mundane as average, unadorned, regular-old marshmallows?
Well, one – because Trader Joe’s has never carried marshmallows before. You can get muhammara, chocolate-covered potato chips and 4 different types of guac, but you’re out of luck if you want dry beans.
More importantly, however, these are the best damn marshmallows I’ve ever tasted – bar none.
Never did I dream that the standard, industrial-produced marshmallows that I have literally consumed thousands of over the course of my life – in hot chocolate, on smores, as peeps, enrobed in cheap chocolate or dusted with coconut – could be anything more than little sugary pillow of air. Never did I dream that marshmallows, by themselves, could be a delicious, craveable treat. That’s what we’re talking about here with Trader Joe’s Maershmallows. It’s as if I’d only ever eaten garden variety Hershey bars my whole life, then someone gave me a dark chocolate bar filled with bacon-ganache. I never knew they could be this good.
Trader Joe’s Marshmallows have literally opened my eyes to the world of inferior marshmallows I have been living in. Writing that down makes me feel like the most shallow person in the world – but I’ll take my enlightenment where I can get it, thank you.
What makes these marshmallows stand out? Everything. Imagine for a moment, every enjoyable quality that an ordinary marshmallow has. Now improve them all by 200%. It’s like Trader Joe’s just brought a Lamborgini to a planet that only had go-karts.
The very first thing you’ll notice as you pick up the bag is how dense and hefty these marshmallows are. Still squishy, yes. Still malleable and yielding, but one of these marshmallows sits in the hand with the weight of three ordinary name-brand marshmallows. It’s as if Trader Joe’s decided to pump a third less air into the same quantity of marshmallow stuff.
Now take a bite. How much richier, chewier and – most notably – creamier do these Trader Joe’s Marshmallows taste? Even better, enjoy that satisfying sweetness. I’ve only never known the sugary, hit-you-in-the-bloodstream extruded corn syrup sweetness of name-brand marshmallows. Trader Joe’s marshmallows, even though they’re denser, are more mellow in their sweetness and more enjoyable to just snack on.
Yes, I said it, snack on. These marshmallows are far more than the raw ingredient for some dish topping – they’re good enough to nibble at while sitting around watching a movie. They’re more of a candy bar substitute than a marshmallow substitute.
Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from using these in place of more ordinary marshmallows in any dish. I tried making a batch of rice krispy squares, and found that not only where they waaay harder to stir, they made for a gooier, and tastier final treat. No surprise there.
There’s no doubt about it – Trader Joe’s Marshmallows deserve a rare 5-star review. They did for me what cookie butter did for me – opened my eyes to a whole new, delicious vista that I never knew existed.
Would I Recommend It: Hell yeah!
Would I Buy It Again: It’s the only type of marshmallow I’ll ever by again.
Final Synopsis: The best marshmallows I’ve ever had in my whole life.