Aldi’s cousin store, Trader Joe’s, has a decent selection of international foods, and that includes Indian food such as samosas and aloo chaat kati pouches. On a recent visit to the store, I saw they had Tikka Masala Vegetables, Jaipur Vegetables, and Yellow Tadka Dal. I bought the Tikka Masala Vegetables and Jaipur Vegetables to try.
These vegetables are sold in pouches that I found on the room-temperature shelves above the freezer section at Trader Joe’s. At the time of writing, they sold for $1.99 each. Each 10-oz. pouch contains two servings.
These pouches look pretty healthy, with mostly recognizable, pronounceable ingredients (see photos of ingredients lists below) such as potatoes, peas, onion, tomatoes, carrots, peppers, and spices.
Not surprisingly, because these are unrefrigerated shelf-stable products, the veggies have the consistency of canned vegetables, so if mushier vegetables are a no-go for you, you may not like these.
Be sure to get some basmati rice or naan to serve alongside these pouch meals. Both have a lot of sauce, especially the Jaipur Vegetables, so you’ll want something to soak or sop it up with.
Both veggie pouches can be prepared in two ways: microwave or stove top.
To prepare in a (1200-watt) microwave, cut a two-inch slit in a corner of the pouch to vent. Stand the pouch in the microwave and heat on high for 1 minute. Carefully remove and pour into a dish. Serve right away.
To prepare on the stove top, place the sealed pouch in boiling water for 5 minutes. Carefully remove and pour into a dish. Serve right away.
I prepared our pouches in the microwave, but I did not think they were quite hot enough for my liking after just 1 minute in the microwave. I microwaved the food for another 30 seconds after pouring it into a small serving bowl.
Once a pouch is opened, it should be kept refrigerated and consumed within one day.
Trader Joe’s Indian Fare Tikka Vegetables
The Tikka Vegetables are described as “vegetables cooked with aromatic spices in a creamy tomato sauce.”
One 150-calorie serving has 4 grams of saturated fat, 15 mg of cholesterol, 340 mg of sodium, 16 grams of total carbs, 3 grams of dietary fiber, 5 grams of total sugars and 0 grams of added sugars, and 4 grams of protein.
This was my least favorite of the two Indian Fare vegetable pouches we tried. It needed a little more salt, or something. It wasn’t as flavorful as I hoped, although it does have a lot more veggies than the Jaipur Vegetables pouch. It was not bad, but it wasn’t memorable either, and I won’t be buying this one again. If you want a good Tikka Masala sauce to serve with meat or veggies, I recommend sticking with Aldi’s Journey to India Tikka Masala sold in a glass jar.
Trader Joe’s Indian Fare Jaipur Vegetables
The Jaipur Vegetables are described as “garden vegetables and cubes of paneer cheese with spices and cashews.”
One 180-calorie serving has 3.5 grams of saturated fat, 15 mg of cholesterol, 420 mg of sodium, 12 grams of total carbs, 3 grams of dietary fiber, 5 grams of total sugars and 0 grams of added sugars, and 6 grams of protein.
I thought this was good, but it was not the best Indian food I’ve gotten from a grocery store. The seasoning is on the mild side in terms of flavor, but my husband and I felt like this vegetable pouch had much more flavor than the Tikka Vegetables pouch. Also, if you don’t like a lot of heat, this is not very spicy. There wasn’t a lot of cheese in the pouch I got; when I saw chunks that I assumed were cheese, they turned out to be potatoes or carrots. The cashews also are soft because they’ve been soaking in the sauce, but that is to be expected in a meal pouch like this. I might buy it again, but I’m not sure.
Trader Joe’s Indian Fare Tikka Vegetables and Jaipur Vegetables are quick and easy to prepare for lunch or dinner. The veggies are on the mushy side but otherwise not bad. The Jaipur Vegetables have more flavor and are the better dish, in our opinion. The Tikka Vegetables are just okay. Be sure to serve both alongside some rice or naan to help mop up the sauce.