A few years ago, I participated in a tasting comparison of Aldi and Trader Joe’s Chinese takeout food. Aldi and TJ’s are distant cousins, so we were curious to see how similar some of their products were. (They turned out to be very different from each other.)
At the time, I didn’t shop much at Trader Joe’s, so I was more familiar with Aldi foods such as Fusia Asian Inspirations Mandarin Orange Chicken, Pork or Chicken Egg Rolls, General Tso’s Chicken, and the like. But since then I’ve made a point to visit Trader Joe’s from time to time, and that takeout showdown experience introduced me to one Trader Joe’s product that became a favorite of mine: chicken spring rolls.
Trader Joe’s Chicken Spring Rolls cost $3.99 at the time of publication for a 9-ounce package that contains five spring rolls.
The package describes these as “white meat chicken with basil, garlic & ginger.”
Ingredients are pretty straightforward: white meat chicken, green cabbage, napa cabbage, carrot, green onion, sugar, basil, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, cornstarch, soy sauce powder, salt, rice wine, chili paste, wheat flour, water, corn syrup solids, and soybean oil.
If you’re looking out for allergens, these contain wheat and soy.
One roll constitutes one serving (51 grams), and that will net you 100 calories, with 35 calories from fat, along with 4 grams of total fat (6% DV), 1 gram of saturated fat (5% DV), 10 mg of cholesterol (3% DV), 260 mg of sodium (11% DV), 11 grams of total carbohydrates (4% DV), 2 grams of dietary fiber (8% DV), 2 grams of sugars, and 5 grams of protein.
These can be prepared in a conventional oven, on the stove top, or in a toaster oven. The package says microwave cooking is not recommended for these.
To bake in a conventional oven, preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Place on a baking sheet and bake on the center rack for 20-25 minutes or until golden, crisp, and warmed through. Serve right away.
To make on the stove top, thaw one roll in the microwave for 30 seconds on high, adding 15 seconds for each additional roll. Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a heavy skillet, add spring rolls, and turn frequently for 3-4 minutes or until golden, crisp, and warmed through.
To make in a toaster oven, thaw one roll in the microwave for 30 seconds on high, adding 15 seconds for each additional roll. Toast on high for 5 minutes or until golden, crisp, and warmed through.
I’ve baked these in a regular oven in the past, but these days I usually heat them in my air fryer. They’re usually ready after about 15-20 minutes in the air fryer.
I like how crisp and flaky these turn out, and the wrapper is light and airy compared to the heavier consistency of egg roll wrappers. My kids don’t like the basil flavor in these and prefer egg rolls instead, but I think they’d be okay with other types of spring rolls that don’t contain basil and instead had more traditional spring roll/egg roll seasonings.
I really enjoy these, though, and they’re an item I pick up often during my Trader Joe’s shopping trips. They are a good addition to a Chinese-American takeout-style meal, or they also make a good lunch served alongside a salad or soup.
Trader Joe’s Chicken Spring Rolls are flavored with basil, garlic, and ginger and have the flaky crispy wrapper we associate with spring rolls. We like them a lot, but most kids we’ve served them to prefer spring rolls or egg rolls with more traditional flavors.