Trader Joe’s Chicken Sausage Ravioli was discontinued, and at last check, they didn’t offer any other any other dairy-free ravioli. But you can buy some from other stores. For dairy-free and vegan options, look for Kite Hill Ravioli, Scoiattolo Organic Ravioli (sold at Costco), SoyBoy Ravioli, and select varieties of Rising Moon Ravioli.
I was sure that none of the Trader Joe’s raviolis were dairy-free, but decided to take a quick peak at the ingredients on my recent aisle-browsing trip. Low and behold one variety, the Chicken Sausage Raviolis w/ Wild Mushrooms & Sundried Tomatoes were free and clear. At only $2.69 a package, I purposefully overlooked the fact that the package was a bit petite, and tossed them in.
With nothing on hand for lunch that very day, I jumped at the chance to prepare my latest Trader Joe’s find. Since the entire package was just 9oz (roughly 10 raviolis) it was evident that it was just enough to satisfy my husband, but not enough for the both of us. Wanting to get the full effect of the sausage, mushrooms, and sun-dried tomatoes, I pulled one ravioli aside for my own tasting, and dressed his plateful with just a touch of TJ’s marinara.
Starving, my husband dove in. Before even sampling my ravioli I eagerly asked, “So how are they?” The reply…”Eh.” Not exactly what I was expecting. I thought perhaps he was just being picky. I proceeded to trial my sample…“Eh.” They were really quite a disappointment.
The raviolis themselves were huge (perhaps 3” round in diameter), yet the center squished down to almost nothing. The filling was very sparse, flavorless, and tasted basically like breadcrumbs. What about the chicken sausage? Perhaps, but I couldn’t taste it. Wild mushrooms? Apparently they were to delicately exotic for our taste buds. Sun-dried tomatoes? It would seem near impossible to miss this potent flavor, but neither of us could detect a fleck. How could this be? Puzzled, I went back to the package to check the ingredients:
Pasta: Enriched Semolina Flour, Water, Eggs. Filling: Cooked Chicken Sausage (chicken, salt, mushrooms, tomatoes, spices, basil, garlic), Breadcrumbs (Wheat flour, yeast, sugar, salt).
Interesting, salt ranks before mushrooms, tomatoes, and all other spices in the sausage. Since they didn’t exactly put a ¼ cup of salt in each package (though the salt content did rank with a can of soup), it looks like far less of the other more interesting ingredients were packed into this ravioli. Also, I think the breadcrumbs just barely missed the first place ingredient spot above the chicken.
Nutritionally, this is a fairly low fat, low sugar lunch. Nonetheless, there are many other calorie conscious foods that I would much rather eat. I guess you can’t win them all at Trader Joe’s!
Where to Buy: Trader Joe’s stores are dotted throughout the U.S. See their website for a store locator.
Thanks for letting me know about the not so great ravioli. I am thrilled to hear about your website and book. I have been searching for dairy free foods since my son was born 16 years ago with a severe milk/casien allergy. It was really hard to find foods back then. He is now getting closer to being out on his own and I want to help him create a list of foods to shop for, then he can worry about double checking them.