Food & Drink

Trader Joe’s Stocking Stuffers You Should Secretly Buy for Yourself

One for your stocking, one for me.

trader joe's stocking stuffers
John Samels/Thrillist

At some point this holiday season, your gift list will run too long and you won’t be able to make your hands fan out one more slice of salami for your epic charcuterie board – let alone think about stocking stuffers (by far the most forgotten holiday gift). 

So when you get to that point or if you’re already there, that’s where Trader Joe’s comes in. You'll probably already be at the grocery store a lot this holiday season, so don't overlook the cult-favorite snack foods and handy household items for gifting when combing the shelves for pantry staples. The store has plenty of items that make perfect small gifts, so here’s a list of the best stocking stuffers from the store you’ll already be frequenting this holiday season.

Reusable Tote Bags

Stockings are useless. So instead of buying something that you have to pack away for 363 days a year, pick up a reusable tote bag that you can use year-round and fill it up with the rest of the items on this list. Now the stocking is the gift.

Grapefruit and Lemon Hand Sanitzier Spray

You can never have too much hand sanitizer (especially this year), so these sprays make a perfect stocking stuffer. The grapefruit and lemon scent is delightful, and the Aloe and Vitamin E keeps your hands from drying out.

Chocolate-Covered or Sugar-Glazed Lebkuchen

There's no denying gingerbread cookies are beautiful, but at times, they can be too hard to really be edible. But Trader Joe's version of this classic German treat turns that notion on its head and comes in chocolate-covered and sugar-glazed varieties.

Double-Chocolate Hot Cocoa Stirring Spoon

Adorable and cheap is a combination I can’t resist. So this little hot chocolate spoon is a win in my book. Simply warm up a mug of milk and use this spoon to stir it up, and you’ll be left with a delicious blend of milk and dark chocolate with a few mini marshmallows on top.

Taste Test of Caramels

This gift will stick at least a few feet out of a standard stocking, but it’s worth the aesthetic misstep. With this stocking stuffer, you can crack open the box and put your palate to the test as you try to decipher the flavor of 12 different caramels like hot chili and strawberry black pepper.

Rainbow of Honey

For the tea lovers in your life, ditch the little bear and update their sweet stir-in with the Rainbow of Honey. Each package contains six four-ounce jars of honey in flavors like clover, orange blossom, and mimosa. Plus, they come in beautiful, reusable glass jars with cork tops.

Cookie Butter

This just might be the most talked-about thing from Trader Joe’s. It’s the kind of thing you avoid all year until one fateful night when you add it to your cart in the name of self-care, so needless to say, it makes a great gift.

Waxed Cotton Food Wraps

Going home for the holidays means a family member suckering you into bringing home leftovers. If you’re the one who is going to make someone lug already-dry turkey on their bus ride home, at least stuff their stocking with waxed cotton food bags or wraps. That way, they can seal up leftovers now (and all year long) in beautiful packaging without creating more waste.

Chocolate-Covered Peppermint Joe-Joe's

The only thing better than Joe-Joe’s is chocolate covered Joe-Joe’s. And the addition of a candy cane crumble on top drives this product into excess, which is exactly what the holidays are all about, right?

Chocolate Passport

Most people wouldn’t buy a fancy single-origin chocolate bar just any old day of the week, but put this in their stocking and they’ll have something special every day of the week from all around the world.

Triple Ginger Brew

This seasonal non-alcoholic brew can be enjoyed on its own or made into a mule, and the old-fashioned swing-top bottle in festive red and green will look great sticking out of a stocking.

Everything But The Bagel Seasoning

Another one of those things you definitely don’t need but would be happy to have, Everything But The Bagel Seasoning makes a perfect stocking stuffer. You can toss it on cream cheese to improve a plain bagel or use it on roasted vegetables, scrambled eggs, avocado toast, or really anything you want to be salty and crunchy and delicious.

Vanilla Bean Infused Maple Syrup

You wouldn’t put one of those grocery store bottles of pancake syrup in anyone’s stocking. But if it’s vanilla bean infused, from a small family maker in Vermont, and from Trader Joe’s, it seems acceptable.

Mediterranean Olive Oil Set

Tickets for a European vacation might fit better in a stocking, but this gift won’t hurt your wallet like an international getaway. For less than $10, this set includes single-origin olive oils from Italy, Greece, and Spain for a Mediterranean tasting experience.

Clementines

Oranges are a classic stocking stuffer. Some say it originated during the Great Depression while others attribute it to an old story about St. Nicholas. But either way, they’re a cheap, delicious, and easy way to fill a stocking, and you can definitely find them at Trader Joe’s.

Sign up here for our daily Thrillist email and subscribe here for our YouTube channel to get your fix of the best in food/drink/fun.

Liz Provencher is an editorial assistant at Thrillist. She already bought all of this stuff for herself. You can talk to her at lprovencher@thrillist.com, follow her on Twitter, or see what she eats on Instagram.