As a food scientist and huge fan of new food products in general, I’m always ready to buy and try new products – especially at Trader Joe’s. This new seasoning blend caught my eye as I made my way through the aisles, and I quickly added it to my cart to spice up my popcorn routine.
I made some popcorn this week (specifically to give this blend a try), and then proceeded to make four more batches of popcorn over the rest of the weekend because this stuff is good. Everything it touches tastes like it’s drenched in a creamy alfredo – it’s tangy, mildly cheesy, and has the slightest hint of rosemary and oregano to keep it interesting. The powder is super fine, making it perfect for coating popcorn with ease. It’s not overly salty, which I really appreciate, and it’s also not overly cheese-y, which I also appreciate. It’s very well balanced, not at all stinky like some cheese powders can be, and not at all boring or one-note like it’s orange, Cheeto cousin. This is cheese powder for a refined, adult palate, and I’m so pleased to report that I’m here for it.
So far, I’ve only tested this on (multiple batches) of popcorn, and honestly, it’s a perfect application. I do want to try to use this on a batch of kale chips that I’m planning on making later in the week, and I’m wondering if this would also be good stirred into yogurt to make a cheesy, somewhat Ranch-reminiscent dip? I think it could work, but again, I haven’t tried this yet, so don’t quote me. But on popcorn – this blend is definitely approved.
The TJ’s website and other reviews I read online mentioned this working well with broccoli, in soups, or mixed into mashed potatoes (yum!). I’m now thinking it would be so good sprinkled on roasted cauliflower, and I can also see this being delicious on top of a bowl of beans. Some reviews that I read online were negative, siting overpowering other flavors (garlic/onion) and lacking in cheese flavor – which I can see, but I don’t agree with. I personally love the more subtle cheese flavor and the additional savory notes, but if it’s a bright orange cheese bomb that you are looking for, I agree this isn’t it!
With that in mind, if you see this item on the shelf during your next Trader Joe’s run and are looking to mix up your seasoning routine, give it a try! I really have been enjoying it so far, and I think you will too!