Trader Joe’s has no shortage of spectacular snacks. There are great cheeses, cookies, candies, chips, and dozens of frozen appetizers (tandoori chicken samosas, we’re looking at you). But if you want to find our absolute favorite crunchy nosh at Trader Joe’s, you’ll have to leave the usual snacky aisles and head over toward the beer. That’s where you’ll find the Giant Peruvian Inca Corn.
These things are like corn nuts on steroids, and they’re quite possibly the perfect crunchy snack. They’re made from giant white Peruvian corn (called choclo) that was first developed by the Incas in the fifteenth or sixteenth century, sourced from Peru’s Sacred Valley of the Incas. They’re about five times the size of standard corn kernels (making them perfectly bite-size), and they’re fried in palm oil before being salted, bagged, and shipped to TJ’s HQ.
Sure, they’re not exactly healthy, but few of the best snacks are (and it’s drinking food, after all). One thing they are, though, is inexpensive: An eight-ounce bag sells for just $1.79.