Trader Joe's
Kristi Blokhim/

Taste Test: 10 Trader Joe’s Frozen Appetizers, Ranked

Are these convenient, bite-sized snacks up to snuff?

Every host knows that frozen appetizers are a godsend. After sending out invitations, cleaning your home, decorating your home, and making sure that your main course, dessert, and drink selections are on point, the easiest way to save precious time is to head to the grocery store and pick up some pre-made handheld bites for your cocktail hour. Who has time to make 100 bite-sized dishes? We certainly don’t!

For the Taste Test: 10 Trader Joe’s Frozen Appetizers, Ranked Slideshow, click here.

And there’s no better one-stop shop for frozen appetizers than Trader Joe’s. Wander down their freezer aisles and it’s a smorgasbord of internationally-inspired handheld foods. From gyoza to samosas to mini-pizzas to mini-tacos, if you want to serve it, Trader Joe’s has it on hand for you to pop in the oven or microwave and serve to your family and friends. No work required!

But are these frozen apps up to snuff? To see whether or not these foods are worth serving, we went to a Trader Joe’s in Brooklyn and picked up 10 boxes of frozen appetizers. There was no particular theme to the items chosen, though we did pick boxes that had at least 10 pieces in them, so you could easily serve an average-sized dinner party. We were also sure to pick up a few vegetarian items, in order to accommodate guests with that particular need.

Then, after cooking up the appetizers in a toaster oven and microwave, we had a mini cocktail party in our office with 10 attendees. They ranked each appetizer on a scale of 1–10 on three metrics: taste, presentation, and “eat-ability” — i.e., how well each item can be held in your hand and eaten without making a mess in the middle of a party. The rankings were then tallied up and each appetizer was ranked on a score out of 30 total.

Some appetizers were positively delicious and have made it on the menu for our future dinner parties — and a few were quite disappointing. In essence, not everything looks like it does in the picture once you pull it out of the box, so beware! So, how did these 10 appetizers rank? Click here to find out.