Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Trader Joe’s Fair Trade Chocolate Truffles

Trader Joe's Fair Trade TrufflesTrader Joe’s always has an interesting assortment of candies and sweet goodies around the holidays. But without brand names (and previous years) to guide you, how do you know what’s good ... or even what’s inside the box? I’ll devote the rest of the week to the Trader Joe’s hostess gifts.

First up is Trader Joe’s Fair Trade Chocolate Truffles because nothing says thank you for having me in your home than not oppressing people six thousand miles away. It frees you up to drink in celebration instead of out of guilt!

This box is certified by Equi-Trade as commerce equitable! The box looks kind of like a take out container, with pretty amber and brown African designs. Inside are two layers. There are 14 truffles in five flavors (Spicy Hot Chocolate gets shorted with only two of those, three of each of the others).

Trader Joe's Fair Trade Truffles

Double Dark - these were quite nice looking. The 70% dark chocolate coating is a little on the acidic and “high note” side, but is buttery smooth and on its own has a slightly dry finish. The ganache center is melty-smooth. It’s firm when bitten in half, but melts quickly. It has similar flavors as the shell, giving the whole truffle a consistent flavor, with the only difference in the textures.

Trader Joe's Fair Trade TrufflesField Raspberry - this one was easy to pick out from the rest, the dark chocolate shell had little raspberry bumps on the top. I was kind of surprised at the pink color of the filling. It’s a light ganache, not quite white chocolate. Sweet, tangy and very much an authentic raspberry flavor. It overpowered the dark chocolate, but there were other, more chocolatey experiences in the box.

Cappuccino - has a milk chocolate shell with a little cap of white chocolate. It’s sweet and has a nice creamy milk chocolate ganache center. It’s more firm than the raspberry one. The coffee notes are a little, well, coffee-ish instead of true rounded coffee. But then again cappuccino is often as much about hot milk as it is about espresso. This has nice milky flavors in it as well.

Spicy Hot Chocolate - it’s a very pretty truffle. A glossy dark chocolate shell and a spiced dark chocolate center. However, the spices gave this more of a woodsy flavor reminiscent of cupboards and cardboard than warm chili. It was smooth, but I was glad when I got rid of these two and they stopped infecting the others with that kind-of-sour spicy note.

Creamy Milk - the milk chocolate shell has a strong dairy component reminiscent of fine Swiss chocolate. It’s a creamy smooth shell with an achingly silky ganache center. There’s not a hint of grain in here, though it is a bit sweet it never becomes sticky or cloying.

As a gift, the packaging is okay, it does communicate the fair trade aspects, which I’m guessing is one of its biggest selling points. It’s nice and compact, but not as easy to just open it up and dig in because it’s double-deckered (and the plain truffles are on the bottom, not all mixed up). The cream “label sleeve” in the center of the box slides off and then it actually looks much better (that’s where all the nutrition facts are). As far as price goes, $7 for six ounces of fair trade chocolate with all-natural ingredients is pretty freak-tacularly good. They’re not the best truffles I’ve had, but for the price (less than $20 a pound) they’re certainly an incredible value and should get you kudos when given as a gift or served to guests.

These were made in Canada. (I suspect that they’re made by Terra Nostra, seeing how there aren’t that many Equi-Trade chocolate companies in Canada.)

Related Candies

  1. Terra Nostra Pocket Bars
  2. Endangered Species: Eco-Rounds
  3. Theo Confections
  4. CocoaVino
Name: Fair Trade Chocolate Truffles
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 4 BENIGN
Brand: Trader Joe's
Place Purchased: Trader Joe's (Silverlake)
Price: $6.99
Size: 6 ounces
Calories per ounce: 157
Categories: Chocolate, Canada, Trader Joe's, Christmas, Fair Trade

POSTED BY Cybele AT 7:32 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

  1. “...nothing says thank you for having me in your home than not oppressing people six thousand miles away.”  That’s hilarious.  Its true, I know, but it made me laugh!  Man, I wish there were a Trader Joe’s closer than a 2 1/2 hour drive…

    Comment by Kimberly on 12/12/07 at 8:37 am #
  2. Cappuccino one looks good. We dont have trader joes here. So, I might have to find it online.

    Comment by Shannon on 12/12/07 at 10:39 am #
  3. my favorite of the trader joe’s holiday candies is the belgian chocolate assortment… relatively inexpensive but good quality ingredients and a lot of interesting, well-rounded flavors (other than just “chocolate” and “dark chocolate”)

    Comment by ruffy on 12/13/07 at 5:58 am #
  4. It looks like Trader Joe’s week! Those look pretty good actually, maybe I should get them!

    BUT in other news…way back when you blogged about a Turkish chocolate ball with popping candy AND the pop rocks chocolate bar, to which I commented I was searching for this Israeli chocolate bar with popping candy that is my favorite. WELL I just got some in the mail, still my favorite! smile

    I hope you are able to try it one day!

    Comment by Hillary on 12/13/07 at 7:47 am #
  5. Mmm, I’ll have to check these out.  I tried some of TJ’s chocolates and wasn’t too fond of them.  Their stuff sure is cheap though.

    Also, I saw your comment on my “fake chocolate” blurb on  I wonder why there’s such a discrepancy between your stats and CNN’s.

    Comment by Jessica "Su Good Sweets" on 12/18/07 at 7:28 pm #
  6. I got to this site looking for reviews on the Israeli Elite Chocolate bar with popping candy. I just had one and it was DELICIOUS! You MUST try it. I was looking for other candy websites that review it, but I think it is absolutely in my top 5 favorites.

    Comment by Jim on 1/31/08 at 3:24 am #
  7. My Trader Joe’s is trying to sell their leftover boxes of these, so I just snagged a few boxes for $1.99!

    Comment by Karen on 4/29/08 at 11:32 am #
  8. Thanks for writing this and promoting Fair Trade.  We write a family blog called the Five Hens and every Friday, we feature what we call our “Do Good” challenge. The challenges are something we can all do to help give back to our planet, our children, and each other. We urge all of our readers to get involved and ?Do Good?.

    This week our “Do Good” Challenge asks everyone to Think about the products you eat and purchase and support those that are grown and harvested in sustainable ways. And look for the Rainforest Alliance Certified, Fair Trade Certified, or UTZ Certified seals on your future purchases.

    Check out the full challenge on our site at

    Comment by Five Hens on 9/18/09 at 6:51 am #
  9. hello, i live in china and i am trying to possibly open a bakery.  if i do, i would prefer to only use fair trade chocolate.  is it possible to get fair trade chocolate chips, what about fair trade cocoa powder?  Also any suggestions on how to go about getting it imported?

    Comment by Victoria on 7/11/10 at 7:21 am #
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Next entry: Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels

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