If you’ve never had traditional, homemade spanakopita, your life is not yet complete. Take it from me: I’m Greek and spanakopita is my favorite food! There’s literally no one else better to trust when it comes to finding out all about the spanakopita sold at Trader Joe’s. Let’s dive in!
First off, if you don’t know what spanakopita is, you’re probably not alone.
Spanakopita is a traditional Greek pastry, usually filled with a combination of spinach, ricotta cheese, and spices. The word “spanakopita” literally means “spinach pastry” in Greek. Wrapped in flaky, buttery filo dough, spanakopita is an undeniably delicious treat that everyone needs to try at least once.
And yes! Trader Joe’s carries spanakopita. In fact, they carry two different varieties. One comes in a pie shape while the other comes in a box of traditionally shaped pastry triangles.
According to TJ’s website, their “authentic Greek” spanakopita pie recipe was devised by a team of brothers from Athens, Greece.
What Kind Of Spanakopita Does Trader Joe’s Sell?
As of June 2022, Trader Joe’s sells two different varieties of spanakopita: Trader Joe’s Greek Spanakopita Authentic Spinach & Cheese Pie and Trader Joe’s Spanakopita filled with Spinach, Ricotta & Feta Cheese
Interestingly, even though the pie-shaped spanakopita is marketed as the “authentic Greek” variety, the individual triangular pastries are the traditional way of preparing and serving spanakopita.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find either of TJ’s Spanakopita offerings at my local store, and their website also says that their Greek Spanakopita is currently unavailable. So, it seems like supplies must be limited at the moment. But so far, it seems to be a stock shortage issue rather than anything being discontinued.
How Much Is Spanakopita At Trader Joe’s?
Both the Greek Spanakopita Authentic Spinach & Cheese Pie and the Spanakopita filled with Spinach, Ricotta & Feta Cheese triangles are typically priced at $3.99.
However, TJ’s website lists “not available” where it usually lists the price for these items. So, it’s possible the prices for these items could go up when supplies return.
What’s In Trader Joe’s Spanakopita?
The ingredients in Trader Joe’s Greek Spanakopita Authentic Spinach & Cheese Pie include:
Filo pastry (unbleached wheat flour, filtered water, cornstarch, salt, deactivated yeast), spinach leaves, sunflower oil, onion, feta cheese (sheep’s milk, goat’s milk, animal rennet, calcium chloride, salt, lactic starter culture), mizithra cheese (whey, milkfat, salt), hard cheese (milk, salt, microbial rennet, lactic starter culture), leek, olive oil, dill, parsley, salt, and pepper
The ingredients for the Spanakopita triangles with spinach, ricotta and feta include:
Filo dough – enriched unbleached wheat flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), water, cornstarch, soybean oil, starch (cornstarch, tricalcium phosphate), sea salt, white distilled vinegar
Filling – spinach, feta cheese (pasteurized cow’s milk, skim milk, salt, enzymes, vegetable coagulant), onions, ricotta cheese (fresh whey, milk, salt, vinegar), cream cheese (pasteurized cultured milk and cream, salt, xanthan gum, carob bean gum and/or guar gum), soybean oil, sea salt, dehydrated dill, and black pepper
It’s worth noting that while the shape of the spanakopita triangles is certainly more traditional, the recipe for the “authentic” Greek Spanakopita does indeed stick closer to a traditional recipe.
Trader Joe’s Spanakopita Nutrition
Here, we will compare the nutrition facts between the two types of spanakopita available at Trader Joe’s.
|Greek Spanakopita Authentic Spinach & Cheese Pie||Spanakopita filled with Spinach, Ricotta & Feta Cheese|
|Serving Size||1/6th pie||3 triangles|
|Carbohydrates||15 g||16 g|
|Sodium||300 mg||390 mg|
|Fat||12 g||9 g|
|Cholesterol||10 mg||20 mg|
|Protein||5 g||5 g|
|Fiber||1 g||1 g|
|Iron||6% DV||6% DV|
|Calcium||8% DV||10% DV|
As you can see here, the nutritional value between the two varieties is pretty similar. The triangles have slightly fewer calories per serving, but have more sodium and cholesterol. Whereas the spanakopita pie has a little more fat.
How To Make Trader Joe’s Spanakopita?
The first thing to know when deciding how to prepare your frozen spanakopita from Trader Joe’s is that microwaves are the downfall of any good spanakopita.
While it might be the quickest and most convenient way to heat up food, microwaves tend to make things soggy and chewy, especially when there is dough (and in this case, super thin pastry dough) involved.
My advice as a Greek who grew up eating traditional, homemade spanakopita? Use the oven! Even a toaster oven will work just fine.
For the Spanakopita filled with Spinach, Ricotta & Feta Cheese, follow these steps to prepare:
For the Greek Spanakopita Authentic Spinach & Cheese pie, follow these steps:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F
- Remove your spanakopita from the freezer (do not thaw first)
- Remove from box and plastic packaging, but leave pie in white paper tray
- When oven is heated, place your spanakopita on the center rack and bake for 35-40 minutes
- Let cool slightly, then serve
Is Trader Joe’s Spanakopita Good?
To answer this question, I checked in on some real customer reviews since I wasn’t able to find this product myself in stores.
Trader Joe’s Greek Spanakopita Authentic Spinach & Cheese Pie has gotten some extremely mixed reviews on traderjoesreviews.com, ranging from 1 star to 5 stars.
Overall, TJ’s other spanakopita offering seems to be getting more consistently favorable reviews.
Freezer Meal Frenzy calls these pastry triangles “delicious.”
Is Trader Joe’s spanakopita vegetarian?
Yes. There is no meat in either of Trader Joe’s Spanakopita varieties.
Is Trader Joe’s spanakopita kosher?
Trader Joe’s Spanakopita is certified kosher by Rabbi Yisroel Kelemer.
Is Trader Joe’s spanakopita healthy for weight loss?
Probably not. Spanakopita contains a significant amount of fat, cholesterol, sodium, and carbohydrates.
What is Trader Joe’s spanakopita’s expiration date?
When you purchase your spanakopita at Trader Joe’s, the box will be marked with a unique expiration date based on when it was made. Until you are ready to prepare your spanakopita, it should be stored in the freezer to retain freshness. Once your spanakopita has been cooked, it should be stored in the refrigerator and eaten within 5-7 days.
Overall, don’t expect too much when venturing into the world of Trader Joe’s Spanakopita. It’s just not going to be as good as the real thing. But if you’re trying to choose between the two varieties, try going for the pastry triangles over the pie-shaped offering, despite the “authentic Greek” marketing.