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Trader Joe's Coconut Milk bad choice?

by (974)
Updated about 13 hours ago
Created March 17, 2011 at 8:05 PM

Why is TJs brand of cocnut milk bad? I know it is a light version --is that the reason why it is not liked? TJs brand is the only one I can find in my area that is 1) cheap $99/can 2) does not have any additives at all. All the brands FULL fat organic/reg contain that stupid guar gum. I did order some Aroy-D once but it cost way to much to ship --wont do that again.

Medium avatar
598 · June 06, 2014 at 6:07 PM

I want to know the answer!

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173
8140 · April 05, 2014 at 6:56 AM

I agree. I was buying WF for a while and then suddenly the taste changed and it clumped together too hard to pour out if the can. It looks like paint!

I've never liked TJ's brand--same off flavor and hard clump in the can. When I can't make my own I've been buying expensive organic stuff, it at least pours out of the can.

86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25
2302 · April 04, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Any response??

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194
11557 · April 21, 2012 at 12:48 AM

Careful on the BPA, I was buying a brand from a Chinese market in the area that the salegirl swore up and down didn't have BPA in it, got home, hit google, BPA. I mean, I guess I should have seen that coming, I was just surprised at how hard she defended it.

E7adfe31507efb7c935f618a829f56d6
1492 · March 05, 2012 at 9:39 PM

Any word yet Drew? This appears to be the most direct answer to the question posed.

0fb8b3d6dcfb279b0f7e050d2d22510f
4625 · February 19, 2012 at 2:41 AM

I stand by this comment. TJ rountinely rates at the bottom for quality and mislabeling of organic products. I really don't know why people go to this mini-mart at all. They are cheating you.

0fb8b3d6dcfb279b0f7e050d2d22510f
4625 · December 30, 2011 at 10:28 PM

Trader joes is an over-rated store- Mine is totally afraid of fat and seems to lean toward an all veggie experience- go ahead minus me again.

Ba20b502cf02b5513ea8c4bb2740d8cb
1659 · November 15, 2011 at 7:07 AM

well at least they mark everything that's gluten free with that "G" think on the label...helps me out a little bit.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64
777 · September 29, 2011 at 5:47 PM

yeah. guar gum gives me some major gi issues whereas the tj's brand doesn't. i'm on a quest to find full fat coconut milk locally with no other ingredients besides coconut milk.

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5
18417 · September 29, 2011 at 4:48 PM

+1 for "haul my ass" GB.

9bca3c7a5a8a78433ce4a398b668aa4b
287 · September 07, 2011 at 2:40 PM

Let's Do Organic creamed coconut isnt sweetened and it tastes great!!

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461
12174 · March 18, 2011 at 7:18 PM

Ugh, I hate it when that happens!!

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930
5232 · March 18, 2011 at 4:06 PM

It's not a good deal if it has half the calories and is half the price.

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930
5232 · March 18, 2011 at 4:05 PM

It's not a good deal if it was half the calories and is half the price.

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566 · March 18, 2011 at 3:27 PM

Speaking for myself, guar gum makes the coconut milk taste funny. Further, I'm quite happy with Let's Do Organic Creamed Coconut for cooking and hot beverages and TJ's lite for cold beverages. The price is right for me and they're just coconut. Why eat an additive if I don't need to?

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386 · March 18, 2011 at 5:04 AM

What's the argument against guar gum, KL? That it is an additive?

A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208
13983 · March 18, 2011 at 3:24 AM

I bought a creamed coconut recently and didn't look at the ingredients. I got home and realized it was sweetened! ACK!

A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208
13983 · March 18, 2011 at 3:23 AM

NYC = $2.00/can or more. Unless I can haul my ass to TJ's.

6a4fd73b4ae4761eefec8e0d38e6f224
1008 · March 17, 2011 at 9:20 PM

Yeah - in D.C., it's at least $1.50. And living by myself, I can't get through more than 2/3 of each can before it goes bad in the fridge. Perhaps I should be eating it more...

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4620 · March 17, 2011 at 8:58 PM

And here I was thinking $2.39/can was a decent price. :(

9055f14c31610afd4d3068ec48eb6d90
974 · March 17, 2011 at 8:37 PM

LOL @WyldKard you must not live in California--everything is CRAZY expensive here --but it is sunny

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841
1906 · March 17, 2011 at 8:34 PM

$99/can doesn't sound cheap. ;)

9055f14c31610afd4d3068ec48eb6d90
974 · March 17, 2011 at 8:23 PM

But it has guar gum

5edbf85deaf83e13b176df023abb154d
1293 · March 17, 2011 at 8:13 PM

Yep. That is what we get.

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16 Answers

Dbed6210bb3622f78baa91e5f667d2c0
4
75 · November 10, 2011 at 5:16 PM

The danger with TJ's isn't guar gum (it doesn't have that), it's a BPA-lined can. Chris Kresser blogged on this topic here: http://chriskresser.com/3-reasons-why-coconut-milk-may-not-be-your-friend

I have an outstanding question to TJ's customer service as to whether they use BPA-lined cans. When I get the answer I'll post it.

E7adfe31507efb7c935f618a829f56d6
1492 · March 05, 2012 at 9:39 PM

Any word yet Drew? This appears to be the most direct answer to the question posed.

Medium avatar
598 · June 06, 2014 at 6:07 PM

I want to know the answer!

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461
3
12174 · March 17, 2011 at 11:57 PM

I've gotten coconut milk shipped straight to my door by the case from Amazon - and got an additional discount and free no minimum shipping by doing it with Subscribe and Save. (As always, I cancelled the subscription after the initial order - pain-free.)

In any case you can usually get both nutrition information / ingredients and customer reviews for most Amazon grocery products, so try some sniffing around there for your coconut milk search as well!

P.S. Don't buy "lite" - only full fat, which is around 700 calories/can. Think of it this way with lite coconut milks: they're cheating you out of your due fat content. ;)

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930
5232 · March 18, 2011 at 4:06 PM

It's not a good deal if it has half the calories and is half the price.

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930
5232 · March 18, 2011 at 4:05 PM

It's not a good deal if it was half the calories and is half the price.

072fd69647b0e765bb4b11532569f16d
2
3717 · March 18, 2011 at 2:43 AM

I'm not sure I've seen an answer to KL's question yet. It's not "what are other alternatives"? It is "is there anything wrong with a no additive "lite" coconut milk"? I'm not the expert on this subject. I get the full-fat stuff, including the guar gum. I've read in several places not to be concerned about guar gum (I believe Robb Wolf makes the statement on occasion). That said, I have not committed to memory why it is okay. On the other hand, if you like the lighter version, it seems like it is coconut milk plus water. Probably why it's cheaper? I say go for it if you like it and it's working for you.

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566 · March 17, 2011 at 8:41 PM

I use the TJ's stuff for cold beverages: it's just coconut milk watered down a bit (no pesky additives!). For cooking, I use creamed coconut that's also just coconut (made by Let's Do Organic).

A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208
13983 · March 18, 2011 at 3:24 AM

I bought a creamed coconut recently and didn't look at the ingredients. I got home and realized it was sweetened! ACK!

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461
12174 · March 18, 2011 at 7:18 PM

Ugh, I hate it when that happens!!

9bca3c7a5a8a78433ce4a398b668aa4b
287 · September 07, 2011 at 2:40 PM

Let's Do Organic creamed coconut isnt sweetened and it tastes great!!

1cefdf65925731a14abb2eadea0aa86d
1
30 · March 18, 2011 at 12:48 AM

I found this website for purchasing raw coconut and a short video on how to "make your own" coconut milk; which includes all of the natural fats and make as much or as little as you like :)

http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/organic_dried_coconut.htm

07c86972a3bea0b0dc17752e9d2f5642
1
3162 · March 17, 2011 at 11:53 PM

I get Trader Joe's coconut milk. It works well enough for me, but I'm not concerned about fat. If you're trying to eat more fat, you'd probably want the non-light stuff.

Fc591774994e91756fb19fcb653dc5a8
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0 · June 05, 2014 at 7:44 PM

TRADER JOES LIGHT COCUNUT MILK

BPA FREE CAN

SWEETENER FREE

THICKNER FREE

REF..MIRA C.N , AND JASON CALTON ,PHD RICH FOOD POOR FOOD BOOK

C270b7476efb0908a0ab31649486c40c
0
0 · September 19, 2012 at 12:39 PM

The coconut milk in the paper cartons does not have BPA, at trader joes or anywhere.

9e1b82be740ab370657ad375f971c521
0
0 · April 24, 2012 at 3:48 AM

I am shocked and can not believe my experience with a store I once considered to carry high quality items. I purchased Trade Joe's Orginal Coconut Milk and noticed that it was watery. Looking at the ingredients, the second ingredient is water. You are watering down this product and I find this unconscionable. It is deceptive to call it coconut milk, instead you should you call it coconut WATER. I am very displeased. I usually buy coconut milk at the grocery store and will once again makes my purchases there. I no longer feel I can trust Trader Joe's.

27e79ef3308bb5f2d7bd04ee7eea7b79
0
2028 · November 15, 2011 at 10:02 AM

I hope this is the best place for my question - I'm sorry if I'm hijacking this thread.

Has anyone else noticed that Whole Foods' full-fat coconut milk now seems as if it has been watered down too? I live in Washington, DC and for several weeks, perhaps close to two months, last May and June, there was none on the shelves - they had completely sold out. When it finally appeared on the shelves again, it was much thinner and did not clump in the can as it used to. It also tastes more like... Trader Joe's coconut milk now! I compared WF's full-fat coconut milk to Thai Kitchen full-fat milk and there's a significant difference.

It's too bad. The Whhole Foods brand had the best price I could find for full-fat coconut milk that didn't come with anything other than guar gym added in my immediate area.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173
8140 · April 05, 2014 at 6:56 AM

I agree. I was buying WF for a while and then suddenly the taste changed and it clumped together too hard to pour out if the can. It looks like paint!

I've never liked TJ's brand--same off flavor and hard clump in the can. When I can't make my own I've been buying expensive organic stuff, it at least pours out of the can.

Ba20b502cf02b5513ea8c4bb2740d8cb
0
1659 · November 15, 2011 at 7:07 AM

Hit up your local Asian market for coconut milk; the TJs stuff is pretty anemic.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194
11557 · April 21, 2012 at 12:48 AM

Careful on the BPA, I was buying a brand from a Chinese market in the area that the salegirl swore up and down didn't have BPA in it, got home, hit google, BPA. I mean, I guess I should have seen that coming, I was just surprised at how hard she defended it.

0fb8b3d6dcfb279b0f7e050d2d22510f
0
4625 · November 11, 2011 at 4:15 AM

I'll never understand the attraction and appeal of this store. Their products are overrated and they are fat fearers and carb pushers, maybe far worse than others because of that over hyped reputation they have. Buy real food, buy local. buy buy TJ.

Ba20b502cf02b5513ea8c4bb2740d8cb
1659 · November 15, 2011 at 7:07 AM

well at least they mark everything that's gluten free with that "G" think on the label...helps me out a little bit.

0fb8b3d6dcfb279b0f7e050d2d22510f
4625 · December 30, 2011 at 10:28 PM

Trader joes is an over-rated store- Mine is totally afraid of fat and seems to lean toward an all veggie experience- go ahead minus me again.

0fb8b3d6dcfb279b0f7e050d2d22510f
4625 · February 19, 2012 at 2:41 AM

I stand by this comment. TJ rountinely rates at the bottom for quality and mislabeling of organic products. I really don't know why people go to this mini-mart at all. They are cheating you.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094
0
78422 · September 29, 2011 at 3:07 PM

I get my coconut milk from walmart in the asian food section.

Golden Star Coconut Milk. Ingredients: Coconut Milk, Water

It's awesome! $1.39 a can.

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455 · September 29, 2011 at 9:27 AM

I love TJ's, but trader joes coconut milk tastes absolutely terrible. imagine that artificial coconut extract crap they use for flavoring coconut cakes, etc. Tastes like they dumped a whole bottle of it into some watery liquid.

06224fadd1e2f45cf0a713b5ef29c3d3
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0 · September 07, 2011 at 1:54 PM

TJ's has begun to water down it's coconut milk even further. It doesn't taste the same. I no longer consider it a good value and am looking for something else.

6927f7289fce95ccf3f4ad1034488548
0
190 · March 17, 2011 at 8:11 PM

Whole Foods has a store brand coconut milk that's full fat and good and is cheaper than what Kroger stocks.

5edbf85deaf83e13b176df023abb154d
1293 · March 17, 2011 at 8:13 PM

Yep. That is what we get.

E7dc4f2e3998906dd3213973a3c10d50
386 · March 18, 2011 at 5:04 AM

What's the argument against guar gum, KL? That it is an additive?

9055f14c31610afd4d3068ec48eb6d90
974 · March 17, 2011 at 8:23 PM

But it has guar gum

B4313b18cc03036a6147543d7b0872d6
566 · March 18, 2011 at 3:27 PM

Speaking for myself, guar gum makes the coconut milk taste funny. Further, I'm quite happy with Let's Do Organic Creamed Coconut for cooking and hot beverages and TJ's lite for cold beverages. The price is right for me and they're just coconut. Why eat an additive if I don't need to?

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64
777 · September 29, 2011 at 5:47 PM

yeah. guar gum gives me some major gi issues whereas the tj's brand doesn't. i'm on a quest to find full fat coconut milk locally with no other ingredients besides coconut milk.

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