Save our Snack!

Trader Joe’s Traditional Thai Lime and Chili Peanuts: where are they now?  Not in stock!

Everyone’s favorite snack nut has gone missing. I’ve been enamored of these nuts well before Trader Joe’s came to New York. I even bookmarked this Times article describing their production and conception for a little light bedtime reading. A few weeks ago I tried to replenish my chili-lime peanut stock, and not only were there none in the store, their little shelf tag was gone, too.  So I asked one of the floral-shirted crew members about it, and she said that they had been discontinued because of lack of availability. That’s all she knew, and I left the store a little confused. Is there a peanut shortage? A problem getting lime leaves? I went to Trader Joe’s colorful but uninformative website and filled out a contact form. Here’s what I wrote:

I went to TJ’s in Manhattan last week and was told that the thai chili lime peanuts were discontinued because of ingredient availability. What does that mean, exactly? Are the nuts in short supply? Is there a problem with the importation of spices? I’m curious because I think most food brands would look to a substitute product to keep the masses snacking. Is that what the chili lime cashews are about? (They’re not as good – the powdery coating doesn’t have as much chili or lemongrass flavor, and the cashews are too buttery and mild to hold up even the lower level of spice.) I appreciate TJ’s innovative products, and these chili lime peanuts were my favorite. Most of all I need to know, are they ever coming back?

I’m going to give them a week to get back to me before I start hunting down TJ executives’ phone numbers and turn wistful longing into investigative reporting. In the meantime, I’m working on a recipe for homemade lime and chili peanuts.

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21 Comments

Filed under Pantry, Uncategorized

21 responses to “Save our Snack!

  1. Steve

    Please do let me know what you discover! I had the same sinking feeling when the thai lime and chili peanuts disappeared from the shelves of my Trader Joe’s. Hmph…

  2. Michele

    My boyfriend and I had the same unfortunate findings. If you find a good recipe please let me know. We are currently growing our own lemongrass in hopes of experimenting ourselves. Not sure about the Thai Lime leaves though !

  3. Candace

    Thanks for the info. I, too, have been searching the internet for an alternative site to buy TJ’s fantastic lime chili peanuts. When I called TJ’s corporate phone, they told me that there was “inconsistant quality” issues with the manufacturer, hence they discontinued them. Wouldn’t say if they would replace the manufacturer. When I begged for the manuf. name they told me it was “confidential information”, but I “might try similar type stores – like Whole Foods”. Haven’t gotten there yet, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed!

  4. Valerie

    Here’s what Trader Joe’s told me about the missing nuts:

    Hello Valerie,

    Thanks for contacting us. We have discontinued that product in our stores due to slow sales. Because our stores have such limited space, if an item does not meet a minimum sales volume, we will discontinue it in order to bring in something we think will sell better. I will pass your comments on to our buyers for consideration. From time to time, if there is enough outcry to bring back a discontinued item and we are able to do so, we will give it another run.

    Thanks for shopping with us,
    Nikki
    Customer Relations

    Seems like there are differing opinions as to why the nuts are missing, but according to Nikki, if we make enough noise, we might be able to bring them back.

  5. Michael

    I too was dismayed! I love this product and am willing to sign a petition to get them back. Is there some warehouse we could raid! The lime, the salt, the spices, so delicious for a snack while driving or reading!!!! Please get them back!

  6. Debbie

    Ditto all the comments above. I thought this was the greatest peanut snack I ever tried and then went to buy more and was told they are no longer in stock and will not be coming back! If anyone finds an alternative please let me know. I am a ‘TJ’ fan but the way they change products sometimes is disheartening. I understand bringing in new things to try – but why not keep the ‘oldies but goodies’? I would also sign a petition.

  7. chris

    Wow, i can’t believe this, considering the number of times i’ve gone to a TJs and found them ‘out of stock’ (before they discontinued…). And everyone i know loves them, including me who never liked or could digest snacking peanuts. I’d buy 4 bags in a single visit sometimes. Everyone i know who shops there buys these every time they go, so i cant believe it was lack of demand. as the original poster noted the product was a focus of a NYT article about how they develop products, and was held up as a signature item! so that seems dubious. the clerk in Bklyn today told me it was a supplier issue (didnt say whether quality or ingredients not being available or whatever). i too have emailed TJs, only today oct. 1, and will be interested to see the reply, given the varying responses so far. sheesh, why not remove one of their crummy items like the frozen/uncooked crabcakes? one of the only things from there i’ve every really disliked.

  8. Lisa

    I am so upset…..thank God I bought a few bags….I am so sad. I went to TJ a few days ago and found that they were replaced with lime and chili cashews….(not the same). PLEASE PLEASE bring the other ones back I am so sad!!!!

  9. sob sob

    Those peanuts are not just snacks.. It is one of the things that brought me and boy friend really close.. a funny story.. I would go any far to get it back on TJ shelves.. we miss it a lotttttt…

  10. Abby

    My friends and I have been waiting for TJ to bring back the peanuts! Ive never contacted a store over a discontinued item…but they’re irreplaceable! Has anyone found anything similar??? The cashews don’t even come close.

  11. Diana

    We love that peanut snack and our local TJ said that it did not earn its minimum volume sales, a statement that is hard to believe from the different blogs and comments I have noted. Does anyone have a receipe for the peanuts???

    • whereimcookingfrom

      Thanks to everyone who’s shared their experience with TJ’s beloved Chili Lime Peanuts. I’ve finally found a good source of raw peanuts (another thing TJ’s stopped stocking in my neighborhood), and I’m experimenting with spice blends. Will report back soon!

  12. Cari

    I am so dissappointed that my favorite spicy snack has been discontinued and no other ready made source available. Please bring it back as I am going nuts without it!

  13. Terri

    I kept checking at my local TJ’s in Indianapolis thinking they were just out. I finally asked and was told there wasn’t enough demand. They do carry Lime and Chili mixed nuts, but since I am allergic to tree nuts, those won’t work. Please keep us posted.

  14. Bob

    The only way to get them back is to have
    everybody suggest via to Trader Joe’s via their
    website to bring them back. They need to see the
    real popularity. They also took out the
    pistachios.

  15. Karl

    ARRGGHH!! I had wondered what happened to these.. I had 4 bags in my freezer and this was my secret ingredient in my home-made thai-style fried rice!!
    GRRRRR…

  16. Bill

    Count me as another fan of these great nuts. I am glad to see that others feel the same way but it doesn’t seem to have done any good. Has anyone found another source??

  17. Mairesa

    I too, am horrified to find this product no longer available. I am nuts about these nuts and going nuts over not having them around. I really don’t want to find a substitute – I want the real thing back on the shelf. I have also written to TJ and hope it makes a difference. This product is a staple in my house – I am gluten intolerant and there is only so much I can eat. I love the flavors in this product and agree with the comments that the cashews just don’t stand up to the same standard. How can they keep the cashews on the shelves and get rid of these nuts! They are nuts!

  18. Jessica

    I found fresh organic kaffir lime leaves on my grocery store shelf today. Now I am looking everywhere for a recipe for the TJ’s Thai peanuts. Any ideas?

  19. Bernard Ibarra

    I am so upset that Thai lime and chili mixed nuts are discontinued as well. I live in Redondo Beach Ca, and I went into a withdrawal when I was told that the mixed nuts were no longer on the shelf… I rushed to Rancho Palos Verdes TJ (6 miles away) and bought all the remaining mixed nuts… that was a couple of weeks ago, now it is the drought…. I contacted TJ but no response thus far. this item was so very popular… why, why?

    • Nut

      I feel the same as all other comments. Just stop going. I only showed up for this spicy treat. So many unhappy visits only to try some other high price dissapointment. Fuck em I wont go back!

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