Why Trader Joe’s Is Rationing Cauliflower Rice

July 13, 2017

Shopping at Trader Joe’s can be a hectic experience no matter when you go—and sometimes the checkout line is so long that you might as well just start on line and do your shopping as it goes (been there, done that).

But recently, demand for one TJ’s product in particular—cauliflower rice—has gotten so high, the store has had to start rationing. Trader Joe’s Riced Cauliflower has been a popular buy since its inception, and according to the store’s own 8th Annual Customer Choice Awards, was both the the fourth favorite item in the fresh produce category and the third favorite frozen product.

People love this stuff—so much, in fact, that some Trader Joe’s locations have had to start limiting customers to two bags of cauliflower rice per day. So far, the rationing only applies to select stores in South Orange, New Jersey, and Fairfield, Connecticut. If you’re in Jersey, that limit will be enforced, a South Orange rep confirmed to Well+Good. However, if you’re in Connecticut, you’ll be pleased to know that the store does not plan to enforce the cap.

Shop the Story

On the other hand, if reading about this cauliflower rice panic has only made you think about how easy it probably is to make cauliflower rice—well, you’re absolutely right. After all, it’s only one ingredient, and there’s bound to be a food processor, blender, or cheese grater somewhere in your cabinets.

Happy ricing to all of you that decide to take this matter into your own hands, and may I suggest this wonderfully summery Mediterranean Cauliflower Rice with Smoky Red Pepper Sauce?

Order now

The Food52 Vegan Cookbook is here! With this book from Gena Hamshaw, anyone can learn how to eat more plants (and along the way, how to cook with and love cashew cheese, tofu, and nutritional yeast).

Order now

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • ajmath
  • AJ
  • SDMfoodie
  • Amy Zorn
    Amy Zorn
  • Carol Chalmers Walsh
    Carol Chalmers Walsh
Karen Lo

Written by: Karen Lo

lunch lady


ajmath August 25, 2017
I am one of those totally obsessed with cauliflower rice - I add it to everything, or have it plain with a little parmesan cheese. It's awesome, but I do make it myself sometimes (use a cheese grater) if I'm too lazy to go to the store. All local stores sell it and it's never out of stock!
AJ August 24, 2017
What about just buying a cauliflower, cutting it into florets, steaming it or baking it with a few spices sprinkled on top and then chopping it in the food processor or with a good old fashioned knife? It's easy to overlook the obvious ;)
SDMfoodie July 18, 2017
I'm sorry but can someone tell me what is the big deal about this product? Does it pack powerful nutrients? Does it taste amazing? Cauliflower tends to be really bland, how is this any different?
Amy Z. July 16, 2017
Just for the record, there is no Trader Joe's in South Orange, NJ. The one the author may be thinking of is in Millburn, NJ
Carol C. July 16, 2017
Mine has flour and some other stuff. That's kind of weird.
Ttrockwood July 16, 2017
Trader joe's frozen cauliflower rice ingredients: cauliflower, salt.
Trader joe Fresh cauliflower rice ingredient: cauliflower.
I think you bought a different product.
Janet July 16, 2017
Costco sells riced cauliflower in 2lb bags and there never seems to be a shortage. Great price, too! I know everyone doesn't live near a Costco but it's an option for those who do.
HalfPint July 17, 2017
My local Costcos (in SF Bay Area in Cali) doesn't seem to carry riced cauliflower. Maybe I'm not looking in the right section? Fresh or frozen?
Carol C. July 16, 2017
Trader Joe's cauliflower rice is NOT just one ingredient. Maybe you never bought it or looked at the product.
Jenn July 16, 2017
Sorry, Carol. Have a bag in my refrigerator I just bought yesterday. Only ingredient is cauliflower.
Matt July 17, 2017
Here's the link to the product website.

It even says it only contains one ingredient.
witloof July 13, 2017
If you have a mandoline making cauliflower rice is a total snap.