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Don't Wait Until Thanksgiving Day To Buy Your Trader Joe's Snacks, OK?

Make your grocery list and check it twice, because Trader Joe's Thanksgiving Day hours are not exactly great for shopping.

It happens to the best hosts and hostesses: you forgot to pick up something for dessert, or that one weird ingredient you don’t keep on-hand all year. (Everyone has a dusty, expired can of pumpkin somewhere.) So it’s important to know: Will Trader Joe’s be open on Thanksgiving 2020? Dear reader, it’s time to break the unfortunate news.

The Trader Joe’s website states very clearly that, no, their stores will not be open for last-minute ingredient needs or snack-happy families craving some pumpkin-flavored goodies after a big meal. All Trader Joe’s stores will be closed on Thursday, November 26, just as they have been in years past. So, be sure to pick up those cranberry and camembert pastry bites, charcuterie board must-haves, and centerpiece florals ahead of time.

That said, Trader Joe’s is going to be open on Black Friday for customers to stock up on Christmas snacks and specialty foods. Catch me munching on toffee and milk chocolate covered crackers shortly after they open. To check the hours for your local TJ’s store, visit their locations page.

And don’t forget that, since September, Trader Joe’s has been reserving its first hour open each day for seniors aged 60 and older and customers with disabilities who may need extras assistance while shopping. These parameters are part of the store’s COVID-19 precautions to keep employees and shoppers safe during the pandemic.

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If you’ll be at Trader Joe’s ahead of your Thanksgiving meal, don’t miss out on your last chance of the year to pick up some of their most loved Turkey Day foods. TJ’s is also one of the more helpful places to shop if you or someone you’re cooking for has some dietary restrictions. They have a vegetarian “turkey” entrée with great reviews, ready-to-eat turkey gravy, gluten-free cornbread mix, and more.

If you’re in need of emergency ingredients to make your famous mashed potatoes or beloved apple pie, don’t be afraid to Google some easy substitutions. Lots of baked goods can still come together easily without eggs or without flour. The Food Network has a great list of substitutions — with measurements — you probably already have at home should you realize a little too late that you're out of a crucial ingredient. (Also, who know bourbon or rum could double as vanilla extract?!)

The internet is also an absolute library of recipes to make copycat versions of your favorite Trader Joe’s items, so if you find yourself craving maple walnut blondies or peppermint Joe-Joes, make them with your family. You’ll have way more fun trying your hand at outdoing old TJ’s and satisfying your sweet tooth.