Trader Joe’s Potato Pancake Latkes Review

Trader Joe's Potato Pancake Latke
Trader Joe’s Potato Pancake Latke

Trader Joe’s Traditional Potato Pancake Latkes – because why bother grating potatoes and crying over chopped onions when you can experience the Hanukkah spirit straight out of the freezer aisle? In a culture of convenience where culinary skills are rarer than a Powerball win, these latkes embody the alluring notion of homemade taste without the pesky effort that comes with it. Yes, purists may balk at the entire concept of store-bought latkes, but when you lack the very culinary expertise required to, say, boil water, rest assured Trader Joe’s is here to save your dinner party credibility with stacks upon stacks of these neatly packaged, uniformly shaped, suspiciously perfect potato pancakes. Just slip them into the air fryer and bam! – you’re basically a gourmet chef, right?

What are Potato Latkes?

Potato latkes are a traditional Jewish dish, particularly popular during the Hanukkah festival. They are shallow-fried pancakes of grated or ground potato, flour and egg, often flavored with grated onion, and often eaten as a side dish, with sour cream or applesauce. Raw potatoes (often peeled) are first grated, then mixed with the (already) grated or chopped onion, beaten eggs and flour or matzo meal with the usual addition of salt and pepper and possibly garlic.

This mixture is shaped into small, flat cakes. After that, they’re ready to be fried in a pan with oil, which turns them into golden brown, crispy cakes with a soft, tender interior. The oil had significance in Jewish tradition, paying homage to the oil that miraculously burned for eight days in the Hanukkah story. Today, though, latkes are served up hot, usually with applesauce or sour cream on the side. They present a mix of a juicy, moist inside and a starchy, crispy exterior, and the taste is a wonderful comfort meal that gives you the best of both worlds between the earthy potatoes and onions. Latkes represent a food that’s not only become a linchpin in the larger framework of Jewish cuisine, but one that’s garnered a worldwide fandom, as well, thanks to being a tasty, rib-sticking comfort food.

How to Prepare Trader Joe’s Potato Pancake Latkes

Trader Joe’s offers three methods to prepare the potato pancakes/Latkes and if I was making them from scratch, I would use the pan frying method but these are already fried and have a fair amount of oil in them so I didn’t want to add more oil. If you have an Air Fryer, I would 100% go with that method of making them, unless you are preparing multiple boxes of them for a large event, then use the oven.


CONVENTIONAL OVEN: Preheat oven to 400°F. Place frozen potato pancakes on a baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes, flip, and bake for an additional 8-10 minutes, or until cooked through. Carefully remove from oven and serve.

PAN FRY: Preheat pan over medium heat. Add enough oil to lightly coat bottom of pan. Add frozen potato pancakes to pan and cook 4-6 minutes on first side. Flip and cook 4-6 additional minutes on second side or until cooked through. Remove from heat and serve.

AIR FRYER: Place desired number of frozen potato pancakes in a single layer into the air fryer. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes at 390°F or until cooked through. Carefully remove and serve.

Trader Joe’s suggests that you serve with sour cream or apple sauce. I personally like Crème fraîche. But put whatever you want on them. Hot sauce. Teriyaki sauce. Curry! Ketchup. go wild! Remember these are nothing more than a sophisticated hash brown.

Trader Joe's Potato Pancake Latke still frozen
Trader Joe’s Potato Pancake Latke still frozen

How Do Trader Joe’s Latkes Taste?

After several minutes in the air fryer, I pulled them out and they were sizzling hot and the edges had gotten all crispy. Nothing to complain about here.

I put them on a plate and put a big spoonful of sour cream on them. I will admit that I have not had many Latkes from scratch but when I do, I love them. They should be crispy on the edges and browned all over and soft and pillowy in the middle and the Trader Joe’s potato pancakes did not disappoint! The edges were crispy and soft on the inside with a subtle taste of onions.

I really like these and they make a great addition to whatever you are having for breakfast.

I don’t know how you can go wrong here with these Trader Joe’s potato pancakes (aka Latkes). You would be hard pressed to make this good from scratch. I am going to give them 9 out of 10!

Trader Joe's Potato Pancake Latkes cooked
Trader Joe’s Potato Pancake Latkes cooked




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