As summer gives way to fall, many smells begin to fill the air. Some are geographically dependent. For instance, if you live in colder climates, you might smell fresh fallen leaves or wood smoke rising from chimneys and backyard bonfires. Some, though, are a bit more ubiquitous, such as the heady aromas of fall cooking. That might mean roasted poultry – turkey, you’re up — or nutty baked acorn squash. But for many, the predominant scent signals that fall is upon us are the warm notes of traditional baking spices.
As Taste of Home notes, many spices fall into this category, but the main ones are clove, allspice, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, star anise, and cinnamon. Quite possibly, the best-known use for these spices in concert is in pumpkin pie spice blends, AKA pumpkin spice. As the name implies, it is used to flavor the eponymous pie … and lattes, gelato, cookies, crackers, candy bars, cereal, and more.
Of course, many non-pumpkin recipes call for these spices independently or in other combinations, such as gingerbread and cinnamon rolls/buns. But if baking isn’t quite your speed, Trader Joe’s offers a fan-favorite product that mimics fresh baked goods: Cinnamon Bun Spread (via Sweet on Trader Joe’s.) In fact, the product has proved so popular it inspired a spin-off snack that just hit the store shelves.
A sweet and spiced popcorn
Cinnamon Bun Inspired Kettle Popcorn made its debut recently and was featured on the Instagram feed of Trader Joe’s List. With a nod to the warm and sweet spread, the kettle corn “effortlessly evokes the satisfying sensations of a gloriously gooey cinnamon bun.” Commenters on the post said they “can’t wait to try” and that they “audibly gasped” upon seeing the product.
Trader Joe’s is famous for its seasonal items that roll out year-round. But fall, with its return to cold weather and plentiful holidays, tends to inspire a plethora of sweet and rich items. We recently reviewed 22 of this year’s fall items, from the bad — Pumpkin Spice Creamy Cashew Cultured Yogurt Alternative — to the mediocre — Autumnal Harvest Creamy Pasta Sauce — to the outstanding — Apple Cider Donuts. While the Cinnamon Bun Kettle Popcorn didn’t make it on our list as it wasn’t available as of press time, its progenitor — the Cinnamon Bun Spread — scored well, coming in at number five.
It’s worth noting that the spread and popcorn are not the only homages to cinnamon rolls that Trader Joe’s has on deck for the fall. Another popular twist is the Cinnamon Roll Blondie Bar Mix, of which The Daily Waffle recently baked a batch. They gave it high marks but did note that it might be nice with the addition of chopped nuts or by replacing the included glaze with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.