Review of Trader Joe’s Cod Provencale Frozen Entree

If it were a little closer and a little less crazy inside, we would probably do more family shopping at Trader Joe’s. My wife made the trip the other day just to get some variety in the house and brought home a bunch of frozen entrees, including a seafood offering for me.

Trader Joe’s Cod Provencale looks to be a small, but potentially tasty frozen seafood entree accompanied by rice and ratatouille, which would be the “Provencale” part. So, let’s see if Trader Joe can whisk me away to the south of France…for $3.99!

The Packaging

One of the things I don’t like about Trader Joe’s products is the lack of transparency. I can’t tell you anything about this cod because there is nothing about it on the packaging. All I can tell you is that the main ingredient is cod and it is a product of France. I assume it is Atlantic cod caught and processed in the EU, but unless labeled, there really isn’t any way for me to tell.

You would think that TJ’s would want to showcase where their fish is coming from. I would also expect the clientele I see in that store to be the type to demand to know these things. Several people I know that are concerned about where there food is sourced, seem to be OK with taking Trader Joe’s on faith.

The Product

Cod Provencale ingredients

I apologize for not having an image of the pre-cooked product, but when I ripped open the top of the package, I spilled a bunch of the rice. It was my fault for trying to rush things, the ingredients looked pretty good. The piece of cod was small, which is expected for the size and price of the entree, but looked good in its frozen state. Although, like most things I buy at Trader Joe’s, the portion size is a bit small for my tastes…I wish I had two.

How to Prepare Trader Joe’s Cod Provencale

Although it had microwave directions, I opted for the longer conventional oven version. Once in a blue moon I’ll reheat fish leftovers in the microwave, but I actually don\’t mind eating cold fish and I’d never be the guy who nukes fish at work. All I had to do is rip off the paper cover, tent some foil over and cook at 350F for about 40 minutes.

cod provencale cooking

As it neared the end of cooking time, I checked on the cod because I hadn’t heard any cooking sounds. I took a quick peek, and it looked like it would take more time than the package suggested. I have a feeling they wanted me to microwave this and paid less attention to the oven times…or I desperately need a new oven.

Toward the end I flipped the piece of cod to show the more attractive side of the fish. The so-called “silver side” of the fillet is the side where the skin was attached. It will not flake as well as the better-looking other side.

The Verdict: Trader Joe’s Cod Provencale

Cod Provencae with rice by trader joes

Not too bad, although it took about 50 minutes, and it needed salt. The fish by that time was flaky and had good cod flavor but would have been very underwhelming without the flavorful ratatouille. Then again, a decent lunch or light seafood dinner for $4 that isn’t a deep-fried patty is tough to beat. Plus, it was more filling than I anticipated so overall it was a great value.

As I prepared this post, I realized that a great blog that I follow had a similar opinion of Trader Joe’s Cod Provencale. Check out the review over at BecomeBetty!