The Battle of The Dumplings

It's the battle of the dumplings! A fight to the death! < okay, that was a little over-kill, but I can't help but imagine little dumplings with eyeballs, armed with swords dueling it out.

Last month I went ahead and did a product review on Trader Joe's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers (which is actually very tasty), this gave me the idea to put Trader Joe's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers to the ultimate test: how does TJ's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers do against an Asian brand of frozen potstickers.  So here it is, the battle of the dumplings: TJ's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers VS CJ Vegetable & Meat Dumplings. CJ's, by the way, is a Korean brand for those of you who are unaware.

Nutritional Value of: Trader Joe's Chicken Gyoza Dumplings / CJ Veg & Meat Dumpling
TJ's (left) / CJ's (right)

Let's begin with the nutrition comparisons of the two brands, this is a comparison of the calories, calories from fat, saturated fat, sodium, total carbohydrate and sugars from total carbohydrates with the serving size in mind. Trader Joe's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers nutritional facts is based upon a larger serving size (TJ's serving size 7 potstickers while CJ's serving size is 5 pieces), while even having a higher serving size Trader Joe's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers still has less calories, way less calories from fat and way less total fat. However cholesterol is higher with TJ's and also is way higher in the amount of sodium used. So there is a balancing act that needs to be done here when deciding whether or not to go for TJ's or CJ's based upon nutritional facts, one must consider one's own priorities regarding health: more fat and calories for less sodium and cholesterol? Or vice-versa.

Trader Joe's
Chicken Gyoza Potstickers

The Chicken Gyoza Potstickers by and from Trader Joe's are easy to make and delicious. The meat is sweet, flavorful and juicy while the dumpling skins have the perfect texture and thickness. These potstickers can be added to soups, fried and steamed, but fried seems to be the best way to cook them and eat them (I have tried all three ways and found that these dumplings can't hold very well in broth and just don't taste as good steamed).

CJ  (Korean brand)
Vegetable & Meat Dumpling

The Korean brand, CJ's Vegetable & meat dumplings which I was able to buy at my local Korean Market blew me away. The flavor reminded me of true Korean dumplings, the glass noodles, meat and spices just reminded me the tastes of authentic Asian dumplings.


THE WINNER: CJ's Vegetable & Meat Dumplings

The cooking directions for CJ's Vegetable & Meat dumplings are exactly the same as the cooking directions for TJ's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers: Oil the pan, brown the dumplings, add a little bit of water to the pan, cover the pan with a lid and allow the dumplings to steam for a few minutes - pretty simple.

The first thing I noticed when cooking CJ's dumplings was that a couple of the dumpling skins were falling apart (which I totally hate), I was already beginning to make up my mind that TJ's Chicken Gyoza Potstickers was the dumpling for me. However, when I took a bite into the first CJ's dumplings a rush of nostalgia ran over me from head-to-toe, I was a bit hesitant to simply be overtaken so easily but there was no doubt about it, when it comes to dumplings CJ's totally wins. The flavor of CJ's dumplings are truer to that of the real thing, perhaps it is the glass noodles and/or asian spices that are used, whatever it is it brought me closer to home than TJ's dumplings was able to, and that was the real test.

*Extra side note
Even though I really dislike that the dumpling skins on a couple of the CJ's dumplings didn't hold very well during cooking time I have to admit that the crunch created on the CJ's dumplings opposed to TJ's dumplings were better, this may be due to the thicker skins on the CJ's dumplings.



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