Trader Joe’s Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls Review

Trader Joe's Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls

You never know when the craving for a spicy appetizer is going to strike, so it’s probably a good idea to keep some tucked away in your freezer at all times. Just one of your many. many options is the Trader Joe’s Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls, which we’re reviewing today — right now, in fact.

We’ve tried Trader Joe’s mochi in the past, but usually it’s served as a chilled dessert, filled with something like a coffee flavored ice cream or a fruity gel. These are instead a hot treat that comes packed with kung pao chicken. Sounds pretty interesting, right?

To heat these, you can use a toaster oven or a regular oven. We chose the latter. While we do have a toaster oven in the Freezer Meal Frenzy, we just find its bigger brother — the big oven — to be easier to use for reviewing frozen food. Our toaster oven can be a little finicky sometimes, so we don’t often use it for anything more than lightly toasting a bagel once in a while. (If you want to see the full cooking instructions, check out our package scans at the bottom of this review.)

Earlier in this article, we talked about these being “packed with kung pao chicken.” Now that we’ve cut a couple of them open, we know that packed wasn’t the right word to use. The inside of one of these mochi balls is mostly just open space, with just a trickling of filling inside.

Trader Joe's Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls

The portion size may be scant, but this filling is absolutely delicious. It’s a ground chicken that’s dripping with rice cooking wine and sprinkled with garlic and ginger. And it’s quite spicy. We had some runny noses in the office after eating these!

The shells are amazing too. These are rice-flour mochi shells, but they have a sugary sweetness that makes them irresistible. They also have a chewiness that a standard breaded shell wouldn’t have, and that means they’re really satisfying to bite into. They’re absolutely great.

Our package had eight mochi balls inside, yet the nutrition content claims three are a serving. This is awkward. It seems like they should have either made four pieces a serving, or included nine in the box. As it currently stands, there’s an uneven amount of servings per box, and we don’t really like that. Get it together, TJ!

If you stick with the recommended three pieces, you’ll be consuming 270 calories and 320 mg of sodium. If you end up eating the whole box, however, that’s 700 calories and 820 mg of sodium. We can say from experience that eating a full box in one sitting is no challenge, especially considering how little filling there actually is inside these.

The Trader Joe’s Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls may be a little stingy on filling, but they’re incredible nonetheless. The spicy-and-sweet combo is just perfect, and the flavor is intense. It’s really hard to stop eating these once you’ve started, so those eight mochi balls disappear in a flash, leaving you with a belly full of 700 calories. If you can handle that calorie count — or if you have the discipline to stop eating after just three — then we definitely recommend trying these.

To learn more about the nutrition content, ingredients, or cooking instructions for these Trader Joe’s appetizers, check out our package scans below.

Trader Joe's Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls
Trader Joe's Kung Pao Chicken Mochi Balls