Why Trader Joe’s sold-out frozen kimbap is a hit

Why Trader Joe’s sold-out frozen kimbap is a hit
Bryan Ke
September 7, 2023
Trader Joe’s frozen kimbap quickly sold out after going viral on TikTok.
Key details: A company based in Gumi, South Korea, started selling its packaged kimbap through Trader Joe’s in early August. Despite initially sending 250 tons of frozen kimbap, Trader Joe’s still found itself short on supply.
How it went viral: The Korean dish gained widespread attention after several TikTok users shared their online reviews of it.
User @ahnestkitchen, a Korean American food content creator on TikTok, garnered over 11.2 million views after she and her mother tried the store-bought kimbap last month.
The TikTok user noted in her post’s description that Trader Joe’s frozen kimbap is “not bad” and gave it a 7.8-out-of-10 rating.
Worth the wait: Trader Joe’s frozen kimbap comes in a pack of nine rolls for only $3.99, making it a popular choice for those who are looking for affordable food with little preparation. Its rise in popularity, however, has left countless people wondering when they’ll be able to get their hands on some.
A Reddit user recently shared a picture of what appears to be a computer station at Trader Joe’s purportedly showing that the estimated arrival for the next shipment of frozen kimbap will be on Oct. 25.
What’s in it: Although kimbap bears a similarity to sushi rolls, the Korean dish is often made using sesame-oiled rice, while the latter contains rice seasoned with vinegar. Kimbap traditionally includes ingredients such as carrots, pickled radish, cucumber and seafood or grilled meat. 
Trader Joe’s version appears to be vegetarian-friendly. It contains sautéed greens, crunchy root vegetables and crisp pickles along with braised tofu.

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