What I Bring Back to Germany

I can’t believe it, but we have officially lived in Germany for 6 months and one week. And in those 6 months, we have been back to the States twice, once to Maine and once to Chicago. It has sort of felt like I’ve just been studying abroad and that Germany has just been a fun trip. Except this time, my parents aren’t footing the bill.

With each day that passes, I feel more and more that I actually live in Germany. And I can say without a shadow of a doubt that there are  certain products that are definitely better in the States than in Germany. Some are silly but some are real necessities. All were purchased at Target.

Here’s what I bring back to Germany from the States:


Jif Peanut Butter. This goes without saying. This falls into the necessities category. German peanut butter is more on the natural side and no where near as delicious as Jif. I always bring back two huge bottles and our pantry is now completely stocked. You would think we are prepping for the apocalypse. I leave enough room in my suitcase just for peanut butter, especially because these suckers are heavy.

Ranch packets. Germany has “yogurt” dressing that is close to ranch and tastes like the Boathouse Farms yogurt dressing I’ve eaten in the past. But there’s nothing like the original Hidden Valley ranch. A friend made some recently from these packets, so I made sure to add them to my list of necessities to bring back. I foresee a lot of salads in my future.

Vitamins. I have yet to find a gummy vitamin in Germany that I like. These are silly and I won’t buy these every time we go back, but I really like these Olly vitamins. I hope to do some more research to find something similar here. I tried to find some in the grocery store a while ago but was afraid to buy them because I wasn’t 100% sure what I was buying. I plan to come prepared with translations next time.

Reynolds Wrap and Ziploc baggies. Since Germans are very eco-friendly, their tin foil and ziploc baggies aren’t as thick or durable. For the tin foil, the German version of the cutter sucks. It does not work. And I hate that. Since I don’t use either of these every day, I consider it worth it to buy these at home and bringing back with me.

Target Merona T-Shirts. I bought one gray v-neck t-shirt from Target before we left and it quickly became a personal favorite. When I went to Target…both times…I bought two for a total of 4 shirts. And at 2 for $16, it’s a win win. I know I can buy these shirts at Zara or H&M for about the same price, but there’s something about these Target shirts that I absolutely love. They are soft, perfect for daily wear and can be dressed up or down. I get a size up, too, that makes it perfect to wear with running shorts or boyfriend jeans with a statement necklace.

What are your Target necessities? If you live abroad, what products do you miss about home?

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