Our Absolute Favorite Items from Costco That Make the Membership Worth It
It's no secret people are obsessed with shopping at Costco, and our team here at Better Homes & Gardens is no exception. The membership-based wholesale chain that first took shape in the '80s is not just for business owners, but beneficial for small and large families alike. Its house brand, Kirkland, offers a variety of affordable food and household items that have garnered quite the fan base over the years. But that's not the only brand of items that makes shopping at Costco budget-friendly. Here we've gathered a list of some of our favorite Costco items that are too good to pass up on trips to the popular retailer.
1. Sous-Vide Egg Bites
When our digital senior home editor Caitlin Sole was still working in the office, these sous-vide egg bites (the three cheese and turkey sausage variety, in particular) were an easy way to enjoy a hot meal while running tight on time. Each pack of two takes just one minute to microwave and "rivals the beloved Starbucks version," according to Sole.
2. Tillamook Sharp Cheddar Block
Digital senior food editor Sheena Chihak's favorite Costco item is in the dairy section. "Based on the amount of cheese we go through in our house you'd think about seven people live in it," she says. "Our family is actually less than half of that, but we love our cheese, especially sharp cheddar cheese, and Tillamook's sharp cheddar to be more precise." Chihak enjoys shredding it to top chili and casseroles as well as slicing it for sandwiches and snacking. "Our fridge is never without this staple."
3. Kirkland Pesto
If you love pesto but don't want to spend the time making it from scratch, this is the top Costco item for you. Pesto is a regular ingredient used by Emily VanSchmus, digital assistant editor of holidays and entertaining, and the Kirkland brand is her favorite. "Since I usually am cooking for one, Costco-size products aren't always the best option for me," she says. "But this freezes really well, so none of it goes to waste." She enjoys the pesto with Banza chickpea pasta (another Costco favorite!) or spread on baked chicken with a sprinkle of Parmesan.
4. Sabatasso's Gluten-Free Four-Cheese Pizza
Finding tasty allergy-friendly pizzas is challenging for those with gluten intolerance, and Sole's had her share of soggy cauliflower crusts. "This gluten-free frozen pizza puts most to shame," she says. "Is it anything fancy or gourmet? No, but it's easy to dress up with whatever you have on hand for a night when you're tired of cooking every single meal at home."
5. Fresh Berries
If you go through a ton of fresh produce in a week like Chihak, this Costco favorite is a huge help. "Berries are a must in all our breakfasts," she says. "Buying the large containers at Costco saves me more frequent trips throughout the week." Go ahead and buy some strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries next time you go to make a delicious berry-filled dessert.
6. Kirkland Signature Nut Bars
For a quick and easy healthy snack that is "way more cost-efficient" than other popular brands, this 30-pack of nut bars really hits the spot for Sole. Each bar has an irresistible combination of almonds, cashews, and pecans with a cocoa drizzle and hint of sea salt. Yum!
7. Rotisserie Chicken
When it comes to making quick and easy dinners, I always use purchased rotisserie chicken as a shortcut ingredient. The whole roasted chicken is already juicy and flavorful on its own, but it can be turned into delicious soups (the jalapeño popper chicken soup pictured above makes a regular appearance on my menu), hearty salads, and more.
8. Innofoods Coconut Clusters
Finding wholesome snacks is important for anyone trying to make healthy choices while munching at home. "These coconut clusters are my favorite go-to snack item from Costco," VanSchmus says. "They're crunchy and a little bit sweet without being overpowering. I like to use them in place of granola on top of plain yogurt or take a bag on car trips for a healthy snack."
9. Paneer Cheese
If I'm ordering takeout, there's a good chance I'll choose Indian food. My all-time favorite dishes in the global cuisine features paneer, a fresh cheese that makes a perfect vegetarian main dish. The Costco paneer helps me make favorites like saag paneer with ease. Or if you want a speedy dinner, simply heat it up with the Mayura tikka masala sauce also sold at Costco.
10. Kirkland Signature Medium Roast Coffee
Once warmer weather hits (or any weather, really), iced coffee is a go-to for a caffeine boost. Instead of shelling out money at the café every day, Sole stocks up on these 40-ounce inexpensive bags of coffee grounds to make cold brew since it doesn't require fancy beans. "It's simple to prep a batch on a Sunday with my OXO cold-brew coffeemaker ($34, OXO) and enjoy cold drinks all week long," she says.
11. Mini Quiches
Sometimes you're craving a slice of quiche, but don't have an hour-ish to make a piecrust, filling, and bake one. Enter Cuisine Adventures frozen mini quiches to save the day. "I'm obsessed with these mini quiches," VanSchmus says. "They're so good and I like that you can just make three or four at a time."
If you're constantly snacking on or adding nuts to your menu, Sole says it's a great value to buy nuts in bulk from Costco. For example, you can purchase a 3-pound bag of raw almonds for about $12, which could cost as much as $10 per pound on their own elsewhere.