19 Things I always Buy at Costco (and one thing I don’t)

What are the best things to buy at Costco? Here are 19 things we LOVE to buy at Costco, and one thing we never buy.

We are big Costco fans around here.

Even though Sam’s Club technically will save you a little more money, we still feel that the quality of products, and the friendliness of staff is better at Costco.

I see a lot of people saying you shouldn’t shop at these stores because they don’t always end up saving you money.

And that can be true! You have to be careful about what you put in your cart and avoid impulse buying all the full-size products of what you sample (because everything tastes so much better in the store anyways. Am I right?!)

However, I do think it can save you money if you are smart about it. So, in case you are wondering what we like to buy there, here are ten things we always buy at Costco.

1. Toilet Paper

It’s such a good price, and it isn’t all cheap-o feeling. Because, as I’ve mentioned before, toilet paper is something you don’t want to skimp on. We’ve been buying the Costco brand of toilet paper for years, and we’ve never gone to something else. It’s inexpensive and soft!

2. Ground Turkey

I haven’t bought ground turkey for awhile (as we have a freezer full of ground beef from Zaycon)

3. Batteries 

Costco brand batteries work well, don’t die after five minutes, and they are cheaper than any other brand being sold there. We always have a package of these on sale.

4. Almond Milk

We are big fans of almond milk around here. I only buy Silk brand for various reasons, and on sale at the grocery store (or with a coupon), I can sometimes get it for $2.50 or less. But let’s be real – I don’t really coupon ever (on the other hand, my sister-in-law, Charbel, is the couponing queen). And Costco always has Silk almond milk for $2.49 (you have to buy three, which isn’t a problem for us.)

5. Cooking Spray

Great price for two HUGE canisters of the cooking spray. It will last you forever, and it’s less than $5 for two (last I checked, at least.)

6. Vanilla Extract

I’m a bit of snob when it comes to vanilla extracts – it has to be real. No imitation for us! Unfortunately, that can come at a big price. I love to make my own, but I always forget to before I run out. Costco has a large container of it for less than $10, and it lasts a long time.

7. Plastic wrap

I remember my Grandpa telling my mom that Costco has the best plastic wrap, and I must agree. It comes with a little plastic wrap cutter, and it works well.

8. Canned chicken

While I prefer using chicken breast when we cook with chicken, I do love the Kirkland brand canned chicken. I believe you get four cans for less than $10, and they are large cans. One of them is just about enough chicken for a pan of our green chile chicken enchiladas. My mom always bought these growing up, and I’ve continued the tradition.

9. Uncooked tortillas 

I think the brand is Tortilla Land, but they are SO good. You’ll never want to go back to the cooked, shelf-stable tortillas again. These are in the refrigerator section, and I believe they are $6.99 for 60. You can freeze them, too!

10. Mexican blend cheese

Well, most cheese at Costco is a great price. But I love getting the Kirkland brand Mexican blend cheese. It’s a great price, and I always divide it up into Ziploc bags. It lasts us quite a while!

11. Jimmy Dean Natural Sausage 

I remember another blogger mentioning this years ago, and it’s been one of my favorite things to buy ever since. It’s non-MSG, natural sausage. I believe it’s three pounds for around $7. I think it’s a great price on sausage, especially since it’s Jimmy Dean’s all-natural brand. It comes in a roll in the refrigerated section

12. Chicken Breasts

While we usually buy our chicken breasts from Zaycon, whenever we run out, we definitely buy the Costco chicken breasts!

13. Rotisserie chicken

Hands down the best rotisserie chicken and the best price! You can get a larger, higher quality chicken for less than what you would pay at a grocery store. We love getting rotisserie chicken!

14. Chocolate chips

Their big bag of chocolate chips is a great product to buy if you do a lot of baking!

15. Paper towels

Similar to my reasoning for the toilet paper, we love buying Kirkland brand paper towels.

16. Cakes

I will never buy a sheet cake anywhere else. Their prices are unbeatable, and I think they taste way better than any other grocery store!

17. Photos

Costco’s photo center is the best. They never ask you for a release (which is nice – we’ve had photos taken where they never gave us a release – just all the photos on a CD – and often I take our own professional-quality photos), the prices are cheap, they are fast, and they are very high quality!

18. Gift Cards

You can buy gift cards for restaurants, theme parks, movie theaters, etc. for discounted rates. Usually it’s something like $100 for $80 or something similar. Forrest and I keep thinking we need to buy some of the discounted gift cards for our own personal use for restaurants we go to regularly.

19. Coconut Oil

They have a high-quality brand of Coconut Oil for a great price – you get two large containers for less than $20. We love it! It doesn’t have the strongest coconut flavor, and it’s great for cooking, baking, etc.

One thing we don’t buy at Costco 

This might come as a surprise, but we rarely, if ever, buy produce from Costco. This isn’t because it’s bad quality – the opposite is true! It’s just that it comes in such large quantities – for a family our size, it just goes bad. We don’t end up saving money by buying produce in large quantities. Maybe one day we’ll be those people who eat 10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day…but until then, we’ll stick with King Soopers or Sprouts 🙂

The one exception is the Cutie Clementines – we always buy them at Costco because they are big, juicy, and we eat those like crazy!

Bonus Tip

This has nothing to do with buying things, but if you want to get the best samples, we’ve found that between 2:00 and 4:00 the most are out. The day before holidays have the best samples!

What are your must-buy products at Costco?

What are the best things to buy at Costco? Here are 19 things we LOVE to buy at Costco, and one thing we never buy.


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  • VANILLA ..... sadly the Kirkland vanilla is no longer a bargain. I've been buying it for years and at less than $10.00 it was great. But the price has JUMPED to over $24.00 per bottle. We always ask if this is a mistake and the answer is always the same. So per ounce vanilla is much too expensive at Costco.
    • YES! I just noticed this, and I'm so sad, because this was one of my favorite things. I need to update this post with the most recent information.
    • I love Costco! Vanilla was up to $26.99 when I went this week, but it's due to a worldwide vanilla shortage. You won't find real vanilla anywhere for a decent price until the supply and demand levels out.The number one thing we buy at Costco is milk. We go through almost a gallon a day at our house, so I buy 4-5 packs (8-10 gallons) at a time and freeze it. A gallon takes about a day to un-thaw sitting on the counter. Saves us a ton of money, and Costco milk tastes a lot better than milk in the same price range at the grocery store.
      • That's good to know - I noticed it was super expensive everywhere. I may have to make my own for awhile again. My husband loves the milk - we always freeze it as well :)
  • I forgot to mention that we also like Kirkland brand albacore tuna. After eating theirs all other tuna tastes way too fishy and they don't add extenders to it.
  • We are great Nutella fans and Costco has by far the best price for it. At Christmas time we purchase a lot of it because we have a few relatives who expect it from us as a Christmas gift. We also buy Tillamook brand sharp cheddar cheese in the two pound loaves.
  • Large trash bags, coffee and aluminum foil. Since we bar b que A LOT, their large Food Service foil will last us almost a year. And yes....don't forget the BUTTER!
  • I always buy my butter at Costco too. And I agree with everything on your list! It's like you followed me around at Costco today!

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