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Costco Members Say These Are The Best Prepared Foods at the Warehouse

When you don’t have time to cook, these prepared food items from Costco might just save the day.
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Over the years, shoppers have found a ton to love when they scour the aisles for deals at Costco. The membership-only big-box grocery chain has cycled through a ton of brands and products that appeal to customers across the country ever since opening its doors for the first time in 1976. Costco initially made an impression on consumers because of its diverse selection of products. And while many beloved Costco-branded items have come and gone throughout the years, one thing that Coscto members can rely on is its assortment of yummy prepared foods.

Granted, exploring Costco's warehouse-sized store locations may seem like the antithesis of convenience when in pursuit of a speedy, pre-made meal that won't break the bank. Trying to parse through any items at Costco—let alone figure out which are the best prepared foods the warehouse has to offer—might give anyone a headache. And while shopping on a limited budget with little time to spare, you of course need to make every dollar and second count.

Luckily, Costco members are not inclined to hold back when it comes to declaring their preferences for particular Costco items while also sharing any tips on how to select and cook the best prepared items in stock. Eat This, Not That! scoured the internet to track down the best member-approved prepared foods that you need to pick up next time you visit a Costco. Keep an eye out for these goods when you make your next grocery run—and also be sure to steer clear of the 18 Foods You'll Regret Buying in Bulk at Costco.

Kirkland Signature Supreme Cauliflower Crust Pizza

kirkland signature cauliflower crust pizza
Courtesy of Costco

Sometimes you just need to treat yourself to a pizza, even if it means opting for a frozen one versus a fresh pizza delivery. While you can find a frozen pizza almost anywhere, not every brand can hit the spot. Luckily, Costco's house brand Kirkland Signature offers a delicious variety of frozen pizzas to choose from, including this gluten-free pizza with a cauliflower crust that has won over diners everywhere since it hit shelves.

In response to a Reddit post asking r/Costco followers which Kirkland Signature products they found best, many Costco members agreed that this cauliflower crust pizza was among their favorite choices out there. Under another thread devoted to the love of this pizza, users claim that couldn't believe how good the crust tastes. They also share tips and tricks for how to best prepare this pizza, like you can make the final product even crispier by cooking it in the oven for a minute longer than what the instructions advise.

Kirkland Signature Italian Sausage and Beef Lasagna

kirkland signature sausage and beef lasagna
Courtesy of Costco

When you're craving something hearty, you can't go wrong with Kirkland's Italian Sausage and Beef Lasagna. This ready-to-cook entree has wowed Costco members for years, thanks to its flavor and how easy it is to heat up. Members of the r/Costco Reddit community can't stop raving about the meal and declared that it ranked as one of the best foods sold at the warehouse.

"That lasagna is every bit as good as what I would make, and it uses real ingredients to boot," Reddit user thrillsbury commented in the Costco subreddit. "This is probably the one Costco product that I evangelize," they continue in a follow-up comment.

If you're a lasagna lover who's too short on time to make one from scratch, don't pass up this solid prepared meal.

Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp

kirkland signature tempura shrimp

Making tempura at home can feel like a herculean task on the best days. In addition to deep frying shrimp, you also have to make the right kind of batter, get the batter to evenly stick to the shrimp, and then avoid overcooking your seafood while ensuring the exterior turns the right shade of golden brown. With so many steps to worry about, it's only natural that Costco put out its own version of tempura shrimp—and so, Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp was born. And given the quality of this Kirkland Signature pre-made seafood hors d'oeuvre, it was bound to attracted a fair share of attention.

Reddit users who double as Costco members consistently sing the praises of Kirkland's shrimp tempura, claiming that the product tastes great, has the right texture, and is even embraced by even the pickiest eaters. Some Reddit users started a thread to analyze how Costco's shrimp tempura stacks up against a similar product from competing grocer, Trader Joe's. After much debate, Kirkland Signature Tempura Shrimp effortlessly trounced Trader Joe's shrimp tempura, securing this win based on the Costco version's delicious flavor and how many shrimp you get per box.

Kirkland Signature Rotisserie Chicken

The Image Party / Shutterstock

If you ask any die-hard Costco fan about the best prepared food at the big box store, it's only a matter of time before someone tells you about the brand's rotisserie chicken. This item goes above and beyond simply being a fan-favorite—it occasionally makes waves on social media when shoppers spot other Costco members hoarding the chicken all for themself.

While some shoppers feel compelled to scoop up every last rotisserie chicken Costco has in stock, there is a good reason for it—it's just that delicious. Because one bird can enable so many versatile meal options, Costco's rotisserie chicken is great for any dining occasion. Users of r/Frugal wholeheartedly agree that the Kirkland Signature rotisserie chicken ranks as one of the best Costco purchases you can make because of how much time and money it can save.

"Entire empires of frugality have been built atop the Costco rotisserie chicken!" Reddit user theDreadalus exclaims in the r/Frugal subreddit.

Costco Food Court Pizza

costco pizza

Costco members know that no trip to the warehouse feels complete without hitting up the chain's food court. If you don't even feel like cooking a meal that day, you could indulge in one of the items that dedicated shoppers swear by. The store's food court serves up massive slices of cheese pizza that consistently have members drooling. One Reddit thread dedicated to singing the praises of this hot pizza claims that Costco's food court pizza could go head to head against the warehouse grocer's legendary rotisserie chickens, especially because the size of each slice relative to the cost feels like you're getting more bang for your buck. Users also shared comments describing their Costco shopping tactics, saying they sometimes just flat-out buy whole pizzas rather than a single slice. This way they have plenty of leftovers to reheat them days later, either in a frying pan or in the oven—all of which saves time and money.

Kirkland Signature Coffee Cake Muffins

costco coffee cake muffin
Courtesy of Costco

Strolling through the Costco bakery section can make anyone's mouth water. The wide selection of cakes and pastries have found their ways to birthday parties and office gatherings for years and have made their mark for many. Out of the countless baked goods found at the big box store, the muffins stand in a tier of their own and rank as one of the best prepared Kirkland products you can grab during a grocery run.

Redditors have debated how many of the muffins they could eat in one sitting, claiming they can't stop at just one. Every Costco member has their preference when it comes to this baked good, but if you want to get the best bang for your buck, you can't go wrong with the coffee cake muffins. Social media can't get enough of this particular flavor thanks to its size. Some folks have noted that the six-pack of coffee cake muffins have even intimidated shoppers into trying to just buy one muffin at a time. If you had to just buy one pre-made pastry that can win over anyone, Costco members swear that you shouldn't pass on these baked goods.

Erich Barganier
Erich Barganier is a health and food writer. Read more about Erich