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10 Costco Items Garnering Thousands of Customer Complaints

Even Costco can’t win them all.
FACT CHECKED BY Chris Shott

From the critically acclaimed Kirkland brand laundry detergent all the way to beloved bakery and food court gems, there's a lot to love at Costco's warehouses. Club members aren't shy about spreading the word about these products they can't live without. But, to Costco's dismay, they also don't hold back when it comes to grocery items that don't quite hit the mark.

All shoppers have their own personal tastes and preferences, but for the following products, it seems that recent customer complaints outweigh the praises. Read on to find out which items you may want to steer clear of on your next Costco run.

RELATED: 11 Regional Costco Finds Your Location May Be Missing

1

Gallon Milk Jugs

gallons of milk at costco
Shutterstock

Over the years, shoppers haven't been shy when it comes to their qualms about Costco's gallon-sized milk jugs. The issue isn't with the milk, though—it's with the product's packaging.

Redesigned in 2008 with the goal of being cheaper and easier to ship, as well as more environmentally friendly, Costco's square-shaped milk jugs have been repeatedly criticized for being difficult to pour and easy to spill.

In one of several Reddit threads dedicated to the cumbersome product, one user wrote, "I had no idea we were so lucky to not have them for several years. Everyone in our family literally groaned when they saw them in the fridge." Another one added, "They are trash."

However, not all Costco locations carry the same style of milk jugs. During Costco's annual shareholders meeting this month, Costco CEO Craig Jelinek pointed out that the company uses several different bottlers, suggesting that the issue with the product could be regional.

2

Realgood's Chicken Grande Enchiladas With Tomatillo Sauce

real good chicken grande enchiladas with tomatillo sauce
Real Goof Foods

Like the milk jugs, Real Good's Chicken Grande Enchiladas With Tomatillo Sauce have sparked multiple Reddit threads, as well. Most recently, one user uploaded a photo of the box and titled the post, "Tried the Realgood brand enchiladas. Costco, WTF were you thinking? 0 out of 5 stars."

The thread has since racked up 225 comments, with the majority of Reddit users complaining about the keto-friendly product.

"Nope, I hated them and threw them out. I'm on keto but these things are a salty mess that have a terrible flavor," one Reddit user commented. Another user called the flavor "super, SUPER bland," noting that the enchiladas are "smaller than the package implies" and have a "soggy" texture and "very low-quality cheese" that "melts oddly."

3

Potatoes and other produce

bags of potatoes
Shutterstock

We previously reported on an issue many Costco shoppers were experiencing with their potatoes. One Reddit user shared that a bag of Costco russet potatoes—an item that typically has a shelf of up to five weeks—was starting to go bad just two weeks after purchase.

Others chimed in to share their own experiences and added that the problem didn't end with potatoes. Other produce purchased at the big box retailer, such as strawberries, oranges, bananas, and tomatoes, was also found to be less than satisfactory and highly spoilable, according to the thread.

4

Avocados

avocados at grocery store
Shutterstock

Adding to the list of complaints for the Costco produce department, one Reddit user shared photos of freshly purchased avocados, which were already sporting mold. "Ugh guess whose[sic] going back for a refund," the user wrote. The consensus from the comment section was that this was not an isolated incident and that the quality of Costco's avocados has been lacking for some time.

Another thread, which actually started as a PSA sharing a new price cut for Costco's avocados, quickly turned into a bash session for the product. Users complained that the fruit was often found to be rotten or, on the flip side, it never softened enough to be edible. Many agreed that the Mexican avocados sold at the store were superior to the Peruvian variety.

5

Kirkland Organic Hard-Boiled Eggs

costco organic hard-boiled eggs
Costco Business Center

Reddit user u/simpleout received over 400 upvotes for a disapproving post about Costco's Kirkland brand organic hard-boiled eggs. "The hard-boiled eggs are pretty gross, they have a weird flavor," the post read. Despite the initial support, shoppers in the comments appeared to be split between either loving or hating the Costco item.

"I've gotten these, they always taste funny to me too. Almost like I can taste the plastic," one commenter shared, while another said, "I eat the heck out of these and have not had any issues. Perhaps you got an improperly stored batch." Some opted to skip the debate altogether and instead went straight to the advice on how to boil your own eggs at home.

6

Global Gourmet Hot Sauce Collection

global gourmet hot sauce collection
Instacart

Variety is the spice of life—but apparently not when it comes to the Global Gourmet Hot Sauce Collection sold at Costco. The pack comes with 12 different hot sauces to try—from New Orleans Bourbon Hot Sauce to Africa Cayenne Hot Sauce. But, according to a recent Reddit thread, all 12 are lacking in both the flavor and the heat department.

"No one who loves hot sauce would buy this or enjoy it as a gift. Avoid," one comment read, which received over 200 upvotes. Others agreed that the sauces were low-quality and tasted watered down due to their vinegar base.

7

My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream

my/mo mochi ice cream variety pack
Instacart

Similar to the Kirkland brand hard-boiled eggs, Costco's boxes of My Mochi Ice Cream sparked a heated debate on Reddit, garnering over 200 comments. On one side of the argument were those who found the mochi variety—which includes strawberry, vanilla bean, and mango flavors—to be delightful. But others were not as charmed.

Critics didn't love the mochi's flavor or texture, and the word "horrible" was thrown around the thread quite a bit. One commenter even compared the taste of the frozen dessert to burnt dirt. Ouch!

8

Chicken Bake

costco chicken bakes
Costco / Facebook

Is the famed chicken bake starting to skimp on both quality and quantity? Complaints recently surfaced that the food court item has lost its appeal since the pandemic. A couple of the product's former fans described the current version as bland, containing less chicken, and overall much smaller for a higher price tag.

"It's basically just an expensive baguette with a thin tube of salted cheese inside, the last couple I've had barely had any chicken at all," wrote one user.

This isn't the first time Costco shoppers have spoken up about the food court's declining quality—other esteemed products such as the Costco pizza and hot dog have also been put into question.

9

Jones Dairy Farm Uncured Canadian Bacon

jones dairy farm cherrywood smoked uncured canadian bacon
Instacart

Complaints were so widespread around the All Natural Uncured Canadian Bacon that its manufacturer Jones Dairy Farm sent out apology letters to all Costco members who had purchased it. One Reddit user shared a copy of the letter online.

"We have identified a quality issue that could cause the product to have a slimy appearance," the statement read. "This is not a food safety issue and there is no health risk consuming the product. However, this quality issue falls short of our standards here at Jones Dairy Farm as well as those of Costco."

Commenters confirmed that a slimy film was found on many recent batches of the meat. According to the letter, anyone who purchased the tainted item is entitled to a Costco gift card as compensation.

10

Okami Sushi Party Trays

sushi party tray
Shutterstock

Costco's freshly-made sushi has been a controversial topic since the beginning. While some members pine for it and hope it makes its way to their local warehouses, others are less than pleased with its overall taste.

But, the sushi woes don't end there. Okami Sushi Party Trays, also found at Costco, have faced similar heat from club members. A Reddit post recently announced the trays—which contain 25 pieces each—were on sale for just $3.97. Within the almost 200 comments, many shoppers were wary of "clearance" or "discount" sushi, while others who had tried it tore into the overall flavor.

"It's like chewing soft plastic dipped in soy sauce," one Redditor recalled. Another said: "I love that Costco mostly sells really good quality items. But that stuff is garbage."

An earlier version of this article was published on Oct. 9, 2022. It has been updated to include new information.

Megan Hageman
Megan is a freelance writer based in Columbus, Ohio. Read more about Megan