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I Tried 5 Costco Spring Bakery Items & the Best Was Rich and Silky

From a morning pastry to a decadent pie, here's how the newest bakery goodies stack up.
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The Costco bakery has been on a roll, churning out new desserts and old favorites over the past year or so, making the bakery a true destination within the warehouse. Since the retailer doesn't publish a schedule of when it releases which dessert, it's anyone's guess until the item appears in the bakery and shoppers get word.

In early spring, the bakery seems to be filled with standard classics—regular cheesecake, plenty of birthday cakes and cookies, and a selection of desserts that only appear seasonally or a few times a year.

I focused on those desserts returning for spring, taste-testing what was worthy of toting to your next party and what you might want to skip on your next visit.

Both adults and children sampled these five desserts, and their opinions seemed aligned.

Here are the five desserts we tested, from skip-it to most delicious.

Morning Buns

a box of costco cinnamon buns.
Photo: Samantha Lande, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition information unavailable

I assume that the new morning buns are intended for breakfast, not dessert (hence the name), but I wanted to take these for a spin, as they appear to have enough sugar to qualify as a dessert. After all, who hasn't had a gooey cinnamon roll for dessert? It's a good deal at $8.99 for a box of nine.

The look: These pastries look tasty at first glance. They are perfectly spiraled and nicely browned, as you'd expect this type of pastry to be. They are topped with a heavy dusting of cinnamon and sugar.

The taste: One word: dry. These likely would have benefited from being warmed before serving. The orange zest did shine through, but only in the slightly more moist core of the pastry. The consensus was that these could benefit from some sort of icing drizzle or frosting like the cinnamon rolls. Maybe they'd be better dunked in coffee for a morning treat, but these are a skip for me when it comes to dessert.

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Lemon Blueberry Loaf

a half eaten slice of lemon blueberry loaf on a paper plate.
Photo: Samantha Lande, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition: (Per 1/10 Loaf):
Calories: 340
Fat: 18 g (Saturated Fat: 4.5 g)
Sodium: 310 mg
Carbs: 42 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 24 g)
Protein: 5 g

The lemon blueberry loaf returns this year with the quintessential spring flavors of, you guessed it, lemon and blueberry. This is another one of those desserts that could have multiple applications, from breakfast to an after-school snack or dessert. As expected, the adults in the crew liked it better than the kids. Like the morning buns, it was also an $8.99 bakery find.

The look: This was a nice-looking dessert that you could serve right out of the loaf pan so guests could see the towering two-pound size, icing, and streusel top, or you could slice and serve off a tray depending on the occasion. I was surprised to see so few blueberries once I cut into it. I expected more.

The taste: The cake had a strong, not overpowering lemon flavor. However, the lemon flavor tasted slightly artificial, and one savvy taste-tester commented that the bakery would have been better using fresh lemon zest. The cake was moist, like a blueberry muffin (with a lack of blueberries), and the leftovers went well with coffee the next morning. This would make a good brunch dessert.

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Mini Carrot Cakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

a box of costco mini carrot cakes.
Photo: Samantha Lande, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition: (Per 1/2 Mini Cake):
Calories: 380
Fat: 20 g (Saturated Fat: 8 g)
Sodium: 380 mg
Carbs: 45 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 32 g)
Protein: 4 g

Costco has a variety of seasonal mini cakes in the bakery, from double chocolate to raspberry. These mini carrot cakes generally premiere just in time for Easter. In true Costco fashion, there is nothing "mini" about these cakes that serve at least two people. That being said, sometimes it's nice to put out something like this instead of a giant cake everyone needs to slice into, and for $9.99, the price is right.

The look: These are adorable. The squiggle of a tiny frosting carrot gets me every time. There is a lovely cream cheese frosting-to-cake ratio as well. There wasn't much visible carrot (if any) like you see in a lot of carrot cakes, but it had a nice crumb.  These look good in a dessert spread.

The taste: Just like in the appearance, these had a nice cream cheese frosting-to-cake ratio, and although I prefer minimal frosting, this worked because it wasn't cloyingly sweet. I wouldn't say this is strongly spiced carrot cake like you may get elsewhere. The flavors were relatively muted for carrot cake but still had raisins and walnuts. This was a hit with kids and adults alike.

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Lemon Meringue Cheesecake

Costco lemon meringue cheesecake
Photo: Samantha Lande, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition: (Per Serving):
Calories: 390

I tasted this delicious cheesecake last year, and it remains just shy of the top spot in this ranking. It's as delicious as ever, even though its price has gone up from last year—it's now $21.99 (previously $19.99). Even if lemon can be a love-it or leave-it flavor, it's a unique, impressive dessert worth grabbing.

The look: I had an interesting dilemma in the store about which cheesecake to pull because the browning on the meringue looked different between each one. I decided to go for one with a pretty consistent light to medium brown look across the cake, but you can see that it is still inconsistent across the whole top. Once sliced, it had a nice layer of meringue, followed by the lemon curd and, finally, cheesecake.

The taste: As expected, the kids weren't as drawn to this dessert (but those who tried it liked it), but the adults felt it was really special, well-balanced, and show-stopping. A few testers said the crust was too hard, but there is a balance of leaving it out of the fridge too long and having a slightly firmer crust. The lemon curd tasted like real lemon, and the cheesecake at Costco is always a hit. The meringue makes it tricky to save this dessert for multiple days, but we didn't need to worry about leftovers for the size of the crowd we had.

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie

Costco's chocolate peanut butter pie
Photo: Samantha Lande, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition: (Per 1/16 Pie):
Calories: 540
Fat: 41 g (Saturated Fat: 25 g)
Sodium: 260 mg
Carbs: 42 g (Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 31 g)
Protein: 5 g

It's hard to beat the combination of peanut butter and chocolate when serving a crowd, no matter the season—it's usually a fan favorite. Although it was close between the lemon meringue cheesecake and the chocolate peanut butter pie, the latter won by a hair simply because it's something more people would gravitate towards. People complained last year that the texture and taste were inconsistent, but that was not my experience. The price remains the same at $19.99.

The look: As one of Costco's heftier desserts, this certainly gets attention. The filling felt firm, the graham cracker crust had a nice crumble, and the peanut butter frosting swirls around it created a pleasing design.

The taste: "It tastes like a giant peanut butter cup," said one of our tasters. Everyone felt it was balanced but that there was a little more chocolate flavor than peanut butter. Another taster likened the consistency to that of French silk pie, noting it looked denser but was actually fluffier. It was not overly sweet but pretty rich, so a small slice was plenty. You'll be able to please any crowd (sans those allergic to peanuts) with this stand-out dessert.

Samantha Lande
Samantha is a freelance writer who covers food, health, wellness and other lifestyle subjects. Read more about Samantha