This is America's #1 Favorite Costco Item
When Just Bare Lightly Breaded Chicken Breast Chunks first debuted on social media in January 2021 as the famous Chick-fil-A chicken nugget dupe. TikTok user @floridamomof3 posted a video of a mother and daughter trying out the breaded chicken bites after a Costco trip. To their surprise, the packaged nuggets tasted the same as the restaurant's top-selling item, at just half the cost per ounce of chicken. The video received over 2.1 million views in the first week.
And thus began the race to the frozen aisles at Costco warehouses across the country. Packages of the antibiotic-free, hormone-free, and steroid-free chicken with 16 grams of protein per serving flew off the shelves so fast that many customers who came for the chicken left empty-handed. If shoppers did manage to snag a four-pound bag of the nuggets and try the taste test for themselves (like Eat This, Not That! did), it was short-lived.
These nuggets became a rarity to get one's hands on. It wasn't until April 2021 that the Just Bare product was finally spotted again, in a warehouse in San Marcos, Calif. But it didn't take long for the demand to outpace the in-store supply once more, leading to a perceived shortage of the nuggets in July. Keen Costco shoppers on Reddit speculated that the product was just so popular that it was hard to find, even though stores were keeping them in stock.
"I'm a morning freezer stocker and I'll tell you I put anywhere from 10-15 boxes of those out every morning and they're gone within 2 hrs of opening. They're incredibly popular and are seemingly always on sample. But I can confirm they're still being sold," said u/CurrentlyNa last month.
Finally, after months of waiting and spotty shelf sightings, it seems that the frozen Chick-fil-A substitute is back in healthy supply—but some customers have noticed a price hike. A Reddit user found the chicken bites in Costco freezers going for $19.99, reportedly around $5 more expensive than before.
Some guessed that the increase resulted from the meat industry supply chain complications due to COVID-19. User u/denisebuttrey commented, "We knew the poultry and meat industries were hit hard by the pandemic. What did we all think was going to happen?"
If you're not balking at the additional cost, you can find Just Bare Lightly Breaded Chicken Breast Chunks at Costco or order it from Instacart for $24.87.
And if you're looking for more easy chicken bites to add to your kitchen, the brand introduced a new release last week, according to an Instagram post by @costcosisters—the Just Bare Raw, Pre-Cut Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast Pieces.
This one is another all-natural 64-ounce bag of chicken pieces that goes for $9.99 and cooks from frozen in 10 minutes. While it might not have the same social media hype around it, the good news is, you'll probably be able to add it to your grocery cart week after week.
Before your next shopping trip, read up on the 5 Major Updates Costco Is Making Right Now.