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The 18 Things Chefs Buy at Costco

We all know how great the deals can be at Costco—so it should come as no surprise that professional chefs love it, too.

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Costco parking lotMary Altaffer/AP/Shutterstock

From pantry staples to premium meat, chefs know how to find quality products at a good price. That’s why chefs from home kitchens to your TV screen are fans of Costco. For example, Floyd Cardoz, the winner of the third season of Top Chef Masters and chef at the Bombay Bread Bar in New York City, says he goes to the warehouse club at least twice a month to stock up, Kitchn reports. While availability can vary from club to club, here are some of the items chefs make sure they leave with in their carts.

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Waygu beefhlphoto/Shutterstock

Waygu beef

USDA Prime meat is a big deal at the Prime + Proper Steakhouse in Detroit. That’s why executive butcher Walter Apfelbaum supplies the chefs there with Waygu beef he buys at Costco, according to Food & Wine. “Costco sells some of the most beautiful prime beef I’ve seen out of the restaurant industry,” he says. Here’s more about why chefs love Costco’s beef.

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Pork Chops with Honey Garlic SauceTaste of Home

Pork chops

Chef Julie Yoon, who runs an online cooking show called Bits & Piecesbuys a big pack of bone-in pork chops at Costco. She’ll wrap them individually in plastic wrap and place them in a Ziplock bag to freeze for future use.

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baconNataliya Arzamasova/Shutterstock


Cardoz likes the heft of Applewood-Smoked Thick Cut Bacon. Yoon, meanwhile, opts for Farmer John Classic Bacon. She gets a four-pack, then freezes three packages and uses it in spaghetti carbonara and grilled cheese. Here are more things at Costco you shouldn’t be without.

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Costco is known for its selection of fruits and vegetables. Yoon’s haul at Costco typically includes baby carrots, mushrooms, broccoli, tomatoes, grapes, avocados and lemons. And don’t forget Mexican limes. They’re not always available at Cardoz’s Costco, but when they are, he likes to pick some up for margaritas. By the way, here are 10 ways to upgrade your next marg.

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Olive oilben bryant/Shutterstock

Kirkland Signature Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Samin Nosrat, the author of the bestselling Salt Fat Acid Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking, is a big fan of this affordable olive oil, according to Refinery 29. Cardoz likes it too, for marinades, salads, and cooking. Find out the other Kirkland items you should always be buying..

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Taco burgerTaste of Home


Cardoz has been a fan since he got some premade burgers for one of his son’s birthdays. He recommends the unfrozen kind in the meat section. Check out these 10 ways to make your next burger even better.

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Spinalis SteakLisovskaya Natalia/Shutterstock

Spinalis Steak

This juicy cut has lots of flavor. “You usually have to special-order this from other butchers,” Cardoz told Kitchn. Find out the bizarre things you didn’t know you could find at Costco.

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Shrimps fried on a wooden backgroundMerydolla/Shutterstock

Kirkland Raw, Tail-On Shrimp

Yoon likes to keep a bag of these frozen shrimp in the freezer. Low in calories, they’re easy to defrost by placing them in a bowl of cold water for ten minutes, she says.

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Red Wine Being Poured In The Glass; Shutterstock ID 507541870; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOHNatashaPhoto/Shutterstock


You may find a wine you really like at Costco, then find that the warehouse doesn’t stock it anymore. Cardoz likes to get “Italian varietals, rosés, and gewürztraminers” there when he can. This is why you should always buy wine at Costco.

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Slicing Chicken on cutting boardAnnapolisStudios/Shutterstock

Rotisserie chicken

A favorite of many Costco shoppers, the rotisserie chicken also makes Yoon’s list of Costco staples. Here are the secrets behind Costco’s rotisserie chicken.

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maple syrup in glass bottle on wooden tableshowcake/Shutterstock

Kirkland Signature Maple Syrup

This pantry staple is not only organic, but Cardoz says it tastes good and lasts a long time. These are frozen items you should always buy at Costco.

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Loaf of wholegrain bread and slices on wooden cutting board.Nataliya Nazarova/Shutterstock

Wheat bread

Yoon likes Whole Grains 100% Whole Wheat Bread. Since the loaves come two to a pack and the bread can get moldy quickly, she sticks one loaf in the fridge and the other in the freezer.

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Spiced peanutsTaste of Home

Kirkland Signature Super Extra Large Peanuts

Not only are they extra large, but they also don’t get stale, which is why Cardoz is a fan. Here are 10 things you should buy at Costco.

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Asian chicken thighsTaste of Home

Organic Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs

It’s not easy to find chicken thighs that are organic, Cardoz says. He likes to get a big pack and use them in curries.

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Heap of black pepper peppercornsNatasha Breen/Shutterstock

Tellicherry Peppercorns

Chefs use lots of pepper, and Cardoz says this brand remains “fresh and fragrant,” Kitchn reports.

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Sliced Chicken Breast fillet (selective focus) on wooden background; Shutterstock ID 381413266; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): TOHHandmadePictures/Shutterstock

Deli meat

Yoon packs her husband’s lunch every day. For deli meat, she goes for a pack of Oven-Roasted Turkey Breast and Honey Ham from Hillshire Farm. To accompany it, she buys Belgiorno Provolone cheese.

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Raw Organic Sweet Light Agave Syrup in a BowlBrent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Agave syrup

Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Blue Agave is reasonably priced, Yoon says. She likes to use it as a sweetener in recipes like shrimp with lime. Here are 13 tips frequent Costco shoppers keep to themselves.

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Frosted Mini-WheatsTiger Images/Shutterstock

Frosted Mini-Wheats

The beauty of a warehouse store is that you can also find plenty of items that aren’t necessarily gourmet. Yoon picks up her cereal at Costco as well. Next, find out 15 secrets Costco employees won’t tell you.

Originally Published on Reader's Digest

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