I’ve written before about how Costco can be both a boon and a curse for the bargain shopper.
While there are some amazing deals at Costco, you have to be careful. Not everything is cheaper at Costco than the regular shelf price at your local grocery store. And when you combine sales at the grocery store with coupons? Well, you can definitely do better on a lot of things.
That said, there are a number of products that I don’t even bother shopping around for – I’m that confident that the price at Costco is the best. So, I’m happy to save the money and time by shopping for these items at Costco.
Here’s my personal Top 7 Only-Buy-at-Costco List.
1. Yeast – Costco sells a 32-oz vacuum-packed package of Red Star Active Yeast, which will last FOREVER in your freezer. I just decant a few ounces at a time into a small Fleishmann’s canister that I keep in the fridge. Costco’s price for one giant package of yeast is less than the small Fleishmann’s canister.
2. Vanilla – Like the yeast, Costco’s BIG bottle of *pure* vanilla is less than a small bottle of McCormick’s. Plus I love using “real” vanilla – it tastes so much better than the imitation stuff.
3. Organic Mixed Greens - Two pounds of organic mixed greens cost $3.99 at Costco – the next lowest shelf price at my local grocery stores is $6.99. That’s almost a 50% discount. I’ll take it! The organic spinach is also a great deal, as are the six heads of Romaine lettuce.
4. Milk – Costco consistently beats the grocery store by at least $.40 a gallon – and sometimes $1.50 or more! The Costco brand gallons aren’t organic, but they are RBST-free, which is my primary concern with milk. (I do buy organic whole milk for my toddler – also at Costco.)
5. Eagle Mill’s Ultra-Grain Flour – I love, love, love this flour. Costco sells two 10-lb bags for just $5. I could probably do a tiny bit better on some bleached white flour coupon stacking deal, but I really don’t like to bake/cook with the bleached stuff.
The ultra-grain, on the other hand, is woooonderful! It’s got all the lighter qualities of white flour, but a lot more nutrients and fiber. (Learn more here.) We use it for our bread machine challah and it’s perfect.
6. Tall Kitchen Garbage Bags – They work out to be less than $.08/bag, which is the cheapest I’ve found – even with sales and coupon combos. Plus they fit our can perfectly and we tend to get, uh, lazy, about taking out the bag, but have never had one split on us. (Pfut, pfut, pfut!)
7. Gasoline – We don’t always fill up at Costco if we’re not nearby when we need gas, but most of the time we do – and for sure, their prices are the lowest. They beat the corner station by at least $.05 a gallon – and usually as much as $.15 – $.20/gallon. Given the cost of gasoline these days, every little bit I can save helps.
Do you have a Costco membership? What are your standard buys there?