Ah, Costco. The land of Kirkland vodka, 114-ounce jugs of ketchup, and surprisingly great deals on moisturizer.
But once you’re done loading your cart with enough toilet paper to last six years, what do you do? You stop at the food court, that’s what.
SEE ALSO: Ice cubes, ranked
The Costco food court has long been lauded for its low prices and hot dogs, but there are other treasures behind those greasy counters, too! (The hot dogs are really good, though.)
Here's our ranking. May your bulk shopping experience end as they all should — with a delicious and nutritionally vacant treat.
14. Chicken caesar salad
Buying salad ingredients in bulk and assembling it in the comfort of your home will be way better than eating a chicken Caesar salad from the Costco food court.
In typical Costco fashion, it’s a hefty meal for a reasonable price, but don't fall for it. We’ve only ever had unappetizing, dry chicken, so if you’ve been blessed with anything other than that, you’re in luck. Overall, the ingredients are just uninspiring. Live your best life with a hot dog or pizza slice in hand instead.
13. Hot turkey and provolone sandwich
A turkey sandwich is always going to be a turkey sandwich, which means it will be fine. But if you're going to have warm turkey, it's difficult not to pine for actual roast turkey instead of lunchmeat. Not even melty provolone, a perfect sandwich cheese, can save this sandwich from sandwich purgatory.
12. Polish dog
If we are being honest with ourselves, and we are, the Costco Polish dog is merely a slightly worse version of the standard Costco hot dog. Just get the classic.
10. Latte mocha freeze
The latte mocha freeze is that cousin that you thought was really cool growing up, but as an adult, you realize was actually pretty weird. If you’re looking for a frozen drink with a little caffeine, you’re better off going to a nearby Starbucks. Costco’s too sweet freeze falls flat.
9. Beef brisket sandwich
A pretty decent reward for spending hours up and down countless aisles, and successfully avoiding samples for fear of spoiling your appetite? Costco’s beef brisket sandwich.
It’s not amazing, but it’s not horrible — which means it’s already leagues ahead of other supermarket food court items. The coleslaw is really what ruins the experience and is the sole reason why this sandwich isn’t ranked higher. We are a firm believer that coleslaw should always be a side, and here, it’s drenched in a sweet BBQ sauce, giving the beef no room to shine.
8. Twisted churro
It's a fluffy churro! What's not to like? Plus, each one is enormous. Good stuff.
6. Whole pizza
We have no particular reason to believe that the whole Costco pizza and the Costco pizza slice are prepared differently. But, due to whatever witchcraft, the slice is way, way better. The whole pizza is not nearly as gooey — perhaps because it hasn't been sitting under a heat lamp for as long?
Still delicious, though. And if you don't want to eat any of the shit you just bought at Costco, it's a nice option for dinner!
5. Very berry sundae
The very berry sundae isn't anything wild, just a cup of vanilla soft serve ice cream and a sweet, only-a-little-bit-cloying strawberry sauce. The magic here is in the amount of strawberry sauce per serving, which is, by our estimation, several hundred gallons. It is so good.
4. Berry smoothie
Whether washing down a hot dog or cleansing your palate after countless samples, there has always been only one drink that will do the job well: the berry smoothie. Unfortunately, the Costco staple was discontinued and replaced by a fruit smoothie. In light of this travesty, we remember you, oh berry smoothie, as a hero in our hearts.
3. Pizza slice
Coscto’s secret weapon is most definitely the slice of pizza. The balance of toppings is remarkable, but you also can't go wrong with just cheese.
The cheese is always supported by a crust that’s somehow perfectly crunchy and soft. Oh, and don’t get us started on those dots of slightly burnt cheese that are scattered across the slice. It’s the perfect shelter for a marinara sauce that’s spread evenly throughout. Sure, sometimes the slice of pizza can be too oily but don’t let that distract you from how straight up satisfying it is.
2. Hot dog
Costco reportedly per year than every single Major League baseball stadium combined. This is for good reason, as they are deeply delicious and there are way more Costcos than Major League baseball stadiums.
The Costco hot dog is a simple pleasure: a salty, vaguely smoky treat that’s definitely too long for its bun, but not quite laughably so. The bun, by the way, does not get soggy, even if you choose to put relish on it. And, of course, it will forever and always be $1.50, including a drink.
1. Chicken bake
The absolute best and most iconic Costco item. It's chicken. It's in a bread tube. There's bacon and Caesar dressing in there. It's like a Hot Pocket, but more phallic. The chicken bake is a greasy wonder, and no Costco trip is complete without burning your entire mouth on one.
Please do not eat it in the car.