15 Costco Meals That are Cheaper Than Takeout

Save money without wasting time waiting for pick-up with these 15 pre-packaged Costco feasts.

A storefront of Costco
Updated July 18, 2024
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Don’t feel like cooking? Takeout can be a solid option if you have plenty of money to spare. Unfortunately, while takeout is convenient, it isn’t cheap.

Fortunately, you’re a Costco member. With a little advance planning, it’s not hard to stock your fridge, freezer, and pantry with affordable and delicious take-out substitutes.

Keep reading for 15 items to add to your list of Costco hacks for your next shopping trip to make meal time a bit easier.

Editor's note: prices are subject to change and may vary by location.

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Del Real Foods Chicken In Red Sauce Tamales

Courtesy of Costco A package of Del Real Foods Chicken Tamales

Online price: $21.59

Not that there’s anything wrong with microwavable frozen burritos, but if you’re craving something more filling and flavorful, chicken tamales might hit the spot.

These protein-rich tamales are wrapped in traditional corn husks by hand for maximum texture, form, and authenticity. They can serve as the centerpiece for a family meal or a quick mid-day snack.

Nissin Top Ramen, Variety Pack

Courtesy of Costco A package of Nissin Top Ramen

Online price: $16.49

In America, ramen is considered a college-student staple that’s both cheap and fairly flavorless.

But dressing up some basic instant ramen with a soft-boiled egg, green onions, mushrooms, sprouts, and a dash of fish stock or soy sauce can turn a simple noodle bowl into a savory (and still affordable) meal.

Nongshim Shin Ramyun Noodle Soup

Courtesy of Costco A package of Nongshim Shin Ramyun Noodle Soup

Online price: $19.79

If you like your instant ramen with a little more spice, Nongshim-brand Korean shin ramyun has a delicious beef-stock base and the perfect amount of authentic heat.

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Kellogg's Eggo Buttermilk Pancakes

Courtesy of Costco A package of Kellogg's Eggo Buttermilk Pancakes

Online price: $14.99

In the mood to have breakfast for dinner?

Whipping up a quick batch of pancakes with a Costco-sized bag of Krusteez pancake mix is pretty fast and easy, but you can simplify dinner even further by popping some Eggo Pancakes in the toaster for a mess-free meal.

Marie Callender's Chicken Pot Pies

Courtesy of Costco Costco Marie Callenders chicken pot pies

Online price: $15.99

The only thing better than a hearty chicken pot pie might be an individual hand pie that you can eat on the go.

Marie Callender’s mini pot pies are made of chicken, carrots, peas, and gravy inside a rich, buttery crust.

With 17 grams of protein per pie and several servings of vegetables, this meal helps you meet your health goals without ruining your financial goals.

Morning Star Farms Frozen Chipotle Black Bean Veggie Burgers

Courtesy of Costco A package of Morning Star Farms Black Bean Veggie Burgers

Online price: $19.99

You could run to the nearest McDonald’s, Wendy’s, or Burger King for a fast burger-based dinner, but why bother when you could grab a healthier black-bean veggie burger out of the freezer?

Along with being healthier, the Costco choice is also cheaper. The cost of each burger in this 12-pack comes to just $1.66 per item.

Bibigo Korean-Style Crunchy Chicken with Sweet and Spicy Sauce

Courtesy of Costco Costco Bibigo Korean style crunchy chicken

Online price: $16.29

Bibigo is a Korean-based company that produces authentic, flavor-packed Korean food and ships it all over the world.

Korean fried chicken is less greasy than American-style fried chicken, with a flakier, more delicate crust.

If you aren’t a fan of spicy dipping sauces, try the same product sold with a sweeter soy-garlic sauce instead.

Authentic Motor City Pizza Co. Detroit-Style Deep Dish Pizza, Double Pepperoni

Courtesy of Costco A package of Motor City Pizza Co Pepperoni Pizza

Online price: $14.79

Don’t wait around for Domino’s to deliver an overpriced pizza. Just preheat your oven and pop in two pepperoni pizzas instead.

If you’ve never had a Detroit-style pizza before, you’re in for a treat: Detroit’s trademark pizza comes square-shaped with a hefty layer of Wisconsin brick cheese on top of a chewy deep-dish crust.

Ajinomoto Yakisoba with Vegetables

Courtesy of Costco A package of vegetable yakisoba noodles

Online price: $16.79

You don’t have to slice and dice your own carrots, zucchini, mushrooms, broccoli, beans, and peppers to create an authentic, flavorful yakisoba dinner.

These vegetarian stir-fried noodle bowls are fully cooked and ready to eat after just three minutes in the microwave.

Plus, unlike a home-cooked stir fry, they don’t leave behind any mess to clean up.

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Costco Rotisserie Chicken

Courtesy of Instacart A rotisserie chicken from Costco

In-store price: $4.99

Costco’s $5 rotisserie chicken is a favorite item for long-time fans.

Costco doesn’t necessarily turn a profit from its best-known deal, but the cheap chicken alone is such a customer draw that Costco isn’t likely to up the price (which has been consistent since 2009) anytime soon — if ever.

Idahoan Real Premium Mashed Potatoes

Courtesy of Costco A package of Idahoan Real Premium Mashed Potatoes

Online price: $10.99

Turn your rotisserie chicken into a full meal by adding a hearty side of mashed potatoes.

No need to order from KFC. This three-pound box makes 65 servings of buttery mashed potatoes in just a few minutes flat.

Kirkland Signature Italian Sausage and Beef Lasagna

Courtesy of Costco Costco Kirkland Signatuer Italian sausage and beef lasagna

Online price: $18.89

Kirkland Signature, Costco’s in-house brand, is well known for its quality. And in true Costco style, Kirkland Signature doesn’t trade that quality for quantity, instead bringing you both at budget-friendly prices.

The brand’s lasagna is a prime example: With four savory layers of real Italian sausage, 100% USDA Choice ground beef, and sauce made from vine-ripened tomatoes, and heaps of mozzarella and ricotta cheese, this particular Kirkland Signature feast is hard to beat.

Kirkland Signature Chicken Bakes

Courtesy of Costco A package of Kirkland Signature Chicken Bakes

Online price: $15.49

If lasagna isn’t your favorite, Kirkland Signature has a host of other hearty, affordable choices, starting with these chicken bakes.

As an American-style, calzone-adjacent treat, chicken bakes are pizza crusts stuffed with chicken, bacon, and cheese. Caesar salad dressing and green onions added some extra zing.

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner

Courtesy of Costco Kraft mac and cheese

Online price: $17.89

Is there anything more comforting than a bowl of mac and cheese? This low-effort meal requires only a splash of milk and a few tablespoons of butter to complete.

Bought in bulk from Costco, each box costs less than $1 apiece.

Azuma Gourmet Seaweed Salad

Courtesy of Costco A package of Azuma Seaweed Salad

Online price: $12.39

Whether you’re already familiar with seaweed salad or you’re looking to add an interesting new flavor to your rotating meal list, seaweed salad is a tasty choice.

Seaweed is packed with nutrients, and it’s also a prime example of umami, one of the five distinct tastes on the human flavor palate.

Salty, savory umami is found throughout most global cuisines, but until you’ve had seaweed with chili pepper, rice vinegar, sesame oil, and sesame seeds, you’re missing out on an innovative twist on this fascinating flavor profile.

Bottom line

dennizn/Adobe holding costco wholesale receipt at costco store

All the Costco items on our list are available online, but there’s a good chance you can find them at your local Costco warehouse for an even cheaper in-store price.

Make sure to leave room on your Costco list (and in your budget) for in-person finds and spur-of-the-moment purchases. You might want to take your top credit card to earn cash back just in case.

You just might find your new favorite go-to meal with any trip, and with those Costco-sized packages, you’ll have enough convenient dinner options to remove take-out from your meal schedule for good.

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Michelle Smith

Michelle Smith has spent a decade writing for and about small businesses. She specializes in all things finance and has written for publications like G2 and SmallBizDaily. When she's not writing for work at her desk, you can usually find her writing for pleasure near large bodies of water.