Grocery

17 Costco Frozen Foods You Should Be Stocking Your Freezer With

Go big—and stay home. Grocery-store whisperer Katie Workman did some sleuthing in our favorite warehouse.

October  4, 2020
Photo by James Ransom

I feel a huge sense of satisfaction when my freezer is full. In fact, I feel the same way about a well-stocked freezer as I do about a well-stocked pantry: peace of mind, building blocks for dinners at the ready, and fewer trips to the store.

Yes, some of the things in my freezer are things I’ve made and tucked away for another day (mini banana bread loaves and bolognese sauce and whatnot). But a lot of my freezer real estate is devoted to raw ingredients and some prepared foods, as well. Stocking up on quality ingredients at terrific prices essentially means that when I am meal planning for the week and don’t have time to go to the store, then I can just “grocery shop” in my own freezer!

So in the freezer-stocking spirit, here are some of the best frozen foods you can score at Costco—from frozen meats and seafood to Kirkland frozen pizzas and all the vanilla ice cream you could ever want.


Best Costco Frozen Foods

1. Shrimp Galore

There are all kinds of sizes and versions of shrimp available in Costco's freezer aisle. And frozen shrimp is one of the foods I keep in my freezer at all times: They defrost quickly, they're of excellent quality, and with a couple pounds of frozen shrimp at your disposal, you can entertain in style at a moment’s notice.

Join The Conversation

Top Comment:
“While I buy my fresh salmon from Costco, I also like the frozen Trident Wild Pacific Pink Salmon Burgers (wild caught) in the freezer section. There are 12 burgers in the 1.36 kg package (3 lbs). There’re great as a burger cooked on the grill or cooked in the oven and served with your choice of sides. For a quick meal in the winter when there’s ‘nothing to eat’ and I remember I have these in the freezer, I put these in the oven to cook and serve with baked beans and a salad. ”
— SandraH
Comment

If you want cooked frozen shrimp, you can find 2 pounds of the stuff (about 50 to 70 count) in the Costco freezer aisle for around $15.

Recipe Ideas: Fresh Linguine With Shrimp & Peas in a Pink Cream Sauce, Spicy Lemon Shrimp Over Rice

2. Wild Fish

Wild fish is super flavorful and sustainable, as well—two very good reasons to stash some in the freezer. Plus, all of these varieties are individually wrapped for freshness and total convenience; pull out just the amount you need. You can pick up a pack of individually wrapped halibut, cod, and wild Alaskan salmon fillets, as well as 3-pound packs of wild mahi-mahi and wild sockeye salmon.

Recipe Ideas: Salmon With Polenta & Warm Tomato Vinaigrette, Cod With Simplest Fresh Herb Sauce

3. Big Scallops

Two pounds of raw sea scallops for under $30? That is a little gold mine to keep in the freezer, not least because they cook up in a jiffy.

4. Ready-to-Cook Crab Cakes

Or take the immediate-gratification route and pick up a pack of Phillips Crab Cakes—they even sell a 36-count mini version that's perfect for an easy appetizer or quick snack.

5. Lasagna

If you need a crowd-pleaser that can feed a lot of people on a budget, then you should make a beeline to the lasagna section. Costco's Kirkland-brand lasagna is all-natural, made from 100 percent ground beef chuck (paging Ron Swanson), vine-ripened tomatoes, and whole-milk mozzarella and ricotta cheeses. Oh, and did I mention that for about $15 you get a whopping 6-pound tray? Yep, that's sure to feed everyone.

6. Pizzas

Then, of course, there are pizzas. Get the classic Kirkland cheese pizza (it comes in a four-pack), Sabatasso’s gluten-free four-cheese pizza (you'll get three), Motor City Pizza Company's Detroit-style pepperoni deep-dish pizza, or, if you’re knee-deep in the cauliflower culture, Milton’s margherita and roasted vegetable cauliflower-crust pizzas.

7. Kosher Meat

Not all Costcos carry these, but in areas with high demand for kosher meat, you might find:

  • London broil
  • Angus ground beef
  • Beef brisket
  • Minute steaks
  • Angus boneless rib eye

8. Frozen Burgers & Patties

For summer grilling season and beyond, Costco has plenty of between-the-bun options in their freezer aisle for pretty much everyone. Options range from 18-count packs of Kirkland sirloin beef patties and bison burgers to wild-caught Alaskan salmon burgers and Beyond Meat's plant-based burger patties.

9. Bring on the Chicken

If you've got kids (or adults) in the house who'll eat nothing but chicken tenders, stock up at Costco on their 3-pound packs of Rocky breaded chicken breast tenders, which are free of antibiotics and hormones. Chicken wings more your thing? Costco sells 10-pound packages of Kirkland chicken wings so you'll never run out. If you're looking for more of a blank canvas, go for their boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins.

10. Costco's Famous Chicken Bake

If you're one of those people who goes to Costco just to pick up a warm, cheesy chicken bake from the food counter, A) you're not alone, and B) you can save yourself a trip next time. Costco now sells a frozen microwaveable version (six in each package) complete with smoky bacon, that signature Caesar dressing, and, of course, a perfectly crispy-soft crust.

Photo by Costco

11. Vegetables for Days

In terms of bang for your buck, frozen vegetables can be a great place to save some cash. The vegetables are frozen immediately after harvesting, so you can know that you’re getting peak freshness (true of frozen fruit, as well; see below).

There are a lot of reasons you might want to have a stash of frozen vegetables on hand, and virtually endless ways to use them. Costco seems to have thought of many of these already! House brand Kirkland has all of the following, plus more: 5 pounds of organic mixed vegetables; 5 1/2 pounds of mixed stir-fry vegetables (broccoli, sugar snap peas, carrots, mushrooms, red peppers, water chestnuts, and onions); and a Normandy-style vegetable blend (broccoli, cauliflower, multicolored carrots). Not to mention 4-pound packages of nothing but broccoli.

12. And Fruit!

If you’re a smoothie person or into fruit desserts, then this is just smart fruit management for a multitude of reasons: You always have fruit on hand, you save money, and you waste nothing (because you’re using only what you need).

A few store visits revealed 4 pounds of Happy Village organic cherries, 4 pounds of Wyman’s wild blueberries, 3 pounds of organic dragon fruit cubes, and an organic tropical blend from Sunrise Growers (mango, strawberries, and pineapple). Clovis Farms makes an organic “Super Smoothie” fruit blend (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, kale, spinach, and bananas), which retails for a little over $10, and there's an organic “Supreme Berry Blend” from Townsend.

On the Kirkland front: 3 pounds of organic blueberries; 5 pounds of pineapple chunks; 6 pounds of whole strawberries; and 4 pounds of the three-berry blend.

Recipe Ideas: Watermelon Strawberry Smoothie, Blintzes With Blueberry Sauce, Simple Berry Fool

13. The Most Popular (& Versatile) Ice Cream Flavor of All

C’mon, you know we’re talking about vanilla. Yes, we love all of the trendy flavors, but when it comes time to top your scoop of peach cobbler, pear tarte tatin, or blueberry galette, then you know what you want. Not to mention when you’re ready to à-la-mode that slice of apple pie. Two half-gallon containers of Kirkland super premium vanilla ice cream (made with pure vanilla) is yours for about $12.

Recipe Ideas: The Best Streusel Apple Pie Ever

14. More Frozen Treats

Beyond vanilla ice cream, there are plenty of other sweet possibilities in the Costco freezer aisles. Think: 40-count(!) Nestlé variety packs, including vanilla sandwiches, cookie dipped bars, and Drumstick cones; Kirkland and Häagen-Dazs ice cream bars; and It's It ice cream sandwiches.

15. Breakfast Favorites

Costco's freezer aisle isn't just all dinner and dessert—it's got breakfast covered, too. From 24-count packs of Krusteaz frozen Belgian waffles to spinach and egg white frittatas from Veggies Made Great, not to mention all that frozen fruit, there are tons of mix-and-match options.

16. Frozen Dumplings for All

Anyone who has ever ordered quality dumplings at a restaurant knows that they can get pretty pricey, pretty fast. But that’s because dumplings are the best. At Costco, you can go big—and stay home.

The Bibigo brand has a lot to choose from: organic chicken and vegetable pot stickers come in a 3-pound bag (which was discounted by $3 when I was last there); 36 big steamed dumplings; and mini chicken wontons. Spicy fried seaweed rolls, a unique offering that caught my eye, await me in the freezer tonight (50 ounces for under $10).

17. And finally...ice!

Not all Costcos sell ice, but those that do sell a 20-pound bag for about $2. Hard to beat for filling up those coolers and blending together your favorite cocktails.

Recipes: Frozen Pomegranate & Citrus Cocktail, Orange White Wine Campari Sangria

What frozen items do you stock up on when you go to Costco? Different stores sell different things, so tell us what we’re missing in the comments below!

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  • Gargen
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Author of The Mom 100 Cookbook and themom100.com blog. A New Yorker, cook, and mom, I don't sit still very much.

92 Comments

Gargen February 1, 2021
Hi does an article dated 2020 have comments from 2019. Went shopping yesterday and couldn’t find many of these products. We did find beautiful great quality Fresh Monkfish!
 
Sam February 1, 2021
With them, you never know. I belong to a Costco products & reviews group (not affiliated with Costco) on Facebook. Many of the products discussed are unavailable at my Costco, so many products must be regionalized.
 
Imnotarobot January 30, 2021
My fave things to buy from Costco is
Frozen Salmon patties 12 for $16
Organic lemonade 2 half gallons $6
...which I use for my mixer in my killer margaritas
4 pack of frozen pizzas for $10
Fresh Giant pizzas to go $10
Organic eggs
Great coffee
I also like selection of organic veggies
I like the design of store layout, clean and very organized, and friendly staff, not like sams, thier staff is like rejects from Walmart.
One more thing definitely like the attached liquor store next door, where I get my 100% agave tequila, large bottle only $18.99
I bought my tv, laptop, and video camera from there too, very satisfied customer.
 
Imnotarobot January 30, 2021
My fave things to buy from Costco is
Frozen Salmon patties 12 for $16
Organic lemonade 2 half gallons $6
...which I use for my mixer in my killer margaritas
4 pack of frozen pizzas for $10
Fresh Giant pizzas to go $10
Organic eggs
Great coffee
I also like selection of organic veggies
I like the design of store layout, clean and very organized, and friendly staff, not like sams, thier staff is like rejects from Walmart.
One more thing definitely like the attached liquor store next door, where I get my 100% agave tequila, large bottle only $18.99
 
Imnotarobot January 30, 2021
My fave things to buy from Costco is
Frozen Salmon patties 12 for $16
Organic lemonade 2 half gallons $6
...which I use for my mixer in my killer margaritas
4 pack of frozen pizzas for $10
Fresh Giant pizzas to go $10
Organic eggs
Great coffee
I also like selection of organic veggies
I like the design of store layout, clean and very organized, and friendly staff, not like sams, thier staff is like rejects from Walmart.
 
Imnotarobot January 30, 2021
My fave things to buy from Costco is
Frozen Salmon patties 12 for $16
Organic lemonade 2 half gallons $6
...which I use for my mixer in my killer margaritas
4 pack of frozen pizzas for $10
Giant pizzas to go $10
Organic eggs
Great coffee
I also like selection of organic veggies
I like the design of store layout, clean and very organized, and friendly staff, not like sams, thier staff is like rejects from Walmart.
 
Candaceelise January 29, 2021
I'm so surprised of all the negative Costco feedback! I rarely have had anything of poor quality. Their avocado oil brand is one of the only brands that were tested to be ACTUALLY made of avocado oil. Their shrimp and other frozen fish never have that off scent that every other grocery store brand I've ever had does. I can get a 12 lb bag of king arthur flour for 6 bucks. That's a smacking deal in comparison to everywhere else. The employees are always helpful and cheerful. And their return policy is wonderful.
 
KG G. January 29, 2021
This article was disappointing. Sounded like a big “hey shop at Costco... they have everything” ad. Rather than a somewhat general list that basically names categories of food they have, I was expecting to get only specific product recommendations like I see in the Trader Joe’s posts. Also— always skeptical about the meat and seafood there, too!
 
LHFlynn January 29, 2021
The meat and the seafood are consistently good at Costco. We buy our rib eyes, racks of lamb, even osso buco there. Furthermore, the shrimp and scallops are well priced and so convenient. When it comes to fish, I make sure to only buy the wild and not the farmed. I'd like to echo the comments on oil, as well. The avocado oil is first class and Kirkland EVVO has been lauded many times over, as has its organic chicken broth. My only complaint is the plastic bottles, but I guess glass would make them heavier to transport.
 
Ed H. January 26, 2021
Most of the items at Costco are temporary at best, and Sam's Club beats "Kirklands" prices almost all the time, especially for fresh fruit and vegetables in our region. Their Synchrony credit card also gives you 5% back on any gas purchase anywhere. And two pounds of scallops for $40? How about $15 or less at Sprouts.
 
AlwaysLookin January 26, 2021
Here's some Costco Pricing info - .99, Everyday item, .49 - Manufacturer offer, .79 - Test item or one off, .97 - Managers special or DISCONTINUED ITEM, .00 or .88, Limited Stock left. I just joined Sam's for their Gas as it's closer to my house, looking forward for the items you noted.
 
Lynnie January 29, 2021
@Ed H. - respectfully, that is not true! I shop Costco heavily and "most of the items at Costco" are NOT temporary. IF they sell, they stay, except for a few holiday treats (see below.)

ALL the items listed in this article are regular Costco features, not "limited time" as you suggest. I know because I am a big time Costco shopper and I buy pretty much ALL the things listed in the article in a regular rotation ... even the ice.

And, Costco has other awesome non-frozen items as we know. Ours here in N. Cali have been featuring some limited edition artisan varieties of mezcal; they always sell 2 lb. blocks of Valbreso French Feta for $7.39 (ahem - Whole Foods sells the same exact cheese for $14.99/lb) and Cypress Grove Humboldt Fog soft-ripened goat cheese in 1 lb. mini-wheels for $19.99 lb. (a N. Cali cheese obsession) not to mention ridiculously great prices on Manchego and Comte cheeses, and on organic fresh ravioli, and on Aidell's artisan chicken sausages.

A featured limited edition item is the Kirkland Eggnog Liqueur in a huge bottle full of bourbon, dark rum and brandy for $9.99 - comes in late September and by late December it is impossible to find (along with a locally produced 1/2 gallon of artisan, non-alcohol, organic eggnog for a ridiculous prices of $4.99 - which is sold by the quart at other grocers for $6.99-$7.99/qt.).

They have wonderful ducks - sometimes fresh but available always frozen. Those Kirkland frozen organic blueberries mentioned in the article are an incredible deal ... SOOOOOO much more I could list. ... and my 4% rebate on gas is a gold mine - I have a 90 mile r/t commute and know all the Costcos between home and work - easily accessible access to great, inexpensive gas.

So, yeah, thanks - I will pass on Sam's Club and stick with what is tried and true at Costco.
 
LHFlynn January 29, 2021
I forgot to mention the cheese above -- and yes, the Humboldt Fog is excellent and well priced. I've never seen duck breasts though. I wonder if that's a regional item.
 
Ed H. February 1, 2021
Blah blah blah. You do realize everything you just said is actually better and cheaper at Sam's, don't you? LOL.
I get 5% back on my Sam's card for gas anywhere. That's 25% more than yours. I could list all the things Kirkland's has replaced with their own inferior quality ersatz brand, or just stopped carrying altogether, but what's the point? You are arguing from a point of willful ignorance, so trying to educate you would be futile. So why should I give examples, like how Kirkland's stopped carrying Atkins products, or how they subbed Talking Rain Sparkling Water with their undrinkable Kirkland's brand, or how they replaced the wonderful jars of sundried tomatoes with "Kirkland's Brand OVEN-DRIED ROMA Tomatoes" Or my personal favorite: the jalapeño-artichoke dip that went from a cream cheese base to "Greek yogurt," which made it sour, wet and gloppy, like something you'd find in your disposal. And your Kirkland's in your area maybe be vastly superior to the stores we have here, just as some Sam's in certain areas are much nicer than others. And there are great buys at both places, but most of the things've I used to purchase at Costco over the past DECADES are no longer available at Kirkland's, having been replaced by inferior Kirkland's junk (Planter's or Blue Diamond nuts, anyone?), or replaced with overpriced "organic" stuff (like a half gallon of whipping cream for $10 [who needs that much] that spoils in a week), or replaced with suspect foreign foods in an attempt to attract the burgeoning foreign communities in our population.
Enjoy your Kirkland's. I will too (the Cambozola cheese they sell there is awesome). But I will save a lot more, have better selection of things I actually need, and get better produce and meat for a lot less at Sam's.
 
Terri A. January 22, 2021
Those Chicken Bakes looked really tasty until I read the nutrition info... 0.0
 
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Elizabeth K. October 11, 2020
Last time I checked, their shrimp is foreign, Thailand or Vietnam. Also the same with Phillips crab? Not for me!
 
Owen L. January 23, 2021
So you’re afraid of seafood from a region that is renowned worldwide for their amazing seafood and healthy diets and lifestyles?
 
LHFlynn January 29, 2021
It's unlikely you'll be able to buy shrimp from American waters. It comes mostly from Asia and Ecuador.
 
Deborah B. January 30, 2021
Any shrimp coming from Vietnam or Thailand is farmed. I’ve been disappointed that Costco does not carry wild caught shrimp at all. The wild stuff isn’t that hard to find at your local grocery store; it’s much tastier and better for the environment
 
Imnotarobot January 30, 2021
Our Cosco, in Austin Texas, has wild Argentina shrimp and they are great
 
cmtyree October 9, 2020
I have found Lobster knuckles and claws at Costco for $14.99 a bag in the last few weeks. Easy luxury in the air fryer. I have 4 bags ready for the holidays!
 
Kestrel October 8, 2020
Articles like this make me feel like there are two different worlds we live in.....one where it is seen as perfectly okay to buy all kinds of fish and factory farmed meat, and one where we know the reality behind those foods. Read THE OUTLAW OCEAN by Ian Urbina and you might decide against ever eating fish again. I wonder where the shrimp at Costco comes from. And surely everyone knows the horrors of factory farmed meat by now.
 
Mm October 8, 2020
I think most of the foods from Costco are not health promoting for people or the planet. Sorry to be a downer but learning about health and our food is key especially now.
 
Tbe October 11, 2020
A must read!
 
Shelley D. January 29, 2021
Costco sells more organic products than any other company in the US. They also pay their employees a living wage and provide health insurance.
 
Deborah B. January 30, 2021
This is one of the many reasons I like shopping at Costco.
 
tastysweet October 8, 2020
I am not sure, but the frozen shrimp at Costco might be from Asia. Not sure. I only buy frozen local Key West shrimp. Haven't tried the frozen Cod. I will try that one.
 
Karen January 29, 2021
Frozen sea bass is excellent.
 
BoulderGalinTokyo October 8, 2020
Certainly different items I would love to have access to! The only frozen vegetable we buy is the frozen sliced avocado. At first, I thought it wouldn't be good defrosted, then put on a salad -not the best- but there are a lot of other uses for smashed or heated avocado. Also, I don't have to peel or throw out a damaged, bad one.
 
Gordon October 7, 2020
Costco has some very good Kirkland branded product. But much of it comes up deficient in the flavor department, I guess people overlook taste when price is important. I prefer Sams Club and BJ's as they carry BRAND name items in addition to their own branded itemds. But for a single person, or even a couple, it does not pay to shop there anymore for many items. They spoil and then I throw out food. Costco is perfect for the overcomsumptive person. Even if you shop with friends to spead out the amount of goods you purchase, it is just to much.
 
laura January 30, 2021
Gordon, the quantities are just right for families.
 
bjm September 21, 2020
We regularly purchase their Scallops. During one of their Seafood Specials, I asked the attendant about whether the scallops were dry or wet packed. She did not know but went to someone in the meat/seafood management area and was able to get the answer for me. They are dry packed and not injected with that vile solution found in so many frozen scallop brands. They are wonderful!!!
 
prajwal M. November 6, 2019
great work. just loved it
costco
 
AlwaysLookin October 28, 2019
I wonder if Costco doesn't have the assortment of FROZEN meats that you mention when they have a Full-Service Meat Dept?
 
les C. October 9, 2020
Not a "full service" meat dept. they will not special cut anything or grind meat for making chili.Want a thick cut steak? They wont do it.
 
abbyarnold October 27, 2019
I eat Bibigo chicken cilantro wonton for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack. I boil up some Better Than Bullion (half the cost at Costco) and throw in a few handfuls of wonton along with spinach or bokchoy. Top it with some soy sauce or ponzu and a squeeze of lemon or lime. They also fry up into a nice appetizer for unplanned guests. Running out of frozen wonton is what gets me to Costco!
 
beth January 22, 2021
If only they continued to carry the "all vegetable" dumplings!! They were wonderful and I always had two bags in the freezer.