Currently Wandering » Outdoor Family, Adventure Travel, Simple Living - Family of 5 Traveling the United States in an Airstream.

Items We Still Buy at Costco & Our Costco Connection Magazine Cover

People seem surprised that we have kept our Costco membership even while living in such a tiny space. Either we are crazy, or there is more to Costco items than large, bulk purchases. I prefer the latter explanation.

Truth is, we are probably addicted to some of the items they carry, and even though the packages may be larger than a regular grocery store, its worth squeezing them in for the cost savings in the long run. In addition, sometimes it really just is convenient. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll notice my occasional rant about loathing grocery shopping. I really do. Its very difficult to price shop, build up a pantry, coupon or any other cost saving techniques. When I buy in bulk from Costco, I feel that I’m getting at least a marginally better deal than the grocery store.

Costco is also predictable. While we sometimes can’t find an item (e.g. Dave’s Killer Bread), its usually not difficult to stock up on our regular items. The layouts of the stores are all the same and we know right where to find everything.

We also have a Visa card through Costco. We get 3% back on gas, 2% back on restaurants, and 2% back on travel expenses. We make enough back between the Executive Membership and the Visa to more than pay for the Costco Membership (hello? Have you SEEN our gas bill every month?). Plus, we usually have quite a bit leftover that lends itself to a spending spree sometime in April. I’m sure they planned it that way.

The food court. Seriously one of the cheapest meals for a family of 5 (even if its not exactly healthy).

In celebration of our recent appearance on the cover of Costco Connection magazine, I thought I’d revise and republish our 2014 list of items we typically purchase. Its actually changed quite a bit in that we’ve added a few things we simply can’t live without. Somehow we always find room.

Items We Buy A Lot

Frozen Strawberries (for smoothies, pancakes, and muffins)
Multigrain Tortilla Chips
Cherry Tomatoes
Grapefruit
Cara Cara Oranges
English Cucumbers
Bananas
Organic Spinach
Rotisserie Chicken
Frozen Chicken Breasts
Chicken Apple Sausages
Cheddar Cheese
Greek Yogurt
Kodiak Cakes Flapjacks
Real Maple Syrup
Love Crunch Chocolate Granola
Cereal (Oatmeal Squares, Frosted Mini-Wheats, Cinnamon Toast Crust)
Mixed Nuts
Dave’s Killer Bread when I can find it, Sprouted Honey Wheat Bread when I can’t

Items That Last Us Quite Awhile
Quaker Old Fashioned Oats
Natural Turkey Lunch Meat
Ground Flaxseed
Chia Seeds
Organic Chicken Bullion Base
Butter Quarters (freeze most of these as well)
Honey (the 3 bears one)
Gummy Vitamins
Dove Body Soap
Kirkland Shampoo & Conditioner
Vegan Protein Powder (for everyone but me, I use Shakeology)
Johnny’s Garlic Seasoning Spread
Quinoa and Brown Rice Packets
Fig Bars
Cliff Z Bars
Stretch Island Fruit Strips
Triscuits
Almond Butter
Nutella
Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce
Kirkland Signature Salsa
Coconut Milk
Paper Towels
Single Serving Hummus (I usually freeze more than half of them)
Laughing Cow Cheese Wedges

When We Have Room or Just Occasionally For Fun:
Potstickers
Orange Chicken
Canned Chicken Breast Chunks
Papa Pita’s Greek Pita Flat Bread (found in *almost* every Costco we’ve been to. Except Nevada.)
Cheese Tortellini
Pesto Sauce
Bagels
Coastal Aged Cheddar Cheese (this stuff is seriously AMAZING)
Broccoli Florets (if I plan a whole week’s worth of dinners with broccoli in them)
Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwiches
GoGurt (then we freeze a lot of them)

Items We’ve Given Up on Buying
Avocados (I just can’t nail the ripeness and they usually go to waste)
Toilet Paper
Cheese Sticks (my kids won’t eat them all)
Eggs (as much as we eat them, I can’t fit it in my fridge!)
Milk (only room in the fridge for 1 gallon)
Fruit Snacks (I just don’t like my kids eating them)
Carrots (once again not enough room for such a large bag)
Oatmeal Packets (much to the dismay of my children)

Wow. That is quite the list. I’m sure I forgot a few, but I’ll add more in as I think of them. What are your favorite items to buy at Costco? Anything you can’t live without? Personally, I still jump for joy anytime we can leave the building with a purchase under $100. Tell me I’m not alone?

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  • Malinda - Hi Jess. Love your blog!
    I was at target yesterday and saw nick and Nora Jammie’s for women with air streams and pink flamingos on them. Thought of you. Check them out.
    Safe travels.ReplyCancel

    • Jess - Thanks Malinda! I’ll have to look for them!ReplyCancel

  • Kyle - Your shopping list looks A LOT like ours! With the exception of diapers of course…(we have a two month old and Costco diapers are a great deal. Encouraging to read how much you can still fit in the airstream! I So agree about the Coastal cheddar! I’ve been known to make a trip for ONLY that cheese when we’ve run out. LOL This helped a lot! Thank you! xxReplyCancel

    • Jess - You are welcome! SO glad we are done with diapers. Too many years of buying those at Costco!ReplyCancel

      • Kyle - I bet! So expensive. someday…..hubs wants one more I worry we won’t fit in the airstream ReplyCancel

  • Monahans Sandhill State Park & Lubbock, TX » Currently Wandering - […] We spent 5 days at the KOA and accomplished A LOT of logistics while we were there, including a stop at Costco where we were able to get our hands on a Costco magazine with our faces on the cover! […]ReplyCancel

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