There is plenty to love about Costco, one of the largest membership-based grocery stores in the country. The warehouse boasts an impressive range of affordably-priced, bulk-sized food products, and don’t even get us started on their famous food court hot dogs—only $1.50 for a quarter-pound, all-beef frank with a 20-ounce soda. (Costco co-founder Jim Sinegal was even quoted saying, “If you raise the [price of the] effing hot dog, I will kill you. Figure it out.” A legend, truly.)
This commitment to keep prices low and item quality high is also reflective of Costco’s generally favorable and celebrated brand and work culture. Employees are paid well above minimum wage and the company frequently goes out of its way to contribute to sustainability efforts and various charitable organizations. But one sector of the business that is often and surprisingly overlooked from a consumer and publicity standpoint? Its flourishing bakery section.
Whether you’re on the hunt for bread, cake, cookies, or pie, Costco’s bakery rivals any mainstream grocery store (or, might I venture, French boulangerie?) with its abundance. In fact, some offerings are so delicious and sought-after that they’re frequently sold out and require a special ordering process to have them in time for upcoming events. We’ve rounded up the seven quintessential bakery treats that are more than deserving of your money and appetite. Check them out below and sound off with your favorite Costco baked goods in the comment section.
Editor’s Note: Since these are prepared fresh and planned by Costco’s pastry chefs, some offerings may be seasonal and/or not available at all locations.
Not to sound too hyperbolic, but this 12-inch round that serves 16 people is, hands-down, the best store-bought cheesecake on the market. It is outrageously creamy and dense, with a graham cracker base that keeps each slice sturdy while retaining its moist and crumbly softness. There is also a subtle hint of salt that balances the cake’s sweetness, making it palatable beyond its velvety texture. While we could do without the whipped cream topping (which seems more like an afterthought than a necessity), its decorative tendrils dress up the smooth surface so that it can easily be served as a birthday cake. And frankly, the birthday wish you’ll probably be making is to have more Costco cheesecake.
It’s hard to mess up a danish, but it’s even more difficult to make an already perfect breakfast treat even more outstanding. Somehow Costco has managed to accomplish the impossible with its almond danish, which touts a sweet marzipan filling surrounded by the delicate crunch of sugar-coated puff pastry. We’re confident that one bite—especially if paired with a freshly brewed dark roast coffee—will convince you.
You really can’t go wrong within of Costco’s variety of muffins—they’re softball-sized, don’t skimp on the mix-ins, and are sold by the dozen—but we’re siding with simplicity when it comes to our all-time favorite flavor: corn. For starters, this humble muffin is quite versatile in its use. You can heat one up and serve with a pat of salted butter, chop it into cubes to make cornbread stuffing, or even dice it and bake it to create savory-sweet croutons.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that raspberries are one of the best berries. The tart, ruby red morsels also lend themselves flawlessly to baked confections, providing a harmonious balance between sweet and sour. In the case of the Raspberry Crumble Cookie, these complementary flavors are not only bold and present, but anchored by a butter cookie and streusel that, frankly, would taste just as scrumptious on their own.
A strong runner-up: White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies. Sure, white chocolate is quite polarizing, but not when accompanied by one of Hawaii’s finest exports, the mighty macadamia. The result is sweet, creamy bliss with a wonderfully crisp and crunchy texture that can stand up to white chocolate’s richness.
You don’t have to hop on a plane to Paris for more-buttery-than-normal croissants. These preserve the integrity of the coveted crescent: airy, layered, and yes, they even freeze well. Slice one in half, throw on some scrambled eggs, melted cheese, and bacon, and you’ll never go back.
Costco’s tuxedo chocolate mousse cake deserves a black-tie soiree to celebrate its epicness. The chocolate cake base is topped with chocolate and white chocolate mousse, crunchy brownie chunks, and then coated in chocolate ganache and spiraled decorations. Not even Willy Wonka himself could come up with a confection more cocoa-heavy. And frankly, we wouldn’t want him to. One sliver of this rectangle will satisfy any hankering for chocolate that you have.
You’re going to have to toss this bad boy in the oven yourself, but the minimal effort is worth the gigantic pay-off. Flaky, buttery crust enrobes a rich and silky gravy of tender chicken breast, peas, carrots, and corn. When it comes to good old-fashioned comfort food, this meal takes the cake—err, pie—and is worthy of a spot in your weekly dinner rotation.
Do you have any Costco favorites from the bakery aisle? Let us know in the comments below!