Safety Recall: Costco US Chicken Salad Linked to E.Coli Infections

November 25th, 2015 by Kimberly · 3 Comments

I love the Costco rotisserie chicken salad, and I know a lot of other people do too.  Unfortunately, in the last few days it has been linked to several E.coli infections across multiple states.  At least 19 people, across seven states, have been infected with E.coli as a result of eating the chicken salad from Costco.  The source of the contamination hasn’t been identified yet, but Costco is working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), and CDC to identify it as quickly as possible.

Food contaminated with E.coli 0157:H7 may not look or smell spoiled. Consumption of food contaminated with this bacteria my cause serious and potentially life-threatening illnesses. Symptoms include severe abdominal pain and bloody diarrhoea. Some people may have seizures or strokes and some may need blood transfusions and kidney dialysis. Others may live with permanent kidney damage. In severe cases of illness, people may die.

According to the CDC infections linked to the chicken salad have been reported in Montana, Utah, Colorado, California, Missouri, Virginia and Washington.  Two individuals have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, or HUS, a type of kidney failure that can lead to permanent organ damage.  So, as you can imagine, this is nothing to mess around with.

Costco stopped selling and producing the chicken salad as of November 20, immediately after it was notified by federal health officials of the link with the E.coli infections.  However, infections from early November have been linked to chicken salad purchased as far back as the end of October, on the 25th, so this has been an issue for about a month.  If you have purchased the chicken salad and still have some of it in your fridge, do not eat it and just throw it away, even if you’ve had some and haven’t gotten ill.  If you still have some, you should return it for a refund from Costco.

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Costco US is CLOSED for Thanksgiving (November 26, 2015)

November 24th, 2015 by Kimberly · No Comments

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Costco is CLOSED on Thanksgiving day (Thursday, November 26, 2015).  They’re not just opening late, or even open for just a few hours.  Amazingly, they’ve decided that their employees need a whole day off and that people can live without shopping for a day too.  However, they are open up until Wednesday and naturally there are plenty of great things to pick up for your big feast, for instance, the pumpkin pie.  Where else can you get a really great 10″ pumpkin pie, that you didn’t have to make, for under $7.00?  So, if you need to pick up some last minute items from Costco to complete your Thanksgiving Day preparations, you’ve got to get over there in the few couple of days!

If you’re one of those people that plan on getting up well before the crack of dawn on Friday, let’s say 4 am, you’re not going to find Costco open, no matter how much you knock on the door or pace around the parking lot.  You’ll need to spend those early hours shopping other places.  Costco will be opening up extra early on Friday (a.k.a. Black Friday) at 9 am; that’s a whole extra hour of shopping time. Don’t forget that they’ve got a special coupon book just for the Thanksgiving weekend too.  If you’ve got to be shopping really early but don’t feel like hassling with the crowds, then spend some quality time shopping on for all of their great Black Friday deals (while supplies last, so log on early).  So, I say, sleep in and then go to Costco at a civilized hour!

Have a Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Holiday hours for Costco US:

  • Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 26, 2015, CLOSED
  • Friday, November 27, 2015, Open 9:00 AM – 8:30 PM

Special Daily Holiday Hours for Costco US through Saturday, December 19, 2015:

  • Monday – Friday: 10:00 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Saturday: 9:30 AM – 7:00 PM
  • Sunday: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM

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Costco US Thanksgiving Weekend Coupon Book: November 27 – 29, 2015

November 23rd, 2015 by Kimberly · No Comments

Costco US has a lot of coupon books going on right now, so be sure that you make the most of these savings.  The Thanksgiving Weekend coupon book starts on Black Friday, November 27, as well as the Saturday and Sunday following Thanksgiving too; it runs November 27 – 29, 2015 but really just while supplies last.  And don’t forget that Costco, like most retailers, will be opening early on Friday, November 27 at 9 am and closing at 8.30 pm.  Since the discounts in this coupon book are only available while supplies last, it might be a good idea to get there early on Friday if there’s something you really, really want.  And of course, there are even more deals to be had at, with the added advantage of no lines, no parking, and you can start shopping whenever you want on Thanksgiving day, November 26, 2015.

Costco US Thanksgiving Weekend Coupon Book: November 27 - 29, 2015

Costco US Thanksgiving Weekend Coupon Book: November 27 – 29, 2015

In this coupon book, there are 36 coupons that you can use in the warehouses for pretty impressive savings, all of which are Instant Savings deals.  There are also 27 great holiday savings deals that you will be able to find only at  All of these coupons are only valid while supplies last; no rain checks!!  I’ve uploaded a copy of the Costco US Thanksgiving Weekend Coupon Book 2015 PDF so that you can browse through it now if you haven’t picked one up.   You can also view the Black Friday warehouse deals at the Costco US website. There’s something for everyone in this coupon collection, I think, so be sure to check it out.

As you would expect there are plenty of electronics, computers, cameras and things like that with coupons or online deals in the book.  This coupon book doesn’t seem to be quite as electronics/television heavy as they sometimes are at this time of year, which I think is great.  Of course, there are still plenty of good deals for things like that too.   However, since there are nice deals for everything from an Xbox to a fresh pork loin, you will certainly find something that is right for you and your holiday shopping needs.  Here are just a couple of stand-out deals to me:

  • Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal Plus Upright Vacuum Cleaner, $180.00 off, final price $389.99; limit 5.  This is an amazingly huge savings with this coupon.  If you’ve been wanting one of these and drooling over them for months and months but just couldn’t bring yourself to pay the big price for it, this is the perfect opportunity for you.  I’ve heard from several people who have Dyson vacuum cleaners that they really are the best vacuum cleaner for keeping your carpets and upholstery super clean and free from even a trace of pet hair, dust, or dirt.  They do such a good job of cleaning, plus they are lightweight and move so easily, you might not hate to vacuum so much anymore if you have one of these.  I really want one, but of course, a teeny tiny version.  This is certainly one of the things that I think could fly off the shelves because of the incredibly large discount.  So, if you’ve got your heart set on getting one of these, I would make sure to be at Costco when they open on Friday.  I also just want to point out that this comes with all of the tools and a bag to store them in; apparently, there’s a version for about the same price that doesn’t have the tools and bag so be sure you price compare the right one.   If you can’t make it, or don’t want to face going to your local Costco store, you can also get this deal at
  • Dyson V6 Motorhead Plus Cordless Rechargable Stick Vacuum Cleaner, $125.00 off, final price less than $245 (based on price at; limit 5.   If the full sized vacuum cleaner isn’t necessary, then you might prefer this nice cordless version from Dyson.  I’ve been debating with myself about getting one of these for a while now and think even I would be persuaded by the $125.00 savings.  I love the idea of a cordless vacuum cleaner because I hate being tethered to an outlet and always having to move the cord out of the way.  Why is it that the cord always seems to be in the way, no matter if you just moved it or not?  One of the other benefits of this one is that you can convert it into a handheld cleaner too, which would make it great for cleaning furniture, stairs, or even your car.  Like the big Dyson, this one also comes with a tool set.  The bad news is that it can only clean for about 20 minutes on a charge.  This deal is also available at if you can’t or don’t want to make it to your local Costco.
  • Battery Tender 3.0 AMP Battery Charger and Maintainer, $8.00 off, final price of $29.99; limit 2. I know this isn’t like a WOW gift or anything, but they’re very useful.  I have a Battery Tender Junior for my motorcycle (which I highly recommend for anyone with a bike that won’t be riding it in the winter) and it is a great way of keeping your battery charged and in good shape during a period when you won’t be using your vehicle regularly.  The Battery Tender has a  four-step charging program (initialization, bulk charge, absorption mode and float mode) that allows for optimization of battery power, without overcharging.  Once it is done charging, it automatically switches to float/maintenance voltage so that your battery will be ready when you need it and won’t be at risk of overcharging (which isn’t good as you can imagine).  This is the perfect thing to pick up for any vehicle you plan to not drive or ride during the inhospitable winter months.  I’m a big fan to the Battery Tender and think that they are an ideal way to keep your batteries charged and ready, even when you’re not going to be taking your car, bike, lawnmower, or whatever out anytime soon.  I’ve had mine for years and it always worked well and kept my bike ready to go when I was (obviously, it wasn’t on the bike when it was in storage but it is back on it now).
  • Eneloop Rechargeable Batteries and Charger, $8.00 off; limit 10.  If you find that you just can’t get away from needing batteries for things like flashlights, remotes, toys, or whatever, you really might want to consider the Eneloop rechargeable batteries.  My mom has some of these and has found that they work really well and obviously, it cuts down on the expense of buying batteries all of the time and you don’t get stuck with things not working until you can get new batteries.  The package at Costco comes with the charger unit as well as eight AA and four AAA batteries, as well as two C and D battery spacers.  You can re-charge each of the batteries up to 2100 times, which should keep you powered for a number of years.  The charger can accept four batteries, in pairs (as in, you need at least two batteries of the same size charging) at a time.  I think this is a great way to cut down on the waste from buying batteries all of the time, plus it is much more convenient.
  • Fitbit Flex Wireless Activity and Sleep Monitor Wristband, $23.00 off, final price $74.99; limit 10.   This might be a great item to pick up for yourself, or someone else that wants one (though I am always weary of giving fitness gifts to people as it could send an unkind message).  You can use it to track how much you are up and moving around during the day and help you to meet your fitness goals.  I think these could be a really useful tool in getting and staying fit.  And as we all know, that is something that almost everyone strives for at the beginning of a new year.  This isn’t really a fun gift, but if it helps people become healthier, then that is the gift that keeps on giving.  I’ve known a few people who have these, or similar fitness bands and have found them so useful and have used them to increase their activity level by just making a few easy changes.  I think the savings of $23.00 makes this a fair price too.

Those are just a couple of things that I wanted to point out, they’re not really exciting things but are great value.  There are also some nice little savings on PJs and thermal shirts for men and women too that are worth considering.  And don’t forget that you can shop on November 26th (actual Thanksgiving Day) at, but you’ll have to wait until November 27 at 9 am to take advantage of the deals at your local warehouse.


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Costco UK Coupon Book: November 23 – December 13, 2015

November 21st, 2015 by Kimberly · No Comments

The new Costco UK coupon book starts on Monday, November 23 and runs until mid-December, the 13th.  In this new coupon book there is a respectable £730.00 in savings, which is just a tiny bit less than the previous book.  It seems like there are a number of these that will be great for anyone planning a holiday party, including lots of alcoholic beverages.

Costco UK Coupon Book: November 23 - December 13, 2015

Costco UK Coupon Book: November 23 – December 13, 2015

I’ve uploaded the new Costco UK Coupon Book PDF (or view it in the Google PDF viewer).  If you didn’t get your book or never do, you should stop by Customer Service and make sure that they have all of your mailing information correct and that you have allowed them permission to send you things in the mail.  Also, while you’re there, ask them for a copy of the latest book if they didn’t hand you one when you walked in the store.  In the UK they print the coupons on both sides of the pages, without the codes, and they just automatically deduct them after they ring up your items.  I love this method of couponing and I’m glad to see that it seems all Costco locations in the world are following suit.  I do still find it useful to have a copy so I know what to look for because I don’t always notice the signs that they’ve posted to let you know what has a coupon.  Of course, they often hand you a copy of the coupon book when you walk in the store or have them sitting there so you can grab one as you enter. I usually download a copy of the PDF to my phone before I go to the store so that I can easily reference it while shopping.  If you sign up to receive emails from, they will send you an email to let you know when the new coupon book is available online, usually the weekend before the new book starts.  Since they now post the coupons on the Costco UK website, you can always download a copy of the latest coupon book from there or you can find a link to it on the Warehouse Offers webpage.

If you are looking for a great gift for the iTunes shopper in your life, you can get a nice 15% discount off a four pack of £15.00 iTunes gift cards.  So, instead of paying the full face value of £60.00 for the four cards, you’ll just pay £46.74.  This might even be a good “gift” for yourself.  I’m actually considering buying these because we do like to buy music sometimes, and this would be a good way to get a bit of a discount.

For years I have had a love of Walkers Shortbread, so I have a very hard time getting my shortbread love in check, and Costco doesn’t make it any easier when they have coupons for it.  You can save £1.50 off a 900 gram box of Walkers Scottish Biscuit Assortment.  They have six different varieties in the box, including the chocolate with Belgian chocolate chunks, chocolate chunk shortbread, and the plain buttery shortbread.  Yum!  After the discount, the box is just £3.49, which is practically just forcing you to buy them.  All of these are the perfect accompaniment to a cut of tea, coffee, or hot cocoa on a cold wintry day.

It’s quickly become that time of year when your shoes and boots are wet and messy when you come in from outside.  So, this is the perfect time to get some absorbent door mats to keep the mess contained and your floors clean.  You can save £2.00 off a two pack of washable cotton door mats; just £9.58 with VAT.  I have these mats and love them.  We’ve had them for about five years I think and they still look great, even though I don’t do much to keep them that way.  The cotton fibres are surprisingly absorbent and really great for wicking away water, snow, general grubbiness, from the soles of your shoes.  They’re not cute or pretty, but they are very effective and will keep your carpet or floors much cleaner this winter.

If you are having a big holiday party, Costco really is your friend.  I think if I were having a party this year, I would be very tempted to get the 3 kilogram half a Parma Ham Leg for £31.99 after £8.00 off.  I’ve always wanted one of these but it’s clearly not practical for any situation where you don’t have a number of people to share this with, as well as a place to store it.  I know there is a special little stand you are supposed to have with your Parma Ham, but I imagine there’s a way to get around that.  If the Parma Ham isn’t quite what you had in mind, there’s also a wide variety of discounts for adult beverages.  There are discounts for beer, wine, vodka, port, whisky, and wine.  So whatever you want, they’ve probably got a deal on it right now.  I personally like the cute little mini keg of Warsteiner Pilsner for £2.50 off.  The cute little keg holds 5 litres and is £11.98 with VAT after the discount.  I’ve got nothing to contribute about the quality of this, but the little keg is great.  We had some of these at a party a few years ago and everyone loved it (ours held root beer though).

There are a number of other great deals in this latest bunch of coupons.  Also, don’t forget that Costco UK online will have special Black Friday deals next week.  If you are interested in these, I suggest you sign up online to get an email with the latest deals.   Here’s what they say about it:

We’ll be releasing a new batch of Hot Buys everyday during the week leading up to Black Friday culminating in 3 waves of deals on Black Friday. Stock will be limited so we encourage you to sign up to receive our offers and be the first to know and not miss our Hot Buys! Expect great savings across a wide category selection in addition to our unbeatable everyday pricing! Bookmark this page for quick access to our Hot Buys as they go live!

If you miss these, or they aren’t for you, don’t forget to check for great deals on lots of other things for the holidays.


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Guest Post: Shopping at Costco Australia

November 19th, 2015 by Kimberly · No Comments

{In honor of the new Costco Australia location in Moorabbin (8 Chifley Drive, Moorabbin Airport, VIC 3194) that opened on November 18, I thought a post from Rick Vanover, frequent guest poster and Twitter minder, about his recent shopping experience at the Melbourne Costco seemed fitting.   And congrats to Costco Australia on the opening of their eighth location!}

Kirkland Signature Big Red Cups

Kirkland Signature Big Red Cups

Who can’t use the big red party cup?! This cup is available in the United States warehouses as well, but is offered at AUD 18.99 and is very practical for anyone hosting a get together. Myself, I keep these in our basement for the kids to drink water from the sink down there. It’s great as they are non-breakable and sturdy. For those concerned about the environmental impact of a large number of plastic cups, these are recycling code 6 (in the common category of recyclables – you don’t want to generate a lot of 7,9 or “others”).

The 240 count package is surely a good deal and will last you quite a while. The Kirkland Signature brand has a slightly different “ridge design” than ones I’ve seen in US warehouses; namely the Dixie brand with a more classic “red party cup” theme (think of college times). Either way, I find these very handy and recommend buying them for a party and keeping them in stock for when you need them next.

Pure Blonde Lager

Pure Blonde Lager

I love finding a good beer (see recent review of the Sierra Nevada fall collection) and that endeavor is even better when I find it at Costco! In the Melbourne warehouse, I was happy to see a 24 pack of 355 ML bottles of Pure Blond offered for AUD 39.79. Pure Blonde is a really nice beer, and it’s marketed as a low carbohydrate beer. In fact, I didn’t even notice that until I read the case label at the Costco warehouse.

Pure Blond is an Australian beer that is really light in all elements ( aroma, taste, bitterness and aftertaste) and pairs well with almost any situation. Whenever I’m in Australia, it’s my go-to beer, and if I called Australia home I’d surely bring this case home with me. Now, I’d love to walk into my warehouse here in the states and see Pure Blonde offered but I don’t think that’s going to happen. If you see this one in the Australia warehouses, give it a look!

Charlotte's Macarons

Charlotte’s Macarons

MACARONS. MACARONS. MACARONS. This is an item I’m glad I actually DON’T have in my warehouse, I’d buy them too often if I did. I did appreciate that they had an assorted flavor package that I could take home and entertain like a pro! The five flavors are: milk chocolate, raspberry, passion fruit, lemon lime, and salted caramel. I think I’d gravitate to the passion fruit and lemon lime myself, but I’d surely try them all. These were offered for AUD 22.89 in the Melbourne warehouse and would surely be a hit at any party you have. These are imported from France and kept in the refrigerated aisle; so you know they will have that chewy middle and subtle sweetness that makes a macaron great. The real debate around the table will be how you pronounce it? Do some put two “o”s in the word? Macaroon or Macaron? Either way it’ll be fun to debate the silly things over a case of Charlotte’s Macarons!

Kirkland Signature Monterey Jack Cheese

Kirkland Signature Monterey Jack Cheese

One of my staple purchases from Costco is cheese of all types. I was shocked to see this Monterey Jack Cheese in the Melbourne warehouse. For one, it’s made in the USA.  I’m quite jealous as I don’t have this one in my market. I do have Colby Jack and two Cheddar cheeses in block form like this, but I’m sure I’d purchase this if  my Costco had it!

It is offered for AUD 8.89 and is a 2 pound block (907 grams) that is really a versatile size for most households. I ALWAYS (I truly mean always) serve any shredded cheese at home from a fresh shred by hand off of a block of cheese like this, and the taste shows. Fresh shredded cheese doesn’t “cake” like pre-shredded cheese does and it also melts better and has more flavor. I’d love to add this cheese block to #CucinaRickatron (Check that out on Instagram, it’s my home cooking!) for some good Monterey Jack additions to my Mexican or Italian cooking techniques.

Costco Food Court Mexican Style Beef Bake

Costco Food Court Mexican Style Beef Bake

The last item I’ll offer is from the food court. The food court at the Melbourne warehouse was slightly different in offerings than what I’m used to in the United Sates. The two key differing items are the Aussie Meat Pie and Mexican Style Beef Bake. I opted for the beef bake, priced at AUD 4.99 at the food court right before lunch time (around 11:20 AM).

As a starter, I’d say that Mexican food outside of the United States and Mexico is an “opportunity for improvement”. Specifically in Australia, I’ve never been overwhelming impressed with Mexican food offerings for a number of reasons.  My primary reason is that I can make almost anything pretty good (see Instagram link above!) and there is a lot of competition for good Mexican food in the United States. Kimberly has also written about tortilla woes before! I’ll be honest, I didn’t care for the Mexican beef bake, it felt like it was a corner of pizza crust filled with some loosely flavored beef and bean concoction. It was missing a spicy and cheesy element, or possibly a zesty red sauce to dip. No worries though, it’s not my taste and I’ll carry on with other things at the food court which is still one of my favorite food venues!


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