This Thanksgiving at Costco – 2008

November 24th, 2008 · 7 Comments

Hopefully, this post will catch some of you before you buy all of your Thanksgiving items.  I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to do a whole post about buying items for Thanksgiving meal preparation or not.  I don’t know if the prices on the turkeys and other things are cheaper at Costco than at the local grocery store but at least this will give you something to compare.

Maverick Ranch Free-Range Turkey at Costco

Maverick Ranch Free-Range Turkey at Costco

Turkey: Okay, this is the main star in the production that is Thanksgiving dinner.  And at Costco, you’ll find several different types to choose from: conventional to fully organic.  At our Costco they had 4 different types of turkeys: Foster Farm, fresh; Butterball, fresh; Maverick Ranch Free-Range, frozen; and Coastal Range Organic, fresh.  It appeared that the only one you wouldn’t be able to buy at the last minute was the Maverick Ranch turkey because they were totally frozen.  It looked like the Maverick Ranch turkeys were the largest ones at around 20 lbs each, the Foster Farms turkeys also looked to be rather large with weights in the 19 – 20 pound range, as well.  The Butterball turkeys were a bit smaller at around 13 – 16 pounds each.  The Coastal Range turkeys looked to be the smallest with weights right around 13 pounds or less.  So there are a nice variety of sizes and types available.  We decided to go with the Maverick Ranch free-range turkey because we like those and think they have a really nice taste usually.  And of course, with a 20 pound turkey we’ll be able to have some leftovers too.  Here is how the turkeys stack up on pricing per pound:

  • Foster Farms: $0.89 / pound
  • Butterball:  $0.99 / pound
  • Maverick Ranch Free-Range: $1.69 / pound
  • Coastal Ranch Organic: $2.29 / pound
Celery Hearts from Costco

Celery Hearts at Costco

Stuffing / Dressing: I make a fairly traditional stuffing for my turkey, nothing fancy with oysters or anything  like that.  Which means that there aren’t many things in my stuffing: bread, celery, onions, eggs and poultry seasoning.  I buy just about all of these things except the onion and poultry seasoning at Costco on a fairly regular basis anyway.  In any case, these are all fairly cheap ingredients but they end up making my favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner.  Obviously, if you’re buying the bread at Costco you’re going to get 2 loaves in one package so you will have a loaf leftover.  The same goes for the celery and eggs, you’ll have some leftovers.  However, you can always use the extra celery for a nice appetizer of stuffed celery or use your extra eggs for deviled eggs (though you’ll need some of those for the pumpkin pie and possibly your bread).

  • Sandwich Bread, 2 loaves: $2.99
  • Celery, 4 celery hearts: $3.29
  • Eggs, 18 extra large eggs: $1.90
Butter Gold Potatoes from Costco

Butter Gold Potatoes from Costco

Potatoes: For Thanksgiving, I like to have mashed potatoes, both white and sweet potatoes.  They make such an easy side dish and everyone loves mashed potatoes of any kind, I think.  I’ve bought both types of potatoes recently too.  I’d love to say that I was thinking ahead but it was just a fortunate turn of events, really.  Or, maybe there’s something about this time of year that makes me want potatoes.  So, I do have several pounds of potatoes right now.  As you might have read in my last post, I really am loving the Butter Gold potatoes and can’t wait to try them as mashed potatoes; I’ll bet they are going to be excellent.

  • Butter Gold Potatoes, 15 pounds: $6.99
  • Sweet Potatoes, 10 pounds: $6.99
Organic Petite French Green Beans from Costco

French Green Beans at Costco

Vegetable: We almost always have asparagus with our Thanksgiving dinner because it’s our favorite member of the vegetable family.  And as long as there are decent bags of it at Costco, we’ve got some in our fridge.  However, if asparagus isn’t your thing there are plenty of vegetable options at Costco.  The frozen green beans are excellent, as is the frozen broccoli but the green beans are definitely more Thanksgiving appropriate.  With the frozen things you get 5 pounds in the big bag, so there will most likely be leftovers.  Of course, if you’ve got last minute guest additions to your Thanksgiving table, you’ll have plenty of veggies to serve up.

  • Asparagus, 2.25 pounds: $5.99
  • Organic Petite French Green Beans, frozen, 5 pounds: $6.79
Harry's Cranberry Sauce at Costco

Harry's Cranberry Sauce at Costco

Cranberry Sauce: I’m adding this item to the list because I saw it at Costco yesterday and knew that I should mention it, even though I’ve never tried it.  I’d love to know if it is any good or not, but perhaps not so much that I want to buy it myself.  I was hoping that I could also add in something about fresh cranberries which I think they had last weekend, when I wasn’t look for them.  But they were completely out this week, not a single bag in the warehouse.

  • Harry’s Cranberry Sauce, 2, 15 ounce containers: $5.29
Costco Dinner Rolls

Costco Dinner Rolls

Bread: Even if you don’t bake your own bread, you’re going to want to have some nice dinner rolls to go with dinner, not to mention the yummy leftover turkey sandwiches.  Costco has some really nice dinner rolls that are great for a large crowd since there are 36 of them in the bag.  I always make my own bread because I do it enough that it’s not a big deal to me anymore.  So, if you’re making your own bread you can get a really good deal on the yeast, as well.  I’ll be honest though, I do not buy my flour at Costco.  For one thing, you have to buy just way too much at one time, for another, I prefer the King Arthur flour for my bread.  But back to the yeast, it is a big package of yeast, however, if you can keep it in the fridge it will last for a couple of years!  Yes, I did say years.  The package I bought is good until June 2010.  In addition, you’ll need some butter but you’ll probably need it for some of your other stuff too.  I usually think that Costco has the best deals on butter around, unfortunately the price of butter seems to have really gone up lately.

  • Costco Dinner Rolls, 36: $3.99
  • Dry Active Yeast, 32 ounces: $3.69
  • Kirkland Signature Salted Butter, 4 pounds: $8.15
Costco Pumpkin Pie

Costco Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Pie: I’ve talked about this way too often in the last year of writing this blog but indeed Costco’s pumpkin pie is good enough to warrant all the talk.  I make a mean pumpkin pie but if there’s one thing I’d be okay with buying it would be this pie.  Now, I’m not saying that any pumpkin pie is up to homemade pie standards but this one certainly is.  It’s large enough so that it can feed plenty of people, which is good for Thanksgiving dinner too.  I’m not going to keep rambling on, yet again, about the great pumpkin pie because I’m sure you get the picture by now; it’s good, you should buy one.  And of course, you’re going to want some whipped cream on your pie and Costco’s got you covered on that one too.  You can get the Land O Lakes whipped cream in a can, or you can buy your own whipping cream and make your own.  The stuff in the can is nice and convenient but at Costco there are 3 cans packaged together, which might be more than you want.  It will last for several months though.

  • Costco Pumpkin Pie, 10″ diameter: $5.99
  • Land O Lakes Whipped Cream, 3, 14 ounce cans: $7.49
  • Heavy Whipping Cream, 32 ounces: $3.88 (this is lower than the price I paid just a week ago)

Phew, I think this pretty much wraps up everything I’m getting or could get at Costco for our Thanksgiving meal.  I’ve gotten almost everything at Costco this year actually.  There are only a few things that I’ll be picking up at the regular grocery store to complete my meal.  And the good thing is that I only had to go shopping at one place and it was as quick and easy as my regular trip to the grocery store.

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7 Responses so far ↓

  1. 1 Terry // 2010.11.29 at 5:37 pm

    Harry’s Cranberry Sauce found at Costco is the Very Best. We have been buying it for several years now & can’t get enough of it. I would like to know where else to buy it as our Costco in Warrenton, Oregon will not get it in for Christmas. I am so sad about that. I always buy extra & freeze it but we never seem to make it last; it is sooooooo Yummy !!!. I would like to be able to get it all year.

  2. 2 FlatGreg // 2008.11.26 at 4:17 pm

    I go to the North Austin one too. I’m hosting a delayed Thanksgiving on Saturday and am hoping to pick up a cheap turkey on Friday. I’ll have to check again. Thanks!

  3. 3 Kimberly // 2008.11.26 at 4:06 pm

    FlatGreg, all of the turkeys were in cases back by the meat area. They had actually brought in a set of special cases to add even more turkeys even. We go to the North Austin Costco, so if you’re at the south location, I don’t know what their situation is. Seriously, they had tons of turkeys and have had some for the last couple of weekends even.

  4. 4 jenn22 // 2008.11.26 at 3:55 pm

    Hi! If available at your local Costco, you should purchase the double chocolate pie made by their bakery. It is yummy! Although I think the “chocolate cream” filling is actually the chocolate mousse that they use in their cakes. However, it doesn’t matter, because it is well worth the $9.99 price! Also, I am addicted to their caramel pecan muffins with chocolate chunks inside, but I wish that they had made their pumpkin chocolate chunk muffins this year instead of the pumpkin streusel muffins – they just aren’t the same without the chocolate chunks!

  5. 5 FlatGreg // 2008.11.26 at 3:45 pm

    Where do they have the turkeys? I was just there yesterday and was upset that they didn’t seem to carry turkeys this year. I’m not sure how I could’ve missed 4 types of turkeys.

  6. 6 Clue // 2008.11.26 at 6:04 am

    Here’s my Costco Thanksgiving this year:

    Since we don’t need a big bird anymore, we opted for the fried turkey breast at Costco this year.

    We chose the pre-cubed butternut squash as one of our vegetables and the petite green beans for the other.

    Our stuffing will be made with the Milton’s Multi-Grain bread, for a sweet yet hearty flavor. It also includes organic chicken stock, cranberries, dried apricots, raisins, white wine, olive oil, garlic and carrots, all from Costco.

    We’re making mashed sweet potatoes this year instead of using just plain white potatoes.

    Finally, the Costco pumpkin pie will be on our table again this year too.

  7. 7 Brian // 2008.11.24 at 12:10 pm

    Thanks so much for doing this. My Costco is 35 minutes away. I was debating whether I should go there for eggs (and other things, of course). Turns out that eggs are cheaper at the local Kroger. By the way, my Costco had fresh cranberries. I’m going to try making cranberry sauce myself this year. It’s just cranberries, sugar and water.

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