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I drive 4 hours and spend $500 for every Costco trip. Here are 16 things I always stock up on.

Summary List PlacementWhen I was growing up on a farm, my mom used to buy in bulk to ensure that our freezer, pantry, and cold storage always had everything we needed to make our daily meals. Although I no longer live on a farm, I learned from my mom and always stock up on my groceries. I also love to cook and bake for my family of four, and having the basics available in my house makes my life so much easier.  I've been going to Costco for more than 10 years and always purchase bulk items to fill up my...

Costco Canada staples maple syrup and chicken soulvaki

Summary List Placement

When I was growing up on a farm, my mom used to buy in bulk to ensure that our freezer, pantry, and cold storage always had everything we needed to make our daily meals.

Although I no longer live on a farm, I learned from my mom and always stock up on my groceries. I also love to cook and bake for my family of four, and having the basics available in my house makes my life so much easier. 

I’ve been going to Costco for more than 10 years and always purchase bulk items to fill up my freezer and pantry. Because I live in Canada and the closest Costco requires a four-hour round trip, I don’t get there often — when I do, I typically spend $500 Canadian (about $413 US). 

Keep reading to see what I buy from Costco to make my long trips worth it.

Note: Prices are in Canadian dollars and are based on one Costco in Canada. They might differ from location to location.

The FoodSaver is one of the best things I ever bought from Costco — and it helps make my big hauls possible

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Before I delve into the things I always purchase at Costco, I have to talk about the FoodSaver vacuum-sealing system, which makes all of my bulk buys possible. 

I use it to portion our bulk purchases into family-sized servings, seal them, and store them in the freezer for future meals. 

The vacuum-sealed food lasts longer and doesn’t get freezer burn. I label everything with dates, too, so we eat the older portions first. This makes planning weekly dinners so much easier because I have a ton of options available in my home.

At $149.99, the FoodSaver has probably saved me hundreds of dollars by ensuring my frozen food stays properly preserved

I like to fill my freezer up with meat, and a big pork loin is one of my favorite buys 

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When we bring this home, we cut it into five or six chunks that can be sealed and later used as a roast or cut into chops.

I like to toss a small roast in my air fryer for a juicy pork dinner or slow-cook one for pulled-pork sandwiches. My family also enjoys it when we toss pork chops on the grill in the summer.

Around 8 pounds of loin can cost me between $23 and $28. 

I also like to buy these packs of roast beef

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Each pack contains around a pound and a half or so of meat, and I vacuum-seal each separately for two Sunday-night meals. 

I like to cook my roast beef in the oven, then make gravy with the drippings. I serve it with mashed potatoes and a veggie dish. 

I can buy around 3 1/2 pounds of Canadian beef for just under $25. 

These honey-garlic sausages are $11 a pack, and my family loves them 

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When I go to Costco I usually buy three or four packs, which contain nine sausages each. 

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I vacuum-pack four or five links together for quick and easy weeknight meals. I think these are best cooked on the grill and served with homemade mac and cheese and a big ol’ side salad.

These chicken and pork souvlaki packs are perfect for grilling

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Once barbecue season starts, chicken ($16.99) and pork ($14.49) souvlaki packs are also a must for our freezer. Souvlaki is a popular Greek food consisting of meat that gets grilled on a skewer.

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I usually cut off a bunch of skewers for dinner and then leave the rest in the freezer for a future meal. They cook really quickly on the grill and I usually pair them with a side salad.

This pack of ground turkey is incredibly versatile

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I like to use ground turkey in our tacos, meatballs, and in my kid-approved Instant Pot turkey goulash (mixed with veggies, pasta, and sauce). I find that ground turkey is a nice alternative to ground beef once in a while.

This pack of ground turkey costs $22.48 and contains four individually wrapped portions that are just under 18 ounces each.

I love buying these frozen chicken breasts in bulk

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Buying frozen meat in bulk also increases my options when it comes to meal planning. I don’t need to use my FoodSaver, and I can easily grab as many as I need for the recipe of choice that day.

I like to either bake these in the oven or put on them on the grill, then serve them with rice or homemade sweet-potato fries. I also cook extra chicken and add it to my salad lunch the next day for extra protein.

These frozen chicken breasts are $24.99 for nearly 4 1/2 pounds.

These seasoned, breaded chicken tenders from Hampton House are perfect for a quick meal

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I can quickly cook these in the air fryer when the kids want supper as soon as possible.

I also recently just made a delicious chicken Parmesan dinner with these chicken strips — I just served them with spaghetti and topped them with cheese and sauce.

This nearly 4 1/2-pound bag of Hampton House tenders costs $21.99.

I make a fresh loaf of bread every week so I buy tons of flour

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After I ensure my freezer will be packed, I stock up on my pantry basics because I love to bake. 

I make a fresh loaf of bread every week with my bread maker. My kids also love pancakes and banana-chocolate-chip muffins, so I’m always into the flour bin.

This bag of flour from Costco is about 22 pounds and costs me only $6.99.

My kids love Kirkland Signature’s maple syrup on their pancakes

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I like to buy Kirkland Signature’s pure organic maple syrup. It costs $8.99 for more than 33 ounces of syrup, and the jug lasts us a while

Simply Campbell’s chicken broth is always on my shopping list 

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I like to use chicken broth instead of water as the liquid in my rice to give it a nice flavor. I also use it to make homemade soups, like corn chowder and my classic leftover-turkey noodle soup.

This six-pack of chicken-broth cartons is $9.99.

The Kirkland Signature canned tomato sauce is a pantry staple 

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I use Kirkland Signature tomato sauce as a base for the chicken Parmesan and turkey goulash I mentioned earlier. It’s also a key ingredient when I make homemade sauce for spaghetti and lasagna.

I love that these cans have lids that make it easy for me to prepare meals without having to dig for my can opener.

Twelve 15-ounce cans cost less than $16.

My husband and I appreciate convenience and a good cup of coffee, so we stock up on Kirkland Signature K-Cups

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Kirkland Signature’s breakfast blend is our favorite, and we always keep these in our pantry for when we need a quick caffeine fix. 

A box of 110 K-Cups costs us $36.99 — so every mug of coffee we brew costs less than 50 cents.

We like to have Premier Protein shakes on hand

protein shakes

I like to have a shake with my breakfast or lunch when I need the extra protein and don’t have the time (or energy) to make anything substantial. 

This box of 18 shakes, each just under 8 ounces, is $36.99.

The Ecos liquid laundry detergent is a must-buy for me at $16.99

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My son has allergies, and after much trial and error, I was able to find that this Ecos brand does not irritate his skin or make him itchy. 

I think it’s a great deal. I do at least six loads of laundry a week, and this huge bottle with nearly 2 gallons of detergent lasts me more than a month. 

The Kirkland Signature chicken taco kit is great after the two-hour drive home

Street Tacos from Costco

After a busy day of shopping and preparing for the two-hour drive home, the last thing I want to think about is what we’re going to eat for dinner when we get back. So I always grab a chicken taco kit from Costco’s deli section before we leave. 

This kit makes 12 tacos, and it’s a quick, filling dinner that my whole family enjoys.

At $16.55, it’s an affordable meal for my family of four — plus, the cilantro-lime cream sauce is amazing.

Click to keep reading Costco diaries like this one.

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