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I’m a firm believer that every dinner should be finished with dessert, but that doesn’t mean I’m preparing pastries and sweets from scratch every week. I buy from local bakers, and pick up treats from the grocery store near my house. My favorite spot for store-bought desserts, though, has to be Costco.
The members-only warehouse may be best known for its oversized packages of paper towels, but the big-box retailer stocks high-quality desserts in every corner of the store. Whether you’re looking for sweets big enough to feed a crowd or individual servings of delicate French desserts, Costco has it (and seconds, and thirds). Here are my picks for the 10 best desserts you can buy at Costco.
1. Cheesecake, $16.99 for 4.5 pounds
I taste tested every store-bought cheesecake I could find and Costco’s came out on top. A few of my fellow taste testers suspected I had slipped a homemade cheesecake into the batch — but no, it was from Costco! The cheesecake is impossibly smooth and rich with a buttery graham cracker crumb crust and tangy sour cream topping. This party-sized cheesecake is 12 inches in diameter and serves 16, but also freezes well in the unlikely event of leftovers.
2. Kirkland Signature Gourmet Chocolate Chunk Cookies, $9.99 for 24
The chocolate chunk cookies from Costco’s bakery are pretty close to perfection. The cookies are evenly baked with a chewy texture and rippled top. The chocolate chunks are generous in size and quantity, so that every bite includes a bit of chocolate. I love picking up a pack of these for easy weeknight desserts throughout the year, but especially in the summer when I use them to build ice cream sandwiches.
3. Kirkland Signature Super Premium Vanilla Ice Cream, $14.99 for 1 gallon
No dessert list is complete without ice cream, and luckily the Kirkland Signature Super Premium Vanilla Ice Cream is among the best I’ve tried. Although Costco doesn’t sell the variety of flavors that a neighborhood grocer does, Kirkland Signature’s ice cream makes up for it in its versatility. You can use this cool and creamy dessert for the aforementioned ice cream sandwiches, mix it into milkshakes, or make an over-the-top banana split.
4. Sanders Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels, $11.39 for 36 ounces
Tucked within the snack section of Costco, you’ll find a sweet and salty treat that shoppers say is irresistible. Squares of buttery caramel are coated in dark chocolate and garnished with a sprinkle of crunchy sea salt. The caramel is soft and chewy and the chocolate is the perfect thickness, adding bittersweetness to every bite. Shoppers have suggested sprinkling the salty chocolatey crumbs on ice cream once you’ve eaten your way through the container.
5. Tuxedo Chocolate Mousse Cake, $16.99 for 42 ounces
Costco’s Tuxedo Chocolate Mousse Cake is a must-try for chocolate-lovers. This bar cake is made of layers of chocolate cake, white chocolate mousse, chocolate mousse, brownie chunks, and topped with chocolate ganache. The cake is beautifully decorated with elegant chocolate curls. Place this cake on a platter and serve this dessert for parties and festive occasions.
6. Tipiak French Macarons, $15.99 for 36
Macarons are delicate sandwich cookies made of almond flour meringue and fillings that include chocolate ganache, buttercream, jam, and curd. Making macarons from scratch requires patience and expertise, so I usually leave that to the pros. Tipiak French Macarons can be found in the refrigerated section of Costco. The colorful macarons are in a variety pack of flavors, which can change with the seasons. At less than 50 cents per macaron, these are among the most affordable macarons you can buy.
7. White Cake with Vanilla Cheesecake Mousse, $15.99 for 10-inch cake
Is it really a celebration without slices of cake to share? Costco sells bakery-fresh cakes that will turn any gathering into a party. The white cake with vanilla cheesecake mousse can be purchased with “Happy Birthday” already written right off the shelf or simply frosted for you to add your own embellishments. Give the bakery 48-hours notice and they can even add personalized messages and designs. While the white cake is my favorite, Costco’s bakery sells a similar cake in chocolate too.
8. Donsuemor Madeleines, $9.39 for 28
These tender butter cakes baked in the classic Madeleine pan are a classic French dessert. The barely sweet buttery cakes are bite-sized like a cookie, but with the texture of a cake — a perfect combination for those of us who have a hard time deciding between desserts. Plus, they’re individually wrapped to maximize freshness. If you want to embellish the cakes, dip one side into chocolate.
9. Island Way Sorbet $15.49 for 12
There’s no dessert more refreshing in the midst of summer than sorbet. The fruity frozen dessert can be made from any fruit, but the Island Way Sorbet from Costco comes in four flavors: coconut, red berry and ruby grapefruit, mango, and pomegranate. The creamy, sweet-tart sorbet is individually portioned and served in natural fruit shells like coconut and mango hulls.
10. Lotus Biscoff Cookies, $8.99 for 35.2 ounces
If you opt for cookies over peanuts on every flight or go ga-ga over cookie butter, make sure to pick up a box of Lotus Biscoff Cookies next time you’re at Costco. These crispy cookies are lightly spiced with hints of caramel, cinnamon, and ginger. You can serve them straight from the box with a cup of coffee or tea, crumble them over ice cream or vanilla yogurt, or use them in place of graham crackers for your favorite crumb crusts.
Honorable Mention: Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie, $19.99 for 4.5 pounds
It would be irresponsible to provide a list of Costco’s best desserts without mentioning the viral bakery sensation that took over in the spring of 2023: the Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie. If you’re one of the few who haven’t tried (or even heard of) this decadent dessert, here’s the dish. There is a buttery graham cracker crumb crust, a layer of rich peanut butter cream, and chocolate cream. A swirl of peanut butter cream rings the edge of the pie. This mega-pie weighs in at 4.5 pounds of rich peanut buttery and chocolaty goodness. There’s no telling if this pie will become a year-round staple, but if it does disappear for good, here’s a homemade version that rivals the original.
Did your favorites make the list? Tell us about it in the comments below.