The title of this post sorta blows any shot I have of building tension, but I’ll try anyway.

Guess where I went for the first time the other night?


That above sentence needs some clarification. I’ve been in Costco before. My parents are Costco shoppers, and I’ve gone with my mom to her local Costco in Michigan on numerous occasions. But I’ve never been to Costco on my own, as an adult living in California, to shop for things for my own home. Until the other night.

My reasons for not being a Costco shopper are pretty simple: I live alone, and I can rarely justify shopping in bulk. I don’t need 96 rolls of toilet paper, nor do I have the space to store it. My kitchen is tiny, and while their canned tuna (which I do consume) is very well priced, if I put 18 cans in my cupboard, I’d literally have room for nothing else.

I know I could easily become a Costco shopper if I wanted to. I’ve lived, for the past 9 years, within 10 minutes of the Burbank Costco pictured above. And who knows, maybe down the line at some point my life circumstances will change, and a Costco membership will make sense for me. But for right now, I’m happy not having a membership.

Plus, I have my friend Tiffany. I learned towards the end of last year that Tiffany (who planned last summer’s awesome kayaking excursion and invited me to my first-ever paintball outing) was an avid Costco shopper, and she invited me along to join her at some point.

So the other night we met up, grabbed a cart, and headed inside. Turns out the Burbank Costco is a lot like the one in Michigan I’ve been to: huge.

And it was laid out exactly the same, too. I kinda already knew where we were headed, despite having never stepped foot in the store before.

I had a shopping list in my head: I wanted to load up my freezer with protein options, and I wanted berries and grapes. I love berries and grapes, but they add up so quickly at the regular grocery store, so I thought Costco might be a nice alternative. I wasn’t afraid of buying these types of fruits in bulk – they freeze nicely, so I can load up a Tupperware if I couldn’t finish them before they went bad.

Also on my shopping list: some jewelry, a mattress, 600 pounds of dog food, 15 pounds of mini Snickers bars, a Blu-Ray player, and a tombstone.

Kidding. But all available at Costco.

I also had a price limit: $100. That figure is what Tiffany owed me for selling her a vacuum a few months ago, so if I stayed under $100 (or as close to $100 as I could get), I wouldn’t have to open my wallet at all, and Tiffany could pick up the entire tab.

We focused mostly in the food section, including a lengthy stay in my favorite part of any Costco: the walk-in refrigerator produce room:

I found lots of items that amused me, like the largest can of tuna I’ve ever seen. Here’s Tiffany modeling it, The Price Is Right style:

But I stuck to my list, despite temptations like bathtub-sized amounts of Cheez-Its and 10 pounds of lobster tails for only $171.20.

Wanna see what I got?

Here’s my Costco Produce Haul:

Top row: 1 lb of blackberries ($5), 4 lbs of strawberries ($6). Second row: 1 lb of blueberries ($7), 1 lb of raspberries ($4.50), 4 pounds of frozen peach slices ($7).

The grapes weren’t sweet, and they weren’t, per pound, much cheaper than a regular grocery store (which isn’t surprising, as they’re not in season in the US), so I didn’t buy any. That’s why I bought the peaches. I love peaches! And those berry prices are fantastic.

Now, for the first time ever in Keep It Up, David history, a PROTEIN HAUL!

Top row: 16 Veggie Burgers ($10 – usually this brand is about $5 for 4), 7 zucchini souffles (they may not be high in protein, but I’ve had them before, and enjoy them, and don’t see them that often in regular stores). Bottom row: 6.5 lbs of chicken breasts ($17), 2 lbs of shrimp ($13.79), 3 lbs of salmon ($20). The chicken breasts and the salmon fillets are individually wrapped – perfect for a single guy like me.

No need to break out your calculators. My grand total was: $103.20 – Almost exactly on target!

I’ve never seen my freezer so full before – and I haven’t frozen any of the berries yet! I love having so many healthy options.

Keep it up, David!

PS: What are your favorite healthy food purchases at Costco? What should I keep an eye out for if I go back with Tiffany?

10 Responses to Costco

  1. ameryati says:

    My God! Food is so cheap in the States. Considering the fact that most of the berries, peaches etc. are imported into my country, not many people would even consider purchasing them.
    On the other hand, we have oranges, pineapples, mangoes, coconuts, bananas and melons in abundance so it makes it easier on the pocket of an average Ghanaian.
    Love your blog by the way.

    • David says:

      For the record, most of the berries were imported from Mexico, but the peaches and strawberries were from California (berry season is just starting here). So glad you love the blog – thanks for the comment!

  2. ameryati says:

    Wow! Food is quite cheap in the States, as compared to my country. Since berries and peaches are imported you can imagine how it would cost a tooth and nail to purchase. lol! Thankfully, we have coconuts, mangoes, avocados, watermelons, pineapples, bananas and oranges in abundance so fruit consumption isn’t a problem.

    Love your blog by the way.

  3. Aimee says:

    We went to Costco this morning. We call it the “shop-o-rama”. The pears are my favorite deal: $4.50 for about 10 big ones. The berries are always SO good, even though they come from far away. Sometimes you just have to splurge to get through the winter. And the salmon burgers are quite good. I’m sure they aren’t as healthy as the plain salmon, but for the same price we get about 4 times the dinners. I find that even though there is a lot of “bulk” stuff, we go through everything we get long before it expires (and I’m talking produce and fresh stuff, not the last-for-a-million-years packaged things). 🙂

    • David says:

      I’ll have to look for the Salmon burgers – didn’t see them, but wasn’t looking for them! Thanks for all the tips, Aimee! xo

  4. I always buy bulk cereal from Costco. $9 for an extra jumbo box. That and chicken breast, and cheese!

  5. Tv Food and Drink says:

    The first time I went into Costco was about two years ago, and I HAD NEVER SEEN SO MUCH PREPARATION H IN ONE PLACE!

    I have never gotten out of the Glendale Costco for less than $200. I would advise you to look into a FoodSaver Vacuum Sealing Kit. Michael bought me one and my Costco goodies last much much longer.

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