Costco and I have a…complicated relationship.  I am usually totally committed to buying whatever I can from small, privately-owned shops. However, for certain everyday, family staples, the bulk-sized, low-priced allure of Costco is just too strong to pass up.  Plus, come on, who doesn’t need three Tommy Bahama beach umbrellas, a tent that sleeps four, and Tupperware for transporting 50 cupcakes?  Just kidding. Whenever I go to Costco, I actually do make a list and try to be super disciplined about sticking to it – of course this is much easier to do when I am sans kids.

Here is what I picked up on my last run:

Fattorie Garofalo Bufala Mozzarella: (4 balls for) 11.99 super creamy and yummy. This works perfectly for prosciutto and mozzarella antipasti.

Parmesan Reggiano: The real deal in huge blocks, and the cost is the same for a tiny sized wedge at specialty stores.

Organic eggs: 18 count and fresh – I always check the date

Fage 0% Greek yogurt: This is a great bulk item for us because I go through so much of it.  It makes a wonderful quick lunch with marcona almonds and dried cranberries, or it goes great with granola.  It’s also good to use in smoothies, and I incorporate it into my banana bread as well.

Bel ‘Olio Grapeseed Oil — This is ridiculously reasonably priced, fantastic quality, and great color. I keep it on my counter in a smaller glass vessel with a drip top.

Kirkland Signature Toscano Extra Virgin Olive Oil– I buy it by the case.  It actually comes from the most recent fall harvest and has an AW number and protected geographical indication

Kirkland Marcona Almonds – I use these all the time for tons of recipes.  Normally, they are so expensive I get sticker shock.

Served here with cheese

Lamb chops – Great Costco staple for years–especially useful since Trader Joe’s stopped carrying them.

Rodelle Vanilla beans – A new item I just discovered, I have not used them yet but they smell amazing – even through the seal. I store mine in the fridge.

Cara Cara oranges (pink navels) – This is a seasonal item that I hadn’t seen at Costco before, but they are my favorite.

Vodka – “Family-size” bottles of Belvidere, Kettle One, and Grey Goose — oh my.

Birthday Cake – (Yes, really) This was a happy accident. My 5-year-old fell in love with the rainbow cake in Costco’s bakery section and she insisted she wanted it for her birthday cake.

“What dear?  Mommy was going to make you one from scratch with 100% organic products … OK, well, it is your birthday.”

It actually turned out to be incredible – vanilla with chocolate mocha frosting–Delicious!