Whether you are looking for fresh, frozen, salmon, cod, wild caught or farm raised you have several options for shopping for fish at Costco. Read our guide to find out how much it will cost as well as our best tips.
Have you ever bought fish before at Costco?
Are you wondering what they have and are the prices any good?
Come along and read our guide to help you know what they have. We have sprinkled in some tips on cooking the fish as well. Also we will talk about sustainability - can we maintain the fish population without threatening extinction due to overfishing?
We are going to start by listing what you would typically find in the frozen section. All the prices are taken in January 2022 in a Costco location in the Palm Springs area of California. Selection and price may vary. California is obviously on the ocean so fish is easier to get there as opposed to living in Nebraska.
|Wild Alaskan Cod||$19.49 for 2 lbs|
|Wild Chilean Sea bass||$43.99 for 1.5 lbs|
|Wild Sockeye Salmon||$36.99 for 3 lbs|
|Wild Alaskan Halibut||$45.99 for 2 lbs|
|Tilapia Loins||$16.89 for 3 lbs|
|Farm raised Atlantic Salmon||$26.99 for 3 lbs|
Tilapia is typically your cheapest fish, followed by cod. Wild Chilean Sea Bass is the most expensive option.
Here is something you want to pay attention to when selecting fresh fish at Costco. Some of the fish is going to be fish that was previously frozen and then thawed to sell. Anything marked with a "*" is previously frozen.
|Wild Sockeye Salmon*||$12.99/lb|
|Wild Pacific Cod*||$7.99/lb|
|Farm King Salmon Filet*||$11.99/lb|
|Fresh Wild Rockfish||$5.49/lb|
|Fresh Farm Whole Trout||$3.99/lb|
|Fresh Farm Catfish||$7.99/lb|
|Fresh Farm Steelhead Filet||$8.99/lb|
|Fresh Farm Tilapia||$4.99/lb|
|Fresh Farm Atlantic Salmon||$10.99/lb|
Most of the fresh fish at Costco is farmed raised and what is wild is previously frozen.
❓ Can You Refreeze Fish?
So if you are buying a big pack of fish that was previously frozen, can you freeze it again? Quality reasons it's not great to freeze and refreeze. But I think it can be done still. If I am going to freeze fish I bought at Costco, you need to do it immediately when you get home. Don't let is sit in the fridge, package it that way you want and freeze it.
🎣 Farm vs. Wild
Besides choosing between buying fresh or frozen fish your next choose is picking whether you want farm raised or wild. I suggest doing your research and deciding what do you think is best for you. I don't claim to be an expert in this area but I want to present some different pros and cons to consider.
Wild caught fish is eating a more natural diet. But what was the water like where they were caught? Is it polluted? Typically we also associate wild anything with having better flavor - like wild blueberries for example. That can be true with fish.
There is also the sustainability factor. Wild fish can be overfished, which is why you might consider farmed fish. But what are they feeding the farmed fish? And are the close quarters more likely to lead to the fish getting sick? You can find fish that is labelled antibiotic free.
I am not saying one over the other. You need to decide what you think is best. Do a little research before your next shopping trip. Costco offers plenty of choices in either option.
🌊 Atlantic vs. Pacific Cod
Costco offers both, so you can try them out and decide which you like better. There is a difference in that Atlantic Cod has a sweeter taste and larger flaking.
As far as sustainability goes, Pacific cod is more sustainability. Depending on where the Atlantic Cod is coming from some areas are overfished.
🏆 Chilean Sea Bass
The most expensive type of fish in the store. It's heralded for it's sweet, rich flavor. The demand for this fish has caused the prices to be high. Some would say to avoid it because of the sustainability factor.
Chilean Sea Bass is actually not bass at all. It's actually called "Patagonian Toothfish". That name doesn't sound as nice on a menu.
How to Cook - Over in a pan over medium heat with butter and herbs. Cook between 10-15 minutes. Once the fish is flaky, immediately remove from the heat. Don't forget a squeeze some lemon juice over top.
Wild or farmed aside, here are the 3 types of salmon you can find at Costco.
|Sockeye Salmon||Oiler fish with more omega-3, strong flavor, great for grilling, deep color|
|Atlantic Salmon||Only sold at farm raised, soft pink color, milder salmon flavor|
|King Salmon Filet||Rich flavor, meaty texture, may also be referred to as Chinook salmon|
Something to know about farm raised salmon is that it's naturally gray. The fish aren't eating their normal feed. The color is added through the feed. It actually says so on the package.
Also note that it says the salmon is raised without antibiotics.
Did you know you can broil salmon? A broiler is like an upside down grill. Set your oven to broil with the rack about 3 inches from the heat. Place the salmon on a sheet pan and season it. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes until the fish flakes easily separate. The USDA recommends it cooked to 145 degrees, but many agree that it's overcooked at that point and instead shoot for 130 degrees. Use your digression.
The rockfish I found at Costco was from Canada. You may also see it called rock cod or Pacific snapper.
The fish has a pinkish hue to it, but not as pink as salmon. It's a medium firm lean fish with a mild taste. It's versatile to be used in most recipes calling for fish.
🐠 Whole Fish
If you are looking for the whole fish, the only option I found at Costco is Farm Raised Trout. More power to you if you can deal with whole fish, I certainly can't!
Stealhead are a type of Rainbow trout. It's an oily fish. Most comparisons with it are to salmon in which Stealhead has more of a delicate flavor and more flaky than salmon. If you are a salmon fan or someone that has tried to like salmon and failed, this would be a fish to put on your list to try.
🍟 Fish & Chips
The types of fish I would recommend if you are going to turn out your own batch of fish and chips. These fish work well when using a wet batter approach.
- Any cod
Cod would be my go-to. Tilapia works too and is also good for fish tacos.
Catfish isn't normally included a fish for fish and chips. It's better for a cornmeal batter like that do in the south, where I have had some of the most amazing fish. I am just day dreaming about the catfish I had a restaurant in Pigeon Forge, TN near the Great Smokey Mountains. Yum!
📧 Sign Up For Our Emails
Do you find this guide helpful? Sign up for our Costco meat email list.
📚 More Costco Guide
Here are some other guides that we have done