A guide to buying beef at Costco. We include all the prices at our local Costco and share with you some tips on buying and cooking each cut from USDA Prime Brisket to a great deal on Ribeye. And don’t forget the flank steak!
For a while I was debating whether or not it’s worth it to get a membership at Costco.
Then I realize a lot of you – my lovely blog readers – were Costco shoppers and thus interested in tips for shopping at Costco. So that was the final factor that got me to buy a membership.
One of the factors I was looking into before I got my membership was the cost of meat, particularly beef.
I did my research I collected all the prices and cuts of beef my Costco in Ann Arbor, Michigan had. And I said, hey I should share that info with my blog readers. So that is why you are here now.
Below you will find a list of what I found at the Costco location in Ann Arbor, Michigan (please note this list has been updated as of October 21, 2019 to reflect current pricing). Prices and selection could vary depending on where you are at.
I also include some tips on how best to prepare each type of beef.
Background on my Meat Knowledge
Much of my meat knowledge has come from reading the Niman Ranch Cookbook. Besides having amazing recipes it has a lot of information on everything you wanted to know about meat and how it is produced.
I cannot recommend this book enough. It changed the way I looked at meat and helped me turn out some mouth watering meals in my kitchen. If you are interest in some really top notch beef and other meat recipes, I highly recommend picking up the Niman Ranch cookbook.
Grades of Beef and Prime Beef
One thing I wanted to point out is that Costco carry some prime beef. Most grocery stores don’t sell prime beef. Generally all you will find is choice beef, but some select in really cheap stores, but for the most part prime beef is used in restaurants.
Check out my post – What is the Difference Between Grades of Beef? – to learn more.
Costco Beef Buying Guide
Let’s begin our guide through the Costco beef world by looking at the steak cuts you might find. Please note that each cut is boneless unless I list it as bone-in.
Costco Steak Prices
|Choice New York Strip Steak||$7.99/lb|
|Prime New York Strip Steak||$17.99/lb|
|Choice Tenderloin Steak (Filet Mignon)||$11.99/lb|
|Prime Tenderloin Steak||$22.99/lb|
|Choice Top Sirloin Steak||$4.99/lb|
|Prime Top Sirloin Steak||$8.99/lb|
|Choice Rib Eye Steak||$10.99/lb|
|Prime Rib Eye Steak||$17.99/lb|
|Prime Bone-In Rib Eye Steak||$13.99/lb|
|Choice Flank Steak||$6.39/lb|
|Choice Top Round Steak||$4.49/lb|
Costco Whole Cut and Roast Prices
Here are the prices of beef at Costco that is either whole cuts or roasts (not steaks). These are your large chunks of beef.
|Choice Whole NY Strip||$5.99/lb|
|Choice Flat Cut Brisket||$8.99/lb|
|Prime Whole Brisket||$3.79/lb|
|Prime Peeled Tenderloin||$29.99/lb|
|Prime Unpeeled Tenderloin||$18.49/lb|
|Choice Chuck Roast||$4.39/lb|
|Choice Eye of Round Roast||$3.49/lb|
|Choice Boneless Ribeye Roast||$10.99/lb|
|Chioice Short Ribs||$9.99/lb|
The price at Costco for a choice boneless Ribeye steak is one of the better prices. Most places are going to be several dollars more a pound. So if you are a Ribeye fan, Costco is a good choice.
They also have thinly cut rib eye steaks that I have either seen for the same price or for a $1 per pound more. Bone-in is available sometimes as well.
Buy the Whole Ribeye, Cut Your Own Steaks
It is not that hard to slice your own beef into steaks of your desired thickness. You just need the right knife.
I like a long, butcher knife, like this one. Great for making nice long and even cuts. Probably can be used to slice bread as well.
If you buy the whole ribeye or ribeye roasts that are prime you can get close to restaurant prime rib in your own kitchen
If you are intimated by cutting your own steaks, then starting with a peeled tenderloin is the easiest way to go. A peeled tenderloin has had the silver skin removed, a tough layer surrounds the tenderloin. It must be removed as you will never be able to chew it.
The peeled tenderloin is expensive, so if you can learn how to do it yourself, there are great videos on YouTube, then save a good chunk of change and buy a unpeeled one. You can create steaks AND roasts with a whole tenderloin.
Brisket is a cut that requires long cooking time. It’s great for smoking or BBQ. Also is the best choice for making corn beef. To learn more about brisket check out this post.
You could also an entire brisket for a really good deal – its’ even cheaper than the choice flat cut brisket. Plus it’s USDA Prime Beef. You can cut slice it up into more manageable servings and freeze. Great idea if you have the freezer space.
New York Strip
I usually prefer the flavor of the Ribeye steak, however at Costco the NY Strip steaks are cheaper in the price. Other stores I see them more equal in price.
A Whole NY Strip is offered that is prime beef. One thing I haven’t mentioned yet but its nice to have a whole cut because you can cut the steak is whatever thickness you like.
I call top sirloin a good value steak. It’s cheaper than Ribeye and NY Strip but still is a quality steak. If not grilling them, you should try doing them in your oven’s broiler. Really good that way.
If you wanted to test the quality of choice vs. prime beef, top sirloin would be the way to go. Buy a pack off each and see for you it if it’s worth it in the future to buy the prime.
There is no other cut of beef I now that soaks up a marinade as well as a flank steak. Just like the top sirloin, they are goo for broiling as well.
Important with all steak, but especially with flank – you’ll want to cut the steak against the grain to make shorter fibers. This will reduce the amount of chewing you will need to do to eat it.
The under $7 a pound price is a good deal.
The top round cut cut comes from the upper back part of the cow. It’s tougher than the sirloin. It is also lean. Dry cooking methods tend to dry this cut out. I would stick to wet cooking methods.
Good for stews and BBQ. I haven’t worked a lot with them as fatty cuts of beef tend to give me heartburn. Sometimes you find prime whole short ribs.
Eye of Round
Makes for a cheap yet still flavorful roast when prepared properly. Check out my post on how to prepare eye of round roasts.
If you have a sous vide machine/immersion ciruculator, they are a great choice for long cooking.
This is my go to cut for pot roast. It has the enough fat and it tasty when you slow cook it. One of my favorite pot roast recipes is my Moroccan Pot Roast.
Already Cooked/Seasoned Beef
There are a couple cuts of beef you might be wondering why I missed them. Both skirt steak and trio-tip are available at Costco but they come already seasoned, so I didn’t want to include them in the lists above.
Let me list for you know the pre-cooked or pre-seasoned beef options including sausage.
|Arrachera Marinated Skirt Steak||$7.99/lb|
|Frontera Slow Cooked Barbacoa||$6.99/lb|
|Sliced Grass Fed Sous Vide Sirloin||$9.79/lb|
|Teton Water 100% Grasss Fed Beef Sausage||$6.13/lb ($15.79 for 36o package)|
|Kiolbassa Beef Sausage||$8.99/lb|
|Steakhouse Seasoned Beef Tri-Tip||$5.89/lb|
|Greenridge Beef Sticks||$5.77/lb ($12.99)|
Thermometer for Meat
One of the biggest piece of advice I give people about meat is that a thermometer is your best friend. It’s how I take the guesswork out of cooking any meat.
Here are a couple that I recommend. They are a wise investment. Saved me countless times from ruining a good steak. And they helped me learn what a good steak will look and feel like when cooked to perfection.
Instant Read Thermometer – The best for steaks. Helps you to check to see if you have reached the perfect medium rare or medium steak.
Taylor Digital Cooking Thermometer with Probe – These are the type you insert the probe into the meat while it’ cooking. This is what I use for beef that goes in the oven, like any type of roast. I like this one because I can set the exact temperate I want. Some come with only preset temperatures which I don”t like. I want the temperature I want.
Costco vs. Sam’s Club – Beef Prices
Seasoning Beef from Costco
I could not end this post without taking a moment talk about seasoning. When it comes to beef there is nothing more important than salt. A great salt can really make your food extraordinary. Costco does sell salt but nothing that really stands out.
My favorite salts can be found from Thrive Market, which it is great site to use in junction with your Costco membership. Thrive has items that Costco doesn’t have and vice versa. Get an extra 25% OFF your first order + a 30 day free trial membership when you sign up at Thrive Market! (Valid on orders $49+, max $20 discount)
The best salts from Thrive Market include Redmond Real Salt, Light Grey Celtic Sea Salt, Maldon Sea Salt Flakes, and HimalaSalt Himalayan salt. A once a year or every 6 months stock up on various salts is a huge gain for your pantry.
We Love to Hear From You
What you purchased beef at Costco before? What did you think? I would love to have your comments below. Also make sure to check out my post on Buying Bison at Costco, and why you might want to give it a try over beef.
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