We Can't Leave Costco Without Stopping For This Food Court Item

Some loyal Costco patrons might argue that the best part about the warehouse retailer, other than the solid deals on bulk items, is its food court. A stop by the food court on the way out from a long shopping trip is an affordable way to satisfy your hunger before you go to unload the large boxes and bags of groceries. There are only a few select items to choose from, so Tasting Table took the time to rank every Costco food court item — and you might be surprised to learn that our favorite snack isn't the bargain hot dog that the CEO promises won't get a price hike.

From the menu, the top-rated item is the chicken bake. It took the number one spot for a few reasons, like the delicious combination of rotisserie chicken and cheesy sauce. Our reviewer refers to it as a "gourmet hot pocket." I have to agree with my fellow writer because it's also my go-to order at my local Costco food court — packed with a rich, comforting flavor that makes for an effortless meal. Plus, as our ranking points out, it only costs $3.99, which is a steal for how large and flavorful it is considering it's from the food court, after all.

What's inside Costco's chicken bake?

One of the ingredients that exemplifies the flavor is the not-so-secret Caesar dressing that's inside the chicken bake. In addition to the Caesar dressing, you'll find rotisserie chicken, cheese, and pieces of bacon stuffed in an oblong calzone-style bread that has cheese on the outside for a flavorful touch at the top of each bite. You might think Caesar dressing belongs solely on salads — but there's a reason why it works so well in Costco's chicken bakes. The creaminess of the dressing pairs quite well with the tender chicken and crusty bread. Then there's the flavor, because Caesar dressing is tangy with notes of garlic, anchovy, and lemon that complement otherwise boring chicken. Don't get us wrong, it might not be homemade Caesar dressing inside a chicken bake, but the flavors are reminiscent of the dressing and meld together for delicious bites.

The chicken bake really stands on its own, but you might want to wash it down with a fountain soda that's sold for less than a dollar (with free refills!). If you have a sweet tooth, the second-highest-rated item on our ranking is a newer addition to the menu: the double chocolate chunk cookie. The cookies are served fresh and warm, so you might want to stay at the food court to eat your meal. For those wondering what item you should steer clear of, we say it's the cheese pizza partly because of its greasiness — but we'll let you decide.