Ah, Costco — the land of free samples, bulk toilet paper, and very large things we didn’t know we needed. While Costco might seem like the promised land of good deals, there are a few things to avoid buying in bulk.
To make your trips to Costco easier, we’ve rounded up five items you should definitely stock up on, and five items you should think twice about purchasing in mass quantities.
Here’s what you should buy.
Whether you live alone or with roommates, it’s always handy to have a hefty supply of toilet paper, paper towels, and trash bags. Buying in bulk will save you money, especially if you opt for brands like Kirkland. Plus, it’s easy to store in a closet out of sight.
Pasta, oatmeal, and dried beans
Pasta, oats, and dried beans can last for as long as two years if stored in an air tight container. They’re great staples to keep in the pantry, and come in handy when you haven’t had time to hit the grocery store in a while.
If you cook with butter a lot, it’s a safe option to stock up on. Not only is it much cheaper than buying a few sticks at a time at your local grocery store, you can also freeze it to prolong its shelf life.
Most varieties of alcohol are going to be significantly cheaper if you buy in bulk, and ,luckily, the shelf life is relatively long. Think about it — a six-pack of beer at the grocery store is usually about $7, while a 24-pack at Costco can go for around $16 (the same goes for wine and hard liquor!).
Whether you’re a student, have kids, or just need supplies for your work desk, it’s generally a good idea to buy in mass quantities. Since mechanical pencils have the same mysterious disappearing properties as bobby pins, it’s a good idea to stock up.
Here’s what you shouldn’t buy.
Some of the deals may seem too good to pass up, but more often than not, it’s better to pick up your favorite fruits and veggies at the grocery store when they’re in season and ripe. Unless you have a big family and eat fresh food pretty quickly, these items will often go bad before you even get a chance to leave a dent.
Dairy and eggs
Food like milk and eggs can go rancid quite quickly if you don’t eat them at a fast rate. Not only that, dairy should only be consumed in small amounts, so pass on the gallons of milk and the pound of cheese next time you’re at Costco. Only buy bulk eggs if you know you can finish them in five to eight weeks.
This one might be surprising to some, but oils only have a shelf life of about six months, and, chances are, you’re not going to finish massive bottles in that amount of time.
Another surprising one for most because condiments can seem like they last forever. But at the rate you probably consume said condiments, is it really worth spending the extra bucks for that larger bottle or jar?
If you love coffee, you probably already know this, but coffee tastes best when ground and consumed within a couple weeks after opening. We recommend buying a smaller portion that can last about two weeks as opposed to a giant sack.
xx, The FabFitFun Team