Those of us who are professional food and recipe writers have a few other things (by association) that we are also experts at: dishwashing (sigh), repurposing leftovers (my favorite indoor sport), and food shopping. And while I have a robust, ever-changing, and always-growing list of places where I shop, Costco remains a mainstay — and more than 90 million other Costco members obviously agree. 

So knowing the ins and out of the different places that I shop — who has the best cheeses, whose prices are great on plastic wrap, how to work the sales, which store-brand quinoa is the best in terms of quality and value — is actually a pretty big part of my job. Luckily I happen to love this part of my job. It’s like an ongoing little game, kind of like Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader? But instead it’s Are You Smarter than the Grocery Store?

Back to Costco — lots has been written (some of it by me!) about being a savvy warehouse club shopper. And it’s nice to know that, should you have time, their enticingly priced little food court awaits you at the end of your shopping excursion.  But sometimes you don’t have time to wait on what can be a very long line, and then sit and have your lunch … and you also might have ice cream or other frozen items that need to get home, stat. But a Costco trip can make you hungry. What to do?

This is what to do: Order and pay for a pizza to be ready just as you check out, and snap it up as you make your way to the door — no waiting, and a very large (and good and cheap) hot pizza to go. There are a few ways to do this.

The final and most important part of this story: He or she who did the shopping and the pizza-procuring gets the first slice (and does not have to help unload the car). Thems the rules.

Katie Workman


Katie Workman is the author of two cookbooks. She is also the founding editor in chief of; a regular contributor to NPR; and a columnist for the Associated Press and Eating Well magazine. She lives with her husband and two children in NYC.

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