As much as we might love cooking for our families during the holidays, let’s be honest. Shopping for and preparing an entire Thanksgiving meal is stressful, time-consuming, and expensive. I mean, a turkey brine alone takes at least 16 hours.
Costco knows this, and so it’s come up with an “easy button” solution to your family’s holiday meal: a pre-prepared Thanksgiving dinner with all the fixings. The catch is that it’ll cost you $200. Is it worth it? We’ll answer that question and more below with our comprehensive guide to Costco’s Thanksgiving dinner meal kit.
Note: At time of publication, Costco's meal kit was on sale for $149.99 thanks to a $50 discount valid through Nov. 12. However, prices may vary.
What Is Costco’s Thanksgiving Meal Kit?
Costco is selling a $200 Thanksgiving frozen meal in a box that ships straight to your door. Branded as the Fortune Gourmet Thanksgiving Dinner, this pre-prepared dinner serves eight and comes with appetizers, sides, and desserts.
Although everything comes prepared — the turkey is pre-brined, for example — you’ll have to heat some items, thaw others, and roast the turkey yourself.
Find a full list of the meal kit’s items below:
5 pounds of all-natural, Amish farm-raised skin-on, netted turkey breast (ready to roast)
1.5-pound tray of mashed potatoes
8 ounces of turkey gravy
1.6-pound tray of mac and cheese
2 pounds of sweet corn
2 pounds of whole green beans
2-pound tray of St. Claire dressing and stuffing
0.75-pound jar of cranberry relish
12 dinner rolls
8-inch whole pumpkin pie
8-inch whole apple pie
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How Can I Pre-Order the Meal Kit?
Ordering Costco’s dinner is easy. Head to Costco’s website, add the Thanksgiving dinner to your cart, and follow the instructions for checkout.
The retailer recommends ordering the meal kit by Nov. 5., which means you should receive your order between Nov. 8-17. (For reference, Thanksgiving is on Nov. 23 this year.) However, if you order late, it may arrive in time for the festivities, as Costco is shipping the meal kit with FedEx second-day air, which delivers in two business days, according to the shipper’s website.
Non-members can also order the meal kit, though you’ll pay Costco’s 5% non-member surcharge.
Is Costco’s Thanksgiving Dinner Worth the Money?
We can almost guarantee you’ll save money if you prepare Thanksgiving dinner on your own. Here’s why.
In 2022, an American Farm Bureau survey found that the average Thanksgiving dinner for 10 people cost $64.05, or around $6 per person. Even with the current promotion, Costco’s meal kit is more than twice as much, and it serves fewer people.
Given the premium you’re paying, the only reason to order Costco’s Thanksgiving dinner is if you’ve got cash to spare and don’t have the time (or the will) to prepare a holiday meal.
And even then, there are cheaper pre-cooked Thanksgiving dinners out there. For example, the Bob Evans chain has a pre-cooked Thanksgiving dinner that serves six for $100.
Cheapism’s Take: Skip Costco’s Thanksgiving Meal Kit
From using premium ingredients to including desserts and sides, Costco’s Thanksgiving meal kit does a lot right. But the math just isn’t on the retailer’s side when it comes to price.
Instead, we recommend making Thanksgiving dinner on your own, even if that means supplementing your feast with cheap, premade sides. And if you can’t imagine putting together a meal, then go for a cheaper prepared option.