Advertisement

I've been a barbecue pitmaster for nearly a decade. Here are 10 things I buy at Costco and how I use them.

Bachan's Japanese BBQ sauce on display at Costco
Bachan's Japanese barbecue sauce pairs well with chicken wings or salmon. Joe Sousa
  • I'm a pitmaster who shops at Costco to cook for big groups and my family.

  • Costco carries solid cuts of meat, such as pork shoulder and USDA Prime brisket.

  • I also like getting Kirkland Signature chicken wings and Bachan's Japanese barbecue sauce.

As a pitmaster of almost 10 years, I'm always searching for different cuts of meat to throw on the smoker for my family and big groups.

I usually visit Costco once or twice a week because its selection of meat is hard to beat in variety and price. The wholesaler also has some other great finds I enjoy.

Here are 10 things I buy at Costco when I'm hoping to grill up something tasty.

Costco regularly has USDA Prime briskets, which can be hard to find in local grocery stores.

Brisket on display at Costco
Even if I don't plan to cook brisket soon, I will always check the meat case for a good-looking one.Joe Sousa

When I buy brisket at Costco, I look for a long and thin cut that's about 14 to 16 pounds.

I don't pay much attention to the marbling, but I look closely at the shape. The flat (the thinner part of the brisket) should be at least an inch thick.

At under $5 a pound, brisket is also one of the cheapest cuts of beef I've found at Costco.

Boneless pork shoulder is easy to smoke.

Swift pork shoulder butt on display at Costco
I buy most of my pork butts at Costco. Joe Sousa

Pork shoulder butt is one of the easiest cuts to smoke. It's also one of the most delicious.

I buy nearly all my pork butts at Costco and prefer the boneless butts to the bone-in ones. They take a bit more work to tie up for an even cook, but since the bone is out, you can get some salt into the middle of the meat.

Give them a quick rub, throw them on the smoker, and 12 hours later, you have a cheap, delicious barbecue.

Pork butts are usually about $2 a pound, and a two-pack from Costco can easily feed 15 to 20 people with some leftovers.

My family is a huge fan of Bachan's Japanese barbecue sauce.

Bachan's Japanese BBQ sauce on display at Costco
Bachan's Japanese barbecue sauce pairs well with chicken wings or salmon. Joe Sousa

I use Bachan's Japanese barbecue sauce to marinade flank steak, coat chicken wings, and glaze pork chops. It's even great on grilled salmon.

The flavor of this sauce works perfectly with pretty much any protein and will add a nice Asian flair to a meal.

Few cuts are as economical as a whole pork loin.

Boneless pork loin on display at Costco
I can get three meals out of a whole pork loin from Costco. Joe Sousa

I usually see pork loin for less than $2 a pound at Costco.

I like smoking pork loins, but I can also cut some nice boneless pork chops out of the loin. My family easily gets three meals from a pork loin for less than $15.

Smoke it until the internal temperature is about 145 degrees Fahrenheit, and you'll have a juicy, tasty piece of meat that's an inexpensive alternative to pricier roasts.

Kirkland Signature chicken wings are great for parties, but I cook them regularly for weeknight dinner.

Kirkland chicken wing packs on display at Costco
The Kirkland Signature wing packs have a variety of shapes. Joe Sousa

The Kirkland Signature wing packs from Costco have both drumettes and flats.

I cook my wings hot and fast with the grill running around 500 degrees Fahrenheit, but a low and slow smoke gives some great flavor, too.

The sky's the limit when it comes to rubs and sauces. Meat Church's Honey Hog or Holy Voodoo rubs are my two go-to picks for wings, but salt, pepper, and Frank's Red Hot are a classic combo.

Pork belly is good for bacon and burnt ends.

Swift pork belly on display at Costco
Pork belly can be turned into bacon. Joe Sousa

I love curing and smoking my own bacon, and these whole pork bellies can be used to make some of the best bacon you've ever had.

I also use these for pork-belly burnt ends — making them requires seasoning, smoking, braising, and glazing pork to make it like meat candy.

Barbecuing and grilling can be messy, so I try to have a roll of shop towels handy.

Scott shop towels in package at Costco
Scott shop towels come in packs of 10 at Costco. Joe Sousa

The Scott blue shop towels can handle whatever mess I throw at them, whether I'm wiping off cutting boards or grabbing a dirty grill grate.

St. Louis-style pork spare ribs can be cooked quickly.

Swift pork ribs on display at Costco
I buy the Swift St. Louis-style pork spare ribs at Costco when I want to prepare something in a few hours. Joe Sousa

The meat cases at Costco are always full of various pork rib cuts. I prefer the St. Louis-style ribs, but the chain also sells baby backs and whole spare ribs.

Ribs are perfect for when you want barbecue but don't want to spend 12 to 16 hours at the grill.

A good rack of ribs can be ready to eat in less than six hours.

Flank steak is a staple around our house.

Flank steak apackages on display at Costco
I can cook flank steak in about 10 minutes. Joe Sousa

I grill flank steak over direct heat and can get it on the dinner table in about 10 minutes.

Flank steak also takes a variety of seasonings and marinades well. I usually use some sort of Asian marinade, but flank steaks can be used to make some great carne asada as well.

Nitrile exam gloves are great for food prep.

Kirkland gloves in boxes on display at a Costco
Kirkland Signature's nitrile exam gloves are my go-to pick at Costco. Joe Sousa

I go through a lot of gloves when I cook, and these 400-count boxes from Costco's Kirkland Signature brand are a lifesaver.

I use them to touch meat, apply rubs and seasonings, and handle dirty grills and grates.

They're much cheaper than the fancy black gloves many pitmasters use.

Click to keep reading Costco diaries like this one.

Read the original article on Business Insider