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How To Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas

Whitney CarlsonComment
How to Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas

I wouldn't call us pro party hosters or planners but we have hosted a few close neighbors and family holidays. We're lucky that our neighbors, friends, and family are not very demanding because we are super laid back about hosting. If you feel the same way, keep reading.

As you know from our numerous previous posts, we love Costco. When we plan on having people over we get almost everything from Costco. It's very convenient and cost-effective. You know by now that we are ALL about saving money. As I was thinking about Super Bowl parties and all of the other events coming up (Easter, graduation parties, school parties, pool parties, etc.), it came to me that I should share how we host ours on a budget! So, here's how we throw a party on a budget - with food ideas from Costco!

P.S. If you are getting ready for the Super Bowl, check out our fun Super Bowl Workout & Meal Plan!

You could host a complete party with a vegetable tray ($9.99), croissant sandwich platter ($29.99), and a pie ($11.99) for less than $52.

Please note that this post is not associated with Costco (and neither are we, other than we love to shop there!). Prices, selection, availability, and the process to order may vary depending on location so call your local store to be sure your location has the same procedure.

Let's start with dessert first.

Sure, Costco cakes wouldn't be considered "clean" but if you eat a piece of cake a few times a year, I think you will be just fine. Remember, what you do every day matters more than what you do once in a while (I heard that quote from Gretchen Rubin and love it!).

Costco cakes are AMAZING. And the price is amazing too. At our local Costco, the price is $18.99 for a sheet cake that serves 48 people. They have limited designs to choose from and from what I understand, they do not do custom work but for the price, you can't beat it! I have a post on How to Order a Cake from Costco where I keep the designs updated. They always seem to have designs for all of the major holidays and plenty of birthday designs to choose from.

If cake isn't your thing they also have cookie platters (60 count for $15.99) or pies (varies by season but ours carries: key lime pie, apple pie, pecan pie, and pumpkin pie - 68 oz for $11.99), and cheesecake ($13.99). I'll take one of each. Please and thank you.

Need A LOT of pies? You can special order those too.

How to Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas
How To Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas

Let's go to finger foods/appetizers next.

Maybe our neighborhood is strange (?!) but the first things to always disappear are the fruit and vegetable trays! I am just simply amazed at the price of Costco's premade vegetable trays and fruit bowls. Sometimes we just buy them when we don't feel like cutting up our own vegetables for the week!

Check out these prices:

Vegetable Platter (4 lbs!!!!!): $9.99
Fresh Cut Fruit Bowl (3 lbs!!!!!): $9.99

How To Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas
How to Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas

I wasn't sure whether to consider these party platters as appetizers or the main course so I'll just include them here. You can order a party platter from Costco! The options at our local Costco are listed below:

  • Croissant Sandwich Platter (serves 16-20): $29.99
  • Chicken & Swiss Rollers (serves 20-24): $29.99
  • Shrimp Platter (serves 20-24): $39.99
  • Meat & Cheese Platter (serves 16-20): $26.99
Shrimp Party Platter from Costco
Sandwich Platter from Costco
Roasted Chicken & Swiss Roller Party Platter from Costco

Now, on to the real deal. The main course.

Scott loves to smoke on his Kamado Joe so for Christmas last year he smoked chicken and pork. I also made our Clean & Simple Roasted Chicken in the oven. It was all delicious!

We've also made our Instant Pot Bison Chili when we had some neighbors over. It was super easy to make and fed plenty!

We spend about $20 on two organic whole chickens (usually around $2.50 per pound) and $20 on the bison meat (2.5 lbs). These prices may vary but those are two very inexpensive options to feed a crowd!

How To Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas
How To Throw a Party on a Budget - Costco Food Ideas

If you don't want to cook, I get it! There's plenty to choose from where only minimal effort will be needed on your part! Again, not the healthiest option but definitely a crowd pleaser: Costco's take & bake pizza for $8.99! Or, if you think the party platters will be enough food, they are a great deal!

Looking for more Costco resources?! Never fear, we have you covered!