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Does Costco have cooked baby back ribs?

Costco is well known for selling great products at wholesale prices. Many customers love stopping by their local Costco warehouse store to stock up on bulk items. One popular item that customers look for are baby back ribs. This leads to the common question – does Costco sell pre-cooked baby back ribs that you can just heat and eat?

The Availability of Pre-Cooked Baby Back Ribs at Costco

The short answer is yes, Costco does offer cooked baby back ribs that just need reheating. However, the availability can vary by location and season.

Costco usually offers pre-cooked baby back ribs during the summer grilling months. They are generally available from May through September. However, even during this time, the cooked ribs may only be stocked intermittently depending on supply and demand.

In addition, not every Costco location carries the pre-cooked ribs. Whether or not you will find them at your local warehouse can depend on factors like store size, customer demand, and regional preferences.

Your best bet is to check with your specific Costco store to see if they stock the ready-to-heat baby back ribs during the summer months. The meat department employees will be able to confirm if they have them in stock or if they expect to get them in soon.

How Costco’s Pre-Cooked Baby Back Ribs are Packaged and Priced

If your Costco store does carry the pre-cooked baby back ribs, here is what you can expect:

  • They come packaged in a vacuum-sealed pouch usually containing two full racks of ribs (around 4 pounds total).
  • The ribs are already seasoned, smoked, and fully cooked. They just need to be thawed and warmed before eating.
  • The pricing is around $20 for a pack containing two racks of ribs.

So you get 4 pounds of tender, smoked baby back ribs that just need a quick reheat. At around $5 per pound, it’s a great value compared to the time and effort required to cook them yourself.

How to Prepare Costco’s Pre-Cooked Baby Back Ribs

Cooking up these convenient pre-cooked ribs from Costco is super easy. Here are a few simple steps:

  1. Thaw the sealed pouch of ribs overnight in the refrigerator or use the defrost setting on your microwave.
  2. Preheat your oven to 325°F.
  3. Remove the ribs from the packaging and place them meat side up on a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. Bake the ribs for 15-25 minutes until heated through. The meat should reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
  5. Optional: Brush the ribs with barbecue sauce during the last 5 minutes of reheating for added flavor.
  6. Slice the ribs apart and serve immediately. Enjoy!

And that’s it – perfectly tender and juicy baby back ribs with minimal effort thanks to Costco’s pre-cooked version. The ribs also reheat well, so you can bake the whole pack and enjoy the leftovers later in the week.

Pros of Buying Pre-Cooked Baby Back Ribs from Costco

There are many benefits to choosing Costco’s ready-to-heat ribs:

  • Convenience – No lengthy smoking or grilling required. Just thaw, warm, and eat.
  • Delicious flavor – They are smoked with seasonings for authentic barbecue taste.
  • Juicy and tender – Slow cooked so the meat is fall-off-the-bone.
  • Minimal mess – No need to handle raw meat or discard bone scraps.
  • Great value – Approximately $5 per pound for pre-cooked ribs.
  • Kid-friendly – With the bones removed, they make finger-food kids will love.

When you want the barbecue flavor without the fuss, Costco’s pre-cooked ribs deliver convenience and taste.

Potential Drawbacks

While Costco’s ready-to-eat baby back ribs provide an easy shortcut to great tasting ribs, there are a few potential drawbacks to consider:

  • Limited availability – As mentioned, they may not be stocked year-round or at all locations.
  • Reheating can dry them out – Be careful not to overcook when reheating to maintain moistness.
  • Pre-seasoned flavor – The seasoning may be generic vs. customized flavors.
  • Not completely homemade – Some BBQ purists may prefer ribs smoked entirely from scratch.
  • Packaged in pairs – You have to buy two racks at once versus single servings.

While not a dealbreaker for most, these factors may make Costco’s pre-cooked ribs unsuitable for some customers depending on their preferences and needs.

How Costco Ribs Compare to Other Grocery Stores

Costco is not the only nationwide retail chain that offers ready-to-eat baby back ribs. Here is how Costco compares to some other major grocery outlets:

Store Availability Pricing per Rack Packaging
Costco Intermittent in summer $10 Vacuum-sealed packs of 2 racks
Sam’s Club Year-round $8-$12 Cryovac packs of 2 or 4 racks
BJ’s Summer only $9-$10 Vacuum-sealed packs of 2 racks
Walmart Limited availability $7-$9 Variable; may be cryovac singles

As you can see, availability and pricing varies somewhat between big box stores. But Costco still offers competitive ready-to-eat ribs during barbecue season.

Tips for Reheating Costco Ribs

Follow these tips for reheating Costco’s pre-cooked baby back ribs to maximize flavor and texture:

  • Thaw the ribs thoroughly before reheating for even heating. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight or use a microwave defrost setting.
  • Reheat uncovered in the oven. Covering with foil can make the ribs soggy.
  • Use a rimmed baking sheet and place ribs meaty-side up to avoid stewing in juices.
  • Brush with barbecue sauce toward the end to glaze – sauce may burn if applied too early.
  • Check internal temperature with a meat thermometer to ensure food safety.
  • Don’t overload the baking sheet. Give ribs space for even heating.
  • Slice ribs before serving for easier eating. Cut between bones into individual ribs.

Following these tips will help you avoid dry, mushy, or burnt ribs when reheating Costco’s convenient pre-cooked version.

Alternative Ways to Cook Costco Ribs

While the oven is the standard reheating method recommended, you can also reheat Costco’s pre-cooked baby back ribs in some other appliances:


Preheat your grill to medium heat. Place ribs meaty-side down and heat 5-7 minutes per side until warmed through and lightly charred.

Air Fryer

Set air fryer to 380°F and cook ribs in batches for 5-7 minutes until heated through, flipping halfway.

Slow Cooker

Add 1 cup barbecue sauce and ribs to a slow cooker. Cook on High for 1-2 hours until heated through, basting with sauce.


Arrange ribs in a microwave-safe dish, cover, and microwave on High for 2-3 minutes per rack until hot. Check often to avoid overcooking.

While the traditional oven is best, in a pinch these appliances can also effectively reheat Costco’s pre-cooked ribs.

Serving Suggestions

Costco’s ready-to-eat baby back ribs are delicious on their own but pair even better with complementary sides and sauces. Consider serving them with:

  • Baked beans, coleslaw, or potato salad
  • Corn on the cob or roasted potatoes
  • Biscuits, cornbread, or buttery dinner rolls
  • Your favorite barbecue sauce or buffalo wing sauce for dipping
  • Pickles, onions, sliced cucumbers
  • Fruit salad or baked fruit dessert

Pairing the juicy ribs with traditional BBQ sides and sauces makes for a complete meal with minimal effort. But they also work well served as appetizers with dips and pickles.

Storing Leftover Ribs

Any leftover reheated ribs from Costco can be stored safely for later use by following these guidelines:

  • Let ribs cool to room temperature before refrigerating.
  • Place cooled ribs in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag.
  • Refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  • Freeze for up to 4 months in freezer bags or airtight containers.
  • Reheat leftovers to 165°F before serving again.

With proper storage in the fridge or freezer, Costco’s convenient pre-cooked ribs can be enjoyed again later in the week.


Costco’s ready-to-heat baby back ribs provide a quick and easy shortcut to smoked ribs with minimal mess and effort. While availability may be limited seasonally and regionally, they offer great value at just $5 per pound when you can find them in stock. Their tender and flavorful pre-cooked ribs just need a short reheat before serving. Pair them with classic BBQ sides and sauces for finger-licking backyard barbecue taste without having to light the smoker yourself. So for delicious no-fuss ribs, be sure to check your local Costco warehouse during grilling season to take advantage of this tasty time-saving product.