I Compared Costco’s Pizza to Sam’s Club’s and Was Shocked at Which Was Better

published Jul 28, 2023
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A whole pepperoni pizza with an Almond Flour Crust, cut into eight slices with one slice being lifted
Credit: Laura Rege
Almond Flour Pizza Crust

Many of my fondest memories from childhood are surrounded by pizza. Who else remembers competing with their peers in school to read the most books just to earn a pizza party for their class? Back then, it seemed as if the toughest decision you had to make was choosing between pepperoni or cheese pizza, but no matter which one you chose, it was always a rewarding feeling to have earned a warm slice of cheesy goodness. 

While my palate has evolved from the free pizza of my youth, there are still times when I search for that nostalgic bite. When that does happen, I know I can depend on Costco to give me what I’m looking for. But as of late, friends and family members have been telling me that I’ve been missing out on a better option: pizza from Sam’s Club. So, with that in mind, I felt it was the perfect time to see how the two matched up against one another in a true showdown. 

Credit: Choya Johnson

The Price and Size

First, I had to make sure I could access the warehouses. Although I have a Costco membership, you don’t need a membership at either warehouse to be able to access the cafe area — which is a plus for both. 

Credit: Choya Johnson

To make this a fair tasting, I chose to get a pepperoni pizza from both Costco and Sam’s Club. Both warehouses offer competitive pricing for sizable pies. At Costco, the pepperoni pizza — which is 18 inches — is $9.95 sans tax. Sam’s Club, however, was $8.98, but the pie is only 16 inches.

Appearance and Taste

Although the wait to get my Costco pizza was a bit longer than usual, once I got it, it was hot and smelled incredible. My experience with Sam’s Club, however, was a bit more difficult. While getting in to get the pizza was no problem, every Sam’s Club I went into on the first day was sold out of everything but cheese pizza. It took me four days and an earlier-in-the-day trek, to nab a pepperoni pizza from Sam’s Club. Once I got it, though, I was ready to compare.

Credit: Choya Johnson
Sam's Club pizza

At first glance when comparing them both, Costco’s pizza looked to be a little more cooked-through, but it appeared greasier than the Sam’s Club pizza. And of course, the former was a bit larger than the latter. 

Credit: Choya Johnson
Costco pizza

But what about the taste? Well, while I normally would have flocked right to Costco to grab myself a last-minute pie when needing something to eat, Sam’s Club actually surprised me with its pizza. It reminded me of the excitement I would have when my mom would tell me we were going to Chuck E. Cheese for pizza and playtime. It was a true nostalgic bite.

Bottom Line

So, were my family and friends right in telling me that I was missing out on something good from Sam’s Club? Taste-wise, yes — I wish I would have gone there sooner. But considering how much trouble I had getting the specific pizza I wanted, I don’t know if I would go through it all over again to get another one.