Who Makes Costco’s Kirkland Signature Rotisserie Chicken? (2024)

First-time Costco shoppers might have noticed lines popping up in certain sections of the warehouse. As returning Costco customers know, the famed Costco products are worth the hype and there just might be some secrets behind them.

From the great deals and hidden discounts, one of Costco’s most popular items is its rotisserie chicken. It’s always affordable, fresh, warm, and convenient. But which brand is behind the Kirkland Signature rotisserie chicken? Read more to find out who provides this Costco favorite.

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Related: Who Makes Kirkland Batteries?

Name Behind Kirkland Signature Rotisserie Chicken

Who Makes Costco’s Kirkland Signature Rotisserie Chicken? (1)

If you’re wondering who makes Kirkland Signature rotisserie chicken (and why it tastes so good), then you’ve come to the right place. The company behind the famed rotisserie chicken is Lincoln Premium Poultry. Similar to other Kirkland Signature products, Costco has a say in a lot of how the products are handled and how they’re being processed. That’s why all of Costco’s products ensure high quality and customer satisfaction.

In order to maintain this reputation, the wholesaler established its own production complex and partnered with Lincoln Premium Poultry to manage the facility. This gives Costco 100% control over its fresh or frozen chicken products to keep the prices low and consistent over the years.

Where Do the Chickens Come From?

With such a high-commodity item, Costco has to make sure they have a hand in the processing of their chicken. That’s why they’ve spent around $1 billion on an enormous poultry farm in Fremont, Nebraska. The farm holds 500 chicken houses, each of which contains 42,000 chickens that help them sell over 100 million rotisserie chickens each year.

Nutrition Behind Costco’s Rotisserie Chicken

When it comes to the nutritional facts, you’ll have to factor in how much you eat of an entire chicken. The ingredients are simple: a whole chicken, water, seasoning, and salt. Costco sells their chicken by price alone, not by poundage, so keep that in mind when estimating the total number of calories you’re consuming. Some sources estimate around 1800-2300 calories for the entire chicken. However, unofficial sites log Costco’s rotisserie chicken at 140-190 calories per serving. Ultimately, you’ll be consuming fully cooked, fresh chicken, so this can be a healthy choice for dinner time.

Why Is This Chicken So Popular?

Who Makes Costco’s Kirkland Signature Rotisserie Chicken? (2)

Costco roasts and seasons their chickens in-house, providing Costco members with rotisserie chicken right from the deli counter. This chicken only ever stays on the shelf for two hours ensuring ultimate freshness. However, that’s not the only reason it’s so popular — it’s also the price point that makes it such a steal. The bird is incredibly meaty with a price of only $4.99.

Similar to the Costco hot dog and drink combo, the $4.99 rotisserie chicken should stay that way for the foreseeable future due to Costco’s price controls. The convenience of picking up ready-to-eat chicken makes lunch or weeknight dinners that much easier.

Lastly, recent changes to the packaging have made this chicken even more popular. While the rotisserie chicken used to be carried in hard plastic take-home containers, they have been replaced with plastic bags. This cuts back on plastic use with bags that can now be recycled. Customers enjoy the easy-to-carry, small bags that can fit properly in the fridge at home.

Is It Worth Buying?

Is it worth grabbing for yourself though? Kirkland Signature rotisserie chicken is one of their top grocery items in the warehouse, so maybe that’s enough to warrant every customer trying it once. Additionally, this is what the reviews have to say:

Customers love the salty flavor of the chicken and moist texture. You can really tell how fresh it is. People also recognize and enjoy how much meat comes on the bone making it a true value. And with over 110 million rotisserie chickens sold per year, it’s clear that price isn’t the only factor. This Costco chicken is the perfect choice if you want a cheap, convenient meal, or protein addition to your weeknight dinner. But if you’re watching your salt intake, it may not be the best option.

Overall, this pre-made chicken option is so worth it. Even picky eaters might want to dive into this cheap, delicious, and filling meal that can last a few days.

Read More: What Company is Behind Costco Frozen Food?

Have you tried Costco’s famed chicken? What are your thoughts on the new packaging? Let us know your Kirkland Signature rotisserie chicken review to help fellow Costco shoppers determine if they should try it. And keep checking back at Costco97 to learn more about Costco’s great finds and famous products.

Who Makes Costco’s Kirkland Signature Rotisserie Chicken? (2024)

FAQs

Who supplies Costco rotisserie chicken? ›

Costco Raises Its Own Chickens

To cut costs, Costco opened its own 400,000-square-foot poultry processing plant in Nebraska in 2019. The plant enables the company to manage the chickens from farm to production and ensures that the birds are grown to the correct size, typically around 3 pounds.

Why avoid Costco rotisserie chicken? ›

Costco's rotisserie chicken is arguably the most controversial piece of poultry in America. In the span of just one year, customers have claimed that the rotisserie chicken tastes like chemicals and causes gastrointestinal issues.

What is Costco changing about their rotisserie chicken? ›

What's changing is the packaging. The chickens used to come in a clamshell made of hard plastic. Now Costco is swapping that out for a plastic bag. In an internal company memo shared on Reddit (since removed), employees said the new packaging would be “coming soon” and would reduce its environmental impact by 75%.

What does Costco inject their rotisserie chickens with? ›

Goldstein interviewed Harshavardhan Thippareddi, PhD, professor of poultry science at the University of Georgia, who explained that chickens are injected with phosphate to keep them juicy through the rotisserie preparation process, and some consumers may interpret this addition as a soapy or chemical-like flavor.

What does Costco do with unsold rotisserie chicken? ›

Contrary to what you might have thought, unsold chicken isn't tossed into the bin. Instead, it's actually repurposed. In fact, Costco explains that all of the meat from leftover rotisserie chickens is used to make an assortment of chicken-based goodies found at their deli counter.

Does Costco make a profit on their rotisserie chicken? ›

As is the case at most grocery chains, Costco's rotisserie chickens are a loss leader. “Very few people simply buy the chicken and leave,” John Longo, a professor at Rutgers Business School, told The Hustle. “They probably shop for other items that provide higher profit margins.”

How unhealthy is Costco rotisserie chicken? ›

It's not the healthiest rotisserie chicken available

Costco isn't the only store selling rotisserie chicken, of course — and while their birds may be popular, they're not the healthiest you can buy. Consumer Reports called out chickens from Costco and Sam's Club for excessively high sodium.

Where does Kirkland chicken come from? ›

In 2019, the grocer established its own massive chicken production complex in Fremont, Nebraska, and partnered with a company called Lincoln Premium Poultry (or LPP) to manage it.

Why isn't rotisserie chicken good for you? ›

Again, this is because most rotisserie chickens contain an “injection solution” of sugars, sodium, and other processed ingredients. Because they are injected into the meat, these additives, salts, and sugars are distributed throughout the chicken—so you can't avoid them by not eating the skin.

Why is Costco rotisserie chicken so moist? ›

The reason Costco's chicken is so juicy is because of a salt solution pumped inside, which is basically like super-brining. That makes the meat moist and evenly seasoned every time, delivering a consistent—though there has been some Reddit uproar about weird-tasting chicken lately in some states—tasting chicken.

Why is Costco rotisserie chicken pink inside? ›

Chemical changes occur during cooking. Oven gases in a heated gas or electric oven react chemically with hemoglobin in the meat tissues to give it a pink tinge. Often meat of younger birds shows the most pink because their thinner skins permit oven gases to reach the flesh.

Have Costco chickens gotten smaller? ›

Costco Wholesale's famed rotisserie chicken is noticeably smaller. While its been long rumored that Costco planned to move away from its large bins to bags to reduce plastic, the change to a smaller bird is a surprise.

What brand is Costco rotisserie chicken? ›

Costco will be releasing data about the "total plastic footprint" of their in-house brand, Kirkland, which is where they're focusing their efforts first. This December, Costco vows to share a five-year action plan about how they're planning to use less plastic, the Public Interest Research Group reports.

Does Costco put sugar in their rotisserie chicken? ›

The ingredients are simple—but the spices are still a mystery. According to the label, Costco's rotisserie chicken is made with 10 ingredients: whole chicken, water, and seasonings (salt, sodium phosphate, modified food starch, potato dextrin, carrageenan, sugar, dextrose, spice extractives).

Why is carrageenan added to rotisserie chicken? ›

Carrageenan is a chemical compound injected into some pre-cooked poultry to tenderize it and keep it juicy.

Where does Costco get all their chickens? ›

That was in 2019, the same year Costco decided to get into the chicken production business. It set up its own feed mill, hatchery, and slaughter plant in Nebraska, and contracted nearby farmers like Baptista to raise over 100 million birds each year, all under the name Lincoln Premium Poultry.

Is Costco rotisserie chicken ethical? ›

Among many individual claims of cruelty, the lawsuit alleges that Costco "fails to provide any realistic method for its disabled birds to reach food and water, or to receive individualized veterinary care." The filing also suggests that birds sometimes become so heavy that they lose feathers on their underside or fall ...

Where does Costco's meat come from? ›

Costco sources its beef from dozens of suppliers. Here, we outline the supply chain of one of their main beef suppliers, Harris Ranch. We detail this supply chain from retailer to feedlot back to pasture, finding that Costco is sourcing beef directly from pollution hotspots in California's San Joaquin Valley (Fig.

How much does Costco sell their rotisserie chicken for? ›

Unlike so many other items that have been subject to rampant inflation in the years following the COVID-19 pandemic, Costco's ready-to-eat rotisserie chicken has retained its $4.99 price tag since the product was introduced approximately 30 years ago.

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