How Long Do Costco Rotisserie Chickens Sit on Store Shelves?

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Costco's Kirkland Signature rotisserie chicken
David Tonelson /

Costco’s rotisserie chickens are legendary and have a devoted fan base. But just how long do those birds sit on store shelves?

The cooking website Allrecipes says it knows. Apparently, the chickens are pulled if they do not sell within two hours. The meat then is “repurposed” for soups or salads, or appears in vacuum-sealed bags available in the deli section.

In truth, Allrecipes did not unearth this information through a lot of sleuthing. The publication simply turned to the new book “The Joy of Costco: A Treasure Hunt from A to Z” by authors David and Susan Schwartz.

They note that Tim Rose, a founding Costco officer, made the decision to keep the chickens fresh for the retailer’s customers.

Although chickens that linger longer would still be safe to eat, they might be a bit less flavorful. And it is that attention to detail and willingness to go the extra mile that has made Costco so beloved.

This is not to say Costco’s rotisserie chicken is great for your health, though. We cite it in “7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco.”

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