Emily VanSchmus | 

Sam's Club Food Court Is Beating Costco at Their Own Game — Here's How

The Krazy Coupon Lady is an ad-supported service. Many offers on our site contain affiliate links, and we may earn a small commission if you make a purchase using them. Some posts are sponsored by the maker of the product, and we receive a fee for the post. Learn More.

One of the best perks of having a Sam’s Club membership is that you can grab a cheap and delicious meal at the food court as you shop. While the Sam’s Club food court menu doesn't have quite as many options as the Costco food court menu, you might be surprised to learn that Sam's Club's food court prices are lower — with the average price of a Sam's Club food court item coming in at about $1.50 less than Costco.

Heck, you can even eat at the Sam's Club food court without a membership, which gives them another advantage over Costco.

Menu items at the Sam’s Club food court start at $0.89 — for fountain drinks and ICEEs — and almost everything you can order is under $2. The most expensive item? A full 16-inch pizza for $8.98 — still way less than ordering from a pizza chain!

We compared food court prices at both warehouses so you can see how Sam’s Club prices stack up to Costco food court prices. Plus, we’ll share a few insider hacks about ordering from the Sam's Club food court.

For more smart shopping tips, savings hacks, and Sam’s Club coupons, download the KCL app or text HACKS to 57299.

Current Sam's Club Food Court Prices & Menu

sams-club-pizza-pretzel-kcl-1

From what we’ve seen, prices are consistent at every Sam’s Club location, no matter where you live. And the only price change we’ve seen in the past few years was actually a price drop! (Sam’s dropped the price of their hot dog combo by $0.22 in November, making it cheaper than Costco's.)

Here is the current Sam's Club food court menu, with prices, as of June 2024:

Menu item

Current price

30 oz Fountain Drink

$0.89

20 oz ICEE

$0.89

Frozen Yogurt (Vanilla or Chocolate)

$1.00

Pretzel (Salt or Cinnamon)

$1.00

Hot Dog Combo

$1.38

Sundae (Berry or Brownie)

$1.58

Pizza Pretzel

$1.98

Pizza Combo

$2.50

16" Pizza

$8.98

Average cost per item: $2.24

KCL TIP: Although the Sam’s Club policy says that nonmembers pay a 10% upcharge on purchases, Reddit users say they have not been asked to show a membership card while dining — and they report paying the listed menu prices at the food court. This policy varies by location, but even if you were to pay a 10% upcharge as a nonmember, you'd get a quarter-pound hot dog with a fountain drink for $1.51. That’s still a heck of a deal!

Which Food Court Is Cheaper? Sam's Club

hand holding a Sam's Club Hot Dog inside the store

Comparing the Sam’s Club food court to Costco’s food court, Sam’s is the clear winner in terms of price. Almost everything on the menu is under $2, and you can get a very filling meal (with a drink or dessert) for $2.50 or under.

When we crunched the numbers, we discovered that a lot of the menu items are comparable in price between the two warehouses — for example, both of their fountain sodas come out to $0.03 per ounce and their pizzas come out to $0.04 per square inch — but the average menu price at Costco is $3.75, compared to Sam’s Club’s average of $2.24.

"Sam’s Club food is so much better! We have both memberships and we definitely prefer Sam’s food. More choices and better tasting." - Kasia T., KCL reader

However, it’s worth noting that the Costco food court has more variety, especially when it comes to full meal options. At Sam’s, you’re limited to a pretzel, hotdog, or pizza — all their other menu items are desserts or drinks. At Costco, you can a hotdog or pizza, but you can also choose a turkey sandwich, chicken bake, or rotisserie chicken caesar salad.

They also have a healthier sweet treat option (the fresh fruit smoothie), which is something Sam’s doesn’t offer. But unlike Sam’s, you can easily pay $5 - $7 for a main dish at Costco.

It’s also worth noting that they've been cracking down on Costco food court membership rules lately, so you’ll likely have to flash your membership card if you’re craving a slice of Costco pizza.

Here’s how the two menus stack up when you compare similar items:

Costco vs. Sam's Club Food Court Prices

Item

Sam's Club Price

Costco Price

Fountain drink

$0.89 for 30 oz ($0.03 per oz)

$0.69 for 20 oz ($0.03 per oz)

Hot dog combo

$1.38

$1.50

Ice cream sundae

$1.58

$2.49

Frozen dessert cup

$1.00 (yogurt)

$1.99 (ice cream)

Pizza slice

$2.50 (includes drink)

$1.99

Whole pizza

$8.98 ($0.04 per sq in)

$9.95 ($0.04 per sq in)

Best Deal at the Sam's Club Food Court: Hot Dog Combo

Here's the math: Even if you were to buy the ingredients separately at Sam's Club — a pack of Member's Mark hot dogs, Sara Lee buns, and Diet Dr. Pepper, for example — you'd pay around $2.23 for the same amount of food and drink in the Sam's Club hot dog combo.

So the food court combo saves you about 38%!

Sam's Club Food Court Ordering Tips

sams-club-cafe-scan-and-go-ordering-app-sign-kcl

1. Order (and pay) while you shop with Scan & Go.

As long as you have the Sam’s Club app (iOS / Android), you can unlock a pretty nifty feature that Costco doesn’t have — online ordering. Skip the lines at the Sam’s Club Cafe and just place your food order right in the app. You can pay through the app, too, and your order will be ready for you to grab on the way out the door.

Costco doesn’t offer in-app ordering — only self-ordering kiosks.

2. Remember that popular Sam's Club food court items often sell out by end of day.

Sam’s Club only keeps a certain amount of food on hand each day, so popular menu items do tend to sell out by the end of the day. One of our editors went to her local Sam’s Club at 6:45 p.m. and found that three different sundaes and the pepperoni pizza pretzel were already sold out for the day. (This isn’t a problem unique to Sam’s though: Costco employees commented on Reddit saying they run out of things as well.) 

3. Ask for Sam's Club food court secret menu items.

One of our favorite insider tips is that the Sam’s Club food court has secret menu items — you just have to ask for them. Our favorite is an ICEE float: To order this, ask for vanilla frozen yogurt in an ICEE cup, with the ICEE flavor of your choice poured over the top. (Typically you can choose from Frozen Cherry, Frozen Pepsi, and Frozen Blue Raspberry.)

4. Look for new limited-time items to come out each April.

One of the only drawbacks of the Sam’s Club food court is that they don’t have as much variety as Costco. However, they do add to it to meet customer demand.

The pizza pretzel actually used to be a secret menu item, until so many people ordered it that Sam’s made it a permanent addition to the menu. You’ll also find special ice cream and sundae flavors every spring (typically during Member’s Mark month in April). In April 2024, they announced a limited-release Tuxedo Sundae.

Get our best deals on the go

By entering my phone number, I want to receive promotional messages from The Krazy Coupon Lady. Message frequency varies. Text STOP to 57299 to end or text HELP for help. Msg & data rates may apply. View Terms & Privacy.