What I found at … is a series that tests and vets intriguing store-bought foodie finds.
What: Kirkland Signature chicken street taco kit
Where: Take-and-make prepared foods
Cost: $5.59 a pound or about $16 per kit
Q: Is this premium taco kit an easy replacement for the weeknight supermarket taco dinner?
I'm sure I'm not alone when I proudly admit that one of the first things I ever prepared for my family was a crunchy taco dinner from a kit. Brown the meat, add seasoning, toast the shells, assemble and boom kanani, dinner's done. Although I've moved on to more complex meals, tacos at home will always have space on the dinner rotation.
When this chicken street taco kit appeared on my radar, I scoured Costcos across the island to no avail. I assumed it wasn't yet available in our region, but I may have been wrong. Fast forward to this past Saturday: A friend messaged me a picture of the kit from Costco Waipio and said there were only three remaining. The next morning, my parents discovered only a handful left in the frenzy of pre-Super Bowl shopping.
Sold for $5.59 per pound, this kit contains 12 4-inch corn tortillas, over a pound of taco-spiced chicken breast, cabbage slaw, Mexican cheese blend, two tubs of sauces and lime wedges. The instructions are simple: Just heat the chicken and tortillas to temperature and top with condiments.
But in order to achieve the desired street taco effect, the pollo is going to need to crisp up a bit in the pan so I added some fat in the form of avocado oil to help it along. The best parts are the really small bits of crispy chicken that add texture variance to the larger, more tender chunks. Because the chicken is already cooked, this process only takes a few minutes.
As for the tortillas, heat up a cast iron skillet over a medium high flame. Toast the tortillas, one at a time, for a few seconds on each side or until they puff up like a whoopie cushion and each side begins to show a few dark spots. It's not burnt, it's flavor.
Now, all that's left is to assemble your tacos. The beauty of this dinner is that everyone can create their own taco masterpiece however they see fit. Using all of the provided condiments, you can get some pretty hefty tacos, but I would like to see more greens included. If I got this kit again, I'd probably want to kick it up a notch and add pickled red onion, chopped cilantro, charred scallions and maybe even a few slices of avocado to stretch the fillings a bit more.
When it comes to the cheese and cilantro lime crema, we all know these condiments are far from authentico, but I must admit they add substance to the meal. The crema should be bottled and sold by the gallon. It reminds me of El Pollo Loco's creamy avocado salsa — I'd load up on that to use as salad dressing — but it was literally the first thing in the kit to run out.
Costco's kit doesn't claim to be authentic, but what you get is winner, winner, chicken taco dinner! The convenience of a one-box meal that's ready in minutes means this is replacing my family's usual crunchy taco dinner in a box. At about $1.35 per taco, Costco's option is cheaper than most taco Tuesday specials around town and you just end up with more. If I were to price out how much it would be to make this from scratch, it would probably be around the same price. Save some time and get this kit!
For a family of three, you could make this and not have any leftovers but for a family of four or more, you'll want to add a side salad or rice and refried beans to bolster your meal. If tacos aren't your vehicle of choice, consider turning the kit into an epic tray of nachos by frying up the chips and baking them with the chicken and cheese before topping with crema, salsa and other embellishments.
Hungry for more finds? Here's the rest of the series:
What I found at Costco: Keto-friendly egg bites
What I found at Foodland: Detroit-style pizza
What I found at Costco: Cheeseburger
What I found at Jack in the Box: Teriyaki steak bowls
What I found at Costco: Sous vide pork belly
What I found at Costco: Beef bulgogi mandoo
What I found at Target: Museum of Ice Cream pints
What I found at Costco: 505 Southwestern street tacos
What I found at Costco: Acai bowl
What I found at Zippy's: Mochiko chicken mix
What I found at Costco: Ultimate Blueberry Margarita
What I found at Burger King: Flamin' Hot Mac n' Cheetos
What I found at Costco: Chocolate lava cake
What I found at Marukai: Milk tea that looks like water
What I found at Costco: Microwave pho
What I found at Costco: Raoh tonkotsu ramen