Whatever happened to Costco's cinnamon sugar pretzels?

Costco, a membership warehouse club that provides consumers a wide variety of merchandise, is one of the few places on the face of the earth where you can buy pretty much anything, from a diamond ring that costs nearly half a million dollars, to a slice of pizza for $1.99. Of course, after you buy that ring, a slice of pizza might be all you can afford. One of the favorite features among Costco club members is the food court. It is not only super affordable — and all the food is super sized — but it is replete with a hot dog and soda combo for $1.50, and yummy soft-served chocolate and vanilla swirled frozen yogurt (via Insider). And, at one time, you could purchase fan favorite soft pretzels, including a cinnamon sugar version. 

This membership warehouse chain has certainly developed a devoted following since opening the doors of its first Costco store in 1983 in Seattle, Washington (via Costco). In fact, according to the annual report, as of 2019, Costco boasted a membership of 53,900,000. That's almost 54 million people who pay a yearly membership fee just to walk through the doors. Costco has built its brand and its following by stocking their warehouse with quality products at prices that can be difficult to compete with. They are also constantly re-evaluating their stock so they can provide the best deals to their members (via Reader's Digest). Could this be the reason they discontinued the cinnamon sugar pretzels?

People were not happy when the cinnamon sugar pretzels were discontinued

While it seems like a reasonable assumption that the discontinuation of Costco's big, soft cinnamon sugar pretzels had something to do with cost, no one really knows for sure why they no longer sell them. However, one thing we do know is members were not happy when they disappeared. If you scour community boards, you will get a feel for the ire. One member recalled in a humorous post on the Costco Facebook page about how Costco "destroyed" their family by "discontinuing their sales of big delicious soft pretzels in the food court and replacing them with tasteless over sugared churros." The member concluded the post by asking the warehouse chain to fix their broken heats and bring back this sweet treat (via Facebook). However, the discontinuation could have also had something to do with trending toward healthier options. According to My Fitness Pal, a Costco food court sourdough pretzel twist with sugar and cinnamon had a whopping 554 calories and 10 grams of fat.

If you find yourself among the Costco members who needs a cinnamon sugar pretzel fix, we definitely feel your pain. And while there don't appear to be any copycat recipes readily accessible, you could try making these cinnamon sugar soft pretzel bites to tide you over until Costco gives in to the pleas.