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One of the best things about summer is how informal and spontaneous everything becomes. Friends just popped by for dinner? No problem — just heat up the grill and throw on some burgers. You know, assuming you've got what you need in the pantry.
I love to entertain, but I don’t always have the necessary supplies on hand. Since I’ve been using Walmart+ home delivery, however, it’s been much easier to pull together informal get-togethers with friends. My process goes like this: 1) Text some friends to come over the next day, 2) Immediately place an order for delivery the next morning, 3) Drop some wine in the fridge to chill so it’s ready when they get there (or so I can enjoy it later that day in the time I saved by not going out to shop). And that's it!
There are a couple of things to know if you’re going this route for your next gathering. Unlike some other delivery services, it’s not always easy to get a same-day slot because this service is new and still somewhat limited in availability. Definitely give yourself 24 hours to be able to get what you need — but even if you can’t, you can pay $10 for two-hour express delivery and voila, problem solved. Second, the groceries, even the refrigerated ones, don’t come with ice packs — so if you live somewhere hot, you'll probably want to schedule an early morning time slot. You'll get a text when your order is at the door, though, so as long as you grab it soon you should be totally fine.
Here’s what I ordered the last time I had a quick gathering of friends. I’m not saying you should do exactly the same, but we all had a great time, so…you decide for yourself.
One of the things I really love about Walmart+ is that the prices are great even on organic food options, like this package of four pre-made burgers that only costs about a dollar more than a package of four regular hamburger patties. These Marketside Butcher Organic Grass-Fed Ground Beef Patties are a huge time saver — just open the package and drop them on the grill.
I eat meat, but I really enjoy plant-based "meats," too, and the options these days are more delicious than ever. These Beyond Meat Sausage Brats are vegan alternatives that come fresh from the meat counter, and they’re surprisingly flavorful and delicious. I serve them to my carnivore friends and they happily devour them.
I couldn’t decide between two irresistible-sounding options — Loaded Potato Salad and Deviled Egg Potato Salad — so oops! I got both. You know what? Nobody complained. While I could have spent an hour prepping these barbecue staples myself, I’m pretty sure what I made wouldn’t have been as good as these expertly prepared sides. And you know what else? They tasted even better because I didn’t have to cook them!
As much as we love potato salad, there are folks out there who just aren't fans of the old spud. So, to be maximally accommodating, I grabbed some pre-made cole slaw and macaroni salad as additional burger and sausage accompaniments. Gotta say: I’m really starting to love not having to cook. Maybe I’ll try to ride out barbecue season into the fall!
Would it be an afternoon hang with friends if we didn’t have hard seltzer? In 2021, no, it would not. Now, sure, White Claw and Truly get the most attention, but for my money, High Noon is making the best one on the market. While there are flavors like peach and grapefruit available, I personally love the pineapple variety of this canned vodka and soda cocktail, made with real fruit juice, which is about as close as you can get to a fresh cocktail in a can. Just chill, open and, well, chill.
I thought about just ordering a watermelon, but then I thought to myself: What’s the point of being an adult if you can’t just have ice cream cake whenever you want? And really, this Unicorn Ice Cream Cake was impossible to resist, with its colorful swirls of cake batter ice cream, vanilla cake base and purple, confetti-and-sprinkles-covered frosting. What a world in which you can order your regular groceries to be delivered at home and include an ice cream cake for you and your friends...not because it’s any special occasion, but just because! (Reader: I grabbed the watermelon, too. What’s the point of summer if you aren’t eating as much watermelon as possible?)
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