This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sam’s Club. The opinions and text are all mine
When I was contacted about working with Sam’s Club on a holiday entertaining post I instantly knew that I wanted to share some tips for quick and easy holiday entertaining.
This time of year it is easy to get wrapped up in getting everything right, but the reality is that nothing is picture perfect. You can only do so much, especially this time of year.
I love cooking, baking, and entertaining, but the reality is life is busy. We want to serve delicious quality food, without a lot of time and effort. One of the things I have learned over the years is that people come together not just for the food, but for each other.
It is easy to spend so much of your time preparing for a holiday party or meal that you end up missing out on the actual party or meal. No one wants that to happen. We gather together to see each. Yes, good food is important, but the more important part is sharing time with family and friends. So today I am sharing a few tips for quick and easy holiday entertaining.
Keep A Well Stocked Pantry and Fridge
This time of year I love to keep a well stocked pantry and fridge full of ingredients I can use for holiday recipes. Sugar, flour, cocoa, chocolate, chicken broth, potatoes, cheese, crackers, bread, and deli meats are all ingredients that can be used to put together quick and easy holiday dishes. I also like to keep soups, meatballs, and cookies in the freezer to bring out for a last minute dish if I need one.
Make Simple Meat and Cheese Trays
One of my favorite things to do for a quick holiday meal or party is to put together a simple meat and cheese tray. It is so easy to slice up different kinds of cheese and meat and place them on a nice platter or tray. Serve it with bread or crackers and you have a simple holiday appetizer or snack. And I grew up in Oregon, so I love Tillamook Cheese. I was thrilled when my Sam’s Club started selling it a few years ago. They sell all kinds of cheese at Sam’s Club, but I love getting Tillamook Cheese.
Fruit and Vegetable Trays
Some of my favorite things to buy at Sam’s Club are the fruit and vegetables. During the holidays they are perfect for slicing up and serving on a platter or tray. Simple and delicious. They also go great with meat and cheese trays.
Save Time By Buying Premade
I love cooking and baking, but the reality is I don’t always have time. When that happens I like to save time by buying premade items. Yes, I can make a delicious homemade pie, but there is nothing wrong with buying a premade one either. The same goes for cookies and cakes. Yes, you can make homemade, but if you don’t have time, buy one and place it on a nice platter or pie plate and call it good.
Use Your Crock Pot
This is a simple one, but one we often overlook. Use your crock pot. My crock pot is one of my favorite kitchen tools especially this time of year. I cook in it, but I also use it to keep food warm.
A crock pot full of soup, either store bought or homemade soup, is perfect for a simple holiday meal or party. It is also great for those times when your family and friends may be coming and going at different times. Everyone loves soup. Cook them or heat a ready made one in your crock pot. Add some bread and a fruit or vegetable tray and everyone can eat whenever they want to.
I also love to keep mashed potatoes warm in my crock pot. This works great for large holiday dinners when you are trying to cook everything up at once. You can make you mashed potatoes a few hours ahead of time and place them in the crock pot to keep warm.
Meatballs are another great recipe for keeping warm in the crock pot. They make a great appetizer or meal. I recently found some fully cooked gluten free meatballs at Sam’s Club that my family loved. I will definitely be keeping some on hand for the holidays.
Try Not To Stress About Getting It All Perfect
The holidays are a time to enjoy with family and friends. Don’t stress about getting it all perfect. Don’t be afraid to keep it simple. Focus on your family and friends and the rest will be just fine!
Sam’s Club wants to help you “Party Like A Pro” so be sure to check out all their videos, recipes, and ideas for helping you this holiday season. And be sure to enter their sweepstakes where they are giving away some great cash and prizes!
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States and D.C., 21 years or older. Ends 12/31/15. To enter and for complete details and odds, visitwww.foodnetwork.com/party.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sam’ Club. The opinions and text are all mine.