Here are a few simple ways to keep your food cold outside when throwing a party, barbecue or picnic!
When you are having an outdoor event in the hot summer sun, it can be a challenge to keep your cold foods cool. There are a few ways that you can go about maximizing the time that your cold food items stay at just the right temperature for the duration of your gathering. Regardless of the option you choose, make sure that you keep all of your cold items close to each other and far away from your hot food.
Consider investing in a large heavy-duty plastic cooler like the Coleman Xtreme Cooler if you frequently have outdoor parties in the heat. These coolers can keep ice and food cold for about five days in very hot weather, like a small temporary refrigerator. They cost about $40 to $100 each depending on the size. Be sure to get the largest cooler available and place it on a short table. Place the food on top and allow your guests to help themselves.
Purchase large bowls that are large enough to fit circular plates and bowls that will hold your cold food. Fill the bowls with ice and nestle the dishes inside of them. For example, you can have a large bowl, then ice in the middle, then a smaller bowl on top-like an ice sandwich.
Inflatable Kiddie Pool
Buy a small square inflatable kiddie pool. Fill it up with ice and nestle your bowls, plates, and trays inside. This should take care of most if not all of your cold food items. Wait until the very moment your guests start to arrive before filling the pool with ice and adding your food items. This idea is probably best for a kids’ birthday party or pool party. For a more classy, adult outdoor event, get an inflatable serving bar instead.
Dry Ice Pellets
Buy dry ice pellets for your party. These pellets can keep food cool for an extended period of time (sometimes up to two or three days). Insert the pellets in plastic bags-they should not come into directly contact with your food. Still, make sure the dry ice is “food grade” meaning that it should be reasonably safe to have in the presence of food.
Deep Freezer for Ice Cream
Position a deep freezer directly outside the house (if this is outside of a home) and run an extension cord inside or to an outdoor outlet to keep it running. Place your ice cream and other frozen treats inside of the freezer for the party. Make sure you put the freezer outside hours before the party so that it will have time to get ice cold.
As you can see there is more than only way to keep food cold outside for your upcoming outdoor event. Choose the option that best fits your needs and the theme of your party.
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