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Summer grilling is just around the corner and my kids LOVE hot dogs. We grill outside frequently living in South Florida, and I often set up little bars or tables of snacks and hot dogs that the kids can reach, grab and assemble on their own!
I prefer to have a kids table set up because it allows me to keep the kids entertained and fed without a lot of effort on my end. If I don’t have to get plates and drinks for all of the kids and monitor their eating, then I can socialize and enjoy the evening much more!
One of my biggest mom tips is shopping at Sam’s Club! It’s a great place to stock up for your family. Since we entertain a lot in the summer, I like going at the start of the summer so that we’re stocked up on everything we’ll need for entertaining.
I decided to put together some tips and tricks to create a kid-friendly hot dog bar, that is actually easy and friendly for the kiddos. I’ve seen so many hot dog bars on Pinterest that are just gorgeous, but my kids would destroy them in 5 seconds. So, here are some applicable tips and tricks that actually work, for the average night of grilling and family fun.
Set Up A Kids Table:
I’ve set up food for grilling before, then realized how often my kids spilled our food display when trying to reach for a snack. Setting up a separate kid table with snacks and food really helps eliminate some of the unwanted spills! Kids are more likely to actually eat their food if it is at a lower height, which is sometimes a big part of my challenge.
Make the Food Easy and Yummy:
I love hot dogs for my little ones to eat because they are easy for them to grab and hold, and they take little prep. They are happy with a hot dog and bun. Sometimes they want ketchup and other times they don’t. It depends on their mood and the day really. So, I set out some yummy hot dogs, which we grabbed from Sam’s Club. Sam’s Club has some awesome deals happening right now, and we got the Ball Park® Beef Franks and Hillshire Farm® Smoked Sausage because my boys can eat hot dogs and sausage every night. You can find them both in the refrigerated section of your local Sam’s Club. Ball Park Hot Dogs will be on instant savings from 5/8/19 – 6/2/19 for $1.50 off, just in time for summer grilling!
My hot dogs usually have the works on them. Lettuce, jalapeño, ketchup, mustard and relish. I love all the flavors mixed together.
Make sure to check out Sam’s Club if your kids are like mine and love hot dogs. You can grab a bunch for such a good price, and the Ball Park Beef Franks are re-sealable to keep them fresh as you go through them. I also stocked up on fruit while I was at Sam’s Club, which leads me to my next tip!
Have Lots of Fruit Available:
I set out bowls of sliced watermelon and grapes. Those are favorites for my boys. They love fruit and they devour it so quickly! It helps get them to the table to start eating, which is actually hard to do. They would rather play and eat every couple of days if I let them!
Use Packaged Drinks to Eliminate Spills:
For occasions with lots of kids over or even just my own, I like to eliminate spills by using pouched or packaged juices. This is so helpful, and rather than having to refill their cup 20 million times, or walk around cleaning up after them, I just put their straw in! For older ones, you don’t even need to help them at all. I love the look of a glass jug with pretty pink lemonade, but it is not realistic for my children.
Don’t Go Overboard with Decor:
Keep things simple and fun. Don’t stress out about the decor and displays because kids are more concerned about the food and playing. They don’t care about how pretty the table is. Save that for the adult table and make the kids table super functional.
I know this isn’t as pretty as you might like, but with kids, things so quickly get torn down, thrown, played with and just destroyed. A simple flower arrangement is plenty, and even that can get knocked over quickly. I like to keep the kids table simple, efficient, and full of nutritious food, rather than lots of decorative items.
By following these simple, realistic tips on setting up a hot dog bar for kids, you can have so much fun! We had a blast hanging out by the pool, enjoying the Ball Park Hot Dogs and Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage. I was relaxed because I didn’t have to worry about a lot of spills and messes, and the boys enjoyed some really good food!