Swap X Simply Sissom (everything that you need to host a fun and efficient meal swap) launches August 22nd! That takes care of the recipes, now all you have to do is plan it. Here are 4 fun ideas for hosting a Meal Swap Party!
Pin 4 Fun Ways To Host A Meal Swap Party for later!
If you follow along on Instagram, you know that in just 2 days, SWAP X Simply Sissom (my done for you approach to hosting a Meal Swap Party) is going to be LIVE! And friends, I'd love you to consider purchasing because, well.. I think it's a truly helpful resource and I literally couldn't be more excited about how it turned out!
Before creating SWAP I did a little research (read... asked my friends) into whether or not Meal Swap Parties were even something that people would be interested in. The overwhelming consensus was "YES PLEASE," but I quickly discovered that what worked for one person didn't work for another. For that reason, I purposely kept things flexible when designing this program. Want to make a party of swapping... do it! Too busy to meet, but love the idea of getting a little help with dinner... no problem.
Here are a couple of ideas of different ways you can make meal swapping work for you.
I've got to be honest, this is my absolute favorite and the swap party format that my group uses most often. It's so nice to have my friends and their kids over. Sometimes these playdates go really well and we are able to sit and drink coffee while catching up for an hour or more. Other times we end up cutting things short and just swapping meals because, well.. we have a LOT of kids and unpredictability is part of it. We keep expectations low and flexibility high.
We've tried setting up a "coffee bar" but have found that it's easiest for everyone to just bring their own favorite coffee. For me, that means a trip to the Starbuck's drive through for an almond milk latte (<-- do NOT go order this, it's a definite acquired taste).
When I host I do like to have some very basic treats available for all to enjoy. Sometimes that looks like whatever recipe is hanging out in the refrigerator after it's photoshoot (<-- yep, when you blog your food gets it's very own photoshoot) and sometimes I do deliberately domestic things like whipping up Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Breakfast Cookies. I've even been known to grab some bagels or muffins from Panera. The theme of this type of swap party is SIMPLICITY + FLEXIBILITY.
Ok, ok, I'm about to make a complete liar out of myself (can we still be friends?). Girls night is in fact my ABSOLUTE favorite style of SWAP. I would now like to amend coffee/play date style swap to be MOST PRACTICAL. True story, my group has only actually done this one time, but you guys.. It. Was. So. Good.
We left all kiddos with the husbands and made a night (and by made a night I mean about 2 hours) of hanging out together on the patio drinking wine and munching on THIS Charcuterie Board. I wore pants with an actual button, fixed my hair and even put on about 5 minutes worth of make-up. I know that sounds relatively unimpressive to most, but guys.. it had been a hot minute since actual grooming had commenced. We brought our meals to trade and left refreshed from adult conversation + with dinner planned and prepped for the week.
Meet Up At A Park:
Alright, I'm about to get really honest with you right now, this is NOT a "swap type" that I've actually tried in real life. I know you probably looked at the pretty picture above and reminisced about all the times you dressed up, put on heels, coordinated your kiddos in matching outfits and packed snacks into a wicker basket before heading out to meet friends at the park 😂. These pics were shot by a professional photographer to use with some of the advertising for SWAP X Simply Sissom, BUT... that doesn't change the fact that they turned out really cute AND that swapping at the park IN REAL LIFE is a fantastic idea. The kids can run around with their buds leaving the moms free to hang out on the blanket or at the picnic table.
Another important point... while the wicker snack basket is inarguably a little over the top... I DEFINITELY recommend coming prepared in the area of snacks. You could go BYOS or... coordinate the goodies potluck style. These PB Chocolate Energy Balls are what I would take!
Skip The Party and Just Swap:
When I was surveying my friends about meal swapping it quickly became clear that there were as many people overwhelmed with the idea of meeting up for a few hours (because life gets really busy) as there were people who were pumped to get a social activity on the calendar. That said.. it was unanimous that having a little help in the area of dinner would be useful.
If you fall into the camp of "I-don't-even-have-time-to-brush-my-teeth" this particular model of meal swapping is perfect for you.
Here's how it works.
Create a swap group comprised of people you already see on a regular basis. This could be co-workers, moms from your child's baseball team that you see 3x a week at practice, family-members you see on the weekends... whatever works for you. Bring your prepped meal kits to these events (that you are already attending anyway) and just trade. No snacks, no fanfare.. just saved time in the kitchen!
Let's Wrap It Up:
Bottom line.. there is no right or wrong way to meal swap. You've got to do what works for your life and schedule. For many, having an excuse to get together with friends is more important than the actual meals and for others... taking care of dinner for the week is the main objective.
If you try a meal swap, let me know! Your pictures make my day. Tag a pic of you and your crew on Instagram @simplysissom. I'd love to see.