Make Outdoor Entertaining a Breeze with These Affordable Finds from Walmart

published Mar 9, 2022
The Kitchn received compensation for this post, which was written and edited independently by our editorial team.
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Picture this: You’re grilling al fresco, the sun warming your skin, a soft breeze blowing through, and a friend cracking a cold one nearby (beer, seltzer, non-alcoholic cocktail — you choose!). Finally, the food is ready, so you leave the sun-drenched patio and… go inside to eat at the table?

Womp womp — feels like a bummer right? Here’s the lesson: If you missed out on upgrading your outdoor space with all the essentials last year, whether that be something as big as a dining set or as small as charming lanterns, the time to get going is now. Outdoor gear sells out quickly every year, and often before the true dog days of summer even start. Luckily, Walmart has just the stuff to make sure your patio, deck, or apartment balcony feels like the entertaining zone of your dreams. From comfy dining and lounge sets that fit eight or more to worry-free dishware made from recycled plastic (!!), you can shop some of our favorite picks below so you’re more than ready when the temperatures rise.

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Outdoor dining calls for easy entertaining essentials that won't get ruined by weather or guests. Made from 70 percent post-consumer recycled water bottles, this 28-piece set is BPA free, food safe, and non-porous, so you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria. You'll snag enough dinnerware for a party of four (including tumblers, dinner bowls, and dinner plates), plus two large serving bowls to hold your favorite side dishes or salads.

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Impress the whole neighborhood with your Grill Master skills on this four-burner Blackstone griddle station that boasts 756 square inches of cooking space. Great for grilling chicken, searing steaks, or even making fried rice, the bevy of burners allows you to create up to four separate cooking zones on the rolled steel griddle top, ensuring every bite is cooked to perfection.

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was $997.00

Designing a party-ready outdoor space is all about versatility. When choosing which pieces to deck out your deck with, look for designs that have multiple functions. This five-piece wicker sectional dining set seats up to seven people comfortably on a mix of cushioned ottomans and a sectional sofa. The included dining table is great for dinnertime but can just as easily be moved out of the way and used as a bar for a more informal celebration.

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Afternoon lunches al fresco will feel much more comfortable under this stylish ticking strip patio umbrella. Set atop a sturdy aluminum pole, it boasts an ample 9' diameter for long-lasting afternoon shade.

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Set out dessert or appetizers in style on this charming tiered server. Outdoor entertaining generally has a casual and relaxed vibe, which is right in line with the simple (yet stand out!) design of this Better Homes & Gardens piece. Three microwave- and dishwasher-safe white porcelain trays lend flexibility (you can even use them sans stand), while a black metal structure adds a slight industrial edge.

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Affordable-yet-stylish flatware is hard to find — which is why we're suggesting you snag this 20-piece set ASAP. Available in a trio of matte finishes (black, gold, and rose gold), this dishwasher-safe design features a streamlined and timeless shape that will make even takeout feel like a special occasion when served on the patio.

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Illuminate the path to dinner under the stars (and feel like you're on the set of a Nancy Meyers flick) with a collection of these adorable stake lights. Sold individually, they'd even make for a charming evening welcome outside your front door or alongside your deck stairs. A hidden solar panel on top helps things get lit after the sun goes down, while the cutout design feels lantern-light.

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One key way to ensure your outdoor space lives just as functionally — and stylishly — as your indoor space? Adding an area rug. Flatwoven with durable polypropylene (which is fade and weather resistant), this graphic geometric style will make an impact beneath your outdoor dining table or in the middle of a sunny seating area.

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S'mores are definitely on the dessert menu with this charming outdoor gas fire pit from Walmart. Fueled by a gas hookup and constructed of durable steel, it's a safe and stylish way to add a bit of rustic appeal to your hangout zone. The best part? The top turns into a totally flat table surface when not in use, so it doubles as a bonus snack station during the day.

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Your outdoor entertaining zone is a great place to get a little bit more adventurous with color and pattern than you might indoors. Case in point: this playful pillow in a summer-ready teal hue with textural accents. As an added bonus, the fabric is UV-treated to be fade and weather resistant, so it'll bring cheer to your space for years to come.