6 ways Whole Foods Market makes entertaining a no-brainer

So you're looking to have date night at home, make a big meal for the family or host a cocktail party for friends. Whole Foods Market has the groceries covered, but the store offers more than a cart full of delicious food. Read on for some of our favorite in-store tips to help you nail hosting duties with less stress and more time with your guests.

1. Visit the Cheese department for guidance on a pro spread

Cheese plates > cheese cubes. You've seen the beautiful, bountiful cheese boards on Instagram, but maybe your cheese knowledge doesn't extend beyond American and Cheddar. Head to your Whole Foods Market Cheese department and let the experts help you select three or four varieties that range from crumbly and salty to oozing and funky. And we mean experts — we have over 300 Certified Cheese Professionals, more than any other retailer.

2. Get special cuts and expert advice from meat — and veggie — butchers

Whole Foods butchers are the ticket to the best steak of your life — or short ribs, lamb chops and more. They'll help you pick out the right cut and give you instructions on how to nail the perfect rare, medium rare or medium doneness. Every piece of meat we sell is Animal Welfare Rated, with no added hormones or antibiotics, ever.

We've even got a produce butcher on staff in our Bryant Park store in NYC. For the knife-averse or cooking shy, she'll slice, dice, mince or chop any veggies you want. Our bags of pre-chopped vegetables from your nearby store, ready to roast or sauté, will help, too.

3. Pick up an Echo device and gain an instant sous chef

If your store has an Amazon kiosk, swing by while you're shopping and check out Amazon's Alexa-enabled devices, like the Echo Dot and Echo Show. They'll help you find new recipes, convert measurements, set timers and more. Alexa will even play your favorite tunes to set the mood while you cook, mingle or sit down to a meal. Learn more about how to get the music you want with your Echo device.

4. Let Whole Foods Market fishmongers prep your next seafood feast

Baked whole fish or perfectly pan-seared fillets are an impressive entrée, but we get it: You don't want to spend an hour deboning your branzino with tweezers. Lucky for you, our fishmongers will do it for you, at no charge. They'll even peel your shrimp and crack your crab. No matter your "catch," all of our seafood is sustainably wild-caught or responsibly farmed.

5. Assemble a dessert tray with something for everyone

The Whole Foods Market Bakery department is a sugar-lover's dream, with tarts made for two, delicate macarons and mini chocolate cakes. Channel the dessert carts of white tablecloth restaurants: Instead of opting for one big dessert, serve up an assortment of smaller sweets. All of our baked goods are made with only cage-free eggs and no artificial colors or sweeteners. There are even options for vegans or those who have gluten sensitivities or other dietary restrictions.

6. No time for a shopping trip? Order Whole Foods Market products on Prime

Prime members in select ZIP codes have access to a growing selection of private-label products from Whole Foods Market such as snacks, canned goods, beverages and condiments through AmazonFresh and Prime Now.

And now, in the neighborhoods of Austin, Cincinnati, Dallas and Virginia Beach, Prime members can shop a broader selection of Whole Foods Market's best-selling items through Prime Now, including fresh produce, high-quality meat and seafood, everyday staples and other locally sourced items, with plans to expand to other cities across the U.S. Two-hour delivery is free, and ultra-fast delivery within one hour is $4.99 on orders of $35 or more.

Read more: 5 Prime benefits that will help inspire you in the kitchen