Many of us have been there: It’s approaching two o’clock in the morning, and we become afflicted with a sudden urge to go out and eat something, whether it’s all-night exam prep or a night out with your friends. However, for the 24,000-ish of us non-freshmen who can’t simply grab a bag of chicken tenders or a very doughy pizza from DXpress, there are limited options. Many restaurants close around this time and ordering pizza can just be so expensive.
So, what’s the best place to satisfy your hunger while also making bad health decisions? Kroger. Whether you’re going “Gucci” or “Ghetto,” Kroger is always the best place for all of your late-night hunger needs.
College towns like Blacksburg are always known to have completely upside-down behavior in the late-night hours. Whether it’s on the Drillfield, on a bus, or walking downtown, the people of Virginia Tech make the crazy and unusual seem completely normal late at night, and Kroger is no exception. Driving, or walking, into Kroger can completely overwhelm your late-night imagination.
The glowing blue sign is a siren calling everyone to a cornucopia of snacks and easy meals, and it illuminates the endless possibilities of food to buy. If you go to a Kroger at 2 a.m., you will see a surprising amount of people, all looking for the same thing.
This is where the art of late-night Krogering comes in. Late-night shopping, or Krogering, as I like to call it, is the art of buying items from Kroger with the intent of eating them immediately. It’s like going to a restaurant where everything is ready-made, and you are the host, the customer, the wait staff and the head chef.
For those of you who may be new to Krogering, you might not know what to buy for your late-night escapades, as there are so many options. As a seasoned Krogerer, I might be able to help people with this.
The first thing you want to put in your head when you walk in is instant food. A common rule of thumb for this endeavor is that you do not want to have to cook something that takes longer than a few minutes. That would completely ruin the experience.
Thankfully, Kroger is completely stocked with food that is ready to eat, from snacks to ice cream, and many of these are still available in the early hours of the morning. If you have a sweet tooth, they always have a bunch of pre-made pastries and a large selection of donuts, all of which are usually marked off.
Speaking of marking off prices, another rule of thumb for a late-night Kroger run is to always have your Kroger Plus Card. This separates the amateurs from the pros, so make sure you sign up. The Kroger Plus Card is absolutely essential and can sometimes save you some money on every run.
If you’re really looking for a feast, have no fear because Kroger offers entire rotisserie chickens in its ready-made sections, most of which are plenty cheap. As someone who frequents Kroger late at night, these golden-brown oregano-covered birds actually seem to be really popular among late-night diners, reinforcing the idea that Blacksburg makes the weird and impractical a normalcy.
There’s also the strategy of going in blind, which is sometimes the most effective way to go about this. Take a deep breath, open your eyes, and acquire the first shiny thing that you see in the store. Most of the time, you will be satisfied.
If you want to go Krogering and wouldn’t mind spending a few minutes preparing your feast, Kroger has multiple aisles dedicated to frozen microwavable foods, ranging from French bread pizzas all the way to pizza bagels and even pizza rolls. The amount of frozen pizza there is unbeatable.
If you’re in a spot where you really, really want some food in the middle of the night, your troubles will subside once you take a step inside the strange land that we all call Kroger. Krogering will always be a fantastic substitute for delivery pizza for generations of Virginia Tech students to come.