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Get Free Slurpees All Week From 7-Eleven

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TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images

Tuesday was 7-Eleven Day, otherwise known as The Ubiquitous Convenience Store Hands Out Free Slurpees Day. But this year, the candy-colored fun doesn’t end there: You can still get your hands on some free icy sugar water at 7-Eleven stores, according to Thrillist. Rejoice: It’s Slurpee Week!

If you buy seven Slurpee drinks anytime between July 12 and July 18, the numbers-obsessed company will give you 11 more free. You have to use the 7-Eleven mobile app to do it, though. Just download the app, sign up for the rewards program, and scan your phone every time you get yourself a Slurp. Once you hit number seven, the app will reload with 11 free Slurpee coupons. If you want to, you can redeem them all at once—which is handy if you're throwing a Slurpee party for your friends.

Though 7-Eleven has been giving out free Slurpees each year since its 75th anniversary in 2002, this year’s extra-long celebration is in honor of the chain’s 90th birthday. (The Slurpee itself is only 51 years old.) Better mark your calendar now for 2027, when the 7-Eleven centennial is bound to include a freakish amount of free Slurpees.

[h/t Thrillist]

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Food
The Surprising Reason Why Wendy's Serves Fast Food's Only Baked Potato
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iStock

For an industry that prides itself on convenience and indulgence, a fiber-rich pseudo-vegetable that’s hard to eat on the go and isn’t deep-fried seems like a curious addition to a fast food menu. Yet Wendy’s has been selling baked potatoes for nearly three decades—11-and-a-half ounces of pure, unpeeled spud, drowned in your choice of toppings.

According to Thrillist writer Wil Fulton, who spoke with Wendy’s vice president of culinary innovation Lori Estrada, the chain first got turned on to the foil-wrapped food in the 1980s, when nutrition experts were (erroneously) touting low-fat diets for weight loss. Eager to embrace the trend, Wendy's viewed a plain potato as a popular alternative to sliced, oil-slicked fries.

The hysteria over fat may have disappeared, but the collective consumer appetite for the potato did not. Estrada says she believes many of them consider the 270-to-480 calorie (depending on toppings) carb dump a meal unto itself, and that some enjoy piling on cheese, bacon, and other burger trimmings for a tasty and inexpensive dinner.

So why don’t you see baked potatoes at other franchises? Estrada speculates that the logistical issues are a turnoff. The potatoes are cooked from a raw state in convection ovens, which could necessitate new equipment and ample prep time. With fries still the king of sides, franchisees may not think it’s worth the hassle.

Wendy’s is undoubtedly happy to have the market to themselves: The chain sells 1 million tubers a week.

[h/t Thrillist]

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LaCroix
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Food
The Secret Ingredient That Makes LaCroix Water So Irresistible
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LaCroix

The distinctive Technicolor cans of LaCroix sparkling water are an increasingly popular sight in stores and on kitchen tables around the country. (If you're old enough to remember the Snapple phenomenon of the 1990s, this is like that—just bubbly.) But as The Wall Street Journal recently pointed out, few of the beverage's loyal fans have any idea what it is they're drinking.

LaCroix comes in a variety of flavors, from tangerine to coconut. The can label, however, is cryptic, listing "natural flavors" as part of the ingredients. Their website discloses only that "natural essence oils" are involved, which sounds like LaCroix should be applied to your hair and then rinsed off.

A look at the nutritional information for LaCroix water
LaCroix

As it turns out, that's not too far off. According to The Wall Street Journal, these "essences" are naturally produced chemicals that are manufactured by heating up fruit or vegetable remnants until they make a vapor, then condensing them into a clear concentrate. They're used in a variety of consumer products, from shampoos to ice pops.

LaCroix was unwilling to confirm the Journal's claim, protecting their manufacturing process in a manner similar to Coca-Cola's famously secretive treatment of their recipe. They do state that no sugars are added, but that may not be enough to protect your teeth: Carbonated water and citric acids can combine to create a lower pH, which has a detrimental effect on tooth enamel. Like most everything that tastes good, these flavored waters are best enjoyed in moderation.

[h/t The Wall Street Journal]

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