What Food to Bring to a Picnic

Summer Conundrums: What Food to Bring to a Picnic

Roslyn Lifestyle Good Eats, Summer

One of the best things about summer is eating outside and having picnics with friends and family. Opportunities come up all the time with outdoor concerts, ballgames, lazy summer days at the beach, and fireworks with friends.  A picnic sounds so easy – toss some food and paper goods into a basket and go enjoy – rarely does it turn out so simple. But with a little planning, preparation and clever packing you’ll find a routine that makes it so easy and stress free that you’ll want to eat alfresco as often as you can.

Finding the Ultimate Picnic Basket for You

We all love accessories to match our personalities and lifestyles, right? So, one of your first considerations is to pick out the right picnic basket to suit you and the feel you want to create for your picnic. Picnic baskets are no longer limited to wicker! Will you be:

  • Packing for 2, 4 or more?
  • Driving, pedalling or walking to the venue?
  • Enjoying a romantic date night?
  • Going to a concert with a group of friends?
  • Having a picnic lunch in the park or at a nearby lake?
  • Setting yourselves up on the beach for the whole day?
  • Having a themed kids party?

You might end up with a variety of picnic setups for various types of occasions, but you will find one that you love for those quick last minute get togethers with family or friends. The new backpack format is the simple and easy option for most day-to-day outings with the kids! Luckily most new picnic baskets, even as a backpack, come complete with dishes, wine glasses, metal utensils, napkins, cutting boards, serrated knife, corkscrew and small salt and pepper shakers.

BikePackBackpackEnglishBasketMalibuPack

Picking Picnic Food that Helps to Create Memories

We all have our favorite summer foods. And we all know anything that can be served cold or at room temperature has good potential for packing away and taking with us on our summer adventures. But instead of the usual watermelon or potato salads, let’s take a look at some quick and delicious picnic recipes that will give our food a colorful spin and keep us energized throughout the day.

 

The Best Cold Appetizers for Picnics

 

AntipastoskewerBruschettaPestoSkewer

 

Yummy Picnic Salad Ideas

 

CauliflowerSaladMediterreanspinach

 

Picnic Finger Food Ideas Without the Mess

 

AsparagusVeggieRollSPinachBread

Some Healthy Picnic Food!

 

ZucchiniChipsRawVeggieCupsNuts

Easy Picnic Desserts

 

BrowniesnobakePretzel

 

Refreshing Summer Drinks

 

PeachTSstrawberrycoconut

Our Top 8 Picnic Tips

There are so many things to remember when planning a picnic and it’s often the smallest of details that really help the day to go successfully. Here are our top tips to create a really wonderful day:

  1. Consider a theme or a centerpiece – a bell jar with wildflowers or a lantern. If driving you could take pillows and arrange crates to make the space comfy and beautiful.
  2. You might like hot and spicy food at home, but it will create thirst. You may not be near a water supply or close to rest rooms so it’s often better to turn the heat down whilst eating alfresco away from home.
  3. Pack in reverse order of your meal so dessert goes in on the bottom. The foods you want first, go in on top.
  4. We all know that heat rises and cold sinks, so it makes sense to have the ice packs on top. Instead of ice packs, freeze or use freezable water sport bottles. It gives you the extra water supply, and don’t fill to the top. You can also purchase cooler sleeves to fit around cans or wine bottles.
  5. Take along wet naps or paper towels, a garbage bag, small cutting boards, extra zip lock bags for leftovers, bag clips, extra utensils and toothpicks.
  6. Put small bottles of ketchup, mustard and mayo in your picnic basket.
  7. You might bring along a separate cooler to store your drinks. Pack a corkscrew, extra cups, napkins and plates.
  8. And finally you would not believe how often this one is forgotten! Make sure to pack a thick picnic blanket, outdoor blanket or waterproof blanket in the event the ground could be damp.

Have an amazing summer and enjoy the outdoors as much as you can.  I hope you have the opportunity for many picnics with great food and company. What are your top tips and favorite foods for making your picnic a truly memorable event?

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Roslyn
I loved going to work each day for 30 years as a professional career counselor. When I retired, I explored my creativity and regard for crafts until I discovered beading. At age 68 I turned my new found passion- jewelry design, into a business. At age 72 I took on learning about social media marketing and developing my computer skills. I am sharing my journey from inception, to frustration, to elation -in the hope of inspiring others that 'it is not too late to start again'. Welcome to my re-invention!

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      Kristen Wilson, you often make me smile as I read your comments. Yes, we are writing lifestyle blogs because you cannot just show jewelry. Right?

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  1. Roz, you’re really serious about this picnic business – even down to a thick blanket. This is definitely a go-to guide for having the perfect picnic.
    Now, let me get back to the food section. I think I’ll start indulging now and not wait for a picnic opportunity.

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      Appreciate your comment, Joyce Hansen. As I researched the topic I saw short lists, elaborate pages & images and so on. I culled what I thought was the most important and relevant. The food choices was a collaboration.

  2. What a fabulous post! I was salivating over the pictures and, like so many commenters, feel inspired to plan a picnic soon. I love the idea of serving a special food to create a special memory – that lavender iced tea did indeed look good enough to bathe in – and I bet it tastes wonderful!

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  3. What a wonderful feast of ideas Roslyn. I love picnics but haven’t been on one in ages. Top of my fun list when the weather warms up. I love all your tips – so right about the blanket often being forgotten! The recipes look amazing – can’t wait to try.

  4. I realized reading this that I haven’t been on a picnic in a very long time! This posts make me believe that picnics can be very mature events in people’s lives. I love the idea of a BBQ and eating outside, however, picnics remind me of family reunions where the food and fun abound! The pictures are incredible and some of the dishes you featured would be perfect for any event…not just a BBQ!

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      Beverley Golden, I do think we are more likely to plan picnics for families and as ours might move away , we may forget how much we enjoy them. Sp,e of my favorite picnics was listening to a concert, first with my family and in later years with girlfriends. Most foods that are good for BBQs are good for picnics as long as they are good served warm or cold.

  5. YUM! I am pinning this – so many delicious things! We take a picnic on the boat a lot, or sometimes we eat just on the dock! Thanks for some great ideas!

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  6. I love ALL your recommendations, Roslyn. We’re now into the monsoon season in Delhi but my sister and family are visiting in February next year and I’ve got some good ideas for a family picnic. Thanks for the inspiration.

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  7. OK – I’m really going to try the mock cauliflower/potato salad. What could it hurt!? Thanks for the ideas. Also, the ideas of cold foods on a skewer is a good, new, fun idea, also. I’ll bet kids would like it, too.

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      That is the recipe I want to try Joan Potter. So often we resort to the tried and true and I do want to experiment. So many great recipes out there. Thanks Joan, for your willing spirit.

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