Planning the Perfect Summer Picnic: Tips and Recipes

Everyone loves a summer picnic where one can enjoy the sun and also retreat to the coolness of thick, shady trees when required. Especially when going on a long car ride, hiking or to the park, it’s wonderful to spread out a rug, unpack some delectable food and cold drinks and just laze while enjoying the ambience.  Summer picnics are the favourite of many and if you are lucky enough to have a small yard attached to your house, it is the ideal place to have one. Good food and good company is all one needs for an enjoyable summer picnic.

If you keep a few tips in mind regarding summer picnic ideas and a summer picnic menu, it’s sure to be a success and enjoyed by all.

  1. Choose a Location
  2. Pick a location first and pack accordingly. One can have a picnic practically anywhere – in one’s garden, at the beach, in a park. A few things will have to be kept in mind when choosing summer picnic places – will it be sunny or shady, hot, chilly or breezy, will there be access to water and washrooms etc.

  3. Carry a Blanket
  4. Carry a lightweight blanket, beach towels, mats or tablecloths if you can sit on the ground. Otherwise, camping chairs are a good option.

  5. Prep Your Food
  6. Preparing the food at the picnic spot, especially if it’s messy, is not always a good idea. It’s best to finish prepping most of the food at home. Make the sandwiches at home, slice the cheese, pack the crackers etc. at home so that you can sit back ab]nd enjoy the picnic.

  7. Invest in a Cooler
  8. Summers can get rather warm, so it’s a good idea to invest in a cooler to keep perishable items fresh by putting them on ice. Bacteria multiply very fast in summer and it’s wise to keep perishable foods at about 4.5 ℃. Thermal containers can be used for hot food. The goal is to consume the food and return it to a safe temperature. If it’s not possible, it’s best to throw the food away within 2 hours. Coolers and thermal containers shouldn’t be opened more than required to maintain their temperature.

  9. Organise the Food in Crush-Proof Containers
  10. Stack the items as you will need them – desserts at the bottom and appetisers on top. Use sturdy bowls as lids as no one enjoys a squished sandwich or a leaking salad.

  11. Pack Extra Crockery and Cutlery
  12. Enamel plates are the best option as they don’t get soggy with saucy food and can be easily rinsed and reused. Carry sufficient spoons and knives for eating and serving. Chopping boards can be used for cutting items and putting together a snack platter.

  13. Pest Control
  14. Bugs can be a menace and spoil the fun of a summer picnic so be prepared with food covers and an approved bug spray.

  15. Menu Planning
  16. Salads are always appreciated on a picnic, followed by mess-free entrees like pastas, sandwiches or a charcuterie board. Salad dressings should be done on-site. All dressings, dips and condiments should be packed in 3 ounce servings in a leak-proof vessel.

  17. Sufficient Drinks
  18. Drinks are a must for a summer picnic so don’t forget the sodas, sufficient water and the beer and wine along with a bottle opener.

  19. Set the Mood with Games
  20. Apart from food and drink, carry a ball or a croquet set for some fun time. Play some music on a Bluetooth speaker and Spotify even has a pre-designed playlist called the ‘The Picnic List’ for such occasions. Engage in picnic games like frisbee, badminton, or card games to add more fun and excitement to your outdoor gathering.

  21. Carry Leftovers
  22. Distribute the leftovers so that everyone can enjoy it a bit later or carry it back with them. Zip-loc bags and some storage containers are always good to carry on a picnic.

  23. Carry Garbage Bags, Sanitisers and Napkins
  24. As always, it’s necessary to leave a place as clean as one finds it so carry garbage bags so that no litter is left behind. Dirty dishes can also be carried in them and washed at home. And to avoid stick hands and faces, sanitisers, wet wipes and tissues are a must.

Plan Your Picnic With Some Interesting and Tasty Recipes

There is no dearth of things that you can make and carry for a picnic. Anything from sandwiches to a dip, chips and salads and myriad other things make for tasty food to eat on a picnic. We have a few summer picnic ideas for you that you can customise to your requirements while planning a summer picnic menu.

  1. Sandwiches
  2. The world’s favourite for picnics, only your creativity can set the boundaries. Varying types of sandwiches can be made including egg, cucumber, tomato or caprese depending on the choice of people. One more tasty option is a slice of ham or salami with mustard sauce or mayonnaise along with it.

  3. Pasta Salad
  4. You can toss in all the vegetables you like into some boiled pasta and make a really colourful and yummy salad. Some balsamic vinegar, olive oil and seasoning is all you need to make this dish.

  5. Citrus Salad
  6. Take some lettuce or other greens, then add in some fruit and spices for a great salad recipe to have at a summer picnic. Similarly,  you can toss together some pesto, chickpeas, tomatoes and mozzarella together with a dressing of your choice. A potato salad, a Mexican tortellini or corn salad are all good options for a summer picnic menu.

  7. Wraps
  8. Any wrap with a filling of your choice also makes a good picnic snack. You can fill the wrap with some chicken or vegetarian filling and decide on the flavour you want to go with. An Asian flavour with some honey and balsamic vinegar or any other sauce that you may like makes very tasty picnic food.

  9. Dips
  10. There are several kinds of dips available and can be used with crackers or lavash for a snack. A dip with avocados, cheesy yoghurt dip, salsa or hummus with veggies of your choice make a nice snack.

  11. Cheese Platter
  12. Assemble a cheese platter with your most loved cheeses, a baguette, crackers, walnuts, green olives, salami, grapes, honey and dried fruit.

  13. Chips
  14. Carry a couple of bags of your favourite chips.

  15. Fruit
  16. Carry some watermelon slices and other summer fruit for a refreshing bite.

  17. Desserts
  18. Brownies, blondies, lemon sugar cookies, cupcakes, shortbread and pies are all mess-free and tasty desserts for a picnic.

Outdoor dining is always fun and we are sure these tips and recipes we have given you will ensure that planning and executing it is not a stressful situation. However informal a picnic is, you have a whole lot of delicious dishes that will make it a memorable experience. In any case, everything tastes better when eaten outdoors and you don’t need to make anything complicated and time consuming while planning  a summer picnic. Get as creative as you want and make a picnic spread that people are sure to remember for a long time to come. And just keep a few important tips in mind so that everything runs smoothly. For more updates on this topic, you can touch base with the EuroKids website.

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