Portable Picnic Recipes
Sunny days, blue skies, and a gentle breeze make for perfect picnic weather - there is nothing like a hike in the country and an outdoor meal of your favorite picnic foods. Paired with a soft blanket and a patch of green grass, these easy and impressive picnic recipes will enliven any outdoor event. Similar to hosting a tailgating event, a hostess needs to think about portability and casual charm for picnic food ideas. To minimize pre-party prep and stress, and maximize praise from your picnic guests, try these delicious, make-ahead picnic recipes, including bite-size fried chicken and sweet hand-pies. So ditch the dining room this season and take it outside. Our best picnic ideas will help you enjoy every minute of these glorious days. Check out thrift stores or antique shops for not-so-perfect wicker baskets, hand-me-down vintage blankets, and charming quilts to help you set up a perfect picnic. Armed with these picnic recipes, you are sure to pull together a memorable movable feast.
Think portability and casual charm for picnic recipes. Find not-so-perfect wicker baskets, hand-me-down vintage blankets, and charming quilts to set up a perfect picnic. These picnic recipes are both portable and casual, making for the perfect picnic menu.
Recipe: Spring Salsa
Fill inexpensive, reusable glass jars with Spring Salsa and chips for easy carrying. This colorful salsa of corn, tomatoes, and cilantro would be equally delicious served over salad greens or in warm tortillas with grilled chicken.
Fruit, Cheese and Herb Skewers
Recipe: Fruit, Cheese, and Herb Skewers
Thread various combinations of fruit, fresh small mozzarella cheese balls, and herbs on 6-inch wooden skewers up to three hours ahead. It's easy and makes for a pretty display.
Fried Chicken Bites
Recipe: Fried Chicken Bites
These spicy fried chicken nuggets are great dipped in honey mustard or blue cheese dressing.
Strawberry-Rhubarb Hand Pies
Recipe: Strawberry-Rhubarb Hand Pies
Crisp rhubarb has a tart flavor that teams up perfectly with sweet strawberries.
Recipe: Lime Fizz
This lime soda is a refreshing drink for a picnic. For an adult version, stir in 2/3 cup vodka. The leftover simple syrup can always be stirred into unsweetened iced tea.
Summer Rice Salad
Recipe: Summer Rice Salad
Ditch a mayonnaise-laden potato salad for this fresh, minty number. Drizzle the versatile dressing over fresh fruit or grilled fish or veggies.
Ginger and Lime Marinated Melon
Cucumber-and-Sugar Snap Salad
Recipe: Cucumber-and-Sugar Snap Salad
Almost any raw veggie works in this cucumber salad. Try using bell peppers, jicama, or fresh corn kernels.
Roasted Green Bean, Apple, and Bacon Sandwiches
A green bean sandwich? Trust us on this one. We fell for the combo of tender beans, crisp apples, salty Parm, and tangy dressing. Keep it tidy by hollowing out the baguette to create a cradle for the fillings.
Recipe: BBQ-Ranch Popcorn
Try other flavors, like chili powder-lime zest and cinnamon-sugar.
Picnic Egg Salad
Recipe: Picnic Egg Salad
It’s all the name! This simple, old-school egg salad recipe will fit right in on your picnic spread, whether you put it between two slices of bread or spread it on toasted baguette slices.
Smoky Snack Mix
Recipe: Smoky Snack Mix
Go ahead and double this addicting recipe—it won’t last long.
Recipe: Almond-Chicken Wrap
This healthy update on chicken salad is wrapped up for easy toting.
Spicy Pineapple Slaw
Recipe: Spicy Pineapple Slaw
This vibrant slaw recipe will kick your picnic game way up.
Turkey and Pimiento Cheese Club Sandwich
Keep these hearty sandwiches together with toothpicks to ensure every bite is a good one.
Blackberry-Peach Cobbler Bars
Recipe: Blackberry-Peach Cobbler Bars
This delicious recipe has everything you love about a summery fruit cobbler in grab-and-go form that’s perfect for picnics.
Southern-Style Potato Salad
Recipe: Southern-Style Potato Salad
This Southern classic is always a welcome sight at a picnic.
Recipe: Mini Muffulettas
This tiny take on the muffuletta sandwich can be made a day in advance so you don’t waste any daylight on the day of your picnic.
Lemonade Iced Tea
Recipe: Lemonade Iced Tea
Our riff on a classic Arnold Palmer is refreshing for hot summer days.
Shaved Cucumber Salad with Pickled Blackberries
This simple summer salad only gets better the longer it marinates, so it’s great to make ahead of your picnic.
Black-Eyed Pea Fritter Sandwiches with Slaw
Swap out your tired deli meat sandwiches for this Southern spin on falafel.
No-Bake Granola Bars
Recipe: No-Bake Granola Bars
These healthy homemade granola bars will keep everyone full throughout the day, and there are three flavor options to satisfy every family member.
Field Pea and Pasta Salad
Recipe: Field Pea and Pasta Salad
Mini glass jars make for easy and adorable toting for this summery pasta salad recipe.
Chicken Caesar Salad Sandwiches
Recipe: Chicken Caesar Salad Sandwiches
This easy sandwich recipe makes the most of that rotisserie chicken you have in the fridge.
Classic Pimiento Cheese
Recipe: Basic Pimiento Cheese
Throw a Tupperware container full of pimiento cheese and an assortment of crackers into your basket, and you’re good to go. You could always make easy-to-tote sandwiches with this favorite spread, too.
Fresh Fruit Salad
Recipe: Fresh Fruit Salad
Fresh fruit is always welcome at our picnics. Bring skewers or toothpicks for utensil-free serving.
Crunchy Pecan Pie Bites
Recipe: Crunchy Pecan Pie Bites
To round out your picnic with a bite of something sweet, toss a few of these easy pecan pie bites into a Mason jar.
Turkey, Apple, and Brie Sandwich
Recipe: Turkey, Apple, and Brie Sandwich
Crunchy apple and nutty, creamy brie are a perfect match with sliced turkey for a sandwich that’s anything but boring.
Egg Salad Sandwiches
Cheddar Cheese Straws
Recipe: Cheddar Cheese Straws
Cheese straws are an all-time favorite Southern snack for parties, hostess gifts, and any occasion that might arise because they’re so easy to toss in a tin and take with you.
Dianne’s Southwestern Cornbread Salad
Remember cold layered salads? We never forgot about them! These vintage recipes are so easy to package and take on a picnic.
Cheese Puffs with Ham Salad
Recipe: Cheese Puffs with Ham Salad
This old-school recipe is delicious, nostalgic, and easy to pack and take in zip-top plastic bags for a satisfying lunch at the park.
Chewy Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bars
You can still enjoy a bite-size picnic dessert when it’s too hot to turn the oven on. These no-bake bars fit the bill perfectly.
Sweet Potato Chips
Recipe: Sweet Potato Chips
If you want to go all-out on homemade, try out this simple chip recipe that’s so much better than bagged.
Barbecue-Peach Summer Rolls
Recipe: Barbecue-Peach Summer Rolls
Showcase fresh summer peaches with this healthy handheld recipe.
Golden Corn Fritters
Recipe: Golden Corn Fritters
These crispy poppers will be all gone long before the picnic is over.
Mini Tomato Sandwiches With Bacon Mayonnaise
This bite-size spin on a classic BLT will become a new favorite.
Recipe: Permanent Slaw
This simple slaw recipe was meant to be made ahead, so you don’t have to worry about it when you’re trying to pack up and go.
Oatmeal-Caramel Cream Pies
Recipe: Oatmeal-Caramel Cream Pies
This childhood favorite is perfect for carrying along on a breezy afternoon picnic.