Healthy Picnic Food Ideas for Every Meal and Summer Gathering
Take It Outside
Gorgeous weather day and night means endless opportunities for alfresco gatherings. The mood is lighter, the food tastes better, and there's little cooking to be done. In other words, easy, instant summer fun. (Related: No-Cook Summer Side Dish Recipes with Fresh, Seasonal Produce)
The Breakfast Bash
Set out a lavish pancake bar. Griddle up a stack ahead of time, and serve with a variety of sweet and savory fillings. Think fruit, veggies, cheese, yogurt, honey, nuts, muesli, cacao nibs, hard-boiled eggs, smoked salmon, herbs, capers, and kimchi. Create your own, or try the combos here.
- Smoked salmon, cream cheese, red onion, capers, chives
- Ricotta, raspberries, honey, hazelnuts, muesli
- Vanilla yogurt, sliced banana, peanut butter, cacao nibs, pecans
Wine & Cheese Happy Hour
A bunch of bites, some rosé, and you're good to go. You'll want to include hard and soft cheeses, fruit, nuts, crackers, and vegetables. Check out the delicious dip recipes below, but these munchies should help get your board started.
- Heirloom cherry tomatoes
- Red wine cheddar cheese
- Grilled halloumi cheese
- Nuts and seeds crackers
- Sliced plums with shredded basil
Orange and Olive Oil Whipped Feta
A wine and cheese outing doesn't limit you to rounds of Brie. One option? Whip feta into a refreshing dip flavored with olive oil and orange zest.
Blueberry, Corn, and Cilantro-Pesto Succotash
For produce, you can stick to your go-to fruit salad and crudité platter—or you can throw together this addictive succotash. It takes advantage of corn, blueberries, and cucumber, which are all in season right now.
Curried Sweet Potato-Mango Dip
Salads On a Skewer
With no dressing, no tossing, and no need for silverware, salad kabobs are your new picnic BFF. (More food on a stick here: Healthy Kebab Skewers You Can't Resist) Try these combos inspired by the classics.
- Wedge chicken salad: chicken, grapes, iceberg lettuce, blue cheese
- Greek salad: cherry tomatoes, dolmas, feta, olives
- Meat and potato salad: steamed baby potatoes, red leaf lettuce, roast beef, pickles
An Elegant Outdoor Dinner
The evening is, without question, the best time to take your meal outside. Create a sophisticated and healthy spread with chilled soups, toasts, and wraps.
Persian Cold Yogurt Soup Jars
This Persian cold yogurt soup doesn't even need to be cooked. Just whip it up in advance and keep it chilled. Then serve it in small jars for a pretty starter or side.