Tips for the Perfect Picnic

Get out your picnic basket—it’s time to plan some picnics. The sun is out and the breeze is warm, and we’ve got lots of picnic ideas for an afternoon at the park, at the beach, or even in your own backyard. Whether you’re planning a picnic for a date or a family outing, you’ll want to ensure you have everything you need to make this special time outdoors a memorable experience for all.

Picnic Checklist

Packing like a pro for your picnic is easy when you keep a checklist of all the essentials, such as a picnic basket, a blanket, plates, cups, utensils and napkins. When it comes to choosing a picnic basket, a classic design with a preppy wicker-look or a colourful cooler tote are two practical options that also have timeless appeal. If you opt for a tote bag, it’s a good idea to have two—one for room temperature food and one cooler tote for anything that needs to stay chilled, such as cheese, meat and drinks. Picnic-friendly plates are a must-have, too. Melamine dishware is ideal for picnic food, and allows you and your group to dine outdoors worry-free. Your picnic blanket should also be easy to care for, so a waterproof or water repellent backing is a great picnic idea.

Other important things to have in your picnic basket include, a wood handle cheese knife, a cutting board, a corkscrew and spill proof salt and pepper shakers. A picnic knife is handy to pack in your picnic basket, too. This practical kitchen tool has a foldout corkscrew and a built-in bottle opener—perfect for anyone who likes to picnic with friends and family.

Picnic Food Ideas

Next, you’ll need to set the menu for the picnic. The best picnic food ideas are easy to prepare, easy to pack in your picnic basket and easy to serve at the picnic. Some of the best picnic foods are the dishes that can travel well and be served cold, such as fresh salads, charcuterie and cheese boards, sandwiches (classic fare like tuna, egg or club house is always a crowd pleaser), fresh fruit, vegetables and dip, cookies and brownies. When it comes to picnic beverages, you can never go wrong with iced tea or lemonade.

Need a little inspiration for your next picnic? Cookbooks and picnic-themed books are a great resource when dreaming up the best picnic ideas and the best picnic food ideas. From recipes for finger foods to picnic desserts, like tarts and pie, we have you covered with all of the best books for planning your next picnic. Explore our kids’ section, too, for picnic-themed books to get little ones excited about the next family picnic.

Fun Picnic Ideas & Activities

The best picnics also include music. Setting the picnic mood with some fun tunes is a great picnic idea. Make sure to pack portable speakers and throw in some games, too. A classic board game or a fun outdoor activity like Frisbee, baseball, football and even blowing bubbles, is a great picnic idea that everyone will love.