A picnic really is the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors. With great food, beautiful scenery, and a blanket to stretch out on, it’s a very relaxing way to spend an afternoon. As the summer party invitations start rolling in, make a plan to, head to your favorite park, mountain or beach spot; with a little planning you can create a perfect picnic to enjoy with family and friends. Our party experts have come up with some great picnic tips for you.
Packing Food and Drinks
- Picnic baskets are cute an give an authentic feel to your outting. However, they are not ideal to accomodate large quantities of food, nor do they keep food cold when needed. Use a cooler for the cold and perishable stuff and use the picnic basket for the wine, the plates, cutlery, wine opener, glasses, and of course the ultimate picnic accessory, the gingham table cloth.
- Keep non-perishable foods (potato chips, fruit, etc.) separate from perishable ones. By keeping them separate, you can better use the cooler space for things that must remain cold. Because the more you jam into the cooler, the less it will stay cold. The ideal ratio is 75% food and 25% ice.
- When organizing the cooler, pack it in reverse order. Dessert first, then the main course and then any appetizers last. Basically you want what you plan to eat last in first and what you plan to eat first in last! Then you can just open up the cooler and begin enjoying your delicious food.
- As for drinks, make sure you put them in the fridge the night before so they will be very cold when you take them out.
- If you are planning to cook food once you arrive at your picnic destination, make sure you keep raw food away from the cooked food. If you really want to avoid cross contamination, you need to put the raw foods (like chicken or steak) in their own cooler. If combining foods, make sure the raw food containers are tightly sealed.
- If you will be sitting on the ground, consider bringing a tarp to put under the blanket. That way you won’t end up with soggy bottoms if the ground it a little damp.
- Remember to keep your mayonnaise base salads on ice (fill up a large mixing bowl with ice and set the salad bowl on top of the ice.) and that cooked foods left out over 2 hours are in danger of growing harmful bacteria that can cause food borne illness. So when in doubt, throw it out! (Or take it home to put in your compost or food scraps bin). Check out our fabulous picnic menu ideas.
- The worst thing that happens at your picnic is to forget an essential item like the blanket or the bottle opener! We’ve complied a great picnic essentials list to help you remember everything you’ll need!
Cups and wine glasses
Corkscrew or bottle opener
Salt & Pepper
Frisbee, other fun outdoor game equipment
Have a wonderful picnic! Check out our classic kids games ideas to incorporate into your perfect picnic.