If there’s anything I learned by living 10 years in Spain, it’s the majesty of the fancy all-day picnic. It’s one of the things I miss most about a Barcelona summer. Even if you’re stuck in, say, Pennsylvania instead of sunny Spain, having a wonderful picnic is simple. All you need is a few good recipes, a great location (or even a so-so one), and a few friends or family members that you love spending time with. The rest does itself. Especially if you have wine.
That said, there are always things you can do to plan a perfect picnic. And this page was created to help you do just that! Here, I have everything from perfect pre-planned picnic menus to fun ideas for themed picnic, to tips for planning the whole thing without a hitch. Everything you need to make your casual picnic also feel chic and special.
Planning to get the grill out at your picnic? Then check out our Barbeque Headquarters for tips, recipes, and more.
Picnic Recipes and Menus
My Perfect Picnic Menu: My perfect picnic menu features simple, elegant picnic recipes that you can make ahead of time and serve at room temperature. This recipe collection is the result of lots of recipe testing! Chic, simple, fancy, and a ton of fun.
Cold Picnic Recipes: This is classic picnic fare at its best. With perfect potato salad and moist oven-fried chicken, this menu is exactly what you’re looking for when you want to have a classic southern American-style picnic. It’s like going back in time. But probably tastier.
My Romantic Picnic: This simple, elegant menu is perfect for planning a romantic picnic for your sweetie. Add a bottle of chilled champagne and a loooong afternoon and you have the perfect anniversary date. Easy, sweet, and totally special.
French Picnic Menu: Sure, this menu –including French cheeses matched up with wonderful wines– is simple and easy to put together. But it’s also elegant, decadent, and to-die-for delicious. This is the fancy picnic at its best.
Family Picnic Menu: Who says kid food has to taste boring to adults, or adult food bad to kids? These family picnic foods are flavorful, elegant, and remarkably kid-friendly.
Italian Summer Picnic: Nothing says summer like a sun-soaked Italian picnic! This simple and flavorful picnic menu will make you want to up and move to Italy. A simple and sophisticated change from sub sandwiches and potato salad.
Picnic Sandwiches: If you’re planning a picnic, there’s nothing easier than throwing together a few sandwiches. But that doesn’t mean your food has to be boring. These recipes are easy, tasty, and best of all, fun and original.
Picnic Planning, Themes, and Ideas
Ideas for Planning a Picnic: With the resources on this page, planning a picnic is easy. I’ve got everything from food and location ideas, to a supplies checklist that will prepare you for any picnic emergency.
Picnic Themes and Games: Want to get really creative with your picnic? Here you’ll find tons of themes for your next picnic, including games to play, food to eat, and even ideas for what to wear.
Create a “Build Your Own” Picnic: Want to make your picnic planning as stress-free as possible? Bring along the fixins and let your guests build their own. This page will give you some great ideas on what to stock up on and how to carry the whole thing off.
Picnic Menus and Foods: Whether you want to put together your own or use one of our picnic menus, this page has a HUGE list of the best and more popular picnic foods, plus my favorite menus!