Your 5-Minute Checklist For Packing A Healthy Picnic

by Malia Frey
There’s no reason to spend the day inside when the weather is warm and the sky is clear. Why not pack a healthy picnic and head to the park for some quality fun in the sun? Use this quick and easy guide to organize everything you need for a yummy feast, then grab the kids, grab your sweetie, or just grab a good book and relax.

4 Things You Need for a Healthy, Fun Picnic

Your culinary outing doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, it’s best if it isn’t. You don’t want to spend the bulk of your day prepping foods for the meal. Instead, keep it simple. Just be sure to include three important elements: healthy delicious food, refreshing low-calorie drinks and fun activities to burn a few calories.
1. Start With Healthy, Delicious, Easy-to-Pack Food.

When you decide what to pack, think about foods that require fewer utensils and very little fuss. Finger foods and salads are perfect. To make sure you feel full and satisfied after you eat, choose foods that are full of diet-friendly fiber and protein.
Try any of these ideas: 2. Cool Down With Refreshing, Low-Calorie Drinks.

You'll want to stay hydrated in style while you picnic. But try to sip drinks that won’t derail your healthy eating plan.
Homemade flavored water is an easy solution. Simply add frozen raspberries, orange wedges, blueberries or cucumber slices to your flat or sparkling water and enjoy.  But nothing is better on a hot day then a cool wine cocktail. Make a batch of low-carb Summertime Quenchers or enjoy a non-alcoholic Apricot Iced Tea.
Also on Z Living: Looking for more inspiring ideas for your picnic? Here are Must-Haves For Your Adorable, Pinnable Picnic.
3. Come Up With Some Fun Activities

You don’t want to spend all of your time napping on the picnic blanket. Park time is the perfect time to burn a few calories outdoors. Bring a Frisbee, a kickball, or pack a few supplies so that the kids can build their own obstacle course.
4. Don't Leave The House Without These Must-Haves:

Be sure to gather these essentials to make your picnic more enjoyable:
  • inexpensive or disposable forks and utensils
  • at least one scoop or serving spoon
  • resealable, collapsible food serving and storage dishes
  • salt and pepper
  • plastic cups or wine glasses
  • paper or cloth napkins
  • an extra bottle of water for spills and other emergencies
  • baby wipes for quick and easy clean-up
 Also on Z Living: Are you traveling with toddlers? Here are More Ways To Pack Smart with the kids!
If you pack carefully, all of your items will fit into a traditional woven picnic basket. But don’t worry if you don’t own the classic tote. Lightweight, collapsible picnic baskets are inexpensive and available at many discount stores. You’ll even find picnic backpacks that are perfect for carrying enough food for two.
Lastly, remember to keep food safety in mind. Perishable food can spoil in just an hour when it is left out in the heat. Add a few frozen gel packs or frozen water bottles to your picnic basket to keep your items cold. Then serve your delicious, healthy meal just before eating. 
WATCH On Z Living: Recipe Rehab, where each week two chefs face off in a competition to give one family's high-calorie recipe a new low-calorie twist. See a sneak preview here.
Do you go on picnics with your family? Tell us about it in the comments! 

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