Who says dining outdoors requires styrofoam plates and red solo cups? Looking good feels good, and you can pick up your picnic game with a few simple tips on picnic style:
Mason Jar Meals
Combine storage and rustic charm with these trendy glass containers. Portion meals – and even snacks - into individual jars, for easy transport and pleasant aesthetics. Some of our favorites include:
- Hummus & Veggies: Place two tablespoons of hummus in the bottom of the jar and stick celery, carrots, and cucumbers right in. It's the ultimate dipping set up.
- This refreshing Carrot Noodle Salad from Nosh and Nourish complements sunny days with spiralized veggies, nuts and seeds. Keep the ingredients fresh by starting with dressing on the bottom.
- Bake make mini-cakes and pack them in mason Jars. We love Chowhound’s fruity recipe.
- Make individual jars of sangria with frozen fruit instead in place of ice cubes.
Classic Gingham for the Win
Nothing says picnics like a classic red-and-white gingham table cloth. There is no need to spend a fortune as they are available at Walmart, most local dollar stores, and on Amazon.
Buy two table clothes—one plastic for you and your picnic-pals to sit on, and one cloth to cut up for DIY touches like:
Also on Z Living: 4 Healthy No-Bake Meals You Can Whip Up This Summer
Brown Bag It
What’s old is new again, and brown bag lunches are no exception. Go hipster-chic by making individual brown bag lunches
and finish them with a stamp. To add a personal touch, you can order a customized From the Kitchen Of...
stamp (Amazon.com, $18.99
If you want to go even simpler, filling brown paper bags with popcorn
, chips, and colorful fruit like cherries is an easy and aesthetically pleasing way to serve your guests their favorite treats.
Also on Z Living: 31 Healthy Breafkast Ideas
Pick the Perfect Basket
Choose a basket to match your style, and don’t be afraid to add a practical twist while still keeping a homey picnic aesthetic. Our favorites include:
- Traditional: A classic wood chip basket that suits your gingham-style (Amazon.com, $15.99).
- Cute & Chic: A black and white insulated basket is both practical and adorable for a ladies’ day out (Amazon.com, $19.99).
- Champagne Tastes: Looking for luxury? Williams Sonoma has a stunning woven willow basket for elegant picnics ($349.95), complete with gorgeous flatware and hand-blown wine glasses. It’s also the perfect gift for a special summer birthday, wedding, or bridal shower
No time to plan the perfect picnic? See if restaurants in your area pack picnics to go. There are options in nearly every major city. Top examples include a summer picnic with beef tenderloin or vegan salads from Joan’s on Third
in Los Angeles, and the ultra-lux $125 picnic basket from The Wayfarer
in New York City, complete with items like mint lemonade, cheese, and organic chicken sandwiches in an insulated basket.
Watch On Z Living: Healthy Gourmet
, where nutritionist Julie Daniluk and chef Ezra Title join forces and
battle between taste and nutrition, helping home cooks create nutritious and tasty meals that can feed a crowd.
We want to hear from you – tell what your favorite picnic food is in the comments below!