5 Easy Recipes for a Carefree Picnic
Guys, I am so excited! It’s picnic weather. We hit 70 degrees yesterday and I went barefoot outside! I know, I know, that’s a lot of exclamation points but I am that excited.
The other day I washed all of my assorted picnic tablecloths and cloth napkins and hung them out to dry in the sweet-smelling spring breeze. I am feeling a ridiculous amount of pleasure over their fresh and clean fragrance and the abundance of their crisply folded stacks. Even folding them caused my heart to flutter.
Our first picnic is going to be in the woods. This is the second best time to wander deer trails. The first best is Autumn.
- No mosquitos!
- Cool enough to walk without getting overheated.
- Wildlife easily spotted through the forest.
Right now there hasn’t been enough time for a lush and thick undergrowth to flourish as it will later in the summer. I can let my girls explore and still see them through the trees. It gives them a sense of adventure and daring, and keeps me sane.
Now that the tablecloths are clean, I can turn my mind to what sorts of foods I want to bring with us.
There’s my old standby, Cowboy Caviar but I think I want to step out of my comfort zone and go easy. It’s too early for local corn on the cob, or berries, so this could be tricky.
Here are my 5 choices for super easy picnic foods to bring with us out into the woods.
I’m going with super duper easy: Peanut Butter Jelly Time has never been a real favorite of mine. Unless…
Add bananas and bacon bits! My choice of peanut butter is any natural brand that’s crunchy. As for the jelly, I have so many choices that are locally canned, it’s hard to choose. My current favorite is a blueberry, strawberry mix. Here’s a recipe for you to try when these fruits are in season so next spring you can bring your own. Strawberry Blueberry Jam Recipe Once you’ve slathered peanut butter on one piece of bread, and jelly on the other, lay slices of banana across the jelly. Sprinkle liberally with crunchy bacon bits, and slap those slices together. I’m going to add some Red Pepper Flakes to mine and Dear Husband’s but the girls won’t appreciate that. I’ll cut their milder sammys into triangles so that we can instantly see which is hot and which is not.
Crunchy Dippy Things!
Chips are the easiest snack food to grab but I’m thinking I’ll take dipping up a notch while still keeping it super simple. I’m going to bring carrots and celery sticks, and baby peppers cut in half to make little dipping boats. For a dip, I think my hummus will hit the spot. Basic Hummus Recipe I’ll bring personal containers for each girl so double-dipping won’t be an issue.
What would a picnic be without lemonade? You can make yours from scratch from fresh lemons or cheat like me and use a can of frozen concentrate. I can’t wait to put together a Blackberry Lemonade using berries my family picked last summer that I have in the freezer. To keep this sweet and tart treat chilled while we’re out exploring, I’ll put the container in the freezer for a couple of hours before we leave to give it just enough slush to stay cool.
I can’t forget my furry friends. Naturally, they will join us on this adventure and rather than give them bits of our food, I’ll bring them their own special treat. These Carrot and Apple Dog Cookies are just the thing. And if my youngest at three and a half years old, decides to take a bite of one of these crunchy goodies, it won’t cause her any harm. She might even like it!
While we’re out there tromping around, my kids will travel three times the distance I walk. They are like the puppies, exploring and going every which way. They’ll need some extra energy for all that exercise and I am sure they’ll start asking when they can eat as soon as we step foot into the forest. I’m going to make them some nutritious cookies to snack on and if they have no room for the rest of our picnic, there will be no harm. These High Protein Healthy Oatmeal Cookies will be perfect.
What are your easiest picnic foods?