20 Quick and Easy Picnic Food Ideas

Summer or autumn, it’s never too late to enjoy a picnic or outdoor party. It’s useful because it keeps you eating healthy foods too. These recipes are great picnic food ideas that are affordable, easy to make, and tasty!

1. Parmesan and Roasted Tomato Quiche

Parmesan and Roasted Tomato Quiche
© tirik, AdobeStock

With a little know-how and effort, you can create a delicious summer quiche, perfect for picnics.

Cooking Time: 40-45 minutes.
Yield: 8-10 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 150g of Cubed Butter
  • 325g of Plain Flour
  • 75g of Grated Parmesan
  • 3 Eggs
  • 350g of Halved Cherry Tomatoes
  • 300ml of Double Cream
  • 50g of Roughly Chopped Basil Leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper

Directions:

  1. Add butter and 300g of flour to a large mixing bowl. Then use your fingers to rub and combine the mixture.
  2. Pour 10 tablespoons of water into the bowl and combine the crumbly mixture into a dough. Spread the remaining flour onto a clean worktop and roll out the dough to fit a pastry case.
  3. Fit the dough neatly into the case and chill in the refrigerator for 20-25 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and put the tomatoes into a roasting tin.
  5. Drizzle the oil over the tomatoes and put them into the oven for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Remove the pastry from the refrigerator and use a fork to pierce the base. Line the pastry with greased parchment paper and baking beans. Place the pastry into the oven for 20 minutes.
  7. Remove the pastry from the oven and discard the beans and parchment paper. Put the pastry back into the oven to cook for an additional 7 minutes.
  8. Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl and beat lightly. Slowly pour the cream into the bowl, followed by a pinch of pepper and salt. Add the basil leaves and whisk well for 30 seconds.
  9. Remove the pastry case from the oven and sprinkle ½ of the parmesan onto the base. Then add the tomatoes and pour the egg mixture into the case. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top and bake in the oven for 23-27 minutes.

2. Avocado and Chicken Baguettes

Avocado and Chicken Baguettes
© Jellyplasma, AdobeStock

Healthy and so delicious, these baguettes will make a perfect addition to any family picnic.

Cooking Time: 10-15 minutes.
Yield: 2-4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Halved Ready-to-Eat Fresh Baguettes
  • 100g of Shredded Lettuce
  • 2 Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • 2 Peeled, Halved, and Stoned Avocados
  • 10ml of Milk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 4 Tablespoons of English Mustard
  • 125g of Flour
  • 1 Teaspoon of Pepper
  • 4 Tablespoons of Rapeseed Oil
  • The Juice of 1 Lime
  • 150g of Breadcrumbs

Directions:

  1. Place the chicken on a chopping board and cover it with a sheet of kitchen foil or film. Use a rolling pin or cooking mallet to beat the chicken to a thin consistency.
  2. Slice the chicken diagonally and ensure each piece of chicken has a consistent or even thickness.
  3. Crack the eggs into a bowl and lightly beat with milk. In a second bowl, add the flour, and mix pepper and the breadcrumbs into a third bowl.
  4. Dust each piece of chicken with flour, then dip them into the milk and egg mixture, before coating with breadcrumbs.
  5. Pour the oil into a frying pan and heat at a medium-to-high temperature. When the pan is hot, add the chicken. Cook for 5-6 minutes, then flip and cook for another 5-6 minutes or until cooked through entirely.
  6. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside to rest for 5-7 minutes.
  7. Spread the mustard on the baguettes and mash the avocado with lime juice in a bowl. Spoon the mashed avocado onto the baguettes and top with the chicken and lettuce.

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3. Easy Pasta Salad

Easy Pasta Salad
© grinchh, AdobeStock

Ideal for picnics and outdoor parties, you can’t go wrong with a pasta salad. It can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be, and it still tastes wonderful.

Cooking Time: 10 minutes.
Yield: 8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 550g of Fusilli Pasta
  • 2 Thinly Sliced Shallots
  • 2 Sliced Bell Peppers
  • 3 Tablespoons of Red Wine Vinegar
  • 6 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • 25ml of Lemon Juice
  • 50g of Chopped Kale
  • 75g of Finely Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 100g of Crumbled Feta Cheese
  • 2 Finely Chopped Spring Onions

Directions:

  1. Put the pasta into a large pot filled with water, then place it on a high heat. Bring the water to a boil then reduce it to a medium temperature and cook the pasta for 7-8 minutes.
  2. Add shallots, spring onions, bell peppers, kale, feta, and parmesan to a large bowl or sealable container.
  3. In a jug, combine the oil with vinegar and lemon juice. Whisk well and set aside for a few moments.
  4. Drain the pasta well and cool in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes. Then add it to the bowl with the shallots.
  5. Pour the dressing on top and toss well to combine.

4. No-Cook Tuna and Sweetcorn Wrap

No-Cook Tuna and Sweetcorn Wrap
© wckiw, AdobeStock

This simple dish makes a wonderful picnic food idea because there is literally no cooking involved. You can throw this dish together in minutes.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 10 Gem Lettuce Leaves
  • 350g of Tinned Tuna
  • 1 Thinly Sliced Tomato
  • 200g of Tinned Sweetcorn
  • Salt and Pepper for Seasoning

Directions:

  1. Thoroughly drain the tuna and sweetcorn, then add them to a bowl. Add the tomato, along with ¼ teaspoon of salt and pepper, and combine well.
  2. Wash the lettuce leaves and place them onto a large clean plate. Spoon the tuna and sweetcorn mixture onto each leave and roll them.

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5. Egg Toasts

Egg Toasts
© O.B., AdobeStock

This doesn’t sound very exciting, but it makes an easy and affordable picnic food idea. If you want to be a little more adventurous, you can jazz it up a little or just have it plain. Egg toasts are adaptable in so many ways and can be eaten hot or cold.

Cooking Time: 5-10 minutes.
Yield: 4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1 Finely Diced Red Onion
  • 1 Teaspoon of Paprika
  • ½ Teaspoon of Salt
  • ½ Teaspoon of Black Pepper
  • 50g of Grated Mild Cheddar Cheese
  • 8 Tablespoons of Mayonnaise (Or Butter if You Prefer)
  • 8 Slices of Bread (Whichever you Prefer)
  • 25g of Unsalted Butter

Directions:

  1. Place the eggs into a large pan and cover with cold water. Bring the eggs to a boil at a medium temperature and cook for 5-7 minutes.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and remove the eggs with a slotted spoon. Place them into a bowl of cold water and set them aside for 5 minutes.
  3. Remove the eggshells and put the eggs into a large jug. Break the eggs up with a fork and add cheese, paprika, salt, and mayonnaise.
  4. Mash thoroughly until a creamy texture is formed. Add more mayonnaise if so desired and butter the bread.
  5. Butter the bread and spoon the egg mixture onto the bread.
  6. Top with onions and a pinch of pepper.

6. Easy Peanut Butter Cookies with Chocolate Chips

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies with Chocolate Chips
© larik_malasha, AdobeStock

It’s easy to spend a fortune on sweet treats. Fortunately, you can make delicious cookies at home with only 5 ingredients. These cookies aren’t just healthier than pre-made ones, they’re delicious and cost-effective too.

Cooking Time: 15 minutes.
Yield: 8-10 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 250g of Peanut Butter
  • 150g of Milk Chocolate Chips
  • 2 Small Eggs
  • 200g of Caster Sugar
  • ½ Teaspoon of Salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line a large baking tray with greased parchment paper.
  2. Add sugar, salt, and peanut butter to a large bowl and combine well. Crack the eggs into the mixture and mix until a dough begins to form. Then fold in the chocolate chips.
  3. Set the mixture aside for 20 minutes to firm up, then scoop out 1 teaspoon of dough and place it onto the baking tray. Repeat the process until the tray is lined with cookies.
  4. Flatten the dough slightly and bake them in the oven for 10-14 minutes.

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7. Simple Potato Salad with Added Chilli Peppers

Simple Potato Salad with Added Chilli Peppers
© MSPhotographic, AdobeStock

Potato salads are easy but taste brilliant. This dish is perfect for summer picnics and the added chilli peppers are a nice twist too.

Cooking Time: 25-30 minutes.
Yield: 4-6 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 750g of New Potatoes
  • 4 Teaspoons of Mustard
  • 2 Tablespoons of Chopped Parsley
  • 6 Sliced Spring Onions
  • 7 Tablespoons of Mayonnaise
  • 3 Sliced Chilli Peppers with the Seeds Removed
  • 4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper for Seasoning

Directions:

  1. Fill a large pot with water and put the potatoes into it. Bring the pan to a boil at a medium temperature and cook for 13-15 minutes.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and drain the potatoes thoroughly. Let the potatoes cool for 5 minutes then cube them.
  3. Place the potatoes into a large bowl and drizzle the oil over them. Add the mustard, spring onions, parsley, chilli peppers, and mayonnaise.
  4. Season with 1 teaspoon of pepper and ½ teaspoon of salt and toss well to combine.

8. Chocolate Brownies

Chocolate Brownies
© chandlervid85, AdobeStock

When you want a sweet treat for a picnic, you can’t go too wrong with chocolate brownies. They are delicious and the perfect bite-sized snack for outdoor events. This is a simple recipe that shouldn’t cause you too much trouble.

Cooking Time: 30 minutes.
Yield: 8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 300g of Muscovado Sugar
  • 250g of Chopped Cooking Chocolate
  • 2 Teaspoons of Vanilla Extract
  • 4 Tablespoons of Cocoa Powder
  • 150g of Plain Flour
  • 3 Beaten Eggs
  • 25g of Unsalted Butter (for Greasing)
  • 150g of Soft Butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and grease a cake tin or deep baking tray with butter.
  2. Fill a microwave-safe bowl with half of the chocolate and heat for 20-30 seconds. Blast the chocolate in 20-second increments until it fully melts. Then remove the chocolate from the microwave and set it aside to cool down.
  3. Use an electric hand mixer to beat the butter in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the vanilla extract and sugar. Beat the mixture until it’s fluffy and smooth.
  4. Beat the eggs into the mixture and add the cocoa powder and flour. Combine well then fold into the melted chocolate.
  5. Add the remaining chocolate to the mixture and pour it into the cake tin. Bake the brownies in the oven for 27-30 minutes.

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9. Roast Ham Panini

Roast Ham Panini
© Victoria Kondysenko, AdobeStock

Paninis aren’t given as much credit as they deserve but make perfect picnic food. You can eat them hot or cold and can put almost any topping on them. Plus, they make an excellent (and pretty easy) snack.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 2-4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Thinly Sliced Shallot
  • 4 Teaspoons of Mustard
  • 2 Sliced Tomatoes
  • 100g of Sliced Cooked Deli-Style Honey Roast Ham
  • 1 Sliced Jalapeno Pepper (Optional)
  • 4 Slices of Ciabatta Bread
  • 5g of Salted Butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat the panini press or maker.
  2. Butter the bread and layer on the ham. Add a spoonful of mustard to the ham, then layer the tomatoes, shallot, and jalapeno on top.
  3. Put the sandwich into the panini press for 5 minutes. Then remove the sandwich from the press and slice it in half.

10. The Kitchen Sink Summer Salad

The Kitchen Sink Summer Salad
© nblxer, AdobeStock

A bit of everything is tossed into this salad and it works beautifully. It’s perfect for picnics or Sunday outings, and cost-effective too.

Cooking Time: 15 minutes.
Yield: 6-8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Sliced Celery Sticks
  • 4 Chopped Spring Onions
  • 500g of New Potatoes
  • 100g of Sliced Radishes
  • 2 Sliced Red Onions
  • 3 Grated Carrots
  • 3 Thinly Sliced Bell Peppers
  • 1 Sliced Cucumber
  • 125ml of Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons of White Wine Vinegar
  • 25g of Mustard
  • ½ Teaspoon of Caster Sugar

Directions:

  1. Put the potatoes into a large pan and fill it with cold water. Bring the water to a boil at a medium temperature and let the potatoes simmer for 10-12 minutes.
  2. Combine mustard, sugar, oil, and vinegar in a bowl. Cover the dressing with film and set it aside in the refrigerator for later.
  3. Drain the potatoes and let them dry for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Add bell peppers, cucumber, carrots, onions, radishes, spring onions, and celery to a large salad bowl. Quarter the potatoes and add them to the bowl.
  5. Drizzle the dressing on top and toss well to combine.

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11. Moroccan-Style Couscous

Moroccan-Style Couscous
© Светлана Монякова, AdobeStock

Perfect for picnics and outdoor gatherings, this dish is ideal for sharing.

Cooking Time: 20-25 minutes.
Yield: 6-8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 450g of Tinned Chickpeas
  • 500ml of Chicken Stock
  • 350g of Couscous
  • 2 Tablespoons of Chopped Parsley
  • The Zest of 2 Lemons
  • The Juice of 2 Lemons
  • 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil

Directions:

  1. Drain and rinse the chickpeas then place them into a pan with the stock. Heat the chickpeas at a low-to-medium temperature and let them simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Remove the chickpeas from the heat and pour the couscous into the pan. Cover with a heavy lid and set aside for 7-9 minutes.
  3. Stir in the lemon juice, oil, lemon juice, and parsley, and combine well.

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12. Easy No-Bake Oatmeal and Chocolate Snacks

Easy No-Bake Oatmeal and Chocolate Snacks
© Monica, AdobeStock

Who doesn’t love a sweet treat at picnics? These are simple but extremely tasty and super easy to make at home too.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 8-10 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 250g of Chocolate Chips
  • 200g of Rolled Oats
  • 50ml of Syrup
  • 100g of Peanut Butter

Directions:

  1. Add oats, peanut butter, and syrup to a large mixing bowl. Combine well and fold the chocolate chips into the mixture.
  2. Line a baking tray with a non-slip baking mat or parchment paper.
  3. Roll small balls from the dough and line them on the plate.
  4. Flatten the dough slightly and place them in the refrigerator for 25-30 minutes to firm up.

13. Simple Salmon Bites with Pickled Shallots

Simple Salmon Bites with Pickled Shallots
© grinchh, AdobeStock

These bites are easy, delicate, and so tasty. If you want an easy option for picnics, this has to be it. You don’t need a lot of prep work and can be made ahead of time too.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 6-8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 350g of Sliced Smoked Salmon
  • 2 Thinly Diced Shallots
  • 30 Kettle Crisps (Or Tortilla Crisps)
  • 50g of Sour Cream
  • 4 Tablespoons of Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Teaspoon of Sugar
  • ¼ Teaspoon of Salt

Directions:

  1. Combine sugar, vinegar, salt, and shallots in a bowl. Cover the onions with film and heat in the microwave for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Remove the pickled shallots from the microwave and drain thoroughly. Let the onions cool for a few minutes.
  3. Scoop ½ teaspoon of sour cream onto each crisp, then, add a slice of smoked salmon. Add another ½ teaspoon of sour cream and sprinkle a few pickled shallots on top.

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14. Easy Tomato and Red Onion Pasta Salad

Easy Tomato and Red Onion Pasta Salad
© marysckin, AdobeStock

You can’t go too wrong with a pasta salad because it’s easy enough to make and very adaptable. This pasta salad is incredibly tasty and is perfect for summer picnics.

Cooking Time: 10 minutes.
Yield: 6 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 450g of Macaroni Pasta
  • 5 Quartered Tomatoes
  • 2 Thinly Sliced Red Onions
  • 100g of Shredded Rocket Leaves
  • ½ Teaspoon of Salt
  • ½ Teaspoon of Pepper
  • 75ml of Olive Oil
  • 2 Chopped Spring Onions
  • 2 Grated Carrots

Directions:

  1. Fill a pot with water and bring it to a slow boil at a medium temperature. Add the pasta to the pot and cook on a simmer for 7-8 minutes.
  2. In a large salad or mixing bowl, add the red onions, tomatoes, spring onions, carrots, rocket, salt, and pepper. Add the vinegar and oil then toss well.
  3. Put the salad into the refrigerator to chill for 20-25 minutes.
  4. Use a colander to drain the pasta and set it aside for 10 minutes to cool down. Then add it to the salad mix.

15. Coconut Balls

Coconut Balls
© iuliia_n, AdobeStock

These are easy to make and don’t need any baking time. Coconut balls are also slightly healthier than some go-to pre-made snacks.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 8-10 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 300g of Desiccated Coconut
  • 200ml of Syrup
  • 125g of Almond Flour
  • 75ml of Coconut Milk

Directions:

  1. To a food processor or blender, add 150g of desiccated coconut, almond flour, syrup, and milk. Blitz until everything is combined well and a dough-like texture is formed.
  2. Tip out the dough from the machine and begin to form small balls from the dough. Coat them in the remaining coconut and set them on a plate.
  3. When the dough has been used up entirely, place the coconut rounds into the refrigerator to chill for 30-40 minutes.

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16. Easy Fruit Salad

Easy Fruit Salad
© samael334, AdobeStock

A lot of people dismiss fruit salad because it goes hot before you reach your picnic destination. However, there are still ways to keep the fruit fresh, even on longer journeys. Besides, it’s a nice healthy snack idea for any occasion.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 6-8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 500ml of Fresh Orange Juice
  • 200g of Blueberries
  • 250g of Quartered Strawberries
  • 100g of Raspberries
  • 2 Peeled and Sliced Kiwis
  • 3 Peeled, Cored, and Sliced Green Apples
  • 2 Segmented Oranges
  • 100g of Grapes
  • 1 Peeled and Cubed Mango

Directions:

  1. In a large airtight, sealable container, add the mango, oranges, grapes, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, apples, and kiwis.
  2. Pour the orange juice over the fruit and keep chilled until serving.

17. Spinach and Goat’s Cheese Mini Muffins

Spinach and Goat’s Cheese Mini Muffins
© iuliia_n, AdobeStock

Muffins aren’t too difficult to prepare at home. These savoury snacks are perfect for outings because they’re small and filling.

Cooking Time: 15-20 minutes.
Yield: 6-8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 200g of Self-Rising Flour
  • 2 Beaten Eggs
  • 125ml of Milk
  • 75g of Chopped Baby Spinach Leaves
  • 2 Tablespoons of Chopped Chives
  • 75g of Crumbled Goat’s Cheese
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
  • 25g of Finely Grated Hard Cheese (Whichever You Prefer)
  • 50g of Butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and melt the butter in a saucepan at a low temperature for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Remove the butter from the heat and set it aside to cool for 5 minutes. Put paper cases into a cupcake tin or baking tray.
  3. To a large bowl, add grated cheese, chives, baking powder, spinach, eggs, milk, and flour. Combine thoroughly before adding the goat’s cheese to the mixture.
  4. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases and bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes.

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18. No-Bake Chocolate Cornflake Bites

No-Bake Chocolate Cornflake Bites
© stephm2506, AdobeStock

Looking for a sweet treat but don’t want to spend a fortune? Well, these cornflake bites are perfect. They aren’t too difficult to make and can be perfect for picnic treats.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes.
Yield: 10-12 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 250g of Cornflakes
  • 100g of Butter
  • 250g of Broken Milk Chocolate Pieces
  • 6 Tablespoons of Golden Syrup

Directions:

  1. Add the chocolate, butter, and syrup to a large saucepan and heat at a low temperature.
  2. Slowly melt and combine the mixture for 2-3 minutes. Then remove the pan from the heat and let the chocolate cool down for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Line a muffin tin or baking tray with paper cases.
  4. Pour the cornflakes into the melted chocolate. Stir well to coat and spoon the cornflakes into the paper cases.
  5. Place the bites in the refrigerator for 1 hour to set.

19. Tomato, Onion, and Feta Cheese Pasta Salad

Tomato, Onion, and Feta Cheese Pasta Salad
© VeronikaSmirnaya, AdobeStock

A simple dish that isn’t expensive to make or needs a lot of effort. It’s perfect for summer outings and parties.

Cooking Time: 10 minutes.
Yield: 2 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 250g of Pasta (Your Choice)
  • 4 Quartered Tomatoes
  • 1 Diced Red Onion
  • 100g of Crumbled Feta Cheese
  • 3 Grated Carrots
  • 10ml of Olive Oil
  • 25g of Chopped Basil Leaves

Directions:

  1. Fill a pan with cold water and pasta. Bring the water to a boil at a medium temperature and simmer to cook the pasta for 8 minutes.
  2. Use a colander to drain the pasta and set it in the refrigerator to cool faster. Then add it to a large sealable container.
  3. Mix the carrots, basil, oil, onion, tomatoes, and ½ of the feta cheese with the pasta. Toss well to combine.
  4. Top with the remaining feta to finish.

20. Mini Courgette and Carrot Cakes

Mini Courgette and Carrot Cakes
© Peredniankina, AdobeStock

These savoury cakes make the ideal picnic snack. They are healthy, easy to make, and incredibly filling.

Cooking Time: 30-35 minutes.
Yield: 6-8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tablespoons of Milk
  • 150g of Melted Butter
  • 4 Beaten Eggs
  • 150g of Grated Courgette
  • 150g of Grated Carrots
  • 100g of Porridge Oats
  • 2 Teaspoons of Baking Powder
  • 150g of Self-Rising Flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius and line a baking tray with paper cupcake cases.
  2. Combine the eggs, butter, and milk in a large bowl. Add the courgettes and carrots and combine well.
  3. In a second bowl, mix baking powder, flour, and porridge oats. Then stir the milk mixture into the porridge mixture.
  4. Combine well then spoon the mixture into the paper cases. Place the cakes in the oven for 24-27 minutes.
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