Close your eyes. Can you feel the sun on your face? The grass between your toes? The charcuterie on your lips? It’s picnic season!
Sure, you could toss a quick crudite and some bottled water in a bag and call it a gluten-free picnic. But don’t you dream of that perfect al fresco experience with the paper-wrapped sandwiches and the little finger foods spread out on an artisanal plaid blanket? Go big! Make this the summer you treat yourself to a spectacular brunch or sunset dinner in the park – because you can.
Never quit your day dream.
So, we did a little scouring of the interwebs to come up with a few amazing recipes and the accoutrements required to take your casual picnicking to the next level.
Everyone knows that Gluten-Free Goddess’ dishes are basically a guaranteed win, and she’s compiled her favorite, fresh picks – like lemon-infused pasta salad with grilled asparagus – in a great picnic-ready post. She’s such a phenomenal resource, it’s hard to go wrong with any recipe. Similarly, The Tomato Tart put together something for everyone with these 73 Gluten-Free Recipes For A Delicious Summer sourced from all our favorite cooking blogs. You want watermelon salsa? Smoked goat cheddar quesadillas with spinach and mushrooms? Don’t worry, they’re on the list.
For the experienced picnicker who feels like they’re ready to graduate from basic to oh-my-god, check out Camille Style’s painfully beautiful post on summer picnics. The gluten-free menu is simple, but heavy on style.
And finally, what can we say about this magical Gluten-Free Picnic Pinterest board except: “4-ingredient pistachio gelato fudge” and “guacamole-bacon bites.”
Packing Your Basket
Obviously you don’t HAVE to invest in official picnic gear. And sometimes, in fact, there are clever hacks that are both functional and stylish.
For instance – why not take your empty egg cartons out of the recycling and put them to good use? This can be especially handy if you’ve got a breakfast picnic in mind. Once you make your eggs, just pop them right back in the package they came in! But this can work very well for other foods – and even in lieu of plates – too. Get a little visual inspiration here and here!
Another fun resource, The Decorated Cookie, isn’t a gluten-free blogger, but her ideas for how to pack your entire picnic – from ice cubes to cookies – in labeled mason jars is really clever. Plus, she includes a recipe for white wine sangria we wouldn’t mind trying…
Speaking of wine: want some at your picnic? Martha Stewart offers up a neat way of wrapping your bottles that is not only totable, but does double duty. Once you unwrap your wine, you’ve got an extra napkin on hand for any spills.
All that said, if you REALLY want to make this a thing, Brit + Co put together a cute list of picnic baskets to buy or DIY, as well as a post with lots of inspiration for snacks, games, and portable products to make your al fresco dining easy and fun. Take a look here and here! There’s also this short list of colorful DIYs meant to liven up the atmosphere for your outdoor dining.
Looking for more specific inspiration? Some gluten-y recipes aside, this list of 50+ Fun Kids Picnic Ideas from Kids Activities Blog has lots of inventive themes and kid-friendly food hacks. For a more romantic twist, dive into the Dating Divas’ post on 97 Of The Best Picnic Date Ideas.
That should just about cover it! If there aren’t visions of homemade sugarplums served in in printable saucers dancing in your head, we’d be shocked. Happy sunny season, everyone!