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An iconic summer image: a red checkered blanket spread over bright green grass beneath the shade of an oak tree with a basket packed with a refreshing lunch. I can’t remember the last time I went on a picnic, but I think it’s been far too long. Picnics are a wonderful way to take time to spend outside. I have some DIY projects and recipes to inspire and elevate your next outdoor lunch. Enjoy!

Basket:

First things first, the basket. You may think the picnic basket isn’t really important. After all, its job is just to transport the main event, the food. However, the basket should be fun and reflect the excitement of what’s to come. You can buy a uniquely shaped basket, add flowers or ribbons for detail, or even weave your own if you’re feeling ambitious! Brit + Co have some awesome ideas to get you started on finding and making your own picnic basket. To see some of the beautiful examples, click here!

Blanket:

Another necessity is the picnic blanket. This is what is spread out to keep the food away from the ground and the grass from staining clothes. It’s easy to just buy a regular old blanket or quilt, but with this DIY, you can make your own! This is very customizable, as you can choose any fabric you want, and this blanket is waterproof. Learn how to sew your own blanket, here.

Now that you’ve taken care of your basket and blanket, all that remains is what we’ve all been waiting for: the picnic food! Though you could always stick with the classic PB&J, I’d recommend trying something new to make your picnic next level. Here are four recipes perfect for taking with you on a picnic adventure. Be careful, though. The ants will get jealous…

Picnic Recipes:

Here are two sandwiches that aren’t your average sandwich. One has veggies and hummus on whole grain bread, sure to be refreshing and filling. The other has classic Italian ingredients like fresh basil, tomatoes, and mozzarella cheese paired with grilled turkey. You can’t go wrong with either of these main dishes. Get the hummus and veggie recipe here, and the turkey caprese sandwich recipe here.

Since the beginning of time, potato salad has been a staple of the picnic. The cool, flavorful salad goes so well with sandwiches and it’s easy to transport and serve. With fresh herbs, creamy sauce, and an added crunch from celery and onions, this potato salad recipe is perfectly balanced in flavor and texture. Try it here!

A classic cookie to close your picnic. Cookies are very easy to transport, so they are a fitting dessert to bring on a picnic. Chocolate chip cookies have been a favorite cookie for a reason. They are soft, sweet and the chocolate chips melt just enough to give them a gooey effect. Make your grandma’s recipe or follow this one!

Pack up some fresh fruit, cool beverages, sunscreen, and a Frisbee, and you are ready to go on your picnic!

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