Eating out with kids can be a chore, so why not make it fun and have a picnic instead.
One of the best benefits of the picnic is that the kids don’t have to stay seated at a table, they are free to run.
You can have a picnic whether you are travelling away from home or just heading out for the day.
Lets look at some really easy options so it’s fun for you as well as the kids.
I start with having my picnic basket always prepared so all I have to do is add food.
Check out what I have in my basket HERE
Picnic Meal Ideas
Meal 1: Rolls filled with cold meat and cheese.
This has been my easy go to when we decide to picnic on the spur of the moment.
I pack the picnic basket with some drinks and freezer bricks and then we stop at the nearest supermarket on our way.
I buy cold meats (ham, salami, prosciutto – whatever is your favourite) from the deli section.
Next sliced cheese, not that plastic cheese that was in when I was a kid, but Coon Chedder slices and Jarlsberg slices – you can get all sorts of varieties choose your favourite. Buying it pre sliced saves having to try to slice cheese with an inadequate knife on a very small chopping board.
Finally to the bakery section for some fresh bread rolls.
Seriously I am in and out the supermarket in 5 minutes and it is quite inexpensive.
Meal 2: Zucchini Slice
Ok this one takes a little forward planning, but is really tasty and a great way to hide a heap of veges. Plus you can serve it warm or cold.
- 1 grated large Zucchini
- 1 chopped onion
- 1 grated carrot
- 1 chopped capsicum
- 1 chopped celery stalk
- 3 chopped rashes bacon
- 1 cup SR Flour
- 1 cup grated cheese
- 5 eggs
- pepper and salt
Mix all the ingredients together, spray oil in a large baking dish, sprinkle parmesan cheese on the top and bake at 190-200C for 30-40 mins or til brown.
If you don’t like the idea of the Zucchini slice, use one of your favourite Quiche or Frittata’s.
Meal 3: Homemade Sausage Rolls
Ok another that requires forward planning, or if you are really organised like my sister – have some made up in the freezer ready to bake.
Don’t forget to add tomato sauce (or your favourite dipping sauce) to the picnic basket.
Bake these just prior to leaving home and wrap the hot sausage rolls in warmed tea towels and placed in separate cooler bag which will then work as a warming bag.
- 500g sausage mince
- 1/2 chopped onion
- 1 grated carrot
- 1 chopped celery stalk
- 1 TBS chopped parsley
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- salt and pepper
- 4 sheets of puff pastry
- 1 egg
- sesame seeds (if desired)
Combine all ingredients except pastry, egg and seeds. (TIP: I use the food processor instead of chopping and grating, adding meat at the end to combine). Cut pastry sheets in half, brush edges with egg, spread mixture along pastry sheets, then roll and cut into desired size. Brush with egg and sprinkle with seeds. Bake at 220C until golden.
Meal 4: BBQ
Many parks now have free gas BBQ’s, make the most of them.
Before you leave home don’t forget to add BBQing utensils: tongs, spatula, scraper and some newspaper (to clean the BBQ).
Make a quick salad, pack some drinks and don’t forget the tomato sauce (ketchup).
Have a look at what you have in the fridge/freezer or stop at the local supermarket on your way and purchase your preferred BBQ meat, my son loves sausages. Again grab some fresh bread as well and a small salad.
Meal 5: Chicken and Salad
You can do so much with a cooked chook, but really there is nothing like having the chicken as is, and some salad.
Be as simple or as elaborate as you like with the salad. You can make a quick simple green salad, get more enthused with potato or pasta salads.
But why not go really easy and buy a pre-made salad at the supermarket while you’re buying the chicken. A great simple option if you’re travelling.
Drinks for a Picnic
I always take a bottle of water for each of us.
Depending on the mood/occasion a bottle of wine, soft drink, and a 100% juice for Lewis.
Extras for the Picnic
If you are wanting nibbles before your meal take some crackers, dips, and potato chips (crisps).
Need a desert? Just pop in some chocolates.
With the weather warming up it really is becoming a lovely time to get out in the fresh air.
So if the next time the thought of having to take the kids out to eat leaves you feeling cold, consider a picnic with a really easy meal for the entire family.
Do you have any quick and easy picnic meal ideas?