It’s picnic season – where the weather warms up, and the action moves outside! It’s time for playgrounds, swimming, and riding bikes. And, you still have to eat!
Here are 3 fun and festive picnic lunches you can take along on the action! They are all kid-friendly both to prepare and to eat, so you can make packing lunch part of the day’s activities.
Perfect Picnic #1: Flower Power!
Flower-shaped sandwiches, fruit kabobs, and painted sugar cookies make up this fun spring celebration!
To make the sandwiches, we cut small flowers out of bread and cheese, and stacked up several layers. It’s held together with a fancy toothpick.
To make the flower fruit kabobs, slice a melon (watermelon, cantaloupe and honeydew all work well) about 1/2″ thick. You have to slice along the edge of melons with seedy centers such as cantaloupe. Punch out flower shapes with a metal cookie cutter. Then, cut small circles out of the center of each flower with a circular cutter, and switch the center with a flower of another color. Push a skewer through one of the petals, through the center piece, and into the far petal to hold it together.
The sugar cookies were cutout and then painted with gel food colors. The gels do not add any taste, and stay bright after baking.
Perfect Picnic #2: Finger Food Fun!
A quick and easy picnic, and simple enough even the younger crowd can put it together.
We started with 2 “lunchables”, though any lunch meat and cheese you have in your refrigerator will work. Cut the meat into squares if it’s in larger pieces, and then cut the cheese into decorative shapes and layer on crackers. We used a small sandwich cutter for the cheese shapes. Add carrots, grapes, and brownies for a complete spread.
Perfect Picnic #3: Sonoma Style
This wine-country-style picnic includes chicken or tofu salad with grapes and walnuts on a croissant, a green salad, and chocolate-dipped strawberries. Make it extra festive with a bottle of sparkling grape or apple juice!
To make the salad, mix 1 cup of cooked chopped chicken or chopped baked tofu with 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup halved grapes, and 1/4 cup chopped walnuts. Use the mixture to fill a sliced croissant.
Our salad is spinach, halved cherry tomatoes and ranch dressing.
To dip your strawberries, just melt some chocolate chips in the microwave – check every 30 seconds to stir, and it’s ready to use as soon as it stirs easily. Dip the strawberries and set them on waxed paper until the chocolate hardens.
Pack up your favorite, and head for the park!