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Top 50 picnic recipes

Pack your best picnic yet with our list of all-time favourite recipes to enjoy al fresco, from summer salads and sandwiches to quiches, pastries and desserts.

Is there anything better than enjoying a feast in the great outdoors? At a time of such uncertainty, it’s hard to know what summer al fresco dining may look like. Whether you’re heading for a socially distanced picnic with friends or enjoying a garden feast on the lawn with your family, we’ve got a wide range of recipes to suit every eventuality.

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Discover our pick of the best ever picnic recipes for everyone to enjoy this summer, from classic quiches and pies to refreshing drinks, snacks and easily portable puds. Make sure you are well kitted out with our roundups of the best picnic accessories and best picnic hampers.

For more outdoor dining inspiration, check out our best ever picnic ideas hub page, which includes all our best picnic food, drink and gadget guides.

Picnic quiche recipes

1. Ultimate quiche Lorraine

Quiches are an absolute picnic staple – simple to make, easily portable and delicious served warm or cold. This classic quiche Lorraine is one of our all-time favourites on BBC Good Food and it’s not hard to see why – a crisp pastry base filled with smoky gruyère, cream and bacon lardons is sure to satisfy.

Ultimate quiche lorraine

2. Smoky chorizo & manchego quiche

We’ve given traditional quiche a Spanish-style makeover with smoky chorizo sausage and nutty manchego cheese. This stylish dish is perfect for a posh picnic or casual lunch.

Smoky chorizo & manchego quiche

3. Next level quiche Lorraine

If you are really looking to impress, this super-sophisticated quiche Lorraine has it all – spiced pastry, smoked pancetta, three types of cheese and an irresistibly light soufflé-style filling. It may take a little bit extra effort but is well worth it.

Next level quiche Lorraine

4. Picnic quiches

Save all the effort of slicing up portions by making these cute individual mini quiches. Each bite delivers a delicious flavour explosion of juicy cherry tomatoes, basil, parmesan and pancetta.

Picnic quiches

5. Roasted tomato, basil & parmesan quiche

For a mouthwatering meat-free option, try this easy roasted tomato and basil quiche. It’s packed with Italian flavours and is perfect for a family picnic or dinner in the garden.

Roasted tomato, basil & parmesan quiche

We’ve got plenty more delicious quiche recipes to try, from salmon and asparagus quiche to sticky onion and cheddar quiche.

Picnic sandwich ideas

6. Egg & cress club sandwich

Fans of traditional flavours will love these bumper egg and cress sandwiches. Firmly secure each stack with a skewer before transporting and serving.

Egg & cress club sandwich

Check out more super sandwich recipes and get some inspiration for sandwich fillings for kids.

7. Stuffed rainbow baguette

Paint the rainbow with this colourful stuffed baguette which kids can help to prepare. It’s absolutely packed full of vibrant veg including beetroot, red pepper, carrot and green leaves, along with hummus, pesto and slices of cheddar. Wrap it in baking parchment and tie with string to transport.

Stuffed rainbow baguette

Find more brilliant baguette recipes and get more inspiration for fun family picnic recipes.

8. Crispy chicken & smashed avocado baps

Looking for a healthy sandwich option? These satisfying chicken baps are packed with crisp lettuce and a creamy avocado spread so you can ditch the calorie-laden sauces. The chicken breasts are covered in a light, crispy coating made from flour, almonds and sesame seeds.

Crispy chicken & smashed avocado baps

8. Chorizo & halloumi baguette

As well as being a delicious breakfast option, this hearty baguette is perfect for a picnic main. A sophisticated take on the sausage sarnie, it packs in salty halloumi, smoky chorizo and a rich homemade tomato paste. To save on spillages, it may be best to transport the paste in a separate pot and spoon it on in situ.

Chorizo & halloumi baguette

9. Fig & Serrano ham picnic bread

Want to branch out from the traditional picnic sarnie? Pack your basket with a fully loaded flatbread instead. Thickly sliced fresh figs make a picture-perfect topping for this ciabatta-style loaf. The sweet fruity flavour complements earthy sage leaves, tangy onion and salty, umami serrano ham.

Fig & Serrano ham picnic bread

Perfect your Italian bread skills with our ciabatta and focaccia recipes.

10. Vegetarian wraps

Add a DIY element to your al fresco feast with these veggie flatbreads, filled with roasted vegetables, creamy coconut tzatziki and a herby, spicy green sauce. Simply pack up the ingredients into separate containers and let everyone assemble their own wraps at the picnic.

Vegetarian wraps

Get more ideas for wrap recipes and flatbread recipes.

Picnic salad ideas

11. Summer allotment salad with English mustard dressing

New season potatoes pair perfectly with crisp, crunchy vegetables in this fresh potato salad recipe. We’ve used radishes, red onions and cucumber, but it would also work wonderfully with fennel, celery and spring onions.

Summer allotment salad with English mustard dressing

Make the most of seasonal veg with our top 10 summer salad recipes and check out more potato salad recipes.

12. Epic summer salad

Truly ‘epic’ in name and nature, this sharing salad is loaded with fresh ingredients such as tomatoes, avocados, spinach, mango and cucumber, covered in a zingy herb dressing with a crumbling of feta. It’s easy to throw together, required no cooking and perfect for a picnic group of six (though you could easily reduce the quantities).

Epic summer salad

13. Pesto pasta salad

This vegetarian pasta salad is super easy to make and packed with colourful vegetables. We’ve included crème fraîche as well as pre-made fresh pesto to create a creamy sauce.

Pesto pasta salad

Try more pasta salad recipes.

14. Curried rice & egg salad

An egg salad is classic picnic fare, Try this family-friendly twist with turmeric-spiced rice, raisins and toasted almonds. Throw in some grated carrots and cucumbers for texture and you have an easy picnic side.

Curried rice and egg salad

Tuck into more hearty egg salad recipes.

15. Warm chickpea salad

Budget-friendly canned chickpeas are an ideal base for this filling salad option, bulked out with Mediterranean veg and studded with chunks of feta.

Warm chickpea salad

Check out more chickpea salad recipes.

Picnic pie recipes

16. Veggie rainbow picnic pie

This colourful pastry, packed with layers of vegetables, feta and egg, is sure to impress your fellow picnic-goers.

Veggie rainbow picnic pie

Discover more vibrant vegetarian pie recipes.

17. Pork & ham pie

Meat-lovers are sure to take a thick slice of this pork and ham pie, which has eggs neatly nestled in the middle. It’s a bit of a challenge, but perfect for a weekend cooking project and well worth the effort when you tuck in.

Pork & ham pie

Take a look at our pork pie recipes for more meaty picnic bites.

18. Summer herb & feta pies

Cheese pairs perfectly with basil, mint and watercress in these crisp, bite-sized filo parcels. They’re easy to make but look beautiful on any plate or platter.

Summer herb & feta pies

19. Coronation chicken pie

Based on a French pithivier, our simple spiced pie is an impressive twist on a classic coronation chicken sandwich filling. It’s equally delicious served warm or cold, and keeps well for up to three days.

Coronation chicken pie

20. Vegan pie

Want a meat-free picnic centrepiece? Cutting into this multi-layered bake will reveal a kaleidoscopic rainbow of colourful veg such as beetroot, sweet potato, chard and celeriac. Wrapped in homemade spelt pastry, this crowd-pleasing pie is worth the effort.

Vegan pie

Browse our vegan pie recipes for more dairy- and egg-free pastry inspiration.

Picnic snack ideas

21. Summer sausage rolls

A summery twist on classic sausage rolls, with a chicken and bacon filling flavoured with sun-dried tomatoes, garlic and basil.

Summer sausage rolls

We’ve got plenty more sausage roll recipe variations. Check out our gourmet versions of this classic picnic snack, including cheese and Marmite sausage rolls and caramelised onion and thyme sausage rolls.

22. Easy Scotch eggs

Another picnic classic, we bring you the perfect recipe for Scotch eggs. With a crispy breadcrumb coating, moist herby sausage meat layer and slightly runny yolk centre, our step-by-step instructions will help you nail this popular snack.

Easy Scotch eggs

Discover more scrumptious Scotch egg recipes to fill your picnic basket.

23. Classic cheese scones

These savoury scones are easy to make, and are a lovely alternative to bread at a picnic. They’re simply scrumptious split in half and spread thickly with butter.

Classic cheese scones

Peruse more savoury scone recipes, from cheddar to chorizo flavours.

24. Seeded cheese & chive flapjacks

Flapjacks don’t have to be sweet! Bake a batch of these moreish cheddar and chive oat bakes for a scrumptious savoury picnic bite. With a mixture of crunchy seeds, grated carrots and porridge oats, they are full of goodness.
Find more fabulous sweet and savoury flapjack recipes.

25. Pea & ham picnic eggs

Want a change from Scotch eggs? These tasty bite-sized morsels are instead filled with shredded ham hock and peas alongside traditional sausage meat. Fry them in a crispy breadcrumb coating and serve with mustard, mayo or minty tartare sauce.

Pea & ham picnic eggs

26. Vegetarian sausage rolls

These tasty little parcels replace traditional sausage meat with a gourmet filling of mushrooms, chestnuts, leeks and cheddar cheese. Encased in a butter puff-pastry case, they are made for picking up and dunking in a punchy dip (see our ideas below).

Vegetarian sausage rolls

If you are also avoiding dairy, then try our equally delicious vegan sausage rolls, which use brown rice miso as a binding agent.

27. Cheese & pesto whirls

If you love Chelsea buns then why not try our super-savoury version for the ultimate picnic snack? These herby tear-and-share bread rolls are easy to make and baked with a moreish filling of mozzarella and sun-dried tomatoes. They are sure to be a hit with the kids!

Cheese and pesto whirls

We’ve got lots more showstopping tear and share breads to enjoy with family or friends.

28. Apple ‘doughnuts’

Try these fun, fruity apple rings for a healthier alternative to real doughnuts. Kids will love helping to make and decorate them with nut butter, cream cheese and sprinkles. Pack them in a small box wrapped in a little greaseproof paper and enjoy as a light picnic treat.

Apple ‘doughnuts’

Discover more quick and easy snacks for kids.

29. Chocolate-dipped strawberries

Transform a punnet of ripe, juicy strawberries into a decadent snack by drizzling them in  velvety dark chocolate. Drizzle with milk and white chocolate and enjoy as part of a romantic picnic or al fresco gathering.

Chocolate-dipped strawberries

Take a look at our strawberry recipes for more inspiration with this juicy summer berry.

30. Picnic trail mix

Ditch the shop-bought trail mix and make up your own sweet and salty version to pack in a paper bag. A delicious mix of nuts, seeds, pretzels, dried fruit and chocolate, it’s a great snack for kids to munch on while walking to the picnic site. Any leftovers can also be used as a popcorn alternative on family film night.

Picnic trail mix

Picnic dips and crudites

31. Hummus

Hummus is one of the most popular and versatile picnic dips. This rich and creamy chickpea blend is made using just five ingredients and is ready in 10 minutes. Spoon into Tupperware boxes to transport and enjoy with crunchy vegetable batons or pitta breads.

Hummus

See our hummus recipes for plenty more flavour variations, including beetroot, pea and squash hummus.

32. Baba ganoush

Whip up this Middle Eastern-style dip as part of an al fresco mezze feast. The smoky flavour of charred aubergines pairs well with nutty tahini, sharp lemons and parsley.

Baba ganoush

33. Chickpea & red pepper dip

Roasted red peppers provide a flavour boost in this speedy, low-calorie dip. You could add feta or goat’s cheese to the ingredients in the processor for an extra tangy hit.

Chickpea and red pepper dip

34. Tzatziki

A cooling mint, garlic and yogurt dip, perfect for summer snacking. Enjoy it with pitta bread toasts or spread over wraps as a filling.

Tzatziki

35. Avocado & cannellini bean dip

Keep the hunger pangs at bay with this light yet satisfying vegan dip. Blitz the avocado with beans, garlic, spices, lemon zest and juice in a blender and serve with a scattering of mixed seeds, crackers or crudités.

Avocado & cannellini bean dip

For an even healthier version, try our vegan avocado hummus & crudités recipe, which delivers all five of your 5-a-day.

Healthier picnic ideas

36. Falafel Scotch eggs

Combining two of our favourite foods – falafel and Scotch eggs – this is a great healthy veggie option to bring along to a picnic. We’ve given perfectly boiled eggs a tasty coating of chickpeas spiced with cumin and coriander, plus a crisp Scotch egg-style panko breadcrumb coating.

Falafel Scotch eggs

37. Easy crustless quiche

Quiche lovers can now enjoy our lighter version of this picnic classic, minus the pastry case. It’s still packed with a comforting mix of cheese, smoky pancetta and asparagus, so you won’t be compromising on taste.

Easy crustless quiche

38. Pastry-less pork pie

Another picnic favourite without the calorie-laden pastry. Our clever pork pie uses strips of seasonal courgette and plenty of spices to make an attractive picnic main that’s also full of flavour.

Pastry-less pork pie

39. Chicken skewers with tzatziki

Combine lightly charred chicken breasts with a vibrant mix of veggies, herbs and homemade creamy tzatziki. Wrapped in wholemeal tortillas, these Greek-style skewers are sure to be popular with kids and adults alike.

Chicken skewers with tzatziki

40. Salmon picnic platter

Spread of smoked salmon, cucumber, eggs and rye bread

Looking for a lighter option to traditional picnic fare? Try a Scandi-style picnic spread complete with cooked salmon, hot-smoked salmon, stuffed eggs and a cucumber, yogurt and dill salad. Pile onto rye bread rolls and prepare to take a big bite!

Salmon picnic platter

Check out our healthy picnic recipes for more light and summery treats.

Picnic drink ideas

41. Pimm’s

Is it really a picnic without Pimm’s? Capture the flavour of summer with this classic fruity drink. Though the recipe is simple, you can’t beat it.

Pimm’s

42. Homemade ginger beer

Make your own zingy syrup by cooking fresh ginger root with lemon peel and sugar. Topped up with soda water and lemon juice, it makes a wonderfully crispy and refreshing summer drink to take to a picnic.

Homemade ginger beer

43. Coconut & pineapple cooler

This crowd-pleasing fruity cocktail can be made in advance and nestled in an ice bucket or chilled cooler, ready for drinking. The boozy base is coconut rum and gin, and we’ve added an optional garnish of coriander to give it a lift.

Coconut & pineapple cooler

44. Zingy blackberry lemonade

Blend lemons, blackberries and mint together to make a refreshing drink that’s delicious served with sparkling water. If you want to take it to the next level (or vary it for the adults), it pairs perfectly with prosecco.

Zingy blackberry lemonade

45. Easy iced tea

Refreshing and citrussy, this easy iced tea is guaranteed to impress at a family picnic. With the subtle flavours of tea, honey, lemon and mint, it’s the perfect palate cleanser after all those pies!

Easy iced tea

Cool down with more of our best picnic drinks ideas.

Picnic dessert ideas

36. Blackberry bakewell squares

Put fresh blackberries centre stage in this tasty traybake with a crumbly digestive biscuit base and a tangy layer of blackberry jam. Cut into squares and transport in a tin – they’ll even survive well on a sunny day.

Blackberry bakewell squares

37. Tropical rocky road

Take rocky road to new heights by adding a tropical twist. We used dried pineapple, mango, banana chips and dessicated coconut, but you can add any dried fruit, nuts or biscuits that you have to hand. Experiment with new flavours and textures – it’s hard to go wrong!

Tropical rocky road

38. Rhubarb & custard blondies

Fudgy and irresistible, these blondies look impressive but are actually really easy to make. We’ve swirled a custard and rhubarb mix through the blondie batter for an extra-rich hit in every bite.

Rhubarb & custard blondies

39. Coconut & jam macaroon traybake

Transport your tastebuds to the tropics with our simple coconut traybake. It’s easy to divide up into squares – each with a jammy raspberry centre and dark chocolate drizzle. Portion into lunchboxes for a sweet al fresco pick-me-up.

Coconut & jam macaroon traybake

40. Vegan cherry & almond brownies

Decadent, moreish and plant-based to boot – it doesn’t get better than these vegan brownies. Glacé cherries add a lovely burst of fruity flavour against the chocolate batter, made extra rich with dark chocolate, cocoa powder and coffee.

Vegan cherry & almond brownies

Indulgent in more of our perfect portable picnic dessert recipes.

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