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    The 35 BEST Picnic Food Ideas

    These Picnic Food Ideas will change your picnic scene all together! Going on a picnic with your loved ones is so much fun. There is just something about doing outdoor stuff, and when hungry just find a picnic table or spread your blanket and have a great meal with your friends and family.

    You can make some great picnic food recipes with some of our great appetizers and sides from GypsyPlate and all over the internet.

    We have some great classics like egg salads and chicken salads for your sandwiches, plus great international flavors like pipirrana salad from Spain and Mexican sweet corn salad from down south.

    You can make some amazing dips and relishes, and even make your own no knead miracle bread and have some cracking picnic spread. Go through all these great picnic food ideas and make that picnic happen…

    The 35 BEST Picnic Food Ideas.

    1. Mediterranean Pasta

    We are starting this Picnic Food Ideas list with an easy pasta dish. This Mediterranean Pasta is super quick, like 20 minutes quick, and has great flavors that every one will keep on digging. Healthy and colorful too.

    Get the Recipe

    2. Olive Tapenade

    If you love olives, this tapenade is for you! Satisfy your “salty tooth” with this simple and easy appetizer from the South of France! Great with crusty bread or crostini.

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    3. Rainbow Pasta Salad

    Rainbow Pasta Salad… It’s everybody’s no-brainer, ridiculously easy, salad that you can throw together in less than 30 minutes! Make a big batch and you are all set.

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    4. Tortellini Pasta Salad with Prosciutto

    This gorgeous Tortellini Pasta Salad is one dish that looks as great as it tastes. It’s so quick and easy, yet such a crowd pleaser. Great to pack it for picnic as its great at room temperature or cold.

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    5 Mango Salsa

    A summer delight! This light yet tasty salsa is great in your picnic basket. All you need is plenty of tortilla chips to munch on.

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    6. Balela Salad (Middle Eastern Bean Salad)

    Let me present you Balela deliciousness!! So colorful, so easy, so refreshing… This hearty colorful salad comes from many Middle Eastern countries and is bursting with flavors and textures.

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    7. Homemade Hummus

    Planning a picnic with your loved ones? This smooth, creamy homemade hummus will be the star of your spread. Try it with pita bread, in wraps or sandwiches or munch with veggies.

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    8. Greek Cucumber Yogurt Sauce – Tzatziki!

    This cool Greek sauce is most commonly associated with gyros, but is great for so much more. Serve as a dip with chopped veggies, slather on grilled meats or spread on your favorite sandwich.

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    9. Quick and Easy Pico de Gallo

    Easy, fresh and delicious. This Pico de Gallo whips up in 10 minutes and is great with chips as an appetizer or as a condiment to many of your favorite Mexican dishes.

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    10. Tyrokafteri (Spicy Greek Feta Dip)

    Tyrokafteri – Greek Cheese? Yes, Please!! Time to get to know Tzatziki’s fiery and zingy cousin… This is the dip you want in your life. It’s tangy, salty, creamy and as said earlier, a tad bit fiery. It’s a dip made from  everyone’s favorite feta cheese. 

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    11. Classic Reuben Sandwich

    Thinking to have ultimate sandwich for your picnic? Let’s talk about Reuben… Cheeesy, Goooey, Crunchy, Ooozy!! It’s not just your regular sandwich. This is a true classic made possible by an eclectic mix of ingredients that work together beautifully and harmoniously. It’s piled high with fall apart, succulent corned beef, tangy sauerkraut, nutty Swiss cheese and Russian dressing.

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    12. Miracle No-Knead Bread

    Some crusty bread is great for a picnic along with some antipasto spread. This easy no knead bread looks and tastes like something from a fancy bakery, with it’s golden brown crust and soft chewy center. And it takes next to no effort.

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    13. Macaroni Salad

    Macaroni Salad is another one of the staple sides for fried fish.

    This version is extra creamy and extra tangy. Make a big batch, and enjoy the leftovers for days!

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    14. 5-Minute Pesto

    Pesto! This classic sauce from Genoa is an Italian classic. Blending the freshness of basil, the pungency of garlic, the buttery nuttiness of pine nuts, and of course some nice olive oil, this wonderful sauce will make you fall in love with Italian food all over again!

    Get the Recipe

    15. Spanish Summer Salad (Pipirrana)

    Here to celebrate tomato season this summer is a tribute to all those luscious summer tomatoes, ripening on the vines in warm sunshine. Mixed with just a few more cool crunchies, and you have yet another colorful popular traditional dish, pipirrana, all the way from the south of Spain.

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    16. Crack Chicken (Crockpot / Instant Pot)

    This addictingly delicious Crack Chicken is loaded with creamy cheesy goodness. And it’s topped with bacon. This easy recipe is equally great in the crockpot or instant pot. Its great as a dip on your picnic day if you are feeding big crowd.

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    17 Israeli Couscous Salad with Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette

    Vibrant, bright and light fresh flavors! A melody of textures! Do you sometimes crave for some good starchy carbs in your salad? This one is a great hearty meal for your picnic.

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    18. Moutabal (Easy Levantine Eggplant Dip)

    Moutabal is a classic Middle Eastern eggplant dip. Creamy roasted eggplant enhanced with lemon juice, yogurt, tahini and a good dousing of olive oil. This one is a great addition to your picnic spread!

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    19. Antipasto Salad

    If you always hover over the antipasto bar in your grocery store, this salad is for you. It’s full of different flavors and textures from salami, tomatoes, artichokes, pepperoni, olives and cheeses with a delicious homemade Italian dressing. Get some crusty bread to go with this salad along with your favorite wine and you are all set.

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    20. Chicken Chapli Kababs (or any meat of your choice)

    Try these exotic kababs next time you are planning an outdoor meal. These Chicken Chapli Kababs are moist, tender and perfectly spiced. No wonder they’re so popular in Pakistan and parts of India!

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    21. Guasacaca (Venezuelan Guacamole)

    Guasacaca! Meet guacamole’s tangier, herbier cousin. Venezuelans love this avocado based condiment and now you can too!

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    22. Caponata

    This Caponata is a delicious Sicilian eggplant relish that perfectly combines sweet and tangy flavors. It’s great as an appetizer over some crusty bread or crostinies.

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    23. Mexican Street Corn Salad

    This Mexican street corn salad is a great way to get the classic flavors of elote served salad-style. It’s creamy, cheesy, and filled with corn, red onions, cilantro, mayonnaise, and more.

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    24. Antipasto Pasta Salad

    This easy and addictively delicious Antipasto Pasta Salad is the perfect contender for picnics and potlucks or meal prepping. Make a huge batch and munch it on lazily on your next picnic outing.

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    25. Chicken Salad

    Have some leftover rotisserie or roasted chicken? Then make this super easy, yet absolutely delicious chicken salad. Grapes and pecans in it just adds a whole extra layer of flavors into it. Make a big batch and you have an easy picnic meal ready. Goes great in sandwiches.

    Get the Recipe @ natashaskitchen

    26. Egg Salad

    Everyone should have one amazing tasting egg salad under their belt. Such a simple salad, but yet with the right ingredients, it’s always finger licking delicious. This classic southern farm style egg salad is loaded with green onions, celery, sweet pickles and pimentos. Make a sandwich, have it over a bed of lettuce or on crackers. It’s so, so good.

    Get the Recipe @ southerndiscourse

    27. Olivier Salad

    This is the most delicious egg and potato salad recipe ever! Olivier salad is an easy and delicious Russian salad made with potatoes, eggs, carrots, sausage and peas all dressed in creamy mayonnaise and fresh dill. Try making it once and you will come back to this salad again and again. Perfect for picnics and get togethers.

    Get the Recipe @ tatyanaseverydayfood

    28. Bacon Deviled Eggs

    These easy bacon deviled eggs are a classic recipe dressed up with the addition of bacon bits and chives. Plus, learn all the tricks for the best deviled eggs ever! They will be devoured quickly at every get together and picnic.

    Get the Recipe @ dinneratthezoo

    29. Fudgy Brownies

    One of the most decadent chocolate pleasures… This world’s fudgiest brownie! It’s gooey and chewy, full of melted chocolate chunks all over. It’s prepared under 10 minutes with ingredients you might have already in your pantry. This is going to be your sweet picnic dessert…

    Get the Recipe @ cafedelites

    30. Red Velvet Cupcakes

    These cupcakes will really have you seeing red! Not only are they super easy to make, their rich, fluffy, crumb, and buttery sweetness make for a perfect take out for picnics and outdoor get togethers.

    Get the Recipe @ bakerbynature

    31. Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

    This Mexican street corn pasta salad does exactly what it’s name implies, it combines the greatness of elote with a pasta salad. You might not find a dish like this in Mexico, but that doesn’t make it any less delicious!

    Get the Recipe @ foodwithfelling

    32. Summer Melon & Prosciutto Salad

    This colorful melon and prosciutto salad!! This one is a must in summer time to cool off with juicy sweet melons. Add in mozzarella and prosciutto and make it look fancy and irresistible. Perfect for picnics and get togethers.

    Get the Recipe @ simplehealthykitchen

    33. Caprese Salad

    There is nothing so simple, yet delicious as a salad out of your juiciest and sweetest ripe summer tomatoes. Make this Italian classic. Simple, yet colorful and vibrant Caprese salad!!

    Get all the colorful tomatoes and layer them with mozzarella and basil leaves with a drizzle of sweet and tangy balsamic reduction.

    Get the Recipe @ jessicagavin

    34. Rotel Dip (Loaded Velveeta Cheese Dip)

    This easy Rotel Dip recipe is loaded with Velveeta, beer, pepper jack, black beans, Rotel, and sausage! Make it for your picnic and see everybody hovering over it.

    Get the Recipe @ thecookierookie

    35. 10-Minute Smoked Salmon Pinwheels

    Deliciously savory smoked salmon pinwheels rolled up with a flavorful chive and dill cream cheese and tons of fresh spinach. This easy, healthy appetizer comes together in just 10 minutes.

    Get the Recipe @ ambitiouskitchen

    There you have it, thirty five amazing picnic food ideas. Pin or bookmark this collection of great picnic food recipes so you always know where to find it.

    And be sure to subscribe to the GypsyPlate mailing list, we’re always cooking up new recipes for you!

    Featured image for picnic food ideas post.

    The 35 BEST Picnic Foods

    This collection of great Picnic Food Ideas will give you plenty of tasty things to eat at your next outdoor meal. For a quick start, try this pico de gallo:


    • 4 large ripe red tomatoes
    • 1 small white onion
    • 1 medium jalapeño or serrano, seeds and fibers removed.
    • 1/2 cup cilantro
    • 2 Tbsp lime juice
    • Salt to taste


      1. Chop onions, tomatoes, cilantro and jalapeño. (The jalapeño should be finely chopped).
      2. Mix all ingredients in bowl.
      3. Let rest for 30 minutes (optional).


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    Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

    Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.

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