Practical Picnic Ideas for the Perfect Day out with Kids

Picnics are such a fun way to enjoy food casually, and kids particularly love the fun that goes with eating outdoors. Whether you’re planning to picnic at home or abroad this summer, these practical picnic ideas for the perfect day out, will help keep the focus on the fun and family time that it’s all about.

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#1. Plan the Place

Before you leave, make sure to choose the picnic site. Pay attention to the nearest amenities on route in case nature calls!! Bring equipment suitable to the site i.e. fishing nets, buckets & spades etc. You could also bring some Lego in a storage box/freezer bag for some quieter play, and fairy wands/toy swords in the forest can create a very imaginative afternoon!

You may also like 7 Fun Outdoor Games & 20 Great Childhood Games

#2. Invest in a cool bag

cooler-bag-819092_640This will ensure that food will keep chilled to the picnic site and also back home as left-overs. Left over chicken skewers makes a great stir fry for the follow days dinner.

You may also find this helpful – the Perfect Picnic Checklist

#3. Pack Finger Food

Bringing finger food means you don’t need to think about cutlery. Pack small bottles of water, so you don’t have to worry about cups.

#4. Feed the Children Before You Leave

I know this may sound odd, but younger kids, particularly, get so distracted by what they see and hear in the outdoors, that their senses start to explore and they forget all about their tummies. Feeding the children before you leave takes the worry away, and everyone can enjoy the snacks as they wish.

#5. Pack Practical Snacks & Food

It pays to be sensible and pack practical snacks that you know the kids will eat. Here are some of our favourites:

  • GrapesChicken Skewers cooked in the oven. These are easy to do, and give a BBQ feel! They don’t require knives or forks and can be seasoned to your personal liking.
  • Garlic Bread made from left over French baguette. Make the garlic butter by chopping garlic and mixing into butter in a food processor (I used my mini processor) slice (not cut) the baguette and put a knob of the butter into each incision. Put in the oven to toast and melt the butter. For kids who don’t like garlic, just add a knob of butter without the garlic.
  • Seedless Grapes. Easy to eat and there’s no clean up. Grapes also have water in them which helps keep kids hydrated.
  • Carrot Sticks. Again easy to eat and healthy.
  • Home-made Flapjacks – can make a nice & easily transportable dessert.

You might also enjoy some of these picnic recipes

Lots more ideas –  12 Quick Ideas for Snacks, 5 Kid-Friendly Fuit Snack Ideas & Snacks Preschoolers will Love

#6. Preparing the Picnic

Have the children help with preparing the picnic – you will be surprised how much they can learn just by doing these simple everyday tasks. Remember learning is fun.

Have patience… sometimes these things take time!  By doing such problems in a concrete way, children will grasp it and remember for much longer than by doing it on paper.

  • They can help to wash the fruit and vegetables. Older children can help to cut and younger children can tear – these exercises are very good for children’s motor skills.
  • By counting out items such as napkins, children can practice maths. Ask the children how many more napkins are needed in order to have enough for everyone. This type of maths problem is in the curriculum for children approx 7-8 years old and is quite complex.

#7. Relax & Have Fun

For your own sake, don’t over complicate your picnic. Picnics are all about relaxing and chilling out so make sure to keep things as simple and stress free as possible. The kids will enjoy running around and playing outdoors, so sit back and enjoy.

Practical Picnic Ideas for the Perfect

Over to you! Let us know your picnic tips in the comments below.

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Laura, a qualified Montessori Teacher, Primary School Teacher, TEFL teacher and mother to one amazing little girl (MT), is a passionate home-cook and blogger. She launched her blog My Toddler Cooks after seeing the educational benefits MT seemed to gain by helping out in kitchen. While not in the kitchen or watching cooking shows, Laura and MT enjoy an active life!! “If we’re not on an adventure in the woods with our wellies, we are on the bicycle searching to see what’s around the next corner – always exploring, learning and having fun”. Follow Laura on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram