Make your summer picnic extra inspiring with these creative recipes and activity ideas!
Is there anything more blissful than a sunny picnic in the park, listening to music, and enjoying the company of your best pals? Plus, it’s a perfect opportunity to use all the amazing edibles growing in your garden! If you want your picnic to have that extra spark of summer magic, we’ve got some creative ideas to take it to the next level.
Grab Your Basket, Blanket, and Camera: It’s Summer Picnic Time!
From delicious garden recipes to fun summer activities, we have plenty of ideas for making your picnic extra memorable.
Make Homemade Wildflower Butter
This trendy spreadable snack is just as beautiful as it is tasty! Instagram food bloggers have been raving about wildflower butter, and it couldn’t be easier to make yourself. You can make butter from scratch by putting heavy cream in the blender for about ten minutes until it separates, or you can purchase some high-quality unsalted butter from the store.
Simply tear up some wildflower petals—and possibly some garden herbs for a little extra flavor and color—then mix it into your room-temperature butter. Add a little salt or honey if you’d like it savory or sweet. Roll the butter into a log, wrap it in plastic wrap, then pop it in the fridge until picnic time! Spread it onto fresh baguettes for an elevated, inspiring take on classic bread and butter.
Try these edible flower petals and herbs for your colorful artisanal butter:
- Anise hyssop
Don’t be surprised if everyone at the picnic whips out their phone to snap a pic of your edible work of art before it gets devoured!
Infuse Sweet Tea with Garden Herbs and Fruit
Nothing quenches your thirst like icy sweet tea on a hot summer day. It’s even better infused with fresh fruit and herbs from the garden! Just slice up your fruits, tear up some fresh herbs, and let it steep overnight in the fridge, so those flavors really mingle.
Here are a few flavor combos we love:
- Green tea with raspberries and mint
- Green tea with blueberries and basil
- Green tea with strawberries and lavender
- Black tea with currants and lemon balm
- Black tea with rosemary, lemon, and honey
- Black tea with peach and thyme
Cheese, Crackers, and Summer Berry Compote
For the ultimate cheese and cracker spread, you need some tasty jams and compotes to balance out the rich flavors of fancy aged cheeses. With so many juicy summer berries to enjoy right now in Iowa, you’ve got plenty of options to explore. You can even make savory jams with tomato—those are technically berries, too! Just mash up five cups of berries with ½ cup of sugar, bring it to a slow boil for about 20 minutes or until it reduces, let it cool, and it’s ready to serve at your picnic!
Herb and Garlic Yogurt Dip for Fresh Veggies
Dip your carrots, cucumbers, and snap peas into a creamy garlic yogurt dip! Just crush up two or three cloves of fresh garlic and mix it into plain Greek yogurt with salt, pepper, a squeeze of lemon, and herbs to taste. Dill is especially delicious in this refreshing, healthy summer snack!
Weave Wildflower Crowns
All you need is a little bit of florist’s wire to make gorgeous wildflower crowns! Take a hike around a park or trail to collect assorted wildflowers before laying down your picnic blanket. Then, weave together all your beautiful blooms and foliage into circular crowns and secure the stems with small pieces of twine. Adorable selfies are absolutely necessary upon completion of your crowns! After your picnic, you can let your crowns dry and hang them like wreaths as a memento of your perfect summer afternoon.
Bring Some Birdseed
Invite some cute wild birds to your picnic by setting up some dishes of birdseed nearby. If you’re lucky, you might be able to coax some of them into eating from your hand! Remember to bring healthy bird feed like seeds, nuts, and corn—don’t feed them any bread! Keep the baguette for your picnic snacks.