Picnic food on a blanket outside

The Ultimate Summer Picnic Guide

Get the blanket out – it's picnic time!

By Alexia Dellner, 14 July 2016
The Ultimate Summer Picnic Guide

Come rain or shine, getting friends and family together to eat al fresco is one of the summer's top moments. When it comes to creating the perfect picnic, the key is to keep things simple. All you really need is a blanket, some fuss-free picnic foods and delicious drink. Of course a bit of sunshine and some outdoor games wouldn't go amiss, but the thing to remember is that the beauty of eating outdoors is how relaxed it's meant to be. Which is why we've rounded up the best picnic foods and ideas to ensure that your al fresco meal is just that. 

To make sure that everyone's happy (and no one has to run back into the house to get more food), prepare a selection of picnic foods that will satisfy a range of tastes. We've got modern twists on British classics like mini hog roast pasties and black pudding sausage rolls, plus easy ways to add a touch of luxury to your picnic with strawberry and basil cupcakes and smoked salmon scones. When it comes to enjoying the flavours of summer you can't go wrong with fresh asparagus or pea salad and cold, cloudy lemonade. Think that whipping up an outdoors feast means a lot of faff? Think again! If you don't have the time or energy to make picnic foods from scratch then you can easily pick up a delicious spread in-store at Asda. Enjoying a perfect picnic is easy with a little know-how and foodie inspiration. Here are our top tips to throwing summer's hottest picnic. 

Up the luxe factor

Whether you're out in the garden or gathering in a nearby park, give your picnic a sense of occasion with some luxurious touches. Freshly baked scones with smoked salmon and soft cheese will go down a treat or for convenience, just pick up some afternoon tea sandwiches in-store, like our soft cheese & cucumber or ham hock & cheddar. For afters, indulge in sophisticated strawberry and basil cupcakes or our new Extra Special Triple Layer Vanilla Latte Cake. Delish! 

Ploughman's Picnic

Say goodbye to soggy sarnies and say hello to a feast of British classics, served with a modern twist. For easily portable and seriously moreish snacks, it doesn't get much better than tender pork with sweet apple, cider and sage filling wrapped in crumbly shortcrust pastry, crispy Scotch eggs with Pimms ketchup and black pudding sausage rolls, all dished up with a side of flavour-packed chutneys. Add a classic cheeseboard, a handful of grapes and some rustic crackers and you've got yourself a perfect Ploughman's feast.

 

Don't forget gluten-free picnic-ers! 

Friends and family who are on a gluten-free diet can still enjoy the classic British flavours of a summer's picnic. A cucumber and strawberry salad recipe is both fresh and summery while this gluten-free terrine recipe is packed with flavour and healthy veg. And there's no need to skip dessert, either! This gluten-free nutella cupcake recipe is deliciously decadent while this moist gluten-free banana and pecan cake is the perfect way to use up soft bananas. Or pick up a selection of crumbly, gluten-free lemon curd, raspberry or sweet strawberry jam tarts in-store. 

And don't forget the veggies!

With so much lovely produce in season at the moment, having a veggie-filled picnic is the perfect way to up your nutrient intake and enjoy beautiful, seasonal fare. This mushroom pâté can be made the day before and is delicious served with crusty bread and a fresh asparagus and pea salad. For an alternative to sandwiches, try this minted pea and spring onion frittata recipe that's so easy to make, gluten-free AND can be served both hot or cold. Simple! 

Cool Down in the Heat

Here's hoping for a beautiful summer filled with lots of sunshine! But whatever the weather's doing, stay cool with some refreshing drinks. Keep things simple by whipping up a big batch of drink, so that people can help themselves, like a fruity rum punch for the adults or stock up on Extra Special Cloudy Lemonade for kiddies. 

No time? No worries!

There's no need to spend the day slaving away in the kitchen in order to enjoy a meal al fresco. Make your life easier by picking up all your picnic supplies in-store and keeping them on hand for whenever the mood strikes you. Get a taste of the Med with some fantastic Mix & Match antipasti in-store, leaving you more time to enjoy in the sunshine. Choose from Spanish tapas, garlic and lemon olives, a spicy falafel mix, and more. 

Afternoon Tea Al Fresco

Combine two classic British traditions – afternoon tea and a picnic. We've got all the cake recipes you need, plus heavenly patisserie eclairs available in-store. Think throwing an afternoon tea party needs to cost a small fortune? Not so! With Asda's cream tea selection you can serve high tea for as little as £3. 

Stock up on all your picnic supplies at Asda