What to Pack for a Picnic Date
Good weather is finally here and you're ready to spend some quality time with your significant other, but wondering what should you pack for a picnic date?
We have the answer right here!
You'll want to make sure that you get everything from food items like sandwiches and salads to beverages such as wine or champagne.
If this is going to be an all-day event, then don't forget about snacks and entertainment either.
How do you plan a good picnic date?
Before the picnic date, you should have a plan in place that includes where to go and what to pack.
There are so many things to keep in mind when it comes to packing for this type of event: food, drink, activities. You'll need all three if you really want it to be a good time so make a list to ensure you are not forgetting something important.
Start the planning with the weather forecast. The weather can make or break a date so make sure that if the forecast is iffy you have a plan in case it starts to rain. Packing an umbrella just in case is a good idea.
Next up on the list is the location. Scout the area for possibilities. Is there a beach nearby? A well-maintained park? Or a spot with spectacular scenery? Having access to a car can greatly expand your options here, consider them all.
Ask your date in advance about outdoor activities he/she enjoys so you can pack the right game/gear/clothes etc.
Also, check if there are any places you can visit on the way there or back such as a winery, museum, farmers market, or wildlife sanctuary.
Picnic date ideas
For an extra memorable date, consider some of the following ideas.
- For an extra romantic time, go for a sunset picnic that can extend into the night for stargazing.
- Scout the area for a location near water such as a beach or a lake. Water activities can add a significant fun factor to the picnic.
- If you have a botanical garden nearby, the blooming flowers make excellent romantic photo background.
What items should I bring on a picnic date?
- The classic picnic basket with food such as sandwiches, fruit, cookies, or brownies (more about the food in the next section).
- Drinks in a cooler with ice packs in it (if the weather is hot) or in an insulated mug (if the weather is colder).
- A picnic blanket to place under the tree on a sunny day so you can feel some shade while still laying in the grass.
- Games like badminton and cards (these make for great activities if your date is shy).
- A large picnic umbrella that can double as a shade or as rain protection as needed.
- Bug spray (just in case!) and sunscreen amid other essentials like water bottles. If it's cold out be sure to bring sweaters or jackets that match! Remember to pack an extra outfit if you plan on walking around town afterward.
- A first aid kit.
What food should I bring on a picnic for two?
This section is about the food for a picnic date.
The very first thing you should think about is asking your date about food allergies. Few things can ruin a date like a medical emergency so ask ahead if he/she is allergic to nuts, gluten, or any other allergens you might pack.
- Sandwiches are always a good bet although for a date you might want to make a little fancier versions with high-end ingredients such as prosciutto ham, unusual cheese, olives, etc.
- If you're packing sandwiches, don't forget to bring an assortment of side items like grapes, apples, and carrots as well! If it's going to be cold out try adding chips or cookies into your basket too.
- Fruit salads are easy since all you have to do is slice up some fruit in advance and throw it on top of lettuce leaves with nuts for a crunchy texture. They’re also great because they'll last longer than cut fruit if packed correctly in Tupperware containers. Plus no one needs utensils so there won't be any awkward moments at lunchtime trying not to spill anything while juggling forks and knives simultaneously.
- Shrimp cocktail (this is an easy dish so it won't take up too much space if you also pack some veggies like carrots or celery). You can prepare these ahead of time by marinating them in lemon juice and olive oil then freezing them before packing them into resealable plastic bags. They'll thaw by the time you're ready to eat; just make sure they don't sit at room temperature for too long.
Don't forget napkins, plates, and flatware. Try to avoid paper or plastic ones, you can find really cute picnic cutlery sets online.
What snacks to bring on a picnic date?
If you want to bring some snacks for your picnic date with bae, try packing:
- Chocolate (in a heart shape or box)
- Nuts and dried fruit mix - this is an organic snack that will give off the right vibe without being too overbearing; it also keeps well in an airtight container so you can prep ahead of time if need be.
- Pita chips and hummus - another simple but healthy option. You can always spice up the pita chips by adding cheese flavorings or seasonings like black pepper, paprika, red wine vinegar, etc. while making the hummus more exciting than just plain by adding items like lemon juice, garlic salt, and cayenne powder.
- Crackers or rice cakes with peanut butter.
- Grapes, strawberries, and/or apples (without the skin) - for a sweet side of fruit that still offers fiber to balance out your snack.
- A charcuterie board with a selection of cheese, cured meat, and fruit.
What about drinks?
For healthy drinks try bringing fresh lemonade or iced tea in travel mugs. There are many recipes online for these drinks, and they're easy to make in advance too!
For more decadent options you could bring wine, beer, or cider. It's best not to drink anything with an alcohol content higher than 5%, a date is not an occasion to get tipsy.
You might opt for a fancier bottle of light red wine like a Beaujolais, an easy Italian rose, or a refreshing white such as Riesling. Make sure you have a wine cooler for the white and the rose. Get shatterproof glasses with a flat bottom.
Champagne is another obvious and romantic choice for a date, a cooler is a must in this case too! Bring plastic flutes as real champagne glasses are too vulnerable for a picnic setting.