The sunshine is out in the beautiful OC, chasing away the clouds to welcome warmer weather. Swim suits, sandals and sunscreen are making their debut, and what better way to celebrate the sunshine than gathering some of my favorite people for a picnic by the beach?
As a busy working mom, I think it’s important to simplify life to make room for the people and things that MATTER. I also believe in quality of life for my family, which includes eating healthy. Before we jump into how-to prepare for the perfect picnic, I think it’s important we talk food first. After all, that is one of the main ingredients of a successful picnic. 🙂
*Eating right is important. It’s crucial to make sure my family and I are eating nourishing, quality food.
*Good eating habits boost energy and contribute to quality of life.
*Whole foods with simple ingredients are delicious + make me feel great!
With that being said, I thought a beach picnic would be an ideal way to combine my love of food and spending time with family, into one perfect day.
We decided to take a short trip to Newport Beach, but if you don’t have the ocean near you, you can always try:
A local park / A pretty lake / A lazy river
How to Plan for Your Picnic
Packing food can get overly time-consuming, and without planning, can often lead to overpacking unhealthy snacks. So, I’ve found it’s best to plan the picnic menu in advance and include delicious but quick bites, so I don’t get tired before I get to the beach.
Organizing your thoughts with my picnic checklist template or shopping list actually saves a lot of time!
This time, my menu theme is inspired by Italy:
- Tomato/Mozzarella/Chives salad (5-10 min prep time)
- Italian meat and cheese sandwich with Chive Remoulade dressing (5-10 min prep time)
- Olives (already prepared)
- Lemon biscotti (can bake before picnic, or just buy prepared)
- Fruit lemonade ice tea (5-10 min)
Light and Quick Caprese Salad
My version of Caprese salad takes no more than 5 minutes but is very delicious, flavorful, and healthy.
*16oz organic cherry tomatoes cut in halves
*8oz fresh mozzarella balls marinated in herbs and olive oil cut in halves
*2 tbs roughly chopped chives
*1tbs olive oil
*salt and pepper to taste
*3tbs roughly chopped almonds
Mix and enjoy
Martha Stewart’s Italian Salami Sandwich
I substituted baguette with Ciabatta bread and wrapped with these paper liners from Crate and Barrel.
Giada De Laurentiis Almond + Lemon Biscotti
Thank you to my kiddo Alex for helping bake it!
Lemon and Berry Arnold Palmer
1/2 tea and 1/2 lemonade with frozen lemon and berries
I chill tea and lemonade, and freeze berries and lemon wedges overnight. Before leaving, poured mix of chilled drinks into little milk bottles (mason jars would give similar visual effect), and added frozen berries and lemon wedges.
Pack some fun games for the family to enjoy. 🙂