These Picnic Food Recipes Just Changed Outdoor Eating Forever

If you don’t like picnics or a good ol’ outdoor party then I’m pretty sure you’re a robot. Fresh air, great food, and those fun baskets with the classic red and white checkered lining are what makes spring worth living! Yes there can be bugs, whatever, big whoop, I’m like a thousand times bigger than they are. However, there is a weakness in my picnic game, I am traditionally just a sandwich and chips kind of girl. I decided to ditch the basics and upgrade my picnic menu to some items that are a bit more daring and way more delectable. All of these picnic food recipes are pretty simple, so much so that even a sandwich traditionalist like me can get on board!

Walking Tacos
walking-tacos

To be quite honest I could probably survive on these for quite some time. Incredibly convenient, what is better than a taco that you can walk with? I am left with so many questions like “why isn’t this the standard?” Traditional tacos are not conducive to walking and eating, what do I do if I need to eat my taco while I walk to go get more tacos? That said, you can see how happy I was to find this recipe. With a lot of flexibility, you can honestly add any taco ingredients you wish. Frito or Doritos bags work best.

I also enjoy this recipe because it is easy to have plenty of extra if individual bags are bought in bulk. This recipe also does not include beans but if properly drained I think would make them even more spectacular than they already are. You can also bring all the toppings in their own container that way guests can choose what ingredients they want to add to their walking taco.

Slow Cooker Barbecue Ribs

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Ribs should be required at every picnic. Seriously, a bill needs to be signed and passed into law. Now smoked ribs are great but not all of us have one of those fancy smokers or a fully outfitted smokehouse. This picnic recipe takes a little prep and you may have to wake up a little early so they are done in time for the picnic festivities but for what it takes up in time, it will give back to your taste buds when it makes them explode with flavor. The prep itself is incredibly easy and all you have to do is give a good rub down with spices and then drown it in barbecue sauce, in a few hours you’ll have fall off the bone barbecue-y goodness.

 

 

 

Bacon Sriracha Potato Salad

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I dare you to think of two things better than bacon and sriracha. The only thing I can think of is both of them combined into a creamy potato salad. I know you might have to pick up the pieces of your mind as it has been blown, and that’s okay. Once you have it back together again immediately gather the ingredients necessary for this delicious dish and have the best damn picnic imaginable. To add an even more awesome element to this dish you can substitute the red potatoes with sweet potatoes. Yes, please!

You can also adjust this recipe depending on the time you have before your picnic adventure. If you are the spontaneous type and are in a pinch, use store bought potato salad and add the additional toppings. Don’t have bacon on hand? Opt for some bacon bits. When everyone raves about this awesome picnic recipe there is no need for you to tell them it wasn’t completely from scratch. You own that potato salad.

 

Lasagna Cupcakes

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Another one for the picnic history books, let me introduce Lasagna Cups. If you haven’t noticed I am all about functionality and convenience at a picnic. Lasagna, for one, is awesome, but the thought of awkwardly trying to eat it outside with plastic utensils does not sound like my idea of a good time. Instead of pasta noodles, wonton wrappers are used to make these perfectly sized cupcakes. You could also make a pizza or mac and cheese version if you wanted to add some variety.  These little cakes are super easy to grab and munch on, making them perfect finger food for your picnic menu.

Vodka Lemonade Juice Pouch

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You know we had to involve liquor in this post, we are HomeWetBar after all. What I basically look at as adult juice boxes is a must have at your next picnic. Disclaimer: If kiddos are present keep a lookout that there is no confusion. Also these look so tasty I wouldn’t blame a kid for getting angry that he couldn’t have one. With only a few ingredients they are super easy to prep and even easier to drink. Tip: These perfectly juice sized plastic bags can be found super cheap at your local craft store.

You can also add a lot variety with this idea. I think Long Island Iced teas would be a great addition or replacement for the pouches. I also have a weird obsession with grapefruit juice that I think would work great as well. Basically you can substitute any of your favorite cocktail recipes into this awesome picnic idea.

Individual Seven Layer Dips

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Another single serving recipe, I love this as a snack before or after the real eating begins. These would work well at any party really. Again featuring simple ingredients, these cups are quick to make and are super delicious. Since everyone gets their own personal serving there will be no fighting over a big bowl of the stuff. I also feel that these smaller cups completely diminish the bug to dip ratio.

What I love about this recipe is the ability to have plenty extra depending on your party size. I am guilty of making a lot more and storing them for a quick snack after the outdoor party. Also depending on how hungry you and your guests are you can adjust the plastic cup size to accommodate the desired amount of dip.

 

Cheesecake in a Jar

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Let’s face it most things are better in jars. If your whole picnic could be in a jar, that would probably best. Takeaway, you need to invest in a lot of jars. If not for the rest of these recipes, definitely this one. Cheesecake is personally one of my favorite desserts. If it was socially acceptable I would skip the entrees and go straight for the cake. Who am I kidding, I do it anyways. Not only are these cheesecake jars delicious but they look great. You can swap out the berries for any other toppings you may desire, I love tangerines on mine!

These little canning jars can normally be found pretty cheap at your local craft store, but you can really use anything you have on hand to serve up these bad boys such as teacups!

 

Looking to improve your picnic to epic proportions? Check out some outdoor party ideas and gifts. Everything from hidden flasks for when you run out of vodka pouches, and grilling accessories, to music blaring coolers.

Mason Jar Condiment Dispenser

Mason Jar Condiment Dispenser

Lawn Drink Holders

Lawn Drink Holders

Picnic Reusable Melamine Plate

Picnic Reusable Melamine Plate

Develop Your Tailgate Party Game Plan

Getting the right game plan together for your tailgate party can have a huge impact: less work; more fun. Tailgating seems simple enough, and in some ways, it is, but packing up an entire backyard’s worth of lawn chairs, food, and grilling accessories can be trickier than it sounds. But tailgators, take notice! We’ve got an awesome list of tailgate party ideas, just in time for the season. From outdoor gear to tailgate accessories, these great tips will get you all the way to the playoffs.

Pack Supplies Inside Your Other Supplies

Tailgate Party Tips

A truck full of kids, food, and outdoor gear doesn’t leave a lot of storage room left to spare. Economize on space by packing your tailgating supplies inside other supplies. Fill a beer mug with condiments. Tuck flashlights into your folding lawn chairs. Shove a stash of beef jerky into your toolbox. As an added bonus, when you store things in unexpected places, only you hold the knowledge necessary to find the hidden treasure, leaving everyone else at your mercy, and more beef jerky to gnaw on when the kids aren’t looking.

Put Everything in Party Cups

Tailgate Party Tips

Disposable party cups are commonplace at a tailgating party, and with good reason. They are lightweight, stackable, and shatterproof. However, disposable party cups won’t keep beer cold for very long. If you are fan of the ubiquitous red Solo cup, opt for the sturdier, reusable, high capacity alternative for your beverage, and put everything else in the throwaways. Plastic forks, napkins, toothpicks, peanuts, straws, and all sorts of small items can be hard to manage outside. A plate full of potato chips will go flying in the wind, but a plastic cup full of chips firmly planted in a deserving hand will stay right where you say. You can serve everything from watermelon to chicken wings in a disposable plastic cup, so be sure to pack plenty.

Cooking on a Stick

Cooking on a stick

It wouldn’t be a tailgate without cooking food over an open flame. While steaks and hamburgers are never a bad choice, cooking food on a stick is fun for the entire family, and gives you more time to relax and enjoy the game. Hot dogs and marshmallows are a start, but chicken strips, shrimp, potatoes, and corn on the cob all cook perfectly when skewered and held over a fire. Extra long roasting sticks are great, because you can stand further away from the heat while your food gets charred and delicious.

Make a Bucket of Jello Shots

Bucket of Jello Shots

Jello shots are a hit every time, but fussing around with trays of little sticky cups is too much of a hassle on the go. Smart tailgators opt for the bucket of jello shots. Just mix up one huge batch of jello and alcohol, pour it into a party bucket or large container, refrigerate, and you’re done. Party goers can scoop out the gelatin with disposable plastic cups, and shoot away. It’s a little messy, but hey, that’s why we brought the portable handwashing station.

Set Up a Portable Handwashing Station

Portable Handwashing Station

Some party ideas have more to do with maintenance than the actual party. As any tailgate party progresses, messes and spills are inevitable. With no access to running water nearby, it’s good to have some clean up plays in your game plan. Take a used, disposable laundry detergent dispenser, fill it with water, and presto! A portable water faucet, complete with handle, ready to rinse hands, feet, and cooking utensils. You’ll want to wash the container out thoroughly to remove any traces of detergent, but after a few minutes with the garden hose and an overnight soak, you should be good to go. Many laundry detergent jugs hold over a gallon of liquid, which should be plenty of water for a few hours of tailgating. It might taste a little like soap, though, so don’t plan on drinking it.

Hide Booze from Your Friends

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Friends are great. We all want lots of friends to make life more fun. But friends will also drink your alcohol without asking, and sometimes all of it. You stay silent because you don’t want to be a party pooper, so you need some great ways to sneak alcohol during your tailgate. May we recommend hiding a stash of booze in a stealth container like our binoculars hidden flask. It even holds two types of liquor, so you can be ready for anything. When you need to sneak a swig, just put the binoculars around your neck, and say, “I’m going over there to do some bird watching!” And no one will follow you, because bird watching, really? All the while you slip away with your own private stash of booze while your friends fight over your last can of beer.

Sneak Booze into the Game

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Once in awhile, tailgating is interrupted by someone who appears out of nowhere with an extra ticket to the game. Should this occur, be prepared to sneak a few drinks into the stadium with the help of a flask hidden inside a sports seat cushion. A durable vinyl pouch is housed withing a real functioning stadium cushion. Just plop it down on the bleachers, take a seat, and when you are ready for a refill, unzip the side panel to get access to an easy release nozzle. The foam of the seat cushion even provides insulation to the liquid inside. With practice, you’ll be able to sneak this play by even the toughest ref.

 

Block Party Bingo Outdoor Game

Summer is the season of grilling, tailgating, and endless fun in the sun. We’re always looking for great outdoor party ideas, so we created a great party game for adults that will keep you laughing well into the fall: Block Party Bingo.

This printable party game is perfect for block parties, music festivals, fairs, or anywhere a crowd of neighbors and strangers come together for outdoor drinking and fun. Whether it’s that annoying neighbor who incessantly talks to everyone at the block party, or that girl who thinks a bikini top is an appropriate shirt, you’ll have fun picking these easy-to-spot situations in any crowd. Turn it into a drinking game, and take a shot every time you spot something, or chug every time you get five in a row. Try to get to blackout before you black out! After a few bingos, this will easily become one of your favorite outdoor party games.

Block Party Bingo

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Print this Block Party Bingo game card, or pull it up on your mobile phone. Take a look at each square, and find as many as possible at your outdoor party. Play by yourself, or with friends. You’ll have a blast either way. Do you know other party games for adults that you think we’d enjoy? Tell us about it in the comments below.

Picnic Food Ideas: Whiskey & Blue Cheese Potato Salad Recipe

This unique potato salad recipe offers rich flavors that will make a splash at your next cookout. Dressed with ingredients like red wine vinegar, barbecue sauce, and blue cheese, the potatoes are actually cooked in whiskey, infusing every bite with the sweet, smoky flavors from your favorite bottle.

Whiskey & Blue Cheese Potato Salad

  • 3 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1 cup whiskey
  • 1 cup cooked wheat berries
  • 2 tbsp spicy mustard
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup whiskey barbecue sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 4 oz crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped
  • salt & pepper

Cut your potatoes into bite sized pieces, as close as you can to 1/2 inch cubes. Add them to a large pot or saucepan, and sprinkle 2 tablespoons of salt over the top. Pour in one cup of your favorite whiskey, then cover with water. Bring the liquid to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. They should be slightly tender and easy to pierce with a fork. Drain the liquid, then cover and let the potatoes rest for at least 20 minutes. They will become more tender as they cool.

In a separate bowl, combine one cup of chilled, cooked wheat berries with the spicy mustard, red wine vinegar, olive oil, and barbecue sauce. Stir these ingredients until well blended. Spoon in the honey and stir until smooth.

Once the potatoes have cooled, add the dressing mixture and stir until thoroughly coated. Sprinkle in the blue cheese and green onions, and gently stir. Add salt and pepper to taste. Chill completely before serving.

 

13 Hot Dog Toppings that Will Blow Your Mind

Hot dogs are a summer favorite throughout the country. Whether grilling out by the pool, camping, or spending the weekend at the beach, nothing hits the spot quite like homemade hot dogs. At the same time, cooking hot dogs is sometimes frowned upon as uninteresting, or food for kids. That’s where fancy hot dogs come to the rescue. Even though the classic combination of ketchup, mustard, and relish has withstood the test of time, here’s a hot dog toppings list that will turn even the most mundane picnic spread into a summer feast. Add these hot dog toppings to your shopping list, and everyone around will go crazy for more.

Thai Peppers

Thai Peppers Hot Dog Topping

The Thai pepper, also known as the bird’s eye chili, is a small, exceedingly hot pepper. Even though they pack a super spicy punch, they are balanced with fruity sweetness, which makes them perfect in hot dog recipes. These peppers turn red when fully ripe, but are commonly eaten while still green. Finely chopped and sprinkled over hot dogs with mustard and onion relish, these spicy soldiers are a natural flavor booster. If you want to go really crazy, sprinkle on some coconut as well.

Fancy Cheese

Fancy Cheese Hot Dog Topping

Among outdoor summer food, hamburgers have always been stingy with the cheese. Although we’re still talking about meat tucked inside bread, party goers frequently forget about adding cheese to their hot dogs. Picnic spreads are known for their sizable stacks of American cheese slices, but for fancy hot dogs, you need fancy cheese. Soft cheeses, like Gouda and Havarti are excellent choices, and fit well with other more traditional hot dog toppings. Stronger flavors, like Danish blue cheese and Stilton, are even better, and should be paired with a steak or barbecue sauce. Keep these cheeses in the cooler, though, because the hot summer heat will make these these gourmet hot dogs extra potent.

Chipotle Peppers

Chipotle Peppers Hot Dog Topping

A staple ingredient in the Southwest, chipotle peppers are really just smoked, dried jalapeños, but add a super sweet smoky flavor. This is one of the best hot dog topping ideas for camping, because you can buy chipotle peppers dried, and keep them in a small, easy to seal plastic bag. To prepare, soak the dried peppers in water for a few minutes, and scrape the seeds out before you chop them up. You can also opt for chipotle peppers in adobo, which doesn’t require soaking or chopping. Chipotles in adobo make an awesome hot dog chili sauce, and make the perfect pair with our next topping…

Fried Eggs

Fried Egg Hot Dog Topping

Meat and fried eggs can be found in every roadside diner, and fried eggs will turn your hot dogs into top-notch comfort food. Easy to make and available anywhere, eggs also look great heaped on top of all your other favorite hot dog toppings. Fried eggs even make it okay to eat hot dogs for breakfast, as if permission was needed.

Chili Spiced Dried Mango

Chili Mango Hot Dog Topping

Another great sweet and spicy recipe for hot dogs comes courtesy of the bulk foods section of the supermarket. These slices of dried mango come seasoned with paprika, salt, chili powder, and a hint of cayenne. The sweet mango flavor is perfect with a grilled hot dog, and the chili spices give it an extra kick. Try a squirt of fresh lime juice on top as a finishing touch.

Maple Syrup

Maple Syrup Hot Dog Topping

Another breakfast inspired hot dog topping, maple syrup offers an earthy, unmistakable sweetness that soaks right into the bun. Best poured on while the hot dog is still piping hot from the grill, this is the perfect condiment for bacon wrapped hot dogs, or even sausage links. Keep it to a light drizzle, though, to avoid soggy buns.

Fresh Herbs

Fresh Herbs Hot Dog Topping

Nothing packs a whollup of bright flavor like fresh herbs. Cilantro, chives, basil, and tarragon all go well with dressings like mustard or mayonnaise, and even give your hot dogs a nice crunch. Chopped green onions can be a good alternative to the white, diced variety. Avoid heartier herbs like rosemary or fennel, because then can be too overwhelming when eaten raw.

Radishes

Radishes Hot Dog Topping

A staple in the salad bowl, radishes will add a peppery crunch to your hot dog recipes. They are easy to chop ahead of time, and firm enough to withstand travel to the beach or tailgating site. The fresh flavor of radishes works well with ranch dressing, and give you picnic spread a little extra color, as well.

Pineapple Salsa

Pineapple Salsa Hot Dog Topping

Fruit salsas can be a great addition to any dish, and pineapple salsa is one of the best hot dog topping ideas. Pineapple salsa has a tropical citrus flavor, but typically features other great tastes, like cumin and garlic. Available in most grocery stores and ready for spooning, it’s a beautiful shortcut to getting the best hot dogs around.

Salt & Vinegar Chips

Salt and Vinegar Chips Hot Dog Topping

Elementary school kids know that the best way to eat a brown bag lunch is to slide the potato chips right between the ham and white bread. Take this lunchtime recipe a step further, and crumble salt and vinegar chips onto your hot dog. The tangy saltiness and fried crunch are perfect for poolside dining, and will make you feel like a kid at recess. Except being a grown-up kid means you get to wash it down with a nice cold beer.

Pickled Garlic

Pickled Garlic Hot Dog Topping

Garlic can be added to just about anything, and hot dogs are no exception. Pickled garlic is great because it’s milder than fresh garlic, but still offers bold flavor. If you’re taking it with you to the campsite, mince the garlic before you leave home, and add it back to the pickling juices. This is a great hot dog topping idea for more traditional folks, and combines perfectly with spicy peppers or sweet relish.

Capers

Capers Hot Dog Topping

A secret ingredient in Italian and French kitchens for generations, capers have recently seen a surge in popularity. They are actually pickled flower buds, and will give your hot dogs a salty, tangy zing. Pair capers with feta cheese and tzatziki sauce for a Mediterranean-inspired delight.

Ravioli

Ravioli Hot Dog Topping

If you are a fan of food stuffed food, such as calzones and chicken cordon bleu, then this will be one of your go-to hot dog ideas. Ravioli are kind of like little sandwiches themselves, so it makes sense. Just tuck as many pieces of cooked ravioli as you can into your next hot dog. If you’re feeling messy, top the whole thing off with marinara sauce, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Eat it fast, or use a toasted bun to avoid getting most of it in your lap instead of your mouth. That would be a shame.

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