Superfood Summer Picnics | CulinArt Group

Eat Well Blog

Superfood Summer Picnics

Warm days, warm nights, late sunsets, and plenty of time to enjoy the outdoors. One of our favorite ways to enjoy summer is to take advantage of the wonderful weather with a picnic. Gather your friends, family, and pets and head outside to enjoy a meal together. Read below for some picnic tips and summer superfood suggestions for your next picnic adventure.

**Since food packed for a picnic will be without proper refrigeration for a few hours – choose foods and recipes that do well in the heat and won’t spoil. It’s easy to get caught up in all of the fun, but it’s important to keep our friends and family healthy. For some extra tips check out our Safe Summer Sizzles June blog post.


  • It may be a little hot to turn on the oven, but veggie chips make a great addition to any picnic. Roast thin slices of seasonal zucchini, squash, carrots, or beets with a drizzle of olive oil and seasoning until crispy. Make some fresh guacamole to take these chips to the next level.
  • Looking for a cool and refreshing summer meal? Fill up a salad with fresh summer greens and a mix of colorful vegetables. Get fancy and spirilize zucchini, carrots, or squash for a “noodle” salad.


  • For a sweet snack loaded with vitamins and minerals, chop and mix your favorite seasonal fruits into a fruit salad. Cherries, cantaloupe, mangos, honeydew, blueberries, and plums will create a beautiful rainbow fruit salad! Sprinkle with a little bit of lemon or lime juice to keep the fruit fresh and to add a burst of citrus flavor.
  • Finely chop fruit like apples or peaches and sprinkle with cinnamon and citrus to create your very own fruit salsa. Serve with sugar cookies, rice cakes, or pita chips.


  • Plant proteins like beans, tofu, nuts, and seeds hold up well in the heat and are great sources of heart healthy fats. Mix these protein packed items into salads, grains, or pasta. Include seasonal produce like bell peppers, cucumbers, corn, and tomatoes. Make your own trail mix with nuts, seeds, and dried fruit, mash beans into creamy dip, and add tofu to cold sesame noodles for yummy picnic options.
  • Some cheeses are better suited for a picnic than others. Firm, low moisture cheeses like cheddar or parmesan are good choices to bring to your outdoor meal. Make a cheese plate with summer fruits like berries, apples, cherries, and peaches, nuts, and crackers, or grate cheese over pasta and salads. Cheese also supplies calcium and vitamin D.


  • Whole grains like quinoa, farro, brown rice, or freekeh, once cooked, are easy to pack and take on the go. Combine your favorite grain with some summer vegetables like green beans, eggplant, or zucchini, and a tasty sauce or dressing for a quick and easy picnic friendly dish.
  • Pasta salads and picnics make a perfect pair. These cold salads make it easy to get creative and add in whatever veggies you have around. Use whole grain pasta for some extra fiber. Or, try bean pastas like chickpea or lentils for added protein.


  • Transportation is the biggest issue for picnics – nobody wants a squished dessert at the end of a yummy meal. One tip is to use a jar. Create individual desserts and layer them up with yogurt, fruit, whipped cream, cake, or brownies. Put a lid on, and you’re ready to go.
  • Fruit cobblers are simple yet tasty. They can be made with any fruit, which makes them naturally sweet. Utilize your favorite summer fruits and top with an oat crumble and some nuts for a crunch.


  • All year round, but especially during the hot summer months, hydration is extremely important. Picnics tend to be centered around food, but don’t forget the beverages! Keep yourself cool with fresh lemonade, iced tea, seltzer, or just plain old water.
  • Make water exciting by adding fresh fruit for added flavor. Let lemons, limes, pineapple, or even cucumbers soak in water and let the flavors seep in.

Make sure you’re ready for your next picnic by having these items on hand:

  • Picnic basket
  • Picnic blanket
  • Cooler (and ice!)
  • Plates
  • Utensils
  • Cups
  • Napkins
  • Condiments
  • Trash bags
  • Sunscreen
  • Outdoor activities
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  • July 24, 2019


What our clients are saying

“What a difference a top chef makes to student satisfaction and enjoyment of campus life!  At a recent boarding school conference, food was mentioned as a key retention method and it is really true. The comforts of home are found in good food and meals enjoyed with friends. We couldn’t be more pleased with the healthy and delicious daily options presented by our chef and his team. Frank even has a suggestion box, so he is always open to new ideas and he even offers cooking classes for our students!”

“I just wanted to send a quick note acknowledging the wonderful food and service provided by our new vendor.  The food was delicious and the students consistently commented on how amazing everything was.  What a difference! In addition, the staff and management were so easy to deal with – very professional.  They were punctual, responsive and attentive to our needs.  Thank you again for making a positive change to the quality of life of our students.”

“I just wanted to give a huge compliment to the cook at Main Street. Today I had the Salmon Super Bowl and it was amazing!!!! Every day I go in there she always has something that looks too wonderful to pass up! Thank you for always having such a variety of food!”

“What a night! You and your team rocked it and made us look like stars. Great working with you and know we will have more chances to work together on future events.”

“I hope you do the food service in heaven.”

“Thank you for including me today in the food waste demonstration/[chef competition] and flattering me with the role of “judge.” I will proudly don the [Stop Food Waste Day] apron the next time I plan an “event” in our own kitchen. I think this is a very worthwhile cause and the statistics you read off are staggering. They, alone, can intimidate a home chef, let alone be the “driver’ for a professional one.”

“I wanted to take this moment to thank you and your staff for making the Athletic Celebration absolutely wonderful. I cannot say enough great things about the event. The food was outstanding and the service was fantastic. Thank you for your help from start to finish.”

“The CulinArt team has been great to work with and has been super flexible. Having worked with other dining services at different institutions, having a dining team that is open to menu changes has been a great resource for our events. ”

“What a wonderful dinner we had tonight for our international families. The food was delicious and well presented as well.”

“The dinner I had tonight at Forman was not only the best meal I have had at Forman in the entire time I have been here, it was the best meal I can remember having anywhere in a long time. [It] was a restaurant quality meal, and it added to the enjoyment that the two young ladies serving me could not have been more charming. What an energizing way to finish a weekend eating a dinner like that.”

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