Picnic season is in full swing! Kick off the season with these healthy and delicious recipes to bring to your next picnic.
Find a shady spot in the park, roll out a blanket and enjoy! (But, don’t forget bug spray or sunscreen to stay sun-safe)
A picnic isn’t complete without a tasty dip. Skip the store bought dips and try making your own homemade hummus dip. Pair with pita chips or raw vegetables!
Yields: 4 cups
- 30 oz canned chickpeas, drained with liquid reserved
- 1/3 cup chickpea liquid, or more, as needed
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Olive oil
- Fresh parsley
- Add all the ingredients to a high-powered blender and secure the lid
- Turn the blender on high for 30 seconds (or more for a creamier texture). Add more chickpea liquid for a softer hummus, if desired
- Add the hummus to a serving plate or sealed container and garnish with olive oil, paprika and fresh parsley
Mediterranean pasta salad
This pasta salad is an easy-to-make, versatile and refreshing addition to your next picnic. The tangy vinaigrette dressing and fresh basil adds a flavourful twist to the dish too!
Yields: 6 servings
- 3 cups uncooked fusilli pasta (or any pasta of your choice)
- 2 heaping cups cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 cups arugula
- 1 cup cucumbers, sliced into thin half moons
- 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 cup basil leaves, torn
- 1/2 cup parsley, minced
- 1/2 cup mint, chopped
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- 1/4 cup olive oil, more for drizzling
- 3 tbsps lemon juice
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp herbes de Provence, or dried Italian seasoning
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Prepare the pasta according to the package directions, or until slightly past al dente.
- Make the dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, mustard, garlic, herbes de Provence (mixture of dried herbs), red pepper flakes, and salt. (Note: the dressing will have a strong flavor, it’ll mellow once it coats all of the pasta salad ingredients).
- Drain the pasta, toss it with a little olive oil (so that it doesn’t stick together) and let the pasta cool to room temperature. Transfer to a large bowl with the tomatoes, chickpeas, arugula, cucumbers, feta cheese, basil, parsley, mint and pine nuts. Pour the dressing and toss to coat. Season to taste with more lemon, salt, pepper and/or a drizzle of olive oil, if desired, and serve.
This wrap will liven up your picnic sandwich game. This classic chicken shawarma recipe is made with simple and fresh ingredients and guaranteed to be a staple in your go-to picnic recipes. For more sandwich recipe inspirations, see our favourite spring sandwiches!
Tip: To avoid the pitas from getting soggy, pack veggies and yogurt sauce separately to transport then build your wrap at your picnic location!
Yields: 6 wraps
- 4 oz olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 6 chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed and crushed
- Pinch of crushed chilli flakes
- 6 pitas
- Lettuce, chopped
- Cherry tomatoes, halved
- Cucumber, thinly sliced
- Make chicken: In a large bowl, whisk together oil, lemon juice, garlic, and seasonings. Add chicken and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to overnight.
- Preheat oven to 428°F, line a baking tray with parchment paper. Add onion to marinade and toss to coat. Remove chicken and onion from marinade and place on prepared baking tray. Bake until chicken is golden and cooked through. Let chicken rest on cutting board for 5 minutes, then thinly slice.
- Make yogurt sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, oil and garlic. Season with salt and a pinch of chilli flakes. To serve as a pita, top pitas with chicken, onion, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and yogurt sauce.
Which picnic recipe was your favourite? Take a picture of your meal and tag us on social media @UHNfoundation.