Vegan Picnic Foods - What Foods To Include?
Catering for your vegan friends at a picnic doesn't need to be a complicated task. Much like the best vegan party foods, you'll find that there are plenty of snacks, sweets, mains and healthy dishes you can make to satisfy everyone.
Here are some vegan meals and inspiration to help make your picnic a success:
- Fresh and dried fruit – There's nothing like biting into a freshly-picked apple or juicy strawberry while enjoying the warm sun at a picnic. Or, enjoy deliciously healthy dried fruits like dates, figs and apricots. Fresh and dried fruits are the perfect way to satisfy your sweet tooth while getting a good dose of important vitamins and minerals. Plus, they require no cooking - just bring them along in a basket and you're good to go.
- Vegan sandwiches – Sandwiches are a picnic staple and there's no shortage of delicious vegan sandwich options. Try making a fancy classic cucumber or watercress sandwich or get creative with ingredients like roasted red capsicum, spinach and hummus.
- Nuts and seeds – When it comes to vegan picnic snack foods, nuts and seeds are your best bet. They're high in protein, rich in healthy fats and fibre - making them a great picnicker's choice.
- Trail mix – If you're looking for a snack that's both healthy and yummy, trail mix is the perfect option. Make your own with nuts, dried fruit, seeds and vegan chocolate chips - or buy it pre-made in convenient single-serving packages.
- Vegan lentil or black bean burgers – Burgers are an easy and portable vegan meal option that can be served hot or cold. Try making your own vegan burgers at home, or buy them pre-made and just throw them on the BBQ for a few minutes before you head out.
- Veggie chips – If you're looking for something crunchy, make your own veggie chips. Vegan kale chips, chickpea chips or vegan kale chips are full of nutrients and are some of the best vegan snacks to take on your next picnic.
- Vegan lollies - don't skimp on these sweet treats at your next picnic. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that there are plenty of delicious vegan lollies and confectionery that you're probably already enjoying by the handful.
- Smoothies – Smoothies are a delicious and nutritious vegan picnic food option that's easy to transport in the car and travels well in reusable smoothie cups. What about a plant-based smoothie using homemade nut milk, nut butter, banana and raspberries? You've got a delicious vegan PB&J smoothie, ready in minutes.
Top Tips For Packing Your Vegan Picnic
When planning a picnic, it’s essential to choose the right foods. You want to ensure that the food is not only delicious but also easy to prepare and pack. Here are some essential tips to consider for your next picnic outing:
- Make the most of your day by choosing foods that can be made in advance.
- If you know it’ll get smooshed on the way, leave it at home.
- Use glass jars, containers and boxes to keep some ingredients separate to avoid a soggy result.
- Bring biodegradable plates and cutlery.
- Prioritise food that is best at room temperature.
- Bring an esky or cold bag for drinks.
- Make sure you bring plenty of water to avoid dehydration.
Food Safety For Vegan Picnics
Since all of these recipes are vegan, there’s less concern about contamination from products like meat, eggs and dairy. However, it is still crucial to practise food safety measures. Here are some tips to make sure your vegan picnic food travels safely and is good for everyone to enjoy:
- Wherever possible, store your food in a cooler. This will provide a more controlled environment, ensuring freshness.
- On hot days, choose a shady spot to keep your food. Direct sunlight can be detrimental.
- Prevent flies and bugs from landing on your food by keeping it covered. Use something like a tea towel, til foil, a small fan or a net covering.
- Remember to keep food and beverage ice separate to avoid any cross-contamination.
By following these guidelines, you can enjoy your vegan meals with peace of mind.
Vegan 7-Layer Mexican Dip
If you want a tasty and nutritious addition to your picnic repertoire, this vegan 7-layer Mexican dip is a real picnic game-changer. Let's get started!
- 1 can of refried beans
- 1 cup of guacamole
- 1 cup of salsa (ensure it's vegan)
- 1 cup of vegan sour cream
- 1 cup of chopped lettuce
- 1 cup of diced tomatoes
- 1 can of black olives (sliced)
- 1 cup of vegan shredded cheese
- Start by spreading the refried beans at the bottom of your serving dish.
- Next, layer the guacamole evenly over the beans.
- Pour the salsa over the guacamole, spreading it evenly.
- Follow that with a layer of vegan sour cream.
- Scatter a layer of chopped lettuce on top of the sour cream.
- Add the diced tomatoes as the next layer.
- Sprinkle the sliced black olives over the tomatoes.
- Finally, top everything off with vegan shredded cheese.
- Cover the dip and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. This will allow the flavours to meld together nicely. Serve with tortilla chips for scooping up the dip and enjoy!
Who can resist a crisp and refreshing coleslaw at a picnic? This Vegan Coleslaw recipe is light, tangy, and incredibly easy to whip up. It's the perfect side dish for any vegan picnic food!
- 1/2 head of green cabbage, shredded
- 1/2 head of red cabbage, shredded
- 2 carrots, grated
- 1/2 cup of vegan mayo
- 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of sugar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large bowl, combine the shredded green cabbage, red cabbage, and grated carrots.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the vegan mayo, apple cider vinegar, and sugar until smooth.
- Pour the mayo mixture over the shredded veggies and mix well until everything is coated evenly. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Refrigerate the coleslaw for at least an hour before serving.
Vegan Fruit Skewers
A sweet, refreshing end to your picnic can be found in these colourful Vegan Fruit Skewers. They're not only easy to make but also an aesthetically pleasing addition to your vegan picnic food spread. Let's get into this simple recipe.
- A variety of your favourite fruits (like strawberries, pineapples, grapes, kiwis, and blueberries)
- Bamboo skewers
- 1/4 cup of agave nectar (optional)
- Fresh mint leaves for garnish (optional)
- Begin by washing all your fruits thoroughly. For larger fruits like pineapples and kiwis, peel them and cut them into bite-sized pieces.
- Thread the fruit pieces onto the bamboo skewers in any order you like. Try to mix colours for a visually appealing result.
- If you wish for a little extra sweetness, drizzle the skewers with agave nectar.
- Garnish with fresh mint leaves if desired.
- Pack these in a container for your picnic. They can be enjoyed fresh or chilled.
Vegan Gluten-Free Brownies
These Gluten-Free Vegan Brownies are fudgy, rich, and incredibly satisfying. A perfect dessert to top off your vegan picnic food collection. Let's dig into the recipe.
- 1 cup of gluten-free flour
- 1 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup of granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1/2 cup of coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce
- 1/4 cup of almond milk
- 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup of vegan chocolate chips
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking dish with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the gluten-free flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and baking powder.
- Combine the melted coconut oil, applesauce, almond milk, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl.
- Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
- Pour the brownie batter into the prepared baking dish and smooth the top with a spatula.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out with a few moist crumbs. Be careful not to overbake!
- Remove the brownies from the oven and let them cool completely in the pan before cutting them into squares.
Vegan Lentil Burgers
Vegan Lentil Burgers are packed with protein and fibre, and they are a flavorful and satisfying vegan picnic food. Let's get into the recipe.
- 1 cup of dried green lentils
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1.5 cups of breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon of soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Rinse the lentils and cook according to package instructions until they are tender. Drain and set aside to cool.
- In a pan, sauté the onions and garlic until the onions are translucent.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked lentils, sautéed onion and garlic, breadcrumbs, soy sauce, and smoked paprika.
- Using a blender or food processor, pulse the mixture until it holds together, but still has some texture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Divide the lentil mixture into patties (approximately 8), and shape them using your hands.
- Heat some vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat. Cook the patties until they are golden brown on each side, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.
- Let the patties cool, and then pack them for your picnic! They can be enjoyed on their own, or in a burger with your favourite vegan toppings.
Vegan Mini Sushi Rolls
Vegan Mini Sushi Rolls are the perfect finger food for your picnic. They are not only tasty but also easy to prepare and carry. Here's the recipe for you.
- 2 cups of sushi rice
- 4 nori sheets
- 1 small cucumber, julienned
- 1 medium carrot, julienned
- 1 ripe avocado, thinly sliced
- Soy sauce for dipping
- Start by cooking the sushi rice according to the package instructions. Once cooked, let it cool down.
- Lay out a nori sheet on a sushi mat or a clean kitchen towel.
- Wet your hands and grab a handful of sushi rice. Press it evenly onto the nori sheet, leaving about an inch at the top free.
- Lay a line of cucumber, carrot, and avocado about one inch up from the bottom of the rice.
- Roll up the sushi tightly using the sushi mat or kitchen towel, starting from the bottom and going up.
- Wet the top edge of the nori sheet with a little water using your fingertip to seal the roll.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the roll into bite-sized pieces.
- Repeat the process with the rest of the ingredients.
- Serve with soy sauce for dipping.
Vegan Pigs in a Blanket
This Pigs in a Blanket recipe is a delightful treat for picnics. They are super easy and quick to make, not to mention delicious!
- 1 packet of vegan hot dogs or sausages
- 1 can of premade vegan croissant dough
- Tomato sauce and mustard for serving
- Start by preheating your oven to the temperature specified on the croissant dough packaging.
- While the oven is heating up, cut each vegan hot dog or sausage in half.
- Unroll the croissant dough and cut it into triangles according to the perforations.
- Roll each vegan hot dog or sausage half in one triangle of dough, starting at the wider end of the triangle.
- Place each wrapped vegan hot dog or sausage on a baking tray.
- Bake in the preheated oven according to the croissant dough packaging instructions, or until the croissant dough is golden brown.
- Let cool a little before serving with ketchup and mustard.