Have you decided to head out, on the 4th of July, to watch fireworks at a special event?
Then, why not take your patriotic picnic with you!
If that sounds good, I’ve created some fun, functional and not-too-perishable ideas to inspire you.
I prefer to pack picnics individually ~ they’re so much easier to carry & hand out.
One issue… lunchbox-sized coolers have gotten very expensive ($10 & up)!
So, consider opting for an inexpensive summer staple to hold your picnic goodies… the sand pail!
Keeping in mind that you’ll be carrying heavier things in your pails, purchase the largest, sturdiest version you can find.
[I found this one at Christmas Tree Shops for $2.97]
Then, make them patriotically perfect by adding window clings, foil star garland and a little ribbon.
Also, if you line it with a little plastic wrapping (I used leftover Christmas gift basket wrap), the pail exterior should stay fairly dry.
For a summer beverage, make some homemade lemonade. It’s easy & CLICK HERE to view the recipe I use.
Decorate larger (24-oz) BALL jars with stickers & ribbon, add your homemade drink delight
(leaving a couple of inches at the top -without liquid- to allow for expansion), place the lid on and pop them in the freezer.
[I found the “CELEBRATE” sticker for 50 cents @ Michaels Craft Store]
This frozen concoction will slowly dissolve into a slushy treat, while it doubles as an ice pack to keep your entire lunch fresh & cool.
If you prefer a caffeinated drink, add milk and sugar to a pot of coffee, which can also be frozen.
And because it’s always nice to have a little cookie for dipping, use candy melts & patriotic sprinkles to coat an artisan rolled wafer.
Make it festive by adding a patriotic toothpick on one end before wrapping it up in a plastic bag to tuck in your lunch pail.
For the main course, consider a grilled Ciabatta sandwich. Click HERE to see the printable recipe for my version.
It’s perfect for a picnic in the summer heat because I use olive oil instead of mayonnaise.
Once it’s grilled, wrap it up in parchment paper (to seal in freshness) and tie closed with a patriotic ribbon.
My favorite ingredient is the fresh basil, which is why it’s a great herb to grow in your garden…
Here’s a look at the entire sandwich process, in photos (cheese added right before final grilling):
For a healthy side dish… use a star-shaped cookie cutter or free-hand small, star shapes out of watermelon slices.
In the bottom of a recycled jam jar, place a small amount of yogurt, mixed with small pieces of fresh,
ripe pineapple and a tablespoon of the (pineapple’s) juice.
On top of the yogurt mix, layer the star-shaped pieces of watermelon, blueberries, fresh pineapple and blackberries.
Close the lid and add a patriotic ribbon embellishment.
And finally…. it’s dessert time!!!
I love that cupcakes are such an individual and ready-to-eat dessert.
And to keep with a patriotic theme, strawberry is the perfect flavor and color!
Also, if you add freshly crushed strawberries into the cake batter, they’ll be extra moist!
After frosting, top them with a single blueberry & tiny US flag for a perfectly patriotic dessert.
Now, I’m thinking how well that coffee drink would go with the cupcake, so what the heck… I’ll probably make both! LOL
To make your cupcake portable, position it on the underside of the lid to a sturdy plastic cup
(ask your local fast food retailer, i.e. Starbucks for a couple of these) and place the cup over it, locking it in place.
Tuck all of your goodies inside each of your embellished sand pails, along with a fan because it’s ALWAYS hot!
Finally, add a clean tea towel or bandanna (over the top) because it will keep the chill inside and double as your napkin.
Grab your sparklers, picnic pails and head out to enjoy a local patriotic celebration!
FINAL NOTE: I love these ideas because using glass containers creates very little waste.
Plus, the bucket is perfect for storing the used wrappers, glass jars, etc. AND to utilize as a carrier on the way home too!
Enjoy the Fun and the Fireworks!
CLICK on the Fireworks photo (below) to enjoy a one-minute fireworks show… set to music 🙂