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Packing the Perfect Picnic Basket

Picnics are a great way to enjoy the outdoors! There’s nothing like relaxing in the fresh air and enjoying some of your favorite treats. Packing the perfect picnic basket makes all the difference for a stress free picnic both during and after! Here’s how to make sure you have everything you need!

Tableware & Utensils

Whether you’re planning a seat at a picnic table or spreading out on the ground, make sure to pack what you need to enjoy your meal! The obvious things like plates, napkins, and utensils are usually a no brainer. The things that are more likely to be forgotten are table cloths, clips to hold on the table cloth, a blanket if you’re sitting on the ground, and serving utensils. Pack all these things in a separate bag such as a grocery bag. Only bring what you need to avoid having to tote excess back with you. If you’re having a picnic with 4 people, there’s no need to haul an entire 100 pack of paper plates. Disposable items are great so you can just deposit them in a trash receptacle on your way out. If you decide not to go with disposables, an additional bag to put dirty items in may be helpful so you aren’t making a mess of other things.


Small bottles of condiments are best so they aren’t taking up tons of space! If all you have are large bottles, putting some in smaller containers such as small Ziploc bowls will save room and allow for better stacking in the basket. What you bring will greatly depend on what you plan to have at your picnic but some of the essentials are typically salt & pepper, ketchup, mustard, mayo, relish, etc. Keep in mind that many of these items will need to be kept cold so you want to include an ice pack, especially for the mayo! Mayonnaise can cause some serious tummy problems when it gets warm and goes bad.


Cleaning up before and after is important when heading out for a picnic! Be sure to bring along things like hand sanitizer or another way to clean your hands before you dig in, especially if your heading out somewhere that doesn’t have running water or restrooms.

After clean up can be simple if you have the right things. As we stated before, disposable tableware and even tablecloths can just be bagged up and deposited in the trash receptacle. If you’re unsure of the facilities, or planning your picnic in an undeveloped area, be sure to bring along trash bags! You can’t be sure there will be a trashcan nearby so you want to be prepared to easily transport what you need to throw away.

Packing The Basket

When you’re packing the basket make sure to go in reverse order as much as you can. Put the items you will need last in the basket first. So this will most likely mean the food will go in first, followed by the tableware and utensils, and then the table cloths or blanket. This way the things you will need to unpack first are right on top and ready to go, and you don’t have to haul anything out before you’re ready!

Packing for a picnic is pretty simple. Sometimes it’s so simple, it’s hard! Try not to overthink it too much! You’ll need to plan accordingly depending on what you’re planning to eat! Write down what you’re having, everything you need to make it, and any condiments you’ll need. This way you can cross things off as you pack it and you’re less likely to forget something.

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