Healthy Summer Picnic Recipes

Find healthy, delicious summer picnic recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

No-Cook Black Bean Salad

Rating: 5 stars 9
A classic black bean salad is a must for picnics and potlucks. This vegan version gets its creaminess from blended avocado. Any mix of salad greens will work well, but try arugula if you want to give this hearty salad a peppery kick.
Hilary Meyer
By Hilary Meyer

Sunomono (Japanese Cucumber Salad)

Rating: 4.5 stars 6
This version of sunomono uses more readily available English or slicing cucumbers, but if you live near an Asian market you could substitute Japanese cucumbers. Some recipes call for salting the cucumbers first, but we found that squeezing them in paper towels removed enough excess moisture without adding additional sodium. This Japanese-inspired salad is cool, crisp and simply delicious.
By Jessie Price

Blueberry-Lemon Ricotta Pound Cake

Rating: 4.5 stars 59
This healthy pound cake recipe isn't just delicious--it also only requires one bowl to make. For the best cake texture, be sure to beat the sugar and butter together long enough in Step 2 to look creamy--the time it takes to get there varies according to the type of electric mixer you have. Serve with brunch or alongside a cup of coffee in the afternoon.
By Stacy Fraser

Chilaquiles Casserole

Rating: 5 stars 77
Our version of this enchilada-style chilaquiles casserole is packed with nutritious beans and vegetables. Canned prepared enchilada sauce has great flavor and keeps the prep time quick. It can vary in heat level so find one that suits your taste. If you want to eliminate the heat altogether, try a green enchilada sauce (which is often milder than red) or substitute two 8-ounce cans of plain tomato sauce.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Tomato, Cucumber & White-Bean Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Rating: 5 stars 4
This no-cook bean salad is a delicious way to use summer's best cherry or grape tomatoes and juicy cucumbers for a light dinner or lunch. Fresh basil elevates an easy vinaigrette recipe that dresses up this simple salad into something extraordinary.
By Carolyn Casner

Fresh Apple Squares

Rating: 3.5 stars 5
One batch of dough does double duty as both the crust and streusel topping to make one of the easiest desserts around.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Cucumber-Yogurt Salad

Rating: 5 stars 3
A refreshing accompaniment to a main course of meat or fish, this cucumber-yogurt salad also makes a tasty filling for pita bread. If the cucumbers are grated instead of chopped, this mixture can be served as a dip.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Pasta Salad with Black Beans & Avocado Dressing

Rating: 4.5 stars 9
Everyone will love this pasta salad recipe that's packed with tomatoes, corn and black beans. We lighten up the creamy dressing with avocado for a healthier version of a picnic favorite.
A portrait of Breana Killeen, M.P.H., RD
By Breana Lai Killeen, M.P.H., RD

Classic Dill Chicken Salad

Rating: 5 stars 2
We lightened up the creamy dressing in this healthy chicken salad recipe with a combo of mayonnaise and plain Greek yogurt. Dill, grapes, celery and walnuts make up this classic chicken salad but feel free to experiment with your favorite fruit, vegetables and herbs. Serve it open-face on toasted bread or scoop it on top of fresh salad greens.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Quinoa Lasagna

Rating: 4.5 stars 15
This healthy quinoa lasagna recipe has a layer of quinoa (rather than noodles) along with vegetables, cheese and herbs. Though it tastes like comfort food, don't worry, this quinoa lasagna recipe is not too heavy--you'll still have room for dessert. To save time, use your favorite jarred tomato sauce in this vegetarian lasagna. (Adapted from “Quinoa Revolution” by Patricia Green and Carolyn Hemming; Pintail Books, 2012.)
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Tortellini Salad

Rating: 5 stars 4
A tomato-rich dressing boosts the flavor and lowers calories and fat in this tortellini salad (the dressing is also great on green salads or grilled fish). Roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts and sun-dried tomatoes add a good dose of vitamins A, C and fiber.
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By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Easy Summer Picnic

Grab a blanket and head to the park! This delicious summer picnic spread is best served with a sparkling wine, such as Cava or Prosecco.
A portrait of Breana Killeen, M.P.H., RD
By Breana Lai Killeen, M.P.H., RD
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Inspiration and Ideas

Almond Butter-Quinoa Blondies
People likely won't even notice that these delicately nutty, just a little chocolaty, blondies are gluten-free. They use quinoa flour in place of all-purpose flour.
Cherry, Wild Rice & Quinoa Salad
This whole-grain wild rice and quinoa salad recipe is perfect for toting to summer potlucks. If you can find red quinoa, it's particularly pretty.
Vegetarian Taco Salad
Rating: 4.5 stars 31

Nobody will miss the meat in this colorful, zesty vegetarian taco salad. The rice and bean mixture can be made ahead and the salad quickly assembled at mealtime. Recipe by Nancy Baggett for EatingWell.