17 Vegan Picnic Ideas for a Perfect Outdoor Feast

Picnics are a wonderful way to enjoy the outdoors, and there’s no reason our animal friends can’t join the party too! I’ve put together a list of 17 vegan picnic ideas that will make your next outing delicious and fun for everyone involved.

A colorful spread of vegan dishes on a checkered picnic blanket, surrounded by lush greenery and a bright, sunny sky

Whether you’re a longtime vegan or just looking to try something new, these recipes are sure to delight. From simple sandwiches to creative salads, there’s something for every taste and occasion. Let’s get packing and enjoy some sunny days with tasty vegan treats!

1. Chickpea Salad Sandwiches

Chickpea salad sandwiches are a tasty and easy vegan option for picnics. I love how simple they are to make and how they satisfy my craving for a hearty, flavorful sandwich.

To start, you need a can of chickpeas. Drain and rinse them well. Then, mash the chickpeas with a fork or potato masher. It’s okay to leave some whole for texture.

Next, mix in your favorite ingredients. I like adding vegan mayonnaise, chopped celery, and pickles. A little pickle juice adds a nice tang. Season with garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

If you want more flavor, try adding finely chopped bell pepper, lemon juice, and parsley. This combination makes the salad fresh and zesty.

Assemble your sandwiches by spreading the chickpea mixture between two slices of bread. I like to add toppings like tomatoes and lettuce for extra crunch. For a gluten-free option, use lettuce wraps instead of bread.

Chickpea salad sandwiches are great because they store well in the fridge. Pack them in a container and they’re ready for your picnic.

You can find more recipe ideas here.

2. Cucumber Mint Lavender Lemonade

A picnic blanket with a spread of vegan snacks, including a pitcher of cucumber mint lavender lemonade, surrounded by nature

I love bringing refreshing drinks to picnics. Cucumber Mint Lavender Lemonade is one of my favorites.

First, thinly slice a cucumber and add it to a pitcher of cold water.

Next, toss in a handful of fresh mint leaves. These add a cool, crisp flavor.

To give it a unique twist, I use dried lavender. A tablespoon is enough for a subtle taste.

Then, juice a few lemons and mix it in. Fresh lemon juice gives the lemonade its zesty punch.

Finally, sweeten it with some agave syrup. Stir well and add ice.

This drink has a perfect balance of flavors. The cucumber and mint are so refreshing, the lavender adds a floral note, and the lemon gives it tanginess. It’s always a hit at picnics!

3. Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

When it comes to picnics, vegan chocolate chip cookies are always a hit. I love making a batch before heading out. They are quick to prepare and always tasty.

For these cookies, you’ll need flour, baking soda, and salt. In one bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In another bowl, cream together vegan butter and brown sugar until smooth.

Add vanilla and a flaxseed egg to the wet mixture. Mix until combined. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ones. Stir in chocolate chips until evenly distributed.

Chill the dough for about 40 minutes for the best texture. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F during this time.

Once chilled, scoop dough onto a lined baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden around the edges. Let them cool before packing them for your picnic.

Vegan chocolate chip cookies are perfect because they satisfy everyone’s sweet cravings. Plus, they are easy to transport and share. Check out this vegan chocolate chip cookies recipe for more details.

4. Stuffed Mini Peppers

A picnic blanket with an assortment of stuffed mini peppers, surrounded by other vegan picnic dishes

I love bringing stuffed mini peppers to picnics because they’re colorful and tasty. They are also easy to make and pack. You can use sweet mini peppers to create a great mix of flavors.

One recipe I enjoy involves filling the peppers with a mixture of chickpeas and almond mayonnaise. The creamy filling pairs well with the sweetness of the mini peppers.

Another favorite of mine includes a mix of vegan sausage and cheddar cheese. Just cook the sausage, mix it with cream cheese, vegan cheddar, and spices, then spoon it into the peppers. Bake them for a bit and they’re ready to go.

For a bit of a kick, try some spicy and sweet stuffed mini peppers. The cheeze mixture with a hint of spice makes these peppers an exciting bite.

Packing some mini peppers stuffed with olives and herbs will add a Mediterranean feel to your picnic. The combination of olives and herbs with the sweetness of the peppers is fantastic.

5. Jackfruit BBQ Sliders

One of my favorite picnic treats is Jackfruit BBQ Sliders. They are perfect for a summer day out.

To start, heat a pan over medium heat and add a bit of oil. Once hot, toss in some chopped onions and sauté until they turn light brown.

Next, add shredded jackfruit. Season it with salt, pepper, and spices like smoked paprika and garlic powder. Cook for a minute or two.

Pour in some water and vegan BBQ sauce, mixing everything well. Let it simmer for a few minutes until the jackfruit soaks up the sauce.

You can also bake the jackfruit for added texture. Spread it on a baking sheet, drizzle with oil, and bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes.

After cooking, fill slider buns with the BBQ jackfruit. Add coleslaw for a crunchy contrast. The combination is amazing!

Jackfruit BBQ Sliders are flavorful and satisfying. They’re easy to prepare and a crowd-pleaser at any picnic. For more details and recipes, check out these Vegan BBQ Jackfruit Sliders or Jackfruit BBQ Sliders. Enjoy!

6. Fruit Skewers with Coconut Yogurt Dip

I love making fruit skewers for picnics. They’re easy to prepare and always a hit. For these skewers, I like using a mix of strawberries, pineapple, and kiwi.

To make the skewers, I gather all my fruits, wash them thoroughly, and cut them into bite-sized pieces. Then, I thread them onto wooden skewers in an alternating pattern. It’s simple but looks really colorful and fun.

For the dip, I use coconut yogurt. I like the creamy texture and slightly sweet flavor. It pairs perfectly with the fresh fruit. Sometimes, I add a bit of honey or maple syrup to the yogurt for extra sweetness.

To keep the skewers fresh, I make them ahead of time and store them in the fridge. They can stay fresh for up to 6 hours. This way, they are ready to grab and go for the picnic.

Dipping the fruit in coconut yogurt makes it extra special. It’s a healthier option than some other dips and really delicious. If you’re interested, you can check out more tips and ideas for fruit skewers at Simply Delicious.

Fruit skewers with coconut yogurt dip are a great addition to any vegan picnic. They’re refreshing, tasty, and easy to share.

7. Quinoa Tabbouleh

I love adding quinoa tabbouleh to my picnic basket. It’s fresh, light, and super healthy. Quinoa is a great base because it’s full of protein and has a nice, hearty texture.

First, I rinse and cook my quinoa. This usually takes about 15 minutes. Let it cool a bit before adding the other ingredients.

I chop up fresh parsley, tomatoes, and green onions. These add a burst of color and flavor. Sometimes, I also include mint for an extra fresh taste.

For the dressing, I mix lemon juice, olive oil, and a bit of salt. This simple dressing ties everything together. I toss the cooked quinoa with the veggies and dressing.

For a little extra flavor, I might season with some black pepper. Everything gets tossed until it’s well mixed.

I always taste it and adjust the seasoning if needed. More lemon juice or salt can make a big difference.

This dish is perfect for a picnic because it’s best served cold or at room temperature. It’s vegan, gluten-free, and delicious! If you want to try making it, check out this recipe. Enjoy!

8. Avocado Hummus

Avocado hummus is one of my favorite picnic dips. It combines the creamy texture of avocados with the savory taste of traditional hummus.

Making it is simple. Just blend chickpeas, ripe avocados, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and a bit of salt. This mixture turns into a smooth, flavorful dip.

I love pairing avocado hummus with sliced veggies like carrots, bell peppers, and cucumbers. It’s also great with pita bread or crackers.

For a bit of a twist, try adding cumin or paprika. These spices can give the hummus an extra kick. It’s tasty, healthy, and easy to pack for any picnic.

9. Vegetable Rice Paper Rolls

One of my favorite picnic treats is Vegetable Rice Paper Rolls. They’re fresh, light, and easy to make.

To start, I soak the rice paper in water for a few seconds until it’s soft but still firm. Then I lay it on a smooth surface. Hey Nutrition Lady explains that this step is crucial as the rice paper will continue to absorb liquid as you work.

I place a bit of shredded carrots, cucumbers, and avocado in the center. Sometimes I add tofu for extra protein. Folding the bottom of the rice paper up and over the mix, I press it down to seal it, as suggested by The Pesky Vegan.

For added flavor, I often include fresh herbs like mint or cilantro. Then, it’s just a matter of tucking in the sides and rolling it up carefully. Loving It Vegan mentions that the rice paper is sticky enough to hold everything together nicely.

Pairing these rolls with a homemade peanut sauce or soy dipping sauce makes them even better. For the sauce, I mix soy sauce, peanut butter, and a bit of sriracha, similar to the sauce from I Love Vegan.

These Vegetable Rice Paper Rolls are perfect for picnics because they’re portable and healthy. Plus, they look so colorful and inviting, making them a big hit with my friends and family.

10. Roasted Tomato Basil Pasta Salad

I love making Roasted Tomato Basil Pasta Salad for picnics. It’s simple and full of flavor. The tomatoes get sweet and a bit smoky when roasted. They mix perfectly with fresh basil.

I start with cherry tomatoes, slice them in half, and toss them with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Then, I roast them until they are tender and slightly charred.

While the tomatoes are roasting, I cook the pasta. I usually go for something like fusilli or penne. These shapes hold the dressing and bits of roasted tomato well.

For the dressing, I mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, and a touch of mustard for a bit of tanginess.

Once the pasta is cooked and drained, I mix it with the roasted tomatoes and the dressing. To finish, I add a generous handful of fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces.

This salad is great to make ahead of time. It tastes even better after the flavors meld together. Roasted Tomato Basil Pasta Salad is always a hit at my picnics, and it packs well too.

11. Spicy Edamame

I love bringing spicy edamame to picnics. It’s simple and tasty.

First, I steam the edamame until they are tender. Then, I toss them in a mix of soy sauce, garlic, and red pepper flakes. This gives them a spicy kick.

The best part is that they are easy to eat. Just pop the beans out of the pods and enjoy.

Spicy edamame is also healthy. It’s packed with protein and fiber. Plus, it’s a great finger food.

For an extra zest, sometimes I add a squeeze of lime juice. It really brightens up the flavor.

If you’re planning a picnic, definitely consider making this dish. It’s always a hit!

12. Grilled Portobello Mushrooms

I love including grilled portobello mushrooms in my vegan picnics. They are easy to prepare and packed with flavor.

First, I wash the portobello mushrooms and pat them dry. It’s important to remove the stems and pierce the mushrooms with a fork. This helps them absorb the marinade better.

For the marinade, I mix balsamic vinegar, olive oil, oregano, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and a bit of Sriracha. Then, I brush this mixture all over the mushrooms, making sure they are well-coated.

When the grill is hot, I place the mushrooms on it and cook them for about 5-7 minutes on each side. They should be tender and have nice grill marks. The smoky flavor really comes through.

Grilled portobellos make a great addition to any picnic spread. They can be served on their own, added to sandwiches, or even sliced up in a salad. Plus, they’re a hit with both vegans and non-vegans alike.

If you don’t have a grill, you can also bake them. This recipe is versatile and works great no matter how you choose to cook them.

13. Kale Pesto Pasta Salad

One of my favorite picnic dishes is Kale Pesto Pasta Salad. It’s both refreshing and satisfying.

To make it, I start by boiling a large pot of water. I cook the pasta until it’s al dente, which takes about 8-10 minutes. After draining, I rinse it with cold water to cool it down quickly.

While the pasta cooks, I prepare the kale pesto. I remove the kale stems and roughly chop the leaves. Next, I blend the kale, basil, garlic, sunflower seeds, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a food processor until smooth. This mixture creates a vibrant, green pesto that’s delicious.

I like to add some extra ingredients to my salad for more flavor and texture. Sun-dried tomatoes and finely chopped broccoli are great additions. For a bit of crunch, I sometimes toss in some green onions.

When everything is ready, I combine the pasta, broccoli, and sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl. I mix in the kale pesto, making sure everything is well-coated. This dish can be served immediately or chilled in the fridge for a few hours.

For the full recipe details, check out Kale Pesto Pasta Salad. It’s a great option for a vegan picnic.

14. Vegan Caprese Skewers

I love making vegan caprese skewers for picnics because they are super easy and delicious. They always impress my friends and family. The fresh flavors of tomatoes, basil, and vegan mozzarella come together perfectly.

To start, I slice the vegan mozzarella balls in half. Then, I grab a cherry tomato and thread it onto a toothpick or small skewer.

Next, I add a folded basil leaf and a piece of vegan mozzarella. I repeat this process until I have used all the ingredients.

Once the skewers are assembled, I arrange them on a serving platter. Then, I drizzle them with a balsamic glaze, adding a touch of sweetness and tanginess.

I sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper on the skewers for extra flavor. The combination of ingredients makes these skewers a refreshing treat.

These vegan caprese skewers are perfect for any picnic, especially on a warm day. They are light, fresh, and easy to eat with your hands.

For more detailed instructions, you can check out this recipe.

15. Rainbow Veggie Wraps

A colorful array of fresh vegetables and herbs arranged on a wooden picnic table, with vibrant rainbow-hued wraps neatly stacked nearby

I love making Rainbow Veggie Wraps because they’re colorful and healthy. You can use any veggies you like, but I usually grab bell peppers, cucumbers, carrots, and red cabbage.

First, slice the veggies into thin strips. Then, take a large tortilla and spread a layer of hummus on it. The hummus adds flavor and keeps the veggies in place.

Next, arrange the veggie strips evenly on the tortilla. Make sure to mix up the colors for that rainbow effect. Roll up the tortilla tightly, keeping the filling inside.

To keep the wrap together, I sometimes add a bit more hummus on the edge before sealing it. Once rolled, cut the wrap into smaller pieces for easy eating.

These wraps are great for picnics. They are easy to pack and don’t need to be heated. Plus, they are a hit with both adults and kids. For more ideas on how to make them, check out this recipe for Epic Vegan Rainbow Veggie Wraps.

I always make sure to pack a few napkins since they can get a bit messy, especially if they are loaded with extra veggies.

16. Peanut Butter Energy Balls

Peanut Butter Energy Balls are one of my favorite treats to bring for a picnic. They are easy to make and pack a lot of energy.

I start by mixing oats, peanut butter, chocolate chips, flaxseed, and honey in a bowl. Then, I let the mixture chill in the fridge for about 10-15 minutes.

After the mixture has set, I roll it into bite-sized balls. They are perfect for quick snacks during outdoor activities. These energy balls can be stored in the fridge for up to two weeks, making them a handy treat to prep ahead.

For a fun twist, I sometimes roll them in hemp seeds or add dried fruits for extra flavor. I love how versatile and customizable these little snacks are.

You can find a good recipe to follow at Gimme Delicious. They are simple yet delicious, perfect for a day out in the sun with friends and family.

17. Stuffed Grape Leaves

One of my favorite picnic recipes is stuffed grape leaves. They are delicious and easy to pack. These little rolls are perfect for snacking on the go.

First, I rinse the grape leaves to remove extra salt. Next, I lay each leaf on a cutting board, with the vein side up and the smooth side down.

For the filling, I mix rice, onions, herbs, and spices. I place a spoonful of the mixture in the center of each grape leaf. To wrap, I fold the bottom flaps over the filling, then the sides, and roll it up tightly.

Then, I layer the stuffed leaves in a pot, adding vegetable broth and lemon juice to cook them until they are tender.

Stuffed grape leaves can be enjoyed hot or cold, making them a versatile picnic option. They are also a great finger food that everyone can enjoy. For a full recipe, check out these vegan stuffed grape leaves.

I love bringing these to picnics because they are flavorful and satisfying. Plus, they are a nutritious option that fits well with a vegan diet.

Health Benefits of a Vegan Picnic

Eating a vegan picnic provides a tasty way to enjoy a variety of nutrient-rich foods while also benefiting the environment. By choosing plant-based options, we support personal health and reduce our ecological footprint.

Nutrient-Rich Foods

A vegan picnic often includes a colorful array of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. These foods are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support overall health. For example, leafy greens provide iron and calcium, while berries are high in vitamin C and fiber.

Whole grains like quinoa and brown rice offer complex carbohydrates and protein to keep energy levels stable. Legumes, such as beans and lentils, are excellent sources of protein and fiber, aiding digestion and maintaining blood sugar balance.

Including a variety of colors in your picnic spread not only makes it visually appealing but ensures you get a wide range of nutrients. For instance, the red in tomatoes provides lycopene, and the orange in carrots offers beta-carotene. Finger foods like veggie sticks with hummus are not only delicious but also nutrient-dense vegan picnic ideas.

Low Environmental Impact

Choosing a vegan picnic helps reduce the environmental impact of your meal. Plant-based diets typically require fewer natural resources compared to diets high in animal products. Growing plants uses less water and land, and generates fewer greenhouse gases.

Avoiding meat and dairy helps lower pollution levels. Livestock farming is a major contributor to methane emissions, a potent greenhouse gas. By opting for plant-based foods, we can help reduce the carbon footprint of our meals.

Additionally, many vegan foods are more sustainable because they can be grown locally. This reduces the need for transportation, further cutting down on fossil fuel use. Enjoying fresh, local produce not only tastes great but also supports local farmers and the environment.

By integrating these nourishing and sustainable choices into our picnic, we can enjoy a meal that’s good for both our health and the planet.

Essential Tips for Planning a Vegan Picnic

A colorful picnic blanket spread with vegan food, including fresh fruits, sandwiches, salads, and plant-based snacks. A basket filled with reusable plates, utensils, and a thermos of refreshing drinks completes the scene

Planning a vegan picnic involves selecting a spot that fits your needs and packing the right items to make your outing enjoyable and stress-free. From finding a shade-covered area to bringing essential picnic gear, these tips will ensure a perfect picnic day.

Choosing the Right Location

When planning a vegan picnic, location is key. I always look for a spot that offers enough space to spread out and relax. Parks with big trees provide shade, which is great for keeping cool and protecting food from spoiling.

Another thing I consider is the availability of amenities like bathrooms and picnic tables. It makes setting up much simpler. I also like to choose places that have activities nearby, like walking trails or playgrounds, to keep everyone entertained.

Before heading out, I check if the park allows picnics and if there are any restrictions on bringing in food or pets. Some places might have rules about open flames or where you can eat. Keep this in mind to avoid any surprises.

Pack Smart: What to Bring

Packing for a vegan picnic involves some planning to make sure you have everything you need. I start with a sturdy picnic basket or cooler to keep food fresh. It’s important to pack foods that travel well and don’t need to be reheated.

Finger foods like sandwiches, wraps, and salads are perfect. I also include things like hummus, veggie sticks, and fruits, which are easy to eat and share. Don’t forget wet wipes or hand sanitizer, especially if there are no sinks around.

Bringing the right gear is just as crucial. A blanket or mat for sitting, reusable utensils, plates, and cups are essential. I also pack napkins, extra zip-top bags for leftovers, and a trash bag to clean up easily. Finally, remember to bring plenty of water and sunscreen to stay hydrated and protected from the sun.

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