Picnic Essentials Checklist

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(Last Updated On: September 4, 2019)

Disclosure: I received one or more of the products listed below for review. All opinions are my own and picnic fun are 100% my own!
Picnic Essentials

Picnic Essentials Checklist

School is out (or almost out if you aren’t yet!) and Summer is here!  That means Summer FUN!  For us, that means spending time outside, enjoying the weather, and playing with our friends.  We love planning picnics.  They are the perfect way to plan for a day of fun…all day!  Just pack your essentials and you will be prepared for hours of fun 🙂

Here are the items on my Picnic Essentials Checklist:

Picnic Essentials


It should be large enough to hold all your picnic-goers and food. I recommend one that folds up easily, is easy to clean, and being waterproof is a bonus. You will see the OneStepAhead Beach Blanket pictured throughout this post…because we LOVE it! We love that it is waterproof (the kids thoroughly tested this out by spilling water on it over and over and loved watching it bead up), soft, and is reversible! We can have cool stripes or brown. It also folds up easily into it’s compact tote. If you spend a lot of time on the beach, you HAVE to check out this Sand-Away Beach Sheet, it is super lightweight and it actually repels SAND!

Picnic Essentials


You need something to bring all your goodies in! I suggest an easy to carry cooler bag.

Picnic Essentials

Food, Snacks and Drinks!

Picnic Items

What is a picnic without the food and drink? Be sure to pack casual foods like sandwiches, bagels, Crunch Pak Apples, carrots, etc.

Picnic Essentials

You will want items that you can eat without utensils and be sure to pack in reusable bags (less waste!).  I like the Bumkins Snack bags from OneStepAhead, they are cute and great for snacks and even your sunglasses and keys!  They are also machine washable 🙂

Picnic Packing Essentials

Ice/Ice packs

Be sure there is a way to keep the cool items cool. If you don’t have an ice pack, freeze a bottle water or two! And when they start to defrost, you can drink them 🙂

Utensils if needed and napkins

Picnic Items

Be sure to Cleanup

Don’t leave a mess behind!

Picnic Essentials

Towels if needed

If you plan on sending some time in the water, grab a towel or two to bring along. This Fast Dry Hooded Towel is a perfect option because it is REALLY lightweight, so lightweight you won’t even believe it’s a towel! It folds up small and is perfect for on-the-go and travel.

Picnic Essentials

Most importantly, Enjoy your Day!

Seeing smiles on everyone’s faces is the best feeling ever, isn’t it?

Picnic Essentials

What are some of your tips for Planning the Perfect Picnic?

Picnic Essentials Checklist on Food Wine Sunshine

Make sure to check out these 10 Summer Must Haves, so that you are completely ready for Summer Fun!

Summer Must Haves

Check out OneStepAhead on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest to stay up to date with everything your child needs to have fun and stay healthy!

And be sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google + and Instagram for more family fun!

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67 thoughts on “Picnic Essentials Checklist

  1. Make a list take a blanket and pick a place were you and the kids can have fun may be together

  2. Thanks for the great tips. We plan on going to the park a lot and these tips will come in handy. Picnics are such a great way to spend time with your family and they are so much fun where ever you have them.

  3. This is a great check list for picnics! I pinned it! Looking forward to picnics with my grandchildren this summer.

  4. We love going on picnics! Some meat, cheese, fruit and some great bread and we are ready to go!

  5. Funny, Now that my boys are 18 and 22 they say some of their best memories are from the (what they said then) ‘stupid picnic’ ‘s I made them go on. I found a book, I think it’s in every major area called 50 Hikes in 50 miles. We explored a lot, found hidden gems in our community, picnic ‘d in beautiful places – Oh, and I am an artist so I took watercolor tubes, brushes and a pad of watercolor paper with us too – I now have 10 year old+ watercolors done by the boys of the places we explored together. I feel a blog post coming on! LOL With a smile, Carlyn in South Tampa 🙂

    1. I LOVE this. Totally makes me smile, thank you Carolyn! I love that your boys remember those times and cherish them. I hope that mine say the same when they get older. And I would love to see those painting sometime – they sound BEAUTIFUL!!

  6. Absolutely, most importantly enjoy the day!!!! Hope you have many great picnics and days in the summer ahead. Thanks for sharing via #FridayShareFest

  7. My favorite summertime picnic must-have is the waterproof sheet. They are a must for wet grassy areas and even concrete next to pool.

  8. Blanket/Sheet is the most important last time I forgot it. Will not make that mistake again lol

  9. The waterproof blanket is an awesome idea, especially if its a beach picnic! Would love one of those!

  10. My most essential item for a picnic are good cheeses and fruits. Of course a good bottle of wine wouldn’t be refused.

  11. Great post! We go hiking every saturday and have a lil mini picnic in the woods! I have a cooler bag similar to yours (Not as nice Lol!) and that is a definite NEED. I’d never be able to carry some cumbersome cooler through the woods. I can’t believe I’ve never thought of freezing water bottles, totally having a blonde moment on that one! So thank you for that tip!

  12. I love picnics in the park or the beach but got to have sun tanning lotion on all the time or I get burnt like a lobster!

  13. the sand-away beach blanket looks great!! something that repels SAND? that sounds perfect! i’m hoping to take a trip to the beach one of these days, too! 🙂

  14. Since we like to picnic on the beach, a blanket is essential. I think the Sand-Away Beach Sheet sounds like a great idea.
    Thank you!

  15. My must have item for picnics or beach days is a cooler but now I think I need a beach sheet. I love that it repels sand.

  16. What great ideas and I really love the OneStepAhead Beach Blanket as it’s waterproof, so nice and thanks!!

  17. My must have is sunscreen because when I was younger I didn’t use it and am paying for that sun damage now. I bring extra spray for everyone to use.

  18. Great tips. I am a big fan of having blankets, and no matter how many I have there is never enough. I have a blanket just like your stripped one with the black edging. It is the best blanket, as it has some cushion to it so even on hard ground it is still really soft.

  19. First off, we need sandwiches! Lots of cheese and meat. Next we need a nice big blanket to fit us on and a cooler to keep our drinks nice and cool! :] Also a camera to make memories

  20. Great Tips! I always take all these with me beaucse we do impromto picnics all the time, but I add some kind of cleaner as well for sticky hands and or bags/ tables.

  21. Picnic food can be a wide range of all enjoyable tasty choices. I have very few choices when dealing with mosquitos and ticks. I can’t tell you how many friends have suffered with lyme disease within their families., sometimes more than once.

  22. Great check lists & tips. Love going on impromptu picnics. I keep the essentials packed and ready to go then all I have to do is add food and off we head!

  23. My must have is my family and good food, just being able to escape life for a little bit. Leave the cell phones at home and just have fun together

  24. We live in Texas so a cooler is a must-have for any picnic here. Thanks for the other good tips.

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