Celebrating Earth Day with a Picnic for the Planet | Picnic Basket Giveaway

Picnic Basket on Grass, Gourmande in the Kitchen, Picnic for the Planet

Is there any better way to spend a beautiful spring day than to set out a blanket, open up a basket-full of food, and pour a crisp glass of lemonade while soaking in the sun?

These days we rarely make the time to sit on a blanket in the grass, to talk and laugh with friends and enjoy the beauty that surrounds us.

Something magical happens when you combine good food, good company and fresh air.  The feeling of the warm sun on your skin makes you a little sleepy and more inclined to lounge unhurriedly for hours while filling up on food and washing it all down with cold glasses of wine.

Picnic Basket on Grass, Gourmande in the Kitchen, Picnic for the Planet

Whether you’re planning a picnic to celebrate a special occasion or just enjoy a beautiful afternoon here are a few tips to make the day even better:

Picnic Tips:

The Location:

Picnics can be anywhere; a grassy park, the beach or even your own backyard, be creative.

Hollywood Reservoir, Gourmande in the Kitchen, Picnic, Picnic for the Planet, Earth Day

The Essentials:

Remember to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold.  Have one cooler for cold items, one for hot items and a picnic basket for everything else.

Pack your cooler in reverse order so that what you want to eat first is at the top.

Use frozen bottles of water to save space and keep the food cool along with ice packs.

Use cloth napkins and re-usable plates to reduce waste.

The Food:

Choose foods that are easy to eat and travel well.

Prepare just a few main items and pick up some olives, vegetables, fruit and cheese to compliment.

On a chilly day bring hot soup in a thermos.

For a no-mayo potato salad try these Potatoes with Crème Fraiche.

Honey Ginger Lemonade makes a refreshing drink.

Bite sized Fruit and Nut Truffles are a good choice for dessert.

Picnic Recipes Gourmande in the Kitchen

More picnic friendly recipes:

Flax Seed Crackers

Marinated Olives

Watermelon and Tomato Salad

Please join me and a group of friends and fellow bloggers in celebrating Earth Day this year by having a picnic for the planet.  What better way to celebrate the Earth Day than with a picnic?

Earth Day picnic for the planet

That’s just what The Nature Conservancy is planning with Picnic for the Planet, and everyone’s invited to join. Picnic for the Planet is a celebration of the Earth, the food it provides and the importance of making meaningful choices that are healthy for us and good for the planet.  All you have to do is have a picnic, somewhere in the world, on April 22nd.

And to celebrate the occasion we are each giving away a filled Picnic Basket (ARV $75)

Picnic for the Planet Giveaway Basket Gourmande in the Kitchen

Basket contains the following items: Collapsible Coleman canvas basket lined with gingham fabric, Picnic for the Planet water bottle, tee, blanket, and temporary tattoo, Reusable bamboo utensil set by To-Go Ware, Popchips, Peeled Snacks organic dried fruit, Green and Black chocolate bar, Back to Nature crackers and cookies, Burt’s Bees chapstick.

Required Entry: For a chance to win leave a comment here, whatever you’d like. For example, tell me what your favorite picnic food is.


The winner is Krissy Minter.  Congrats Krissy!

The required entry must be done otherwise any extra entries will not count.

Extra Entries:

1. “Like” Gourmande in the Kitchen on Facebook.*

2. Follow @gourmandeinthek on Twitter and tweet the following : Celebrate Earth Day w/ a Picnic & #Win a Filled Picnic Basket Worth $75 from @nature_org & @gourmandeinthek http://bit.ly/picnic12 #picnic12

3. Like The Nature Conservancy on Facebook.

4. Follow @nature_org on Twitter.

5. Follow Sylvie | Gourmande in the Kitchen on Pinterest. *

6. Subscribe to Gourmande in the Kitchen updates by email, or subscribe to my RSS feed.*

PLEASE REMEMBER: Leave a separate comment for EACH of your entries or only one entry will be counted.

*If you already follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest and/or already subscribe to Gourmande in the Kitchen let me know as well, since this counts as an entry.
Giveaway starts on 4/16/2012 and will run until 4/22/2012 at 11:59 pm PST.


who are also giving away baskets this week.

Official Rules:
To enter leave a comment.
One winner  with a valid entries will be selected at random. I will email the winner and they will have up to 3 days to claim their prize or another winner will be selected.
One winner will be selected at random to receive one Filled Picnic Basket a $75 value.
The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning.
Sponsors are as follows: http://www.nature.org
For more information about Picnic for the Planet and to host your own picnic please visit http://earthday.nature.org.


  1. Kris D. says

    It’s not really a specific food, but my family loves to take advantage of this time of year when you get Surprise! nice days by hitting the Greek deli on the way home from picking my mom up at work – hummus, pita bread, any other spreads that catch your fancy, meat or spinach pies if they have them, some kind of nice drink, and it’s an instant-picnic and pretty healthy too.

    (As soon as it warms up enough that the snow shovel comes out of the car, we do put a small picnic set in, though – it’s not so much a basket as just a set of plates and utensils neatly packed up, so we don’t have to use plastic and disposable stuff for our spur of the moment picnics.)

    In the last couple of years, when I was still in college and so had a weird schedule, sometimes my dad and I would also grab a pizza and take it to this nice picnic area near our house with the dogs so they could play. Pizza isn’t really traditionally picnic food, but it works well with being eaten outside so you don’t have to worry about a mess, and it’s kind of a father-daughter thing for us. 🙂

    For general picnic ideas and packing thoughts for more ‘traditional’ picnic approaches, I highly recommend folks check out bento blogs – there’s a lot of good ideas that you can scale up to feed more than one person, and fantastic tips on food safety. (I used them a lot when I was in college to pack lunch/dinner because food on campus was $$ and awful.)

  2. says

    I love picnics! It is a great way of relaxing and having a lovely meal while enjoying the landscape. Great tips and post.



  3. says

    You make me love picnics even more! However, I have to admit it’s not one of my habits… but I love it, I really do, so I think I’d better plan more picnics this coming summer!

  4. Kel says

    For picnics I like to pack food already made – so I waste no time preparing while outside.

  5. Maureen says

    I would bring along some tuna salad and other cold cuts or lunch meats and some cut up raw veggies and a dip and some brownies or lemon bars. For beverages it would be lemonade.

  6. Steph says

    Usually when we have a picnic it also includes a hike, so I love to pack a refreshing fruit like watermelon to quench our thirst. Thank you for the chance to win.

  7. Veronica says

    Found your site via Moleskine – thankful I did. Would be a perfect way to share a beautiful spring day with my husband. I can see it now, my husband and I playing on the blanket with our baby girl while watching my older son taking pics of outdoor beauty… ahhhh

  8. says

    My favorite picnic food is baguette with really good cheese (currently obsessed with Red Hawk from Cowgirl Creamery).

  9. Kari says

    It’s hard to imagine a picnic when it’s snowing here. My favorite picnic foods are pretty basic; sandwiches, salad and fruit.

  10. Mary says

    My favorite picnic food would have to be the potato salad…it just wouldn’t be the same without it

  11. says

    Wonderful tips and photos, Sylvie! We often freeze some bottles of water to use as ice packs for the cold food. Then we can drink the icy water when we’re done!

  12. says

    Agreed – picnics are wonderful. I used to pack juice packs and sandwiches when I was 6 and have picnics in an old apple orchard meadow near my house with my two best friends. Magical memories!

  13. says

    The best part about a picnic is that we get to come out of our cubby – hole looking houses to avoid winter and somehow embrace the joy of summer.

  14. Gloria R, says

    Now, to talk about picnics. We live at a small lake in Ohio and this is my favorite thing to do. Picking up some cold cuts, a loaf of fresh French or Italian bread, fresh fruit, bring a few cupcakes and a couple bottles of something to drink and WAM! you have a picnic. Easy, simple and fun. I also like to make up some fancy and easy dishes for special occasions which is what I ran off your watermelon, tomato and feta salad. It sounds delicious!!!!!!!

  15. says

    On picnics I love to take my green salad that is tomatoes, spring onions, cucumbers and avocados. Though after my friend telling me about cucumber sandwiches that might just be my next surprise for the picnic.