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Recipes

5 Make-Ahead Recipes To Upgrade Your Next Picnic

From Spanish tortilla to raspberry crostata, these easy and elegant picnic recipes travel beautifully.
5 Make-Ahead Recipes To Upgrade Your Next Picnic

Recipes and text by Michelle Rabin. Produced by Aimee Nishitoba. Photography by Christie Vuong. Food Styling by Ashley Denton. Prop Styling by Christine Hanlon.

We wait all year for the warm weather and bright shining sun; the perfect excuse to pack up a picnic and dine outside. But this summer, we’re saying goodbye to soggy sandwiches and store-bought coleslaw and upgrading to delicious homemade delights that travel well and are best served at room temperature. Here are five recipes for a delicious make-ahead picnic—without a sandwich in sight.

Antipasto Salad

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A plate of antipasto salad on a picnic blanket

The test of a good picnic salad is whether it can make it to the main event without getting soggy. This one gets tossed right before it’s served, but the ingredients are safe to hang out in the cooler for hours. Packed with marinated vegetables, salami and cheese, it’s basically a meal in a bowl. Get this antipasto salad recipe.

Crudités with Dip Duo

Crudités with dip duo: Eggplant and red-pepper dips in yellow bowls, surrounded by vegetable slices
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A few tricks can make a veggies-and-dip platter really sing. First, find the freshest, most seasonal veg; consider fennel wedges, endive, rainbow radishes and heirloom cucumbers. Next, sprinkle the veggies with flaky salt and give them a shower of spices and fresh or dried herbs, such as baby basil, za’atar or sumac. Serve with a homemade dip. These eggplant and red-pepper-muhammara dips are one-way tickets to Flavour Town. Get these dip recipes.

Spanish Tortilla

Side view of a Spanish tortilla with two servings sliced out of the whole, topped with spicy mayonnaise and flaked salt.
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The Spanish tortilla is a staple in bars and restaurants in Spain. Best served at room temperature, it’s the perfect dish to bring to a picnic. Thinly sliced potatoes, onions and eggs are cooked into a thick, tender omelette. Serve with spicy mayonnaise or the eggplant dip. Get this Spanish tortilla recipe.

Lemon Poppy Seed and Raspberry Tart

A checkerboard-patterned lemon poppy seed and raspberry tart with one slice missing

This tart is made with a shortbread crust and a bright raspberry filling—making it half cookie, half pie and 100 percent delicious. Sturdy enough to hold in your hand yet elegant enough to serve at a dinner party, this dessert will impress any guest. Get this raspberry tart recipe.

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An overhead shot of five upgraded picnic dishes on various melamine plates on a picnic blanket.Recipes and text by Michelle Rabin. Produced by Aimee Nishitoba. Photography by Christie Vuong. Food Styling by Ashley Denton. Prop Styling by Christine Hanlon.

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