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What to pack for a picnic

Happy family having picnic

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What to pack for a picnic? It isn’t easy to decide what to pack and when you think of a picnic basket you automatically think of a sandwich, but they can be boring.

You could try using different breads, if you’re used to white bread try Rye or wholegrain or better still head for the ciabattas or wraps, the possibilities are endless. Try incorporating a few unusual ingredients such as peppers, gherkins or pickles. When you’ve decided on your filling such as banana and date or tuna with mustard mayo, now it’s time to ditch the calories and save your waistline. Ditch the butter or margarine for salsa, mustard, pickle, low fat mayo and so on. We’ve put together a few simple, low fat picnic inspired ideas:

Chicken, pesto and rocket wrap

Serves: 4

Per serving: 343 calories / 13.4g fat


4 large wraps

4tbsp red pesto

2 grilled chicken breasts, skinned and sliced

Handful of rocket leaves


1) pread each wrap with 1tbsp of the pesto.

2) Add the chicken and rocket leaves.

3) Wrap up and cut in half before serving.


There’s nothing better than a pizza, and it is a healthier alternative to a quiche. Making a pizza from scratch can be a lengthy and time consuming process, to cheat a little buy a ready made base or use a ciabatta bread.

Veggie Heaven Pizza

Serves: 6

Cooking time: 10-15 minutes

Per serving: 137 calories / 4.5g fat


150ml ready-made tomato sauce

1 large ready-made pizza base or ciabatta bread

1 small onion, sliced

1 red pepper, sliced

100g mushrooms, sliced

1tsp mixed herbs

150g mozzarella cheese, grated


1) Spread the tomato sauce evenly over the base.

2) Top with the veg, sprinkle the cheese and herbs on top and bake in a pre-heated oven for 10-15 minutes.


A typical picnic basket contains lots of chicken, but by eating the skin you are adding calories and fat to your diet. Ditching the skin means a healthier alternative, but also means you’re ditching the flavour.

You can cut the costs of the shops by marinating your own chicken at home, use bbq, teriyaki or tikka sauce to add flavour.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Serves: 4

Cooking time: 5-10 minutes

Per serving: 194 calories / 1.1g fat


2tbsp Worcestershire sauce

2tbsp white wine vinegar

2tbsp honey

2tbsp brown sauce

4tbsp tomato ketchup

400g skinless chicken breast, cut into strips


1) Mix all the ingredients except the chicken, in a bowl. Add the chicken and mix thoroughly to ensure all of the chicken is coated. Cover and chill for 3 hours.

2) Grill for 5-10 minutes, turning occasionally until cooked. Now serve.

Chicken and rocket wrap


Dips and chips are often found in a picnic, but they are loaded with calories and fat. Opt for the healthy alternative such as taramasalata and houmous. Guacamole and salsa are the best options. Save your waistline and swap the tortillas and crisps for wholemeal pitta and veg sticks.


Serves: 4

Per serving: 26 calories / 0g fat


1 cucumber, de-seeded and grated

150g fat free Greek yoghurt

1 garlic clove crushed

Juice and zest of half a lemon

Salt and pepper


1) Place the cucumber in a serve and squeeze out any excess fluids.

2) Mix the cucumber with the remaining ingredients. Cover and chill before serving.


On hot summer days lettuce is often left warm and limp, which is no good for a salad. By packing cherry tomatoes baby sweetcorn your snacks won’t go soggy. Try a Greek salad, chunks of cucumber, red onion and pepper, cherry tomatoes and olives topped with fetter should keep its taste and texture hours. For a more substantial picnic salad, add chopped veg and chicken, harm or tuna to pasta or brown rice.

Tuna and sweetcorn pasta salad

Serves: 4

Per serving: 259 calories / 9.4 micrograms g fat


300g cooked wholewheat pasta

200g can of sweetcorn, drained

200g can of tuna in brine, drained

15 cherry tomatoes, quartered

4tbsp red pesto


1) Mix all the ingredients together.

2) Cover and chill before serving.

Tuna and Sweetcorn Pasta



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