The weather is warming up and summer produce is officially here, which means that picnic season is upon us. And there’s no better way to greet summer than with a picnic basket full of Imperfect goodies! Here are some of our favorite ways to turn your next Imperfect box into the ultimate picnic spread. Be warned, once you start succeeding at picnics, you may find this newfound confidence spilling over into potlucks, barbecues, and tailgate parties, too!
- Potato salad: We know, we know, potato salad is boring and bland, and the idea of a starch swimming in mayonnaise doesn’t exactly bring to mind the beach body you envisioned for the summer. The good news is that potato salad doesn’t have to be underwhelming by definition and we invite you to use your next batch of potatoes to discover why. Using fresh herbs and acidic components instead of globs of mayo is the first step towards reforming your wayward potato salad. Come join us and impress your picnic companions by imagining a lighter, more delicious potato salad!
- Roasted vegetable dip: Making a roasted veggie dip is a great way to get the most of your box and make a satisfying yet healthy side dish with minimal stress. The beauty of dips like this is that you can make them ahead of time and take care of other picnic prep while the veggies roast. Once they’re sweet and tasty, all you have to do is blend your roasted veggies with a few choice spices, throw them into a container, and bring along your favorite dipping items like chips, or some Imperfect carrots and celery stalks! What are you waiting for? This roasted bell pepper hummus isn’t going to make itself!
- Homemade Pickles: Pickles are a wonderfully refreshing accent to any picnic. Whether they’re paired with cheeses, cured meats, or sandwiches, pickles bring an irresistible tang and crunch to an outdoor meal. It’s always amazing to note how many compliments homemade pickles attract, despite being so simple and easy to make! We love making pickles with leftover carrots, hot peppers, or cucumbers, but honestly, the sky’s the limit when it comes to pickles. Try making quick-pickled vegetables today!
- Kale salad: Before you stop reading, let’s acknowledge that kale salad has a decidedly mixed reputation. Kale is unapologetically fibrous and earthy and while you may scoff at the absurdity of getting your leafy greens a massage before you get one, the reality is that you have to do something to soften up the kale. Thinly slicing it helps, but the best move, in our experience, is to actually dress the salad ahead of time. This is why kale salad is the ultimate picnic dish: the texture and flavor will improve if you make and dress the salad a few hours before you eat it! Reputation rescued, kale salad can once again be a beloved side dish that’s just as healthy as it is delicious! Marinate your kale into a super salad!
- Berries: Mitch Hedberg once said that an escalator cannot break, it can only become stairs. That’s how we feel about berries. If you can’t find the time or motivation to make a delicious cherry tart with them, you can always just snack on them as a tasty and healthy dessert. Berries remind us that there is no need to overthink picnic prep. Sometimes throwing a basket of delicious cherries or blueberries in your backpack is all the work that you need to put into dessert.