Nothing says summer quite like eating outside, whether you’re gathering your crew for a day at the beach or throwing down a blanket for an outdoor movie screening or concert. In fact, it all seems so romantic in your head, right? What could go wrong? That’s when you realize how challenging pulling off a picnic in temperamental Mother Nature can be.
But don’t fear! When it comes to dining outside headache-free, being prepared for just about anything—from ant invasions to not-enough-wine (the horror!)—is all in how you pack up your picnic basket. Thankfully, today’s options for portable picnics are better than ever, and we’ve rounded up the most handy options out there.
If you’re more of a glamper than a camper, this backpack is the perfect way to make sure you’re dining in the great outdoors—in style. (Or maybe it’s just a really long walk from the parking lot to the outdoor concert venue.) This bag is packed with everything you need for a chic dinner for four: lightweight melamine plates, napkins, flatware, acrylic wine glasses, a cheese board (with knives), corkscrew, salt and pepper shakers, and a fleece blanket. And an extra cooler tote means you won’t starve.Buy Now
Related Reading: How to Pair Cheese with Summer Fruit
This photo-worthy wicker picnic basket isn’t just an Instagram trap: it’s also an outdoor dining workhorse. It includes everything you need for a romantic dinner for two: plates, wine glasses, flatware, and a corkscrew (obvs). There’s even room left over for a bunch of grapes, which you’ll obviously dangle over each other’s faces for dessert.Buy Now
Double date? With this ultra-romantic wicker basket setup for four, you’ll swear you’re dining in the Tuileries Garden in Paris, even if you live in, well, not France. There’s a chic checkered blanket (conveniently waterproof) for you to lay out your bounty, and ceramic plates with cloth napkins give the whole outing an elevated feel. Wine is a given, and thankfully glasses are included—and there’s plenty of space for a bottle (or two).Buy Now
The cylindrical shape of this wicker basket makes it the perfect carrying case for a couple bottles of vino or sparkling water. (There are even interior leather straps for holding the bottles in place!) Plus, it’s smaller than most of the baskets on this list, so it’s perfect when you just want to tote around a little snack as opposed to an entire four-course meal.Buy Now
Even though this one is technically not a basket, it’s a genius way to transport food for a crowd without spilling the potato salad all over the car (or yourself). The bottom zippered section can fit a 9- x 12-inch baking dish with room to spare, and it’s insulated so your mac and cheese will still be gooey and warm when you arrive at the park. The top pocket also provides plenty of space for extra toppings or utensils, and the whole thing is super easy to carry.Buy Now
This handsome tote (that also transforms into a backpack) fits a whopping three bottles of wine—need we say more? There are also clever compartments for a cheese board, knife, and corkscrew, and it’s stylish enough that you won’t look weird bringing it to work the day of an outdoor concert.Buy Now
If you were to solely judge your picnic basket on cuteness, this heart-shaped option would win the gold medal. What’s more, the antique-inspired white linens packed inside are the things Instagram-worthy shoots are made of. Thankfully, it’s not just a pretty tote. Inside, two porcelain plates, hand-blown wine glasses, a cheese board, corkscrew, and salt and pepper shakers provide everything you need for a romantic outing, even if it’s not Valentine’s Day.Buy Now
If you love to spend time outdoors but don’t have space at home to store a picnic basket (looking at you, apartment dwellers), this collapsible basket is a genius way to still pack a moveable feast. It’s made from durable polyester canvas and is water resistant, plus its generous size and drawstring top make it great for toting around large amounts of food. Then when you’re done, just fold it all up.Buy Now
This adorable polka-dotted basket is a lifesaver on camping trips and outdoor picnic excursions alike. The aluminum alloy frame means it’s super-durable (but also light enough to carry), and the aluminum lining means it’ll keep your bevvies and veggies cold until it’s time to chow down. It’s also a space-saver: once it’s empty, it folds up easily.Buy Now
Header image courtesy of Amazon