I've spent the last several years of my life living in and loving the city of Chicago, where interior spaces are small and people can't wait for the warmer months (40 below, no thank you). As soon as summer hits, folks flood the parks, beaches, and rooftops to host picnic after picnic.
But when you're away from home, you're almost guaranteed to need these three things, so don't leave without them!
Picnic baskets aren't hard to assemble; in fact, they're pretty straightforward despite their loosey-goosey nature. You need a container, food, and something to eat with or on — that's it!
That being said, here are three things you'll always find in my basket or bag at all times!
1. An extra spoon
Although most of us are trying to travel light and it's easy to think that a large spoon will weigh down your fare and make travel via transit impossible, pick up a large, inexpensive, plastic spoon to toss in your bag. It'll save you from not being able to grab X, Y, or Z from the grocery store to nosh on and weighs literally next to nothing. It also means that if you're meeting a second party at your location of choice, you're covered if they brought baked beans and forgot their cutlery.
2. One good knife
We could probably write an entire post on carrying a good knife with you in any life circumstance, as there isn't anything you can't do with a good blade, but at a picnic it's almost more important than the food itself! Not only can it do normal things like, um, cut stuff, but a good knife can open a can or champagne bottle, slice those must-have hard cheeses, and allow you to supreme citrus without getting all sticky.
- See our picks for picnic knives: Best Picnic Knives
3. Large kitchen towel
There are very few circumstances where paper napkins and I get along. Usually when we're using them we're outside at get-togethers and I'm always the girl who can be seen frolicking across the field chasing hers down so she doesn't look like a litter bug when it catches the air and goes flying off the table (#spaz). I'll take a community towel any day over paper goods — in addition to acting as a plate, it performs magical clean-up duties, doubles as a doggy bag once you tie the ends up, or can be used as an impromptu bib.
Do you have a must-have item in your picnic basket? Something you've found that is a great multitasker or just a go-to item that will never leave your side? Let us know below!