Memorial Day Picnic Recipes

Celebrate the holiday weekend with picnic-friendly main dishes, salads, slaws, desserts and drinks.

Save Collection

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Alice Gao ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©Con Poulos

Photo By: Alice Gao ©Alice Gao Photography

Photo By: Con Poulos

Photo By: Con Poulos

Photo By: Con Poulos ©2010, Con Poulos Photography

Photo By: Antonis Achilleos

Photo By: Alice Gao ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Alice Gao ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Christopher Testani

Photo By: RYAN DAUSCH

Photo By: Antonis Achilleos

Photo By: Antonis Achilleos

Photo By: Kat Teutsch

Photo By: Kat Teutsch

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Lisa Shin ©Lisa Shin Photography, Inc.

Photo By: Alice Gao ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Armando Rafael

Photo By: Alice Gao ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: RYAN DAUSCH

Antipasto Salad

Giada gives classic pasta salad an Italian twist, tossing traditional ingredients like salami, cheese, peppers and olives with fusilli.

Get the Recipe: Antipasto Salad

Curried Chicken Wraps

Ina adds cashews to her curried chicken salad for a bit of salt and crunch. Plan ahead by cooking the chicken a day in advance and allowing it to cool overnight –– this will make it easier to shred on the day of the big cookout.

Get the Recipe: Curried Chicken Wraps

Crunchy Lemonade Drumsticks

Treat skin-on drumsticks to a fragrant lemon-buttermilk marinade for at least 4 hours (or up to overnight) before breading and baking them. It's best to dip the drumsticks in mayo before rolling them in panko to ensure the breading sticks.

Get the Recipe: Crunchy Lemonade Drumsticks

Coleslaw

What could be better than the tried-and-true combination of fried chicken and coleslaw on a summer day? For the best results, try preparing the slaw the night before the big cookout –– that way, the cabbage and carrots have time to soak up the tangy dressing.

Get the Recipe: Coleslaw

Muffuletta

Stacked with layers of sopressata, mortadella and provolone, this hefty sandwich is made to survive on the road. A muffuletta is really at its best when it's been pressed for up to 3 hours — giving the briny tapenade time to soak into and soften the Italian loaf — which makes it perfect for packing at the bottom of your Memorial Day picnic basket.

Get the Recipe: Muffuletta

Poppy-Seed Potato Salad

Try this mayo-free take on potato salad, made instead with an easy dressing of Dijon mustard, poppy seeds, oil and vinegar.

Get the Recipe: Poppy-Seed Potato Salad

Fried Chicken

Serve Ree's crispy, perfect-every-time fried chicken at your Memorial Day barbecue, then be ready to make it for every summer get-together thereafter — it's that good!

Get the Recipe: Fried Chicken

Guacamole Salad

Turn your guacamole into a salad your friends and family can enjoy by the spoonful by dicing the avocado (instead of mashing) and adding cucumber. Be sure to add a good squeeze of lime on top of the dish before packing it up for a picnic to keep the avocado from browning.

Get the Recipe: Guacamole Salad

Cornbread Salad

Assemble this salad as you would a trifle. Layer store-bought cornbread with corn, tomatoes, peppers, cheese and more.

Get the Recipe: Cornbread Salad

Daikon-Carrot Salad

Use a vegetable peeler to slice carrots and daikon radishes into ribbons for this refreshing salad.

Get the Recipe: Daikon-Carrot Salad

Spiced Burgers with Cucumber Yogurt

A light, refreshing yogurt sauce made with cucumber and cilantro is just the thing to cool down these curry-flavored burgers.

Get the Recipe: Spiced Burgers With Cucumber Yogurt

Strawberry Country Cake

Ina flavors this impressive country cake with sour cream plus lemon and orange zest. Spread generous spoonfuls of whipped cream and fresh strawberries between the cake layers and on top for a decorative picnic table centerpiece.

Get the Recipe: Strawberry Country Cake

Pat's Picnic Potato Salad

Pat mixes boiled red-skinned potatoes with a quick homemade pesto sauce for a hearty picnic side that's good served cold or at room temperature.

Get the Recipe: Pat's Picnic Potato Salad

Cucumber Salad

Ellie's refreshing cucumber salad is an easy addition to any picnic or cookout.

Get the Recipe: Cucumber Salad

Lemon-Herb Orzo

Easy enough to make at the last minute, this bright orzo dish comes together in just 20 minutes with a handful of fresh herbs and lemon zest.

Get the Recipe: Lemon-Herb Orzo

Fried Chicken Sandwiches

These easy-to-pack sandwiches are filled with crispy buttermilk fried chicken, crunchy coleslaw and spicy chipotle mayonnaise.

Get the Recipe: Fried Chicken Sandwiches

Potato, Tomato, Corn and Basil Salad 

Summer salads don't have to come with a high price tag. Dave's delicious version uses seasonal ingredients, which will save you money.

Get the Recipe: Potato, Tomato, Corn and Basil Salad

Creamy Potato Salad

Add some kick to this quick potato salad by stirring in some horseradish.

Get the Recipe: Creamy Potato Salad

Avocado Salad

Creamy avocado pairs beautifully with sweet mango and crunchy jicama.

Get the Recipe: Avocado Salad

Flank Steak and Rajas Fajitas

Spice up your picnic with Aarón's grilled fajitas. He fills tortillas with strips of flank steak, onions and both jalapeno and poblano peppers. 

Get the Recipe: Flank Steak and Rajas Fajitas

Frozen Grape Sangria

A light summer wine, like Pinot Grigio, is best for this white sangria. Freeze only the green grapes before assembling the drink –– this makes for a refreshing cocktail that isn't overwhelmingly cold.

Get the Recipe: Frozen Grape Sangria

Fried Chicken

Boneless, skinless chicken cooks much faster than meat with the bone in. This way, you'll have a platter of hot fried chicken ready to feed a crowd in no time. 

Get the Recipe: Fried Chicken

Lady Marmalade Chicken Salad 

Aarti's take on chicken salad features a Greek yogurt dressing and extra crunch from roasted cashews.

Get the Recipe: Lady Marmalade Chicken Salad

Pressed Picnic Sandwich with Roasted Red Pepper and Pepperoncini Spread

A great make-ahead dish that can be prepared as early as the night before, this tasty pressed sandwich features a zesty roasted red pepper and pepperoncini spread, tangy goat cheese and artichokes with slices of salami and prosciutto in the middle.

Get the Recipe: Pressed Picnic Sandwich with Roasted Red Pepper and Pepperoncini Spread

Roasted Corn, Zucchini and Jalapeno Salad

Marcela tops this refreshing salad with an olive oil and lime dressing and serves it with crispy chicharron for a delicious crunch.

Get the Recipe: Roasted Corn, Zucchini and Jalapeno Salad

Spanish Potato Chip Frittata

This clever riff on a classic Spanish egg dish uses potato chips instead of potato slices for fantastic flavor and texture. The best part? It serves and tastes great at room temperature so you don't have to worry about keeping it warm on the go.

Get the Recipe: Spanish Potato Chip Frittata

The Neelys' Lime Bars

The Neelys' creamy, zesty lime bars are just the thing to top off a picnic. For the neatest presentation, use a metal spatula or a baker's scraper to remove the bars from the pan. 

Get the Recipe: Neely's Lime Bars

Macaroni Salad

Juicy grape tomatoes, crisp radishes, green bell peppers and crunchy scallions add color and flavor to this macaroni salad.

Get the Recipe: Macaroni Salad

More from:

Memorial Day