Easy Picnic Packing Ideas

The following picnic packing ideas are not only practical and easy, but the delicious "take your pick" picnic foods are proven to be popular with all age groups and fun to serve. These picnic lunch suggestions are gleaned from Polly Pigtails, a vintage magazine that published wholesome comics and stories for young girls.

Vintage Picnic Packing Ideas

Polly Pigtails No. 30 (July 1948)

Young Girl Enjoys Her Picnic FoodEnjoy Properly Packed Summer Picnic Foods
(Source: © chepko/Depositphotos.com)

Polly packed a "take your pick" picnic which means she included a variety of foods so her friends could pick and choose. Each person can make the kind of sandwiches that they like the best.

This kind of picnic packing is quicker and easier than making all the sandwiches at home, and picnickers love having the variety of food choices. Why don't you try some of her ideas on your next picnic?

Polly's Picnic Packing Ideas

Wrapping Picnic Sandwiches in Wax PaperWrapping Picnic Sandwiches
Wrapping Picnic Foods SeparatelyWrapping Picnic Foods

Wrap bread and butter sandwiches in wax paper. Put sandwich spread in containers for use later.

To avoid mixed-up flavors, wrap foods separately. Place heavy items at bottom of basket.

Sandwich Fillings

  • Ground ham mixed with mayonnaise and mustard.
  • Peanut butter blended with cream cheese.
  • Liverwurst and pickle relish.
  • Cream cheese blended with apricots or chopped olives.
  • Cream cheese with chopped dates and nuts.
  • Baked beans, mashed, and blended with onion and pickle.


Brown bread, whole wheat, white, date-nut, raisin, rye, choice of buns or rolls.


Lettuce leaves, watercress, celery stalks, pickles, carrot sticks, olives. (Wrap chilled relishes in wax paper, then in a damp towel to keep them crisp and fresh.)


Easy-to-eat fruits such as apples, grapes, bananas, watermelon, cantaloupe, oranges, or peaches.

Also, cake, cupcakes, muffins, cookies, or individual tarts.


Cold milk, lemonade, fruit punch, hot chocolate (in Thermos bottle).

Making Picnic Punch

Making Picnic Punch
Preparing Fruit for Picnic Punch
Finishing Making the Picnic Punch

Heat 1 cup sugar with 1/2 cup water to boiling point. Cool. (Why is it better to sweeten cold drinks with syrup? Syrup sweetens evenly and quickly, without so much stirring.)

For fruit punch: Remove seeds from 1-1/2 cups orange juice, 1/2 cup lemon juice. Combine with 1 cup pineapple juice. Add 2 cups ice-water, syrup to sweeten. Add chopped ice.

Pour into vacuum jar 

Remember Also

Picnic Packing IdeasIdeas to Make Your Summer Picnic Perfect
(PD Source: Polly Pigtails, No. 30, 1948)

Along with the vintage picnic packing ideas above, be sure to pack salt and pepper, butter, a bread knife, paper plates, cups, spoons, napkins, and cleaning cloths. Always tidy up when you're through picnicking. And above all…

Have a lot of fun!

Girl With Pigtails Eating a WatermelonEating Watermelon Is Always Fun on Picnics
(Source: © Dimedrol68/Depositphotos.com)

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