Desserts That Are Easy to Make for Your Next Picnic

It’s officially picnic season, and no alfresco feast would be complete without a sweet treat at the end, whether it’s a hiking picnic, a large picnic gathering, or even a simple afternoon tea picnic. It could be a picnic for two or bringing the kids or a large gathering of family or friends. No matter what, these occasions necessitate eating sweet treats!

We may crave cool treats in the summer, but popsicles and ice cream aren’t the most portable party desserts. Even fudge will become a little sloppy and melty. So here are the best easy picnic dessert recipes for your next picnic.

Apple Puff Pastry Tartlets

Apple Puff Pastry Tartlets with dried currants, Brie, and a drizzle of honey are a delightfully grown-up dessert. They also make a lovely and portable picnic dessert.

These charming tarts are so easy to make that you can whip them up within 30 minutes and bag them steaming hot directly from the oven. Although, like apple pie or strudel, these beauties are also delicious cold.

These are ideal for an afternoon tea picnic or a fall-themed picnic menu.

You won’t have to worry about them melting while you dine al fresco. (Keep the chilled pieces cool so they don’t enter the food safety “danger zone.”) With this make-ahead picnic dessert recipe, you can keep calm and picnic on — in delicious style.

Triple Berry Cheesecake Poke Cake

A poke cake is one of those desserts that improves after a few hours in the fridge. That’s the approach we recommend in this mash-up recipe, which incorporates everything you love about cheesecake, sheet cake, and berry pie into a semi-homemade recipe.

When they taste the cheesecake-frosted, fruit-infused, and graham cracker crumble-topped masterpiece, no one will believe you started with a boxed cake mix. Chill the cake for three hours to overnight before frosting and diving in to allow the fruit to seep into the “pokes.”

Gingerbread Loaf Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting

With this magnificently moist gingerbread loaf covered with lush cream cheese frosting, you can enjoy the taste of gingerbread any time of year. A simple dessert to prepare and transport, it’s ideal for winter and fall picnics.

Apple Hand Pies

Man's hand take a homemade delicious rustic pastries fresh pies with meat and potato from the metal baking rack

Summer calls for apple pie à la mode, but bringing a whole pie to a picnic feels like a potentially infuriating endeavor. Single-serving hand pies begin with store-bought pie crust, are loaded with warmly spiced, buttery apples, and are finished with a sugar dusting on top.

To save time on the day, prepare the apple filling ahead of time, refrigerate overnight, and then set up and bake the pies for up to four hours. Chill out until the picnic.

Peanut Butter S’mores Cookie Bars

We thought it was impossible to improve on s’mores, but we did—and it requires peanut butter cookies. By combining chocolate chips, graham cracker crumbs, and mini marshmallows with peanut butter cookie dough, you can make a dessert bar that will become the hottest new summer picnic treat.

Mini Pies in a Cupcake Tin

When you serve a single pie to a group of people, a fight will inevitably erupt over who gets the largest slice. However, with these super simple mini pies baked in a cupcake tin, you can ensure everyone gets an equal share!

Rose Petal Cupcakes

These simple vanilla cupcakes will add a touch of elegance to your picnic spread. To add a touch of elegance, garnish with rose petals.

Easy White Chocolate Fudge

Fudge doesn’t get more portable than that. This White Chocolate Fudge recipe is quick and easy to make, ideal for picnics. It can be adapted to the seasons by substituting pecans or macadamia nuts for almonds.

For a grown-up sweet treat, add mint crisps or a sprinkle of sea salt or rainbow sprinkles for a kid-friendly picnic treat. This elegant and portable picnic sweet requires only four ingredients and minimal effort.


a close up of schotcheroo bars

Bar cookies are among the greatest make-ahead dessert options for any occasion. A classic Scotcheroo recipe is perfect for backyard picnics to bake sales. Assemble the bars up to four days ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator, covered, if your kitchen is warm or at room temperature.

If you and your picnic companions like chocolate, consider doubling the topping ingredients.

No-Bake Oreo Chex Cereal Bars

There have never been sweeter words spoken than “no-bake.” Because when you combine mini Oreo cookies, Chex cereal, marshmallows, peanut butter, and chocolate into a snackable bar, you’ve got the easiest and most delicious dessert you’ll want to make.

Lemon Blueberry Bars

These Blueberry lemon bars are a pleasant twist on a cheesecake that is intense on the lemon flavor with a splash of blueberry. They are a terrific sweet treat for all your outdoor adventures and can be made ahead of time – even the day before.

The recipe for these picnic bars is adaptable; swap out ingredients to create textures and flavors that suit your tastes. Also, these vegan and gluten-free sweet treats are incredibly simple to make.

Chocolate-Mint Marble Cookies

On the hottest summer days, we often crave something minty and refreshing. These tender, cream cheese-infused cookies taste like mint chocolate chip ice cream without worrying about them melting everywhere.

Divide the dough into two halves, add green food coloring (if desired) and mint extract to one and cocoa powder to the other to create the eye-catching marble pattern. Then combine the pieces and bake for up to three days ahead of time.

Strawberry Kiwi Fruit Pizza

mix fruits pizza

Pizza for dessert is always among the best picnic dessert ideas. It travels well, but it also looks great and is simple to make. Spread a layer of tangy lemon cheesecake on top of a sugar cookie crust, then garnish with pretty slices of fresh strawberries and kiwi before slicing and serving.

Strawberry Cheesecake Lemon Bars

Instead of water or milk, use lemonade in the cake batter of the lemon-flavored boxed cake mix. We bet you can’t stop at just one square with a lemon glaze and a lush strawberry cheesecake-like filling. Bake these four to twelve hours ahead of time, then store them unfrosted in the refrigerator until picnic time.

Picnic desserts are ideal for any summer or spring gathering. You can bring these simple party desserts to picnics, barbecues, backyard bashes, pool parties, and other outdoor festivities.