I need ideas + Mystery $$ Target Gift Card Giveaway!

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My family and I are preparing for a trip to the beach the first week of September!  I’m trying to save $$ by planning a couple of picnic lunches and dinners, but I’m having a hard time coming up with what to serve on the beach.  I can’t think of what tastes good with sand, you know? 🙂   So, I’m asking you for help!

Just for fun, I’m giving away a Target Gift Card in hopes that you will help me out with your amazing ideas!  The catch is, it’s a mystery gift card – you won’t know what’s on it until you get it and call the number on the back of the card (or try to spend it, too!)  I will tell you that it’s at LEAST $1, but not more than $25.  To enter, simply put your name with a link to your blog, or your email address in the comments section with your picnic idea, and I”ll draw for a winner on Wednesday night at 10 PM.

Good Luck everyone!  (And thanks for your help!)

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About Kim

I am a sinner, miraculously saved by grace, living by faith, and pressing toward the mark of being more like Christ. I absolutely love being a stay-at-home mom! I'm also a caterer for a few weddings throughout the year, a baker, and a party planner. And I love to play in other people's kitchens as well as my own! My husband, Chris, just finished his studies for his MA degree in Pastoral Studies. He's a wonderful (and super smart!) daddy - and the most loving and supportive husband. My two beautiful daughters, Chloe and Kami, are the joys of our lives! We pray that they both would be greatly used of the Lord. Throughout their short time here on earth, we have learned so much about ourselves, our God, and the gratefulness we have towards our own parents, who raised us in the ways of God's Word. Our third unborn child is a blessing as well - even after its recent pre-diagnosis of Trisomy 18, or Edwards Syndrome. This blog has kinda turned into a little journal of sorts of our dark journey down this rather uncommon road. I stay busy cooking, cleaning, gardening, and raising the plants I killed back to life, and homeschooling. I blog when get the chance. :) We are always happy to have visitors, so please stop by anytime! Although, if you do give us a call first, we'll make sure to have some fresh cookies and sweet tea available when you arrive!

105 responses »

  1. Well, deli sandwiches always work, but to make it nicer, buy some great tasting rolls, and that always makes it taste better! Fruit salad sounds yummy on the beach….I assume you might have a stove where you are staying??? You could make pizza crust ahead of time and bring the toppings and have homemade pizza!

    Have fun!

  2. We lived in FL for 8 years, and wraps were always popular at the beach. If you wrap the wrap (!) in foil, it makes it easier to eat and harder for the sand to get in. We also would freeze water bottles and pop them in the cooler as ice; they’d be ready to drink by lunchtime. Have a great time!

  3. I would pack a cooler full of frozen juice boxes and water bottles (will help keep everything cold), a couple kinds of chips, cold veggies with some dip, pb&j sandwhichs for the kids, lots and lots of fruit(one of my fav beach foods!), some cold pasta salads, i also like loading up a pita with some veggies and hummus, dried fruit and nuts, popcorn. Enjoy your trip 🙂

  4. I would say whatever your take, have it pre-cut up and pre-wrapped to avoid sand issues. Little tupperware bowls of cut up fruit for each person would be good (have forks on hand).

    Cheese cubes—you can use a toothpick to pick them up and eat.

  5. Potato salad, steamed corns (it’s fine if it’s cold), fruits, oats/raisins muffins, veggie sticks and dip (or without). We do these for picnics, maybe it’ll work for beaches too?

  6. We live in California and find ourselves at the beach most the weekend.
    Here are a few ideas we bring….
    Rice Crispy Treats – they are simple to make…decorate/color
    Frozen/precooked edamame soy beans in pod- super healthy and fun to eat
    Tuna Salid – this is good to did crakers into for kids – no soggy sanwiches..
    Cut fruit – you fan even put it on skewers
    Frozen Acai (sorbet) you can get at the health food store – added fruit if you like – again really healthy and refreshing.

    Hope this helps!

  7. Hi,
    Our family goes to the beach every year and we love to pack wraps to eat. There was a great recipe for wraps in the current issue of All You. Also, fresh salsa and corn chips…with the crunch of the chips, you won’t even notice the sand! =) We use 2 avacados chopped, 1/2 red onion chopped, 1/2 bunch of cilantro minced, 1 can black beans drained, 1 can corn drained, 2 tomatoes chopped, 1 cup of Italian dressing ( sounds weird…tastes great), a tsp or two of cumin and salt and pepper to taste. Mix it up early in the morning let it mingle until time to eat…..Deelicious! Also we always make pinapple sweet tea. Make tea the normal way you do but before you add water, add one large can of pinapple juice….1/3 to 1/2 cup sugar…then add water and stir. We love it! Thanks for the givaway! Hope you have agreat time at the beach!

  8. Wraps are easy and can be made ahead. I would bake some cookies for an easy and mess free dessert. I always get hungry from playing at the beach so keep some easy snacks like fresh fruit, cereal bars, and dry cereal on hand.

  9. Burritos are a great staple for us on the road. If you have a way to heat (in a microwave, for example), line a small ice chest with foil, fix your burritos, heat, place in the foil, replace the cover as you go to keep the heat in, and once your supply is completed, cover the top with foil, and keep tightly covered.

    Another easy deal for us is peanutbutter tortillas…just like a p/b sandwich, but rolled up, easy to grab and go, no heat needed.

  10. We love meat sandwiches on buns! We normally do 2 kinds of meat and make them on buns, wrap them in saran wrap or put in a ziplock bag. Chips, pretzels, yogurt or pudding, fruit, carrots, celery,dip, and dessert. Normally I make a pan of brownies and pack them in a Tupperware container. We fill a cooler with ice, put our drinks on the bottom and get a big container to lay on top of the ice to put our sandwiches, yogurt, and pudding in, anything we don’t want to get soggy.

  11. skewers are THE way to go! I grew up on the beach, so this is a tried and true “recipe”:

    Take anything you have for skewers. chopsticks work wonderfully, or you can just use the skewers at the grocery store.

    put ANYTHING on them. some great ideas include, sliced fruit (bananas, apples, oranges, pineapples, peaches, grapes, etc)

    Also, make a sandwich and cut it into bite-size pieces and put it on the skewer. That way everything can be eaten without having to be touched!

    Have fun at the beach! 🙂

  12. OK, nothing tooo original here, but I’ve lived in Florida my whole life and here is what we always bring!

    Sandwiches, bananas, granola bars, apples, chips, fruit salad and drinks

  13. I love getting inspiration from some of my favorite food network people when I am going to do a picnic. Here are some of my favorites:

    If you want to go healthy – Try Ellie Kreiger:
    http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_ek/episode/0,2763,FOOD_25716_44137,00.html

    Or if you want to try something different – There is Ina:
    http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_ig/episode/0,1976,FOOD_9971_39963,00.html

    Or for super easy & quick – Rachael Ray:
    http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_tm/episode/0,1976,FOOD_9997_20599,00.html

  14. Its a little work but fried chicken fingers are good at the beach and they taste good cool/cold also. I always double bread mine to give extra flavor and crispiness.
    Apple slices are good.
    As for wraps I’ve found a really good recipe that is easy. Take a Flat Out wrap, on 1/2 put peanut butter then jelly on top, slice bananas then sprinkle granola over everything. Roll up, cut in 1/2 and you have a tasty, filling healthy lunch.

    And what we always did was bring a milk jug filled with water down to the beach. With an ice pick or knife cut holes in the top and then you have a way to rinse off your hands and face without having to run up the boardwalk or waste expensive bottled water.

  15. Fruit, lemonade, and turkey sandwiches! Make sure to bring coolers with ice though or you’ll have some very sad looking fruit 🙂 We like to put our drinks in reusable containers and freeze them the night before. They stay nice and cold that way and also act as ice packs for the rest of the food.

  16. I would suggest an old fashioned picnic lunch. Fried chicken, iced tea, some potato salad and whole pieces of fruit. If you are not opposed to getting the chicken from a pre-prepared source this is a simple and delicious beach picnic lunch.

  17. Homemade lunchables are fun to nibble on- use some divided section plates with lids (try the dollar store) and fill the sections with pepperoni slices, cheese, crackers, grapes, etc.

    Another thing we eat a lot of is tortilla wraps- your favorite lunch meat, rolled in a tortilla with lettuce, shredded cheese, and a little ranch dressing. I roll these up in foil or Press and Seal Wrap and they travel well.

  18. Salads & Lots to drink-Cold pasta salad with italian dressing (it stays good), tomatoes, cucumbers,cheese & ham. Fruit salad. With making salad it’s all mixed and easy to eat. Cracker sticks and lots of juice and H2O.My kids always drink a lot when we are outside.

  19. We love pineapple or watermelon or grapes, chips or pretzels, cut up veggies with dip, cut up hotdogs to dip in ketchup/mustard, sandwiches – especially tuna, leftover pizza, etc.

  20. Good ol’ PB&J for the kids (don’t knock yourself out—they aren’t there for the food) and turkey wraps for the big kids!! Have a blast!!

  21. What about homemade pimento cheese, chips, and fruit. This would require a cooler but it would be super easy tp put together. Thats all i can think of for now. 🙂

  22. I always loved buying subway before heading out to the beach…. homemade would even be tastier!!

    Handheld foods are great!! (bananas, burrittos, burgers)

    dips are tough to manage.

    drinks with caps!!! like your traditional 20 0z beverage!! that way theres no sand in your lemonade! you can reuse water bottles so not to buy too many sugarry drinks 🙂

    cheers!!

    I love target!!

    http://jacobandrachel.blogspot.com

  23. We like to take cut up fruit and cold wrap sandwiches in the cooler. You can put all the different “fixins'” in different containers for the pickier eaters, but we usually just have them all pre-made. Juice boxes work great, too.

  24. I am originally from Florida. We spent lots of time at the beach. Among some of the foods we took for picnic lunches were: sandwiches, cold fried chicken, and sandwich wraps. Side dishes included chips, cookies, pasta salad and potato salad. All items can be safely packed in a cooler to keep them from spoiling. Oh, this brings back so many memories of my youth.

  25. We like to make homemade stromboli’s and serve with chips or carrots and dip. They are good cold too, but it can be all made and ready to serve straight from the cooler. And, no utensils are needed:)

  26. Mmmm… chicken salad wraps, pasta salad, lemonade, cookies… I love beach food!!! I like to freeze bottles of lemonade, then by the time we’re read to eat, they’re mostly defrosted… kind of like lemonade slushies.

  27. I would take chicken curry salad with rice. You can eat it on crackers, on bread, or in a wrap. Yummy. Let me know if you want the recipe. Grapes, chicken , pineapple, rice, curry. pecans! Happy Beach Vacation! 🙂

  28. Sandwich wraps are great. Easy to eat and something different than a sandwich. Anything that’s easy to pull out of the cooler with no hassle. Such as granola bars, fruit , carrot sticks, ect.

  29. The beach sounds like sooo much fun…hope you have a great time!!

    I agree with a lot of others that wraps are the way to go! We like turkey wraps with tomatoe, lettuce, shredded cheese and ranch dressing. For the beach, you might want to leave off the tomatoes – soggy and sandy wouldn’t be a good combo!

    To go along with the wraps, gogurts are a good choice. They don’t require utencils and they are healthy and refreshing. Just squeeze and enjoy!

    Thanks for the give away.

  30. Jello and pudding cups keep sand out until they’re open. Box drinks with straws eliminate sand in your drink and cut down on sticky spills.

  31. I love this pasta salad recipe,

    3 cups penne pasta, cooked, drained and cooled 4 medium tomatoes, chopped (about 4 cups) 12 slices OSCAR MAYER Hard Salami, chopped 1 cup KRAFT Natural Mozzarella Cheese Crumbles 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil 1/2 cup KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese 1/2 cup KRAFT Roasted Red Pepper Italian with Parmesan Dressing
    Mix all together and chill before going. I take extra dressing because the pasta really soaks it up. Yummy!

  32. I don’t have any ideas for lunches but bring a crockpot for dinner! That way you can throw everything in in the morning, go have fun with the family, and come home to a nice dinner already prepared!

    HTH!

  33. I’ve found that snack foods are the best to bring to the beach. We love bringing crackers (ritz, wheat thins, triscuits…), sliced cheese cut into quarters, deli meats slice into quarters, and making little cracker sandwiches. We bring paper bowls so people can gather their fixings and then put their sandwiches together without making a mess. We also bring fresh fruit in tupperware–grapes, watermelon, fresh cut pineapple-yum! And then other easy treats, like licorice, m&m’s, fruit snacks, etc. This way, you have little fresh snacks throughout the day for everyone to munch on when they get hungry–there’s nothing better than fresh meats, cheeses, and fruits when you’re out in the sun all day at the beach. Good luck!

  34. Wraps would be a great idea! If you wrap them up in foil or wax paper before going, people can just peel back the paper as they eat to keep the sand out. Have a great trip!

  35. It’s not as much about which food you have as much as it is about having clean fresh water handy. Having 5 small kids, and living near the ocean, clean hands with which to eat is more the issue (that’s how the sand gets mostly into your food). Try to keep some handy wipes, and some bottles of clean water nearby so that you can wash everyone’s hands off prior to eating. Other than that, since you are in the sun, (which zaps your energy), I find things that you can eat quickly and easily are best. (Carrot sticks with little containers of dip or celery with peanut butter are good for small kids) to go along with some simple sandwiches and chips…. A friend once brought these roast beef sandwiches with Meunster on Onion rolls when we went… I haven’t forgotten how great they were. But, stay clear of soda which zaps your oxygen and energy, and draws sand fleas, as well. Keep it simple – the point is to enjoy the beach experience! Have some fun! I hope you all have a great time!

  36. We love to make Steak In A Pocket sandwiches. Cook steak to your liking, then marinate in 1/3 cup oil, 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 tsp dry mustard, garlic salt and pepper to taste. You can transport it to the beach in a plastic container. When you’re ready to eat, fill a pita pocket with marinated steak and chopped red onion.

  37. Like others have already said – wraps are the way to go! Turkey, chicken salad, italian cold cuts – whatever your family likes! I wrap mine in wax paper and twist the ends. When it’s time to eat, just untwist one end and start eating! Keep untwisting and tearing off the paper as you go – it works great! I also like to put all of the snack type foods, chips, crackers, etc.., into ziplock bags so that they stay closed when they aren’t being eaten. Have a great trip!

  38. We live in Florida so the beach is close by… We love wraps, in tinfoil, and frozen drinks as well. We also do cheese sticks (individually wrapped and you don’t have to slice them). Pringles are better than other potato chips for the beach because they come in those cans so the chips don’t break, and also the sand doesn’t get in!

  39. Our old standby take with us lunch is granola bars. They sorta taste like sand anyway. 🙂

    Or yogurt…you use a spoon rather than your hands. Of course, you could get the tube kind that they just squirt into their mouths, too.

    Pudding (that doesn’t need refrigeration)
    sun chips or flat earth chips ( a bit healthier than regular chips)

  40. We love wraps at our house. Get those roll-up wraps and grill chicken and slice it ahead of time. You can mix taco seasoning with cream cheese for a fajita roll-up and spread it on. Add pepper slices, cheese, etc. Or, you can use the grilled chicken for a ranch or caesar wrap by adding spinach leaves and then either ranch or caesar dressing. Easy!

  41. When we lived in Florida, we always made Pitas and wrapped them in foil, so we could peel it back and eat it without touching it with sandy hands. Chips and other “finger” foods only work well if you have somewhere to wash up first so that sandy fingers don’t get all over everything. At the very least, I would put them in individual baggies for each person so if one child is sandy, they don’t get it on everyone else’s food. Frozed drinks and water bottles in the cooler provide cool drinks and avoid ice packs, so on the return trip home, the cooler is lighter!

  42. I would bring stuff for “mini” sandwiches, like crackers, cheese and pepperoni in pre-cut sizes. That way, if one little sandwich gets sand in it, the whole lunch is not ruined. Also, veggie sticks and chips!

  43. We’re vegetarian and tortillas spread with hummus and loaded with lettuce and any other veggies you like is an easy thing to pack and for the kids to eat.

  44. Most beaches have grills ( or take a hibatchi). Somehow hotdogs and burgers taste better at the beach. Pack a cooler with condiments, drinks – water and fruit juices are best.

  45. I could never get my kids to sit long enough to eat a meal at the beach so we always prepared a big breakfast, lots of snacks for the day, and planned on a filling dinner (usually made in the crock pot so it is ready when we get back to the room/home). Do as much of the preparation at “home”(hotel room) as possible to decrease the opportunity for sand to get in the food. Cheese and/or peanut butter and crackers are good sources of protein. Fresh fruit and veggies are easy and refreshing. You can freeze many fruits (melons, berries, grapes) and they will still be cold later in the day and if they are still a bit frozen that is ok too. Granola bars are another snack that has some substance to them. Chips, pretzels, and fruit snacks always go over well, but do not do much to stave off hunger so be sure to pack other more substansive food with them.

  46. I don’t know the ages of your kids and maybe other readers will like the suggestion. We read the book, Bread and Jam for Francis, by Hoban and then my kids really wanted to eat the little meal she has at the end of the book. Might be fun for your picnic, depending on the ages of your kids!
    Blessings!

  47. check out September’s issue of Parents magazine (pages 230-232). They have a ton of great lunch suggestions, all packaged in those cute Laptop Lunch boxes . . .

  48. Were going to the beach in 4 weeks! I like to freeze everything so as the day progresses the things are still cold! Fruit, water bottles, etc. I also take fruit snacks, gold fish, pretzels, homemade snack mix. Don’t take anything with chocolate or that will melt unless you have a cooler! Honestly, we usually eat lunch before hitting the beach and just take snacks for whenever!

  49. Watermelon! You will be hot, and watermelon, all cut up and in a container with lid to keep the sand out, will taste refreshing!

  50. I like to take pita bread, dips, lunch meats, cheese etc. and make little pita pockets. The best thing is that you can just fill up your pita with as many fillings as you want and use any leftover pitas to dip later in the day.
    Another must have at the beach is an orange or two cut up into wedges for when you get out of the salty water – it neutralizes the taste and is so fresh and summery!
    If you want a special drink one day blend up some fruit with yogurt or sherbert and juice to make your own smoothies and store in the ice chest, or drink on the way down to the beach.

  51. I’ve always loved chinese food for picnics. They come in great little containers that you can eat out of right on the beach. No worries about plates or bowls. Make a nice cold asian noodle salad, wontons, egg rolls. Pack up the chopsticks and a nice tea to go with it.

  52. When we do picnics, I love to have barbeque pork or chicken with coleslaw, baked beans, potato salad, lemonade and sliced watermelon! YUM! I’m hungry now. Also, cold chicken and corn on the cob with homemade muffins is a favorite.

  53. We always do snacks. Cheese cubes, frozen grapes, and other fruit. Anything that can be eaten with a toothpick, they cost a lot less then plastic, because they will be coming back and forth for food, at least my six do, and using a new one because they dropped the other one on the sand. Also meat rolled up works great on a toothpick too. The wraps in foil and wax paper are the best so the food doesn’t get soggy. Have a great trip. Wish I could go

  54. From years of growing up on the beach, my favorites have always been a sub sandwich or PB&J, chips (which also happen to complement the taste of salt water and sand quite well!), and some kind of bottled drink, which I find to be better than a can for obvious reasons (i.e. it can be resealed, AND the sand is easier to bypass or blow off when drinking.).

  55. We like to pack bbq chicken for picnic dinners,which tastes great even cold. For something a bit more exotic, try baking or grilling chicken with a glaze of honey and pineapple juice with a Tbsp. of Worcestershire. Make a fruit salad, add pineapple chunks and use the juice from your canned pineapple for the glaze. You can add mango or kiwi to your fruit salad too for more of an island feel. Pack a side like potato salad or cut veggies, and a big loaf of Hawaiian bread. Luau in a picnic basket!

  56. I suggest lil smokies with BBQ sauce (most rooms have microwaves these days), some string cheese, fruit and a loaf of French bread! You can eat it all with a small bowl, napkin and toothpicks. Also, for clean up take a few dampened cloths from the room in a bag tied at the top.

  57. We live in Florida near the beach. I always pack things individually in a ziploc bag to avoid as much sand as possible and easy clean up. You could do pasta salad with cold chicken, eat it right out of the bag with a fork/spoon, easy to close to save some for later. Put yogurt/pudding in a ziplock bag. When you are ready to eat it just cut the end off and enjoy. Our favorite is a snack mix. I add together a bag of Chex Mix, Sun Chips, sesame sticks, raisans, Cheez Its, Reese’s Pieces, nuts.

  58. Pick up an August ALL YOU magazine at Walmart (pink cover.)

    Inside you will find around page 157 a whole page of coupons for free Wheat Thins, Free Kraft cheese, free Crystal Light, free Oscar Mayer hot dogs and free Kraft salad dressing.

    We made a picnic out of these items by having crackers and cheese, carrots and Kraft ranch dressing/dip, Crystal Light to drink and mini hot dogs on a toothpick. It was so fun to serve the whole family for “free” with these coupons.

    After using all the other coupons for $1 off Kotex (free for the small size,) ALL detergent (free travel size at Target,) $1 off peanut butter and so many other coupons-went back and bought a LOT more magazines-something I rarely ever buy!

    Best wishes!

  59. Hi:
    We buy a thermal bag pack it with ice(or freeze your water bottles and it’s less to carry on the way out) and make egg salad and chicken salad sandwiches using finger rolls. Of course, you have to eat two to equal a sandwich but when you drop one in the sand it’s not as much of a loss! Ha! Ha!

    I also freeze go-gurts (the yogurt in a tube) for the kids! They are just the right temperature when someone asks for a snack!

    Have fun.

    Michelle

  60. My family loves frozen grapes and chunks of watermelon as well as cheez-its. Also we like cheese tortellini chilled with tomatoes and olives with italian dressing like a antipasta.

  61. Anything that you can eatpartially wrapped while eating! I like to take reduced fat soft cream cheese, a bit of cinnamon, raisins, and chopped apple and mix well and spread on a tortilla. Baby carrots and other sliced veggies packed in snack size ziplocs to prevent sand contamination. GoGurt or a store brand of yogurt tubes are good, too. And when it’s hot outside, I love frozen grapes

    have a great trip!!!

  62. Here is what I would pack if I was going to the beach:

    Fruit (apples, pears–easy to eat. cut up in tupperware for small kids)
    Tortilla chips
    Bean salad (can be scooped with tortilla chips but has enough protein to be filling and considered a meal)
    Granola bars or 100 calorie packs or something else individually wrapped
    Crowd pleasing “snack” like goldfish
    Water and juice boxes
    String cheese

  63. Two ideas:
    1. Chicken salad, you can put it on bread or just serve it in plastic cups. Forget the whole plate idea, too hard to manage.
    2. Grill on a hibachi, some hot dogs, marshmellows (smores) for an evening meal.

  64. Hmm…what about grapes, apples with caramel sauce, homemade chicken salad and crackers?
    Throw in a container of pink lemonade!

    thanks…and have fun!

  65. I tend to enjoy buying a loaf of bread from the bakery section of a supermarket and then adding on cold cuts with mustard. Also, good hummus is really good with bread. As for things to drink, a 2 liter of ginger ale with a can of frozen lemonade is extremely refreshing. 🙂

  66. There are so many suggestions, I couldn’t possibly read them all to see if i’m duplicating an answer…so here goes. Chicken salad with celery, grapes and almonds (keep it cold with frozen waterbottles!), fruit salad (watermelon, pineapple, grapes, melon, etc), chips are a must and for dessert some chocolate chip cookies. Have a good time!

  67. When we take food on the go, we enjoy the following: celery sticks, baby carrots, black olives, sweet baby midget pickles, grapes, bananas, cut up apples and put a little lemon juice on them and they keep very well, and of course a variety of sandwiches work with the easiest being PBJ because you don’t have to keep them cold. We also have enjoyed the ready to eat Uncle Ben’s rice already cooked in a bag, it states to heat in microwave, but we have eaten it right out the the bag. There’s also the pre-packed chicken salad, tuna salad with crackers and we also enjoy. You could also buy the chicken and ham salad in a can and bring your crackers or bread with you and open the can up on the beach. Don’t forget a trashbag!

  68. a couple packs of lunch meat, tomato, cheeses and a loaf of bread
    or
    a veggie or fruit platter (you can make em yourself or buy em) and serve those first
    or
    depending on ages here, popcorn and snacks for the afternoon that will stay all day (teddy grahams, cheezits, etc)

    and of course, don’t forget to to plan $1/pp for an ice cream stop later in the day as that’s a great way to end a day at the beach!

  69. There are several great recipes for home made beef jerky available online. Try one of those (make ahead and it stores easily and well) accompanied by potato salad and fresh whole fruit.

    Spinach dip, pimmento cheese, and chicken salad are great on just about any cracker or bread, as well as on or celery, carrot slices, and cuke slices. One particular favorite with us is miniature pitas, cut in half. The bite sized pockets are excellent for the fillings mentioned above. Load the dip or salad into a plastic bag and seal. When it is time for lunch, a tiny nip at one corner of the bag with a pair of scissors allows for easy squeezing. It is also keeps sand from blowing into the dip, as sometimes happens with an open bowl. Using several small, snack sized zip lock bags cuts down on mess, minimizes food loss in case of drop or other disaster with one of the bags.

    Rachel

  70. When I was a kid, my mom would take a family sized, large mouthed thermos container, fill it with hot dogs, and then pour boiling water over. When it was time to eat, the hot dogs nice and hot, and fresh tasting. To this day, the only time I want a hot dog is when I’ve been outside swimming or at a ball game…and every single time, I remember mom’s thermos dogs.

    Rachel

  71. I would recommend food items that are separated (i.e. grapes, carrots, chicken nuggets, tiny sandwiches…etc.) just because if you accidentally get sand on it, only that piece and not the entire thing is ruined. Take things that are individually wrapped, and also lots of fruits like watermelons and grapes. Frozen grapes are so delish. Whatever you decide on, just make sure it’s ready to eat and you won’t have to do any putting together at the beach. For example, if you want cheese and crackers, cut the cheese and make little cracker-cheese sandwiches at home instead of trying to do that at the beach.

    Good luck!

  72. Well I like a cold pasta salad, if you bring plastic cutlery and pack it in throw away tupperware its easier than sandwiches on paper plates that bow away.

  73. We always seemed to bring picnic-type food to the beach… sandwiches, fruit, chips, cold drinks, & maybe a little something for dessert. Keep it simple so you aren’t stressed out about it, because anything homemade suddenly seems heavenly when you’re out on the go taking a break! Enjoy your vacation!

  74. Well, our standard family picnic is PBJ sandwiches for five, chips, apples, carrots, and whatever else we have on had (granola bars, raisins, pretzels, cookies, etc.) Everyone likes this, it travels well, and most importantly, you don’t have to worry about PBJ spoiling if it stays out too long!!! Oh, we also drink water. (I use plastic containers, too, so we don’t make any trash — except apple cores!) Have fun on your picnic.

  75. Being that we live in Corpus and we are always at the beach; I have figured out that chicken salad sandwiches are the best for beach eats…that and a bag of chips (seasoned so you don’t have to take dip) and some small juice containers. And there you have it. Easy peasy…yummy and cool!!!

    (keeping chicken salad sandwiches in the cooler is easiest…I normally make a whole loafs worth and when they’re made, simple use the sandwich bag that it came in for easy access…)

  76. I’m sure someone has already said this, but here goes:

    Make “sand”wiches! I grew up going to the beach almost daily during the summer and mom always wrapped them in wax or parchment paper, which gave us an instant placemat while eating.

    The other great thing that we had as a special beach treat was fried chicken. Once hands were clean it was fine to eat.

    Have fun!

  77. We always make sandwiches (depending on the budget with all the fixings or not) and what goes better with sand then a sandwich.

  78. My hubbie makes fried chicken and fruit salad the night before and we eat it cold on the beach. Its yummy cold!

    debtfreedowds.wordpress.com

  79. I second the idea about frozen grapes, also pretzels, wraps, cheese and crackers, and I saw that someone else said chicken nuggets, which our family does as well. The kids like them cold, can eat them with their fingers, and don’t make too much mess with them.

  80. We always take individual everything! Everything in ziplock bags that way if sand gets in one thing it doesn’t ruin everything. Love chips, fruit snacks, sandwiches,etc. Thanks for doing a giveaway, hope you have a great time!
    rachels4ut@aol.com

  81. My mom used to make sandwiches – she uses King’s Hawaiian Sweet Bread rolls and puts ham/deli and cheese in it! It is really tasty. Then we just bring packed/canned beverages. We also have chips and veggies and dip.

  82. How about crackers with pepperoni and cheese, fruit of your choice, baby carrots, etc.? I know it sounds more “snacky” than a meal, but it isn’t very messy at least, even though the sand will be! 🙂 Have fun!

  83. Whenever we go anywhere that we need to pack a cooler, I ALWAYS make my own ice at home ahead of time! I will make my cubes and pop them into plastic bags. Then refill my trays and repeat until I have enough ice! It saves so much money!

    I also freeze any water bottles or juice bottles that I plan to take and it also serves as ice (and drink!)

    Chicken salad on rolls or crackers is a great lunch on the beach! Mix it up in your container with a lid and it will be ready to spread on your sandwiches! Just remember to bring a spoon!

    carrot sticks and/or celery sticks with ranch dip are always a great snack too!

    Hope your trip is full of many wonderful memories!
    tswetter@hotmail.com

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