32 Trader Joe’s Products We’re Obsessed With—and How to Pack Them for a Picnic

The art of eating al fresco is more difficult than it looks. Thankfully, there’s one source we turn to when packing up for an outdoor meal. You can score all the best picnic foods from Trader Joe’s, but knowing how to curate a selection for every occasion—well, that requires a bit more finesse.

Ahead, we’ve gathered the essentials for an indulgent French-inspired picnic (complete with an insulated basket), a breezy beach gathering, the ultimate al fresco charcuterie set-up, and beyond. Whether it’s an impromptu affair or you just don’t feel like fussing with recipes, we’ve made our picnics as effortless as possible with foods curated exclusively from Trader Joe’s. Because filling your picnic basket should be easy on your budget—and we’ll take any excuse to hit up TJ’s.

Featured image by Michelle Nash.

Image by Michelle Nash

How to Pack a Breezy, Beachside Picnic

Unless you’re lucky enough to have an oceanfront address, a beach picnic likely means a bit of a haul. To save room for the integral wine (scope our TJ’s faves), we’ve kept our suggestions on the lighter—but no less satisfying—side.  

Every product is curated with care by our editors and we’ll always give an honest opinion, whether gifted or purchased ourselves. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a small commission at no cost to you.

How to Pack a Gluten-Free Picnic

Perhaps your group is well-versed in the limitations of Celiac. Or maybe your friend just so happens to be avoiding gluten for trendier reasons. No judgment here—a gluten-free spread can be as substantial as a hearty glass of wheat beer thanks to our picks for the best picnic foods from Trader Joe’s.

Image by Michelle Nash
Image by Michelle Nash

What to Pack for an Indulgent French Picnic Spread

We tend to think of relatively light fare when we think of picnics. But when your al fresco dream looks like a scene from Marie Antoinette, it’s time to call in the Trader Jacques heavy hitters.

Image by Michelle Nash

The Ultimate Charcuterie Picnic

Ah, the most leisurely picnic of them all. No cooking—just slicing, organizing, and nibbling. Feel more than free to pair with your favorite wine.

Image by Michelle Nash

The Best Prepared Foods at Trader Joe’s for a Picnic

We weren’t about to do a roundup of the best picnic foods from Trader Joe’s without devoting an entire section to what the beloved grocer does best: prepared foods and killer dips. 

Swap out something in our curated lists for these bestsellers below—or simply supplement. You can’t go wrong with a parmesan pastry pup or two.


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