Summer is in full swing and it’s time to take your meal on the road so you can where you want to be! Here is the third menu and recipes in the Vine Ripe Nutrition’s Summer Picnic Series! Be sure to check out the other two picnic menu ideas which include:

4 Perfect Picnic Summer Recipes

3 Summer Picnics to Make this Summer!


The menu in this post highlights a trip to the Carolina beaches to get the ingredient for the main dish, shrimp! I don’t eat shrimp often but if I have the opportunity to get some that is caught fresh from a Carolina fisherman, that is a special treat! Fish is a healthy source of protein but not all fish is the same. A lot of the fish at the grocery store is caught in other countries and they may not be required to meet the same health and safety guidelines as fish caught in the United States. Two other concerns that I have is that some fish is high in mercury which is a neurotoxin and many species are over-fished in a non-sustainable way. This can cause certain types of fish to become endangered and eventually extinct. These are important reasons for all of us to be informed consumers about where our fish is caught, is it a variety that is lower in mercury and is fish caught in a responsible way.

Catching your own or purchasing farm raised fish raised in a responsible way can be great options also. Although, I have to share that I have failed miserably as a fisher person, once breaking a pole that belonged to my father-in-law and on my second fishing expedition casting off on a tree and breaking my line. So I leave the fishing to the experts or at least my husband and son. I will bring me a good book read! Here is the menu!

Healthy Summer Picnic

Pickled Carolina Shrimp with Onions, Lemons and Pepperocini

Early Summer Farro Salad

Lemon Raspberry Tartlets

Cucumber and Water

Pickled Carolina Shrimp

United States Coastal Shrimp, get it while its in season & enjoy!

Pickled Carolina Shrimp with Onions, Lemons and Pepperocini

Makes 6 servings

1 ½ pound shrimp,

¾ cup cider vinegar

1 sliced onion

1 lemon sliced

½ cup oil, (you can use canola or peanut oil)

4-5 pepperocini sliced

1/2 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning

½ teaspoon sugar

½ teaspoon salt

In a large bowl, combine the onions, lemon, cider vinegar, oil, capers, pepperocini, sugar and salt. Add the shrimp and toss to mix in all the ingredients. Cover and let refrigerate at least 24 hours. Stir occasionally. Serve cold. Keeps for 3-5 days.


Carolina Pickled Shrimp and Farro Salad

The flavors of summer are just to tasty to miss!

Early Summer Farro Salad

Farro is an ancient wheat which is similar in texture to rice but higher in protein and calcium like quinoa. It is becoming one of the recent new grain super stars!

10 ounces farro

1/2 shredded or thinly sliced carrot

1/2 cup snow peas

1/2 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

¼ cup olive oil

1 tablespoon mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

Place 10 ounces farro and just cover with water or even vegetable broth. Bring to boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes. Rinse and drain. Add the raw fresh veggies. Make a dressing by whisking together lemon juice, olive oil, mustard, salt and pepper.

Lemon Raspberry Tartlet

Add a little zing with this little tart!

Lemon Raspberry Tartlets

This quick little tart comes together quickly and I brought them to a friends house where they received raved reviews!


Makes 6 tartlets

1 large sugar sugar cookie (I prefer one that is organic that does not have hydrogenated fats)

Lemon Curd

1 egg, beaten

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon flour

1 tablespoon of butter or Smart Balance tub margarine

1/2 tablespoon grated lemon zest

1/2 cup lemon juice

6 muffin liners

12 to 18 raspberries for garnish

In a regular sized muffin tin, place muffin liners. Crumble cookie in a bowl and sprinkle about 3/4 of the crumbs in the bottom of the muffin liners. Make lemon curd in a small saucepan by melting the butter and adding flour until it makes a paste. Add sugar, lemon juice and rind and blend it in the paste with a whisk until thick and creamy. Add a little bit of the lemon sauce to the beaten egg and whisk it together. Add the egg mixture back to sauce and stir well. At this time, if it is not smooth and there are pieces of egg, let mixture cool and run it through a sieve. Add the lemon curd mixture in the muffin liners on top of the crumbled cookies. Allow to cool at least one hour and then top with the rest of the cookies and top with the raspberries.





Cucumber and Water

This is some serious flavored water with cucumber and a sprig of mint. Try it sometime with sparkling water!

Cucumber and Water

This water was so simple to make! Just add a little cucumber and mint and you will find it adds such a good flavor to water without adding calories. Try different fresh herbs and sliced citrus fruits to try different combinations!

These picnic healthy menu ideas bring the best of summer’s seasonal foods. I hope that you enjoy the combinations that I put together but feel free to mix and match then let me know what you found that worked for you! As a registered dietitian nutritionist in Asheville, I love to share healthy meal solutions for your busy schedule! I hope that you will find them as tasty as my family and friends have too! You can find lots of recipes on Vine Ripe Nutrition’s food blog but you can find more in my recipe pages also!

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