Skip to main content

Summer's 7 Best Portable Picnic Desserts

Bringing just the right dessert to a picnic can be a little tricky. You want it to be easy enough to transport without spilling or getting smooshed, it should be simple to serve without a lot of fuss, and it should look good enough to make your picnic feel like a party. These top-rated desserts are all that and more. Take a look, and take them along on your next outing.

1. Apple Hand Pies

Everyone will love the convenience of helping themselves to individual grab-and-go minis instead of having to deal with a whole pie. For one thing, you don't need plates and forks. To give these hand pies extra eye-appeal, use a cookie cutter to cut the pie dough into stars or circles, put a tablespoon of filling in the center of half the cut-outs, top with the other half, crimp with a fork to seal, cut steam vents, and bake until golden brown.

2466568 Apple Hand Pie Photo by Allrecipes Magazine 650x465

Apple Hand Pie | Photo by Allrecipes Magazine


You might also like Shelly Hospitality's Blueberry Turnover Hand Pies and Blueberry Pie Pops.


2. Apple Slab Pie

Here's another variation on classic picnic pie, but baked in a shallow pan instead of a pie dish. The result is everything you love about pie, but in a form that's a whole lot easier to slice up and serve to a crowd.

1050640 Apple Slab Pie Photo by SunnyDaysNora 650x465

Apple Slab Pie | Photo by SunnyDaysNora


These pick-up-and-eat pie bars might change the way you eat pie.


3. Cheesecake in a Jar

Talk about cute and convenient. These fillable, chillable, stackable, portable dessert jars will be your go-to all summer long. Infinitely customizable, they can be filled with endless combinations of cheesecake and fresh fruit. Choose a jar shape that's easy to stack in your cooler so they can stay properly chilled until you're ready to pass them around.


You might also like Key Lime and Raspberry Pies in Jars and Lemon and Raspberry Trifle in Mason Jars


4. Creamy Chocolate Cupcakes

If you've ever tried to bring cupcakes to a picnic without using a special cupcake carrier, you know the heartbreak of smooshed frosting. But who wants to wrestle with another big thing to carry from the car? Try these no-frosting cupcakes instead. Their baked-in cheesecake centers are rich enough to satisfy the frosting factor, but they're easy to stack and pack. If your cupcake are very moist, put a sheet of waxed paper or parchment between layers of cupcakes.

964885 Creamy Chocolate Cupcakes Photo by Linda Evon Samulowitz 650x465

Creamy Chocolate Cupcakes | Photo by Linda Evon Samulowitz


These easy tips help you bake cupcakes like a pro.


5. Brookies (Brownie Cookies)

There's a practical reason why brownies and cookies are classic choices for picnic desserts. Aside from their comfort-food-level deliciousness, you can bake them in big batches and they're easy to pack. For best results, choose recipes without gooey toppings and frostings so they don't get smooshy or sticky.

1497704 Brookies (Brownie Cookies) Photo by SunnyDaysNora original 650x465

Brookies (Brownie Cookies) | Photo by SunnyDaysNora


Browse our entire collection of brownie recipes.


6. Watermelon Cookie

Why choose these particular cookies over the hundred upon hundreds you can find on Allrecipes? Because they look like adorable little slices of watermelon! Are they picnic-perfect or what?

3712607 Watermelon Cookie Photo by amandarivers_ 650x465

Watermelon Cookie | Photo by amandarivers_


You bet we have more cookie recipes to choose from, plus tips for baking great cookies from scratch.


7. Fruity Fun Skewers

Raise fresh fruit to the level of dessert by threading it on long bamboo skewers. Use sturdy fruit that doesn't brown easily: Colorful grapes, melon, berries, and pineapple are excellent choices. Serve with fruit dip, and you've got a party on a stick.

102252812 Fruit Skewers Photo by Meredith 650x465

Fruit Skewers | Photo by Meredith


More Ideas for Summer Desserts

• These no-bake summer desserts won't heat up your kitchen.
• Behold 6 outrageous ice cream pies that are worth the brain freeze.
• Browse our entire collection of refreshing summer dessert recipes.


Follow me to more recipe inspiration and how-to tips on Allrecipes Dish.


Vanessa Greaves

About Vanessa Greaves

Good food, friends, and fun are always on the menu. Check out things that make me go yum: foodelicious On Instagram On Twitter @vanessa_greaves