Dining Al Fresco

The following blog and recipes appeared on  Life’s Simple Ingredient  as part of a collaboration with Revive Wellness.

It’s time to wake up from winter hibernation and enjoy the outdoors. There’s nothing quite like enjoying a meal outdoors!

Since the pandemic, more restaurants have offered outdoor dining – dining al fresco – as a way to promote open space and encourage social distancing, but the benefits of dining al fresco go beyond that. Being outside has so many positive effects; it improves physical and mental health, increases happiness, and improves sleep. In addition, nature is naturally soothing, and when you combine that with enjoying a meal, there’s nothing better, so why not try it from the comfort of your own home?

Even if you’re a homebody, there’s something outside for everyone to enjoy. With warmer weather in sight, it’s a great time to pack a picnic and get out there with family and friends. Not sure what foods to pack? We’ve got you covered!

Start with the basics and create a charcuterie-type meal. Next, include a variety of snack food to fuel your body in a fun way. Multigrain wheat crackers, cheese slices, hardboiled eggs, and a mix of raw vegetables and fruits; for example, this Chicken and Avocado Roll recipe is absolutely perfect for an outdoor picnic! It’s super fresh and comes together quite quickly. When packing for a picnic, you want to make sure you have all your major nutrients covered, so you have the energy to enjoy the fresh air. It’s essential to include a good source of protein – think lean meats, eggs, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, nuts and seeds, etc.; a source of carbohydrates that provide fibre – whole-grain breads/crackers/wraps/pastas, quinoa, fruit, rice, etc. and then a serving of fat – avocado, butter, peanut butter, oils, margarine, etc. Have fun picking from these different groups and enjoy the different flavor profiles they all offer.

Finally, finish off your meal with this Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble. This dessert is both refreshing and satisfying – the perfect way to end your springtime picnic!

Try dining al fresco with some fun new recipes with your friends and family in the warm weather!


About Marina Mansour

Marina’s passion for nutrition comes from understanding its impact on health and wanting to share that with others. Healthy living is a means to promote well-being and prevent or manage chronic disease. It’s never too early or too late to start, and she is there to support you in any way she can. Helping empower people to live their best life truly brings her joy. Marina loves traditional, cultural foods and modifying recipes to make them even healthier without sacrificing taste. Eating is so much more than the food on our plate – it’s about the enjoyment, the laughter, and the relationships that come with it as well. As a Registered Dietitian, she wants to help you enjoy healthy eating and develop a positive relationship with food. She is fulfilled by working with families and enabling them to make positive, sustainable changes to their health.

May 16, 2022