Any time is a good time to find ways to add fruits and vegetables to the plate.  Picnic season is just one more opportunity to find creative ways to bring these delicious bites to the table.

While Memorial Day is a day of remembrance, it has also become the unofficial beginning of picnic season and summer gatherings.   This month we are adding fruits and veggies to the menu plan with simple combinations that the entire family will love.  At the Price Chopper/Market 32 Kids Cooking Club we had fun building Salad Stuffed Cars, making Sandwich Skewers, putting together Fruit Kabobs and preparing Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries.

These are all easy recipes that the kids can have fun making and enjoy serving to family and friends.

Fruits and Veggies Picnic Fun

by Jodie Fitz

Salad Stuffed Cars

2 Cubanelle peppers

3 cups salad greens

2 tablespoons Craisins®

2 tablespoons sunflower seeds

2 tablespoons avocado ranch dressing

8 cucumber slices

PICS vegetable cream cheese

4 candy eyes (optional)

Cut the top off of two washed Cubanelle peppers and remove the seeds and insides of the pepper.

Place the salad greens, Craisins®, sunflower seeds and avocado ranch dressing into a mini chopper.  Chop the ingredients.

Fill the hollowed peppers with the chopped salad and place them on their side on a plate or tray.

Using cream cheese as edible food glue, attach 4 cucumber slices to each of the peppers to create car wheels.

Optional:  Add two candy eyes on top of each car using the vegetable cream cheese to hold them in place.  You can find candy eyes in the baking aisle of your Price Chopper and Market 32 Supermarkets.

The Dressing:  You can locate the avocado ranch dressing in the produce area coolers of your Price Chopper and Market 32 Supermarkets.  

You can use your favorite ranch dressing as an alternative.

Sandwich Skewers

4 skewers

1 bagel

4 ounces PICS Colby Jack Cheese

8 grape tomatoes

8 slices of cucumber

4 slices of your favorite lunchmeat

Lettuce leaves

Cut the bagel in half.  Then dice both pieces of bagel into large bite size pieces.  You will need twelve pieces to make four skewers.

Cut the Colby jack cheese into bite size squares.  You will need eight pieces for four skewers.

Cut the lunchmeat pieces in half to create eight pieces.  Fold each one twice before skewing.

Add everything to the skewers by creating a pattern; bagel piece, folded piece of lunchmeat, lettuce pieces, cube of cheese, slice of cucumber, a grape tomato and then another piece of bagel.  Repeat so that you have two pattern sequences on each skewer.

Cheese:  You can use one of your other favorites of PICS cheeses if desired; Muenster, pepper jack, Vermont sharp, cheddar, mozzarella, etc.


Fruit Kabobs

4 skewers

Watermelon, seedless


Slice your watermelon into large circle slices.  Use a small heart shaped cookie cutter or large fondant cutter to create watermelon star shapes.  You will need twelve stars for four skewers.

Wash the blueberries.

Add the fruit to the skewers by creating a pattern; two blueberries, a watermelon star and repeat that pattern three times on each skewer finishing it off with two additional blueberries.  The blueberries help to keep the watermelon pieces securely in place on the skewer.

Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries

12 strawberries

12 blueberries

½ cup PICS cream cheese

¼ cup PICS confectioner’s sugar

1 teaspoon PICS vanilla extract

Wash the strawberries and the blueberries.

Cut off the greens of the strawberries to create a flat edge.  Set the strawberries on that flat edge.

Using a sharp knife cut into each strawberry on four sides, at a slant, to remove the top and hollow the center.

Mix the cream cheese, confectioner’s sugar and vanilla together with an electric mixer.  

Place the cheesecake-flavored cream cheese into a quart sized snap and seal bag.  Clip one corner.  Pipe the mixture into each strawberry to fill it.  Place a blueberry on top.

Cooking with Kids: Every recipe is filled with life skills that help to encourage children’s confidence in the kitchen.  Here are a few to focus on when making this recipe:

  • Measuring ingredients
  • Following directions
  • Mixer safety
  • Preparing fruits and vegetables
  • Cutting skills and knife safety
  • Piping
  • Skewing and skewer safety