Simply Healthy Family: PICOBLAT : What you need to bring to your next picnic! #PicnicGame


PICOBLAT : What you need to bring to your next picnic! #PicnicGame

Somebody told me that today was the halfway marker of summer on the calendar. That someone has also has only lived in The Valley of the Sun for exactly 3.5 months. Ummm,  did the nickname "The Valley of the Sun" not clue you in? I was sorry to burst his shiny, happy yet clueless bubble but summer unofficially or not starts in mid April and ends at the very tail end of October here in Phoenix. Prepare yourself.

I did clue him into a little known secret that apparently is well kept by us Zonies. There is relief from the scorching heat only a stones throw away via the I-17. Prescott, Sedona, Flagstaff, Greer and other retreat from the heat towns are a minimum of a 2 hours drive North from Phoenix. And....... wait for it........... there are a handful of beautiful bodies of water known as creeks and lakes scattered amidst the desert mountains (puddles in comparison to the Midwestern lakes but we love them nonetheless).

"Puddles" of water that are perfect for a day trip, beat the heat picnic getaway. We are masters of this scenario. We pack mostly healthy snacks to last all day long, plenty of water and fish bait to keep the kids entertained.

I have to say that as a Native Arizonan, I haven't shared some of my most favorite places to picnic or camp with the newbies because let's face it, tourists can cramp your style and solitude is nothing short of a blessing when you live a hectic life in the city. I will however share with you a picture or two of our latest stumble upon spot somewhere along the Mogollon Rim, pronounced,  /mʌɡɨˈjn/ or /mɡəˈjn/) or /mɒɡɒɔːn

Did that help?

So what do I bring on road trip picnics? Fruits, veggies, cheeses and PICOBLAT, of course. 

An acronym for 

P eppers
I talian dressing
C ilantro
O nion
B lack beans
L ime juice
A vocado
T omatoes

When put all together and let to marinade for a day equals the perfect picnic food.
No need for instructions on this, it's really super simple and you can add as much or as little as you prefer of each ingredient, although I do recommend going easy on the Italian dressing (house/creamy style) and heavy on the lime juice. Also, if you use canned black beans, you want to drain them first. I also add chopped jicama to this more often than not which adds the crunch factor.

Need more ideas and inspiration for you summer picnicking? Check out these fabulous recipes perfect for summer noshing.

Today we are celebrating International Picnic Day by bringing you a basket packed with goodies from A to Z, in the style of the picnic game! Drop by the Sunday Supper Movement to see the whole picnic spread out on our virtual blanket.

I'm going on a picnic and I'm bringing...
Asian Chicken Salad from Try Anything Once Culinary
Beautiful Beet Salad from Small Wallet, Big Appetite
Chicken Muffuletta from Marlene Baird
Double Chocolate Chip Cookie Cups from The Dinner-Mom
Elote from Peaceful Cooking
Fennel Slaw from FoodieTots
Greek Farro Salad from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Honey Porter Glazed Chicken and Vegetable Skewers from Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
Italian Pasta Salad from Casa de Crews
Japanese Plum Sushi from
Kudos Kitchen Kolaches from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Lemon Yogurt Bundt Cake from In The Kitchen With KP
Molasses Lovers Baked Beans from Cindy's Recipes and Writings
Northern Bean Salad with Egg and Prosciutto from Family Foodie
Orzo Salad from The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
PICOBLAT from Simply Healthy Family


  1. What a great idea! I'll have to try this sometime. :)

  2. Oh yum! I was curious of the recipe's name, but I love the acronym and the ingredients!

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  4. Until today, I didn't know I was a huge picoblat fan!! It sounds incredible!!!

  5. Lovely scenery for a picnic! Black beans are one of my favorites!

  6. Love every single ingredient in your PICOBLAT! Fun name and so, so colorful!
    Renee - Kudos Kitchen

  7. Hi Gwen, so funny someone told you summer was half over, kind cute huh! anyway love your pictures and your picoblat.

    1. Funny indeed, he'll be feeling pretty silly in 3 months when it's 100+•

  8. I am very sure I would love this PICOBLAT too.

  9. Your photos are stunning, Gwen! I don't blame you at all for not wanting to share your favorite places. As long as you share the PICOBLAT!

    1. Aww, thank you Stacy, I'm pretty hard on myself when it comes to my food photography.

  10. I'm going to be saying PICOBLAT all day now. And making it this weekend!

  11. Oh my gosh, YES Gwen - this is the perfect thing to pack in a picnic basket...and oh how do I wish I could visit that beautiful picnic spot!

    1. Thank you Heather! If your ever in my hood I'll tell you how to get there. ;)

  12. This is so easy & so yummy. thanks, Gwen

  13. Yes! I plan to have lots of picnics this summer, so this would be perfect!

  14. Such beautiful pictures! And, I'm love the fun salad!

  15. omg....Arizona has water AND greeness :) Absolutely beautiful, as is your picoblat. We eat a lot of mexican and tex-mex food. This is a MUST

  16. I love the acronym and I know I would love this Picoblat! Such beautiful photos and so peaceful, I would imagine. I would really, really like to see it for myself.

  17. I am really interested in what you wrote here. This looks absolutely perfect. All these tinny details are give me a lot of knowledge.
    christian hospitality

  18. I wondered what PICOBLAT was when I saw it on the list. Clever!! I would have to nix the avocado though *sigh* even though it is a fave I have developed an allergy (I know, it is tragic really). Lovely photos too!!

    1. I fell ya! Actually I'm allergic to, feels like little pins are in my lips and mouth when I eat it but I love it so dang much I still it it in small doses...... with Benadryl near by.

  19. Lovely pictures. Having only been to AZ once in my life - and I was in 10th grade, I would love to visit again. Beautiful! I love your picnic recipe too - that salad looks absolutley delicious! BTW - what's your A/C bill like with such long Summers? I bet similar to our heating bill? Which runs about $250 a month in the dog days of Winter - which here in NH is Nov-April....ugh!

    1. You don't want to know what our electric bill is in the summer! When I was pregnant in the summer and we had 2 ac units it was almost as much as our mortgage! week! Come visit us anytime!!


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