A picnic is a meal that you eat outside. For your birthday, you might take a picnic lunch (including celebratory cupcakes) to a nearby beach with some friends.

You can use the word picnic for both the occasion — "Let's go on a picnic!" — and for the meal itself: "I am packing the best picnic to take on our hike." It's also a verb, meaning "to eat outside." And when a friend describes a difficult task and adds, "It was no picnic," they mean to emphasize how hard it was — the opposite of an easy, breezy picnic.

Definitions of picnic

n any informal meal eaten outside or on an excursion

show 6 types...
hide 6 types...
an informal meal cooked and eaten outdoors
barbecue, barbeque
a cookout in which food is cooked over an open fire; especially a whole animal carcass roasted on a spit
a cookout at the seashore where clams and fish and other foods are cooked--usually on heated stones covered with seaweed
fish fry
a cookout where fried fish is the main course
weenie roast, wiener roast
a cookout where roasted frankfurters are the main course
a gathering at which burgoo stew is served
Type of:
meal, repast
the food served and eaten at one time

n a day devoted to an outdoor social gathering

field day, outing
Type of:
holiday, vacation
leisure time away from work devoted to rest or pleasure

n any undertaking that is easy to do

“marketing this product will be no picnic
breeze, child's play, cinch, duck soup, piece of cake, pushover, snap, walkover
an easy task
Type of:
labor, project, task, undertaking
any piece of work that is undertaken or attempted

v eat alfresco, in the open air

“We picnicked near the lake on this gorgeous Sunday”
Type of:
eat a meal; take a meal

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.