May 06, 2023

7 Best Picnic Blankets of 2023, Reviewed by Our Editors

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Not every blanket makes the cut as a true picnic blanket.

Is there anything nicer than going for a Sunday afternoon picnic with the fam? You've got the salad packed and ready to go, a sunny cocktail in the thermos for Mom and Dad, and freshly sliced watermelon just waiting for the kids to dig in. But no picnic is complete without the blanket!

If you've ever fallen victim to grabbing the nearest throw blanket and packing it along for a picnic, then you'll know the value in having a dedicated picnic blanket that's designed for that purpose. Whether you're laying the blanket out to sit with the kids on a sunny afternoon, prepping for an alfresco dinner on the beach, or gearing up for sunrise coffee on your camping trip, you'll want to have a suitable blanket on hand for your adventure.

We've researched, reviewed, and even tested tons of picnic blankets on the market, evaluating their durability, comfort, size, waterproofing, and much more, to come up with this list of the best of the best (to learn more about the main factors we looked for, scroll to the end of this story). To make it as easy as possible to find the perfect picnic blanket, we've even categorized them for you. So get the basket packed (we've got plenty of picnic food ideas to help with that too). Your perfect picnic is just one click away.

If gingham isn't the perfect picnic print, then we don't know what is. But this blanket is far from just cute (but, really, it's SO cute), it's incredibly functional too.

For starters, the ZAZE picnic blanket is massive — a whopping 80" x 80". That should be plenty of room for four adults to sit or six to eight kids, with food included, of course. It also features a three-ply construction. The bottom layer is waterproof, so you'll never have to worry about pesky dew for an early morning sit. The middle layer is a comfortable cotton that adds a bit of padding, and the top layer is polyester, which also acts as a water-resistant surface, so there's no need to worry about spills. We were also super impressed with the stitching on this blanket. Almost quilt-like, the stitching ensures that this blanket will stand the test of time.

Of course, portability is also a huge factor when it comes to picnic blankets, and this one delivers. It conveniently rolls up with a Velcro closure that reviewers say is quite sturdy. Reviewers also mention that this blanket is perfect for just about anywhere, from sandy beaches to picnics in the park.

Positive review: "Los Angeles had a lot of rainfall and storms the past few months, and I was itching for a picnic (especially with all the greenery that's been sprouting as a result of the heavy rainfall). The picnic blanket is large, just as pictured, waterproof, and super easy to clean! Folding it is a bit of a hassle and is reminiscent of folding up a sleeping bag. Either way, highly recommend! Great purchase."

It's a bit of a splurge in comparison to some of the other blankets on our list, but this option from the environmentally sustainable brand Geometry is the best bet for serious picnickers. This beach blanket was made for just about any terrain. While it repels sand well, it also holds up great against grass, rocks, sticks, and other underbrush. If you often find yourself on an impromptu sit in nature, stash this in your car and thank yourself later.

Since it was designed as a beach blanket, however, it has a leg up in the absorbency and quick-dry departments. Instead of a polyester layer that repels water, the Geometry blanket is made from recycled materials that instead absorb water and rush the drying process. This can be a huge advantage if you don't want to constantly wipe up after kids, pets, or any other mess makers.

As much as we love this blanket, though, there are two areas where we were a bit disappointed. One, this blanket measures 62" x 65", slightly smaller than the competition. It could fit 2 to 4 adults comfortably, but adding in food with a group of 4 would be a squeeze. It's also a bit thinner, and while we don't have much concern about the durability, that might impact comfort.

As much as we love the waterproofing of polyester picnic blankets, the material isn't conducive to heat, so they can get pretty chilly when the temperatures drop. For fall picnics—and maybe even winter picnics on mild days—you'll want this fleece blanket.

Like the ZAZE blanket, this buffalo check option has a three-ply design with a waterproof bottom layer and sponge-fill middle for cushion. However, the top layer on this blanket is fleece, making it extra warm and cozy on fall days. If you live in a wet climate but still want to enjoy a picnic on a chilly day, you'll have no worries about water seeping up through this blanket. We also love the faux leather carrying straps that make it incredibly easy to pack away.

While we love the fleece top layer on this blanket, it is a bit of a double-edged sword. The fabric isn't waterproof, so we'd advise opting for something else if you've got kids or pets on the move while on your picnic. It's also on the smaller side, coming in at just 59" x 69".

Positive review: "I've taken this blanket to the beach and park several times now, and each time I've been grateful for this large blanket. It comfortably fits 4 people sitting, or 2-3 people if you want to lay down. It is soft on one side, with waterproof material on the bottom side (have not had any issue with wet bottoms sitting at the park even in damp areas!). It is so easy to put away, simply roll it up and use the belt strap to buckle it tight, and it's easy to clean as well (have had no issues giving it a quick wash in the tub after using it). Amazing blanket for the price!"

While we love the extra-large size of the ZAZE blanket, not everyone needs that much space. If you're only packing for two adults or just a few kids or maybe even just yourself, a smaller blanket should be plenty of space. The Scuddles picnic blanket offers a whopping eight size options, starting with 52" x 57" and going up to 60" x 79".

It has a similar three-ply construction to most of the other blankets on this list, with a PEVA waterproof bottom, soft foam core, and acrylic top layer. Just like the ZAZE blanket, the Scuddles option prevents water from seeping into the foam core from both the top and the bottom, making it perfect for kids and pets. The built-in carrier is also similar to the ZAZE blanket, but this one includes a pocket that reviewers love to use for their phone, wallet, or any other small items.

Many reviewers did note, however, that the Scuddles blanket didn't brush clean as well as they'd hope, with debris sticking to the acrylic fabric. It was also mentioned a handful of times that the blanket is thinner than expected, which in addition to being a little uncomfortable also meant that some sticks and weeds found their way through.

Positive review: "This little picnic blanket… I adore it. I have owned it for a couple weeks now and we have used it every day since. I have three young kids and we use it outside and at the park! I have put it on wet grass and have not gotten wet which is a huge plus for me."

A picnic on the beach calls for a blanket that's far different from one you might take on your camping trip in the woods. While you might not need a thick blanket, you will want one that quickly ditches any sand and water that might find its way on your blanket.

This 100% nylon blanket feels similar to a travel camping hammock. It repels sand with a quick brush or shake and is water resistant. It's a thin, one-layer blanket, but you shouldn't need much padding just laying on sand. The nylon is ripstop and the seams are triple stitched to reenforce durability. We also love that this blanket comes in three sizes, has an attached compression pack for easy storage, and is designed with weight-able pocket corners on the underside, which you can fill with sand so that you'll never lose it on a windy day.

Reviewers also mention how lightweight and easy this blanket is to travel with. Additionally, since the material is so thin, it's super breathable, which is a necessity for a hot beach day.

The only complaint many reviewers had with this beach blanket was that it faded from sun exposure overtime, but that's to be expected with frequent use. And while it makes a phenomenal beach blanket, we'd never recommend using this when camping or on rough terrain.

Positive review: "I loved how compact & easy [it is] to take with you. It's light weight, sand doesn't stick to it and it didn't get hot. BUT the best part are those handy dandy lil pockets on the corners, you just fill with sand and it stays in place!! Don't even need the stakes. I loved this blanket so much, I also ordered the larger size also for when the family joins us on the beach. Awesome small business too, which I try to use whenever I can. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!"

Looking for a blanket to tuck away with you on a camping trip? This one will have you cozy as can be, whether you use it as a spot to eat dinner or to curl up in by the fire.

This camping blanket is made with a three-ply design but features more padding in the core in comparison to other blankets we reviewed and the same polyester top and bottom layer. This extra padding insulates from the cold ground to keep users warm, while the polyester layers repel water. When not in use, the blanket rolls up like a sleeping bag and packs into a lumbar pillow shape that weighs just two pounds. It has corner loops to stake into the ground, as well as a cape clip if you'd prefer to wear it as a more traditional blanket.

Positive review: "I'm pretty sure my parents had a blanket like this when I was a kid. This has a great weight, nice little cushion to it which makes it comfortable to sit on, folds up easily, and looks great. Perfect for camping, but the beach, picnics, blanket forts (as the mat), and more too. This will be kept in my car so we are always ready for relaxing outside. I'm going to order another to keep with our camp supplies."

Calling all frequent flyers! Sometimes you don't have the room to pack a hefty picnic blanket, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy your time outside comfortably! These Turkish towels are traditionally used as beach blankets but work just as well when you need a packable, lightweight blanket to take on the go.

Of course, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention how well this blanket repels sand. It is designed for the beach, after all! While it isn't waterproof, it features a quick-dry technology that you might find you like even more. And with a length of 82 inches, you'll be able to fit quite a few on this comfy towel.

The flip side of having a blanket that's so lightweight and breathable is that it doesn't stand up to rough terrain very well. Make no doubt about it: This is not the blanket you want for a picnic in the woods. But for everyday use in the park, on the ball field, or at the beach, it should be just fine.

Positive review: "I wanted something that would be soft (not plastic-y) and would be big enough for two people and this was perfect. We comfortably fit two of us on it and it's very soft against the skin. It also didn't add any heat despite using it on a hot day. It held up well after washing in cold water and drying on a medium heat. Plus it's lightweight and compact so it was easy to travel with and didn't take up too much space in my bag at all. It's not sand-proof though so sand collected on the top and quite a bit came home with us via the blanket."

A great picnic blanket should not only be able to stand up to the spills and stains your family and friends might inflict on the top layer, but it should offer a layer of protection from the ground as well. Whether you're using the blanket on a morning when there's still fresh dew on the grass or a wet climate on a cool day, you'll want to be sure that your bottom is protected from any moisture that might seep through. While most of these blankets are waterproof or water resistant, some feature quick-dry technology that's more suitable for some circumstances, such as picnickers who have just taken a dip in an ocean or lake.

Some picnic blankets offer size options, but many do not. First step: think about how many people you can usually expect to use this blanket. Anything 60" x 60" and smaller is only suitable for two adults or up to four small children. If you're looking for a blanket that'll fit the whole family, you should opt for one that's at least 70" x 70" or prepare to get two blankets to lay side by side.

Let's be real: No one wants to spend a fortune on a good picnic blanket. That's why we stayed in the under $50 price range, save for one special splurge that's perfect for the frequent picnicker. Save your money for travel, food, and great wine to go with your picnic!

Hannah Jones is the Commerce Editor for Country Living. Her eye is always on the next up-and-coming products to include in gift guides and she's ready to test everything from dog beds to garden tools for product reviews. When she's not scoping out the latest and greatest items on the market, you can find her hanging with her two rescue dogs.

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