Exploring the Culinary Side of Paddle Boarding: Gourmet Picnics and Dining Experiences on the Water

Find out about the joys of packing a picnic and enjoying it on your paddle board.

inflatable paddle boards

Stand up paddle boarding, a popular water sport involving standing or kneeling on a board and propelling oneself using a paddle, isn't just about fitness and adventure. For many paddle boarders, it's also an opportunity to enjoy unique dining experiences on the water. Whether you're interested in packing a gourmet picnic to enjoy mid-paddle, or you're looking for unique dining experiences catered by waterside restaurants, there's a wealth of culinary delights to explore.

Paddle Boarding Gourmet Picnics

2 sup paddle boards

Packing Your Picnic

When planning a paddle boarding picnic, the first thing to consider is your stand up paddle board equipment. Many stand up paddle boards come with bungee cords or other tie down points that can securely hold a dry bag or cooler. This is where you'll store your food and drink items. Inflatable paddle boards often have a larger deck area, providing more room for picnic items.

Choosing the Perfect Spot

Choosing the perfect spot for your paddle boarding picnic is also essential. Look for calm, flat water with a scenic view. This could be a quiet spot on a lake, a secluded beach, or even a serene cove. 

Enjoying Your Picnic

When you've reached your chosen spot, secure your paddle using your paddle holder or leash attachment point, then unpack your picnic. Remember, safety is essential. Always keep your personal flotation device on, even while you're eating.

Dining Experiences on the Water

Waterside Restaurants

Many coastal and lakeside areas have restaurants that cater specifically to paddle boarders. You can paddle up to the restaurant's dock, secure your board, and enjoy a meal with your feet still dangling in the water.

Catered Stand Up Paddle Board Excursions

For a truly unique dining experience, consider booking a catered paddle board excursion. These outings, led by experienced guides, often include a gourmet meal enjoyed on a secluded beach or on the board itself.

Staying Safe

Whether you're packing a picnic or dining at a waterside restaurant, safety should always be your top priority. Always wear a personal flotation device and use a paddle board leash to keep your board close at hand. Also, be aware of the weather conditions and water currents.

Packing a SUP Kitchen

fishing on stand up paddle board

When it comes to paddle boarding, you don't have to limit yourself to pre-made food. With a bit of creativity and the right gear, you can cook a gourmet meal right on your SUP board.

To make this happen, you'll need an inflatable SUP board that's stable and has plenty of deck space. Equip it with a compact, portable stove, and a lightweight pot or pan. Be sure to secure your cooking gear using your board's tie-down points to ensure they don't fall off during your journey.

Next, think about what you'd like to cook. Grilled sandwiches, hot dogs, or even a simple pasta dish are all doable with a portable stove. Pack ingredients in a cooler or insulated dry bag to keep them fresh until you're ready to cook.

SUP Fishing: From Water to Plate

If you're an angler, consider combining your love for fishing with paddle boarding. Paddle board fishing is a growing trend, and it's not hard to see why. It's a peaceful, immersive experience, and there's nothing quite like the thrill of catching your dinner while balancing on a SUP board.

You'll need a fishing gear attachment for your paddle board, as well as a personal flotation device and a paddle leash for safety. Don't forget a small cooler to store your catch until you're ready to cook it.

When you're done fishing, find a calm spot, anchor your board, and prepare your catch right there on the water. Remember to follow all local fishing regulations, including catch limits and size restrictions.

Cooking Safety on a SUP

Cooking on a paddle board isn't without its challenges. Safety should always be your top priority. Never leave your stove unattended and keep flammable items away from the flame. It's also important to keep your board stable to prevent tipping over. A SUP board with a displacement hull can be more stable and suitable for these activities.


paddle technique on hard paddle boards

The culinary side of paddle boarding offers a unique way to enjoy this popular water sport. Whether you're a beginner just getting your feet wet or an advanced paddler looking for a new experience, consider adding a gourmet picnic or dining experience to your next paddle boarding adventure. Not only will you get to enjoy delicious food, but you'll also get to experience the tranquility and beauty of eating on the water.