bbq’s vs picnics

With summer on the horizon, Brits are getting set to eat outdoors – and now the nation has spoken: BBQs beat picnics when it comes to the UK’s favourite al fresco food setting, according to new research.

The study from margarine brand FLORA reveals that almost two thirds (61%) of people look forward to firing up the BBQ this summer, compared to 33% who prefer to lay down their picnic blanket.

Taking the lead as the UK’s grill aficionados, 69% of Geordies say they prefer BBQs to picnics, the highest proportion of any city, crowning Newcastle the nation’s BBQ capital. This compares to almost half of people from Leicester (46%) who prefer picnics over BBQs, the highest across the country.

Citing their reasons for preferring to BBQ, Brits say they can be more adventurous with their cooking (23%) as well as finding barbies more sociable (58%). Despite spending more time than ever at home, it appears many are also happy being homebodies, with 35% saying they love to cook for friends and family in their own house.

BBQs are not only for meat lovers, with over one in ten (13%) preferring BBQs to picnics because they find it’s easier to put plant-based options on the grill.


Reasons Brits prefer BBQs to picnics:

Reason for preferring a BBQ Percentage
Food is tastier and more flavoursome 36%
The joy of cooking food for loved ones rather than eating shop-bought sandwiches 35%
Sitting on the floor is a big no-no for many, with almost a quarter opting for the comfort of a garden chair over a plaid rug 24%
Peeved picnickers said public spaces are too noisy/busy 18%
A hatred for eating warm sandwiches 14%
It’s easier to put plant-based options on the menu 13%
All-weather grillers praised BBQing for being a year-round activity 12%


When looking at what Brits expect to be on the grill, burgers are the top BBQ staple according to three-quarters (75%) of respondents; however, some might be leaving them to cook for too long as over a third (36%) think burnt food is synonymous with a British BBQ. Revealing other key components, almost half (45%) say they think of men congregating around the grill, while one in five (20%) say dads cracking jokes their kids find cringeworthy is what they think of most when they think of BBQs. Further perpetuating the stereotype that Brits are grill rookies, a third (31%) also say struggling to light the coals is typical BBQ conduct.

For those in team picnic (33%), health and convenience are key reasons for preferring to get the hamper out. Almost a third (32%) revel in the fact that picnics are less effort, stating that BBQs involve too much prep and cleaning. The same number (32%) also say it’s easier to be healthy at a picnic, while budget-conscious Brits state that picnics allow them to use food staples they already have in their kitchens (26%).

Picnics are also perfect for plant-based diets, with one in ten (13%) claiming they find it easier to include these dishes in a picnic when compared to a BBQ.

For the social media obsessed, picnics are deemed to be more Instagrammable (4%), while eco-conscious Brits say that BBQs emit too much CO2 (19%).

To check out FLORA’s range of spreads and to search for Flora BBQ and picnic recipes, please click here:  


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