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The best places for picnic provisions and street food in York

Krep York

Where to buy food to eat outdoors in York’s parks and gardens

Picnics are officially ON and, after the year we’ve all had, you’d be justified in splashing out on some delicious provisions made by somebody else. Now we’ve nothing against a homemade cheese and pickle or peanut butter and jam (our kids’ sandwich option of choice), but there are plenty of places in York that will do the hard work for you, whether you’d like a complete, fit-for-royalty picnic selection or just a mouthwatering sandwich, scone, snack or meal to take away and eat in the nearest green space (take a look at our best places for a picnic in and around York here). York’s food businesses have all had a difficult year, so we’d always recommend that you shop local and independent if you can.

Bluebird Bakery

For some of the best scones, brownies and bread in town, Bluebird Bakery is hard to beat. Visit their little shop, just off Shambles, and take your pick from the delicious, freshly baked goods. Their savoury danishes and spinach and chickpea rolls are excellent picnic options, and good luck resisting the salted caramel slices…Bluebird Bakery, 2 Little Shambles, York YO1 7LY

Henshelwoods Delicatessen

Henshelwoods York

Right in the heart of York’s thriving market, family-run York deli, Henshelwoods, has everything you need to make an unforgettable picnic. From speciality meats and cheeses to chutneys, crackers and pork pies, there’s something for everyone. Select your own ingredients or order ahead and they will make up a picnic for you. Henshelwoods, 10 Newgate, York YO1 7LA


Krep York

Krep is one of our go-to places to eat with kids in York. Forget the formality (and associated stresses) of a sit-down meal: these authentic crepes and galettes are served from a charming hut in the vibrant Shambles Market using the best local ingredients. Made fresh in front of you, you’ll have the choice of old favourites, seasonal specials, sweet and savoury. Children may well be temped by anything featuring Oreos or Biscoff and adults will be happy too. The closest peaceful green space is York Museum Gardens, Dean’s Park (next to York Minster), or the riverside. Krep, Shambles Food Court, Shambles Market, York YO1 8RY



Spark:York is a place that looks and feels like no other venue in York. It’s a vibrant, relaxed place to eat and drink, with kids or without, and a good option if you’d like a range of food and drink to choose from and take away (or eat there). There’s a changing rota of pop-up bars and restaurants, but if you imagine craft ales, edgy cocktails and some of the best street food in town, you’re not too far from the mark. It’s an easy, stress-free place to take kids, but it’s also popular with adults for a night out or a cheeky daytime drink with friends. If you don’t fancy eating in, order something to go – the riverside is just a short walk away.

The Dark Horse Espresso Bar

The Dark Horse Espresso Bar York

Takeaway coffee from a horse box? It’s a thing! The Dark Horse Espresso Bar, in Shambles Market, is one of our top recommendations for a family-friendly coffee stop in York. It’s an independent, family-run, outdoor coffee shop that serves exceptional coffee, and there’s a healthy brunch, lunch and homemade treat menu too. Grab a delicious Allpress coffee to take away or sit and relax in the small outdoor seating area. There’s a tempting selection of Anzac biscuits, banana bread and toasties if you’re feeling peckish, and kids’ options too – ideal for a picnic lunch nearby. It’s about a five minute walk (summer crowds permitting) to York Museum Gardens, one of York’s top picnic spots. The Dark Horse Espresso Bar, Silver St, Shambles Market, York YO1 8RY

The Hairy Fig

The Hairy Fig York

The Hairy Fig is a small but beautiful delicatessen on Fossgate, a street buzzing with brilliant independent businesses. It’s also guaranteed to have everything you need for a picnic (possibly aside from Hula Hoops, our kids’ picnic crisp of choice). Choose from a range of gourmet olives, cheeses, pates, antipastis and sweet treats. Call ahead if you’d like them to make a picnic box up for you in advance. The Hairy Fig, 39 Fossgate, York YO1 9TF

Doe York

Doe York donuts

Okay, so it’s debatable whether a huge, novelty donut is an essential element of a picnic but when they’re this good (and this fun), why not? Rainbow, cream-filled, seasonal, chocolatey, fruity, vegan and veggie, Doe has an array of homemade donuts to choose from right in the heart of the city. Prepare to queue at peak times, but it’s worth the wait. Doe, 12A Church St, York YO1 8BE

Brew & Brownie

Brew and Brownie York

Brew and Brownie fans will happily queue to sit in and enjoy the cracking coffee and delicious pancake stacks, but as it’s just across the road from the entrance to York Museum Gardens, why not order something to take away and enjoy in the Yorkshire sunshine? Their sister cafe, Brew & Brownie Bakeshop, is just as lovely and they do takeaway salads, sandwiches and cakes too. Brew and Brownie, 5 Museum St, York YO1 7DT

Shambles Kitchen

Shambles Kitchen

Shambles Kitchen is one of York’s original purveyors of street food, and is still one of the best. As well as their tiny permanent home on the famous Shambles, they can often be found selling their popular meat sandwiches, loaded fries and sausage combos on Shambles Market or Parliament Street. Vegan and veggie options are available, and they even do a kids’ hot sandwich too. Shambles Kitchen, 28 Shambles, York YO1 7LX

The Prickly Pear

The Prickly Pear Holgate York

The spikier sibling to The Hairy Fig, The Prickly Pear is a relative newcomer to the Holgate area of York. It offers the same delicious provisions, daily soups and sandwich specials, cakes, coffee and more to takeaway. The closest peaceful spaces are the riverside, Rowntree Park and West Bank Park. 40 Holgate Rd, Holgate, York YO24 4AB

The Good Food Shop

A little further from York city centre, but well worth the stroll, is The Good Food Shop on Bishopthorpe Road. You’ll find an array of fresh and interesting salads, a tempting selection of cheeses and meats, crackers, local bread and gorgeous cakes. It’s less than a five-minute walk from Rowntree Park, one of our favourite spots for a family picnic thanks to the two play areas and space to play and explore (just make sure you put your blanket down in one of the gated areas that the geese can’t access!). The Good Food Shop, 20 Bishopthorpe Rd, York YO23 1JJ

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