“The Outdoor Table” by April McKinney

Thomas Nelson, $26.99

298-page paperback

Backyard barbecues, lunches on the porch, afternoons by the pool, picnics and tailgating — all reasons to eat outdoors and the topic of a cookbook by April McKinney.

She offers 200 recipes for delicious foods that travel well and can be prepared ahead of time. Each recipe features an icon indicating the best types of outdoor events for serving.

The book, illustrated with numerous color photos by Stephanie Mullins, also showcases “outdoor table destinations” across the country from tailgating at LSU to Broadway Under the Stars concerts in the open-air ruins at Jack London State Historic Park in Sonoma County, California.

Recipes are divided into seven chapters from beverages to desserts, like a watermelon lime cooler, a favorite of both children and adults, and Monie’s Shasta cake, a recipe McKinney says has been passed on by her grandmother.

The book’s collection of easy-to-prepare recipes is sure to inspire readers to host an outdoor party or pack a picnic lunch.

Cheramie Sonnier is a food writer and columnist. Contact her at sonnierfood@gmail.com and follow her on Twitter at @CheramieSonnier