Life’s a Picnic! 7 Tips to Help You Celebrate National Picnic Day on April 23

National Picnic Day

Can you feel it? Spring is in the air! The warmer temperatures and sunny days that have graced us here in St. Louis make it absolutely perfect for enjoying a meal outdoors with our friends and family. What better time to do that than on Sunday, April 23 – National Picnic Day?!

From a casual light meal to a fun barbecue, picnics are the perfect time to spend time with friends, catch up with family, or enjoy a romantic date with your significant other. Here are 7 tips to help you celebrate National Picnic Day this year!

Find Your Favorite Spot – It could be a local park in town, a breezy waterfront locale, or a scenic spot with picnic tables. Just remember that you’ll need to haul all of your goodies to and from your spot, so try not to go too remote! We recommend a location that has plenty of shady trees or shelters to keep you comfy and cool.

Bring the Necessities – That means bringing a nice blanket, a sturdy picnic basket, plates, napkins, and wet naps. It might be a good idea to bring along sunscreen and bug spray as well!

Make It Easy – Avoid choosing messy, sticky foods like tacos, pasta, and foods covered in sauce. Instead, choose foods that are simpler. You really can’t go wrong with a loaf of freshly-baked bread, your favorite cheese, a bottle of chilled wine, and fresh fruit!

Tailor It to the Time – Planning on a breakfast picnic? Fresh fruit, breakfast sandwiches, pastries, donuts, and coffee would be perfect to pack! More of an evening picnic? The standard bottle of wine, cheese, and bread would be more fitting.

Bring Some Games with You – Consider bringing a fun activity for you and your friends or date to enjoy! A card game or small board game, a Frisbee, or lawn games are all good choices and can make the day even more memorable.

Book It – Do you and your friends enjoy books? Bring a few good books with you in your picnic basket! If your significant other enjoys reading, you can always enjoy his or her company over a good book and delicious food.

Take It Inside – If the weather doesn’t hold up, don’t let it rain on your parade. Instead, have a picnic at home! You can have all of your favorite foods with you on the floor of your living room or out on your deck. Best of all, you’ll have a sink nearby for easy cleanup!

Don’t forget to stop by McArthur’s Bakery Café to pick up all of your favorite picnic essentials! We have the freshest, tastiest breads, pastries, donuts, sandwiches, and more! Call us at (314) 894-0900 or visit us at www.mcarthurs.com to learn more.

Make Easter a Complete Hit With These Delicious Brunch, Dinner, and Dessert Ideas!

Easter meal ideas

Easter is just around the corner! Do you know what your plans are yet? Maybe you’re meeting up with some friends for a scrumptious brunch. Perhaps you’re inviting your family over for a wholesome Easter dinner. Or maybe you just want to have your friends over to enjoy a smorgasbord of Easter-themed desserts.

Whatever your plans are for Easter this year, make sure that you impress your guests with some delicious, easy-to-make concoctions. Not sure where to start? Here are some ideas for brunch, dinner, and dessert!

Easter Brunch

Light and Lovely – Keep your Easter meal simple yet delicious this year! Serve a juicy roasted chicken with a fresh fruit salad or asparagus pasta for a tasty, easy meal. Top it off with cucumber finger sandwiches, hot herbal tea, and lavender cookies for dessert!

Delicate and Festive – Enjoy a more refined Easter brunch with an easy-to-prepare yet tantalizing menu! Serve prosciutto and melon salad with cantaloupe vinaigrette, potato and leek cakes, sautéed green beans with bacon, and lemon-blueberry poppy seed muffins.

Brunch Buffet – Go all out with a springy brunch buffet! Let your guests choose between ham and lamb, and serve a roasted vegetable medley, freshly-made bread, fruit salad, spring rolls, and a dessert selection of your favorite fruit pie, angel food cake, and Easter-themed cookies. Delicious!

Easter Dinner

Seasonal and Sumptuous – Welcome spring by choosing seasonal foods to serve during your Easter dinner. We’re thinking juicy glazed ham, watercress-buttermilk soup, salad, and fluffy bread rolls. It’s sure to be a hit!

Fancy and Satisfying – Impress your guests with a plethora of savory and seasonal food this Easter! Your menu can include brown sugar and mustard-glazed ham, green beans with toasted garlic and almonds (way better than green bean casserole – trust us), herbed potatoes au gratin, and hot cross buns.

Traditional Feast – Not everyone likes fancy faire. A traditional, no-fuss Easter dinner can help solve all of your picky-eater problems! Bake a delicious ham, serve up mashed potatoes or potatoes au gratin, roasted asparagus, and top it all off with hot-out-of-the-oven dinner rolls.

Easter Desserts

Cream Cheese Swirled Carrot Cake Bars – Make a dessert that will make the Easter Bunny jealous! These yummy carrot cake bars are easy to make and perfect for Easter! Try the recipe here! (https://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/cream-cheese-swirled-carrot-cake-bars/c1a65bbb-39aa-402e-94d1-391dcc7c9605)

Lemon Blueberry Layer Cake – Lemon and blueberry combine to make a savory springtime cake that will leave your guests wanting more! Choose to frost it with a buttercream frosting, or you can leave the sides exposed so everyone can see the gorgeous layers. Check out the recipe here! (http://www.womansday.com/food-recipes/food-drinks/recipes/a13417/lemon-blueberry-layer-cake-recipe-wdy0414/)

Sunflower Peeps Cake – What’s better than chocolate and Peeps? Not much! This tasty cake resembles a beautiful sunflower with rows of yellow Peeps that resemble eye-catching flower petals. Place chocolate chips in a circular pattern to give the illusion of seeds in the middle of the flower. Don’t worry – this may look intimidating to make, but it’s very easy AND delicious! Get the recipe here! (http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/peeps-sunflower-cake)

Of course, you can always wow your guests without having to lift a finger. Just come in to McArthur’s Bakery Café and find the perfect Easter desserts and food for your Easter meal! Call us today at (314) 894-0900 to learn more or to place your order!

Savor Delicious, Locally-Made Park Avenue Coffee at McArthur’s!

Park Avenue Coffee logo and cup

What’s better than starting your day with a rich cup of your favorite coffee? Not much! In fact, we dare say that the only thing better is enjoying a perfectly-brewed cup of Joe made here in St. Louis. That’s why McArthur’s is proud to source our coffee from Park Avenue Coffee!

As you may know, Park Avenue Coffee is a locally-owned St. Louis café that started out in the historical and beautiful Lafayette Square. They became known throughout the city for air roasting all of their coffees, which brings out the most out of each and every bean. When you order a Park Avenue coffee, you know that you’re in for a bold, unique taste that will awaken your taste buds and leave you wanting more.

At McArthur’s, you can savor a wide variety of Park Avenue-sourced coffees and drinks, including hot and iced coffees, espresso, and several types of lattes. You can also kick back and enjoy one of the best cups of hot tea around or a delicious mocha, caramel, or vanilla frappe. Whatever you choose, you just can’t go wrong! Oh, and don’t forget to treat yourself to a freshly-baked McArthur’s pastry while you’re at it!

So what are you waiting for? Come in and see for yourself why McArthur’s Bakery & Café and Park Avenue Coffee make such a dynamic duo!

6 Lucky St. Patrick’s Day Party Tips to Help You Celebrate in Style

green top hat surrounded by green shamrock confetti

St. Patrick’s Day is only a few weeks away, but there’s still plenty of time to help you organize a fun-filled party for you and your friends and family! Whether you want to celebrate your Irish heritage or just want to have a good time with your friends, St. Patrick’s Day is always the perfect time to get together and celebrate the Irish spirit.

Not sure where to begin? Lucky you! We have 6 handy tips to help you celebrate St. Paddy’s Day this year:

Go Green – It just isn’t a St. Patrick’s Day party without some green! Make sure that you and your guests participate in “the wearing of the green” this year. Get creative and dress up like a leprechaun, a living shamrock, a banshee, or any other Irish get-up. Give your guests an extra incentive and hand out a prize for the most festive-looking guest!

Bring the Irish Vibe Inside – Don’t forget to jazz up your place before the party starts! Hang cut-outs of shamrocks, leprechauns, and rainbows on the ceiling, and bedeck your space with green, white, and orange helium balloons to represent the Irish flag. Shamrock-shaped party lights strewn in the kitchen and dining room can also make your home feel more festive! Oh, and don’t forget to include bowls full of snacks. We particularly like including those gold foil-wrapped chocolate coins!

Pump Up the Irish Jams – The appropriate music can really bring your party to life, so don’t forget to make a festive playlist! You can include classic Irish tunes like “Danny Boy,” some traditional Irish jigs, or go a bit more modern and out-of-the-box with bands like Afro Celt Sound System to get your guests dancing.

Search for Treasure – Looking for a fun activity to do? Hold a treasure hunt for your guests! Come up with clever clues to help them find the treasure, and hide it somewhere in your home. We suggest hiding it inside the bowl of foil-wrapped gold chocolate coins!

Speak as the Irish Do – Add a bit of Irish fun to your party by using some typical Irish phrases! Greet your friends by saying “What’s the craic?” meaning “What’s up?” Toast each other by shouting, “Slainte!” (pronounced “slaan-sha”), which means, “I drink to your health!” And don’t forget “Erin go Bragh” – Gaelic for “Ireland forever!” You can print these and other fun phrases out and place them around your home for your guests to try out themselves!

Indulge in Irish Faire – The best part about a party (aside from hanging out with your friends and loved ones) is hands-down the food! You can either choose to go a bit more formal and provide some slow-cooked corned beef and potatoes, or you can keep it casual with corned beef sliders and plenty of green appetizers, dips, and vegetables. Fresh Irish soda bread is a must, along with shamrock-shaped cookies and cupcakes! For drinks, create fun shamrock shakes by combining mint, chocolate, milk, and maybe a little bit of green food coloring. For the adults, be sure to provide your favorite Irish beers, whiskey, and Irish coffee!

Let McArthur’s help you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year. We have plenty of delicious, freshly-baked St. Paddy’s Day treats and desserts for you to savor, including cookies, cupcakes, pies, and more! Visit one of our four locations today to get yours!

5 Fun Facts about Mardi Gras You Might Not Know

green, purple, and gold beads

What do you think about when you hear the words “Mardi Gras”? Maybe you have visions of green, gold, and purple flash through your mind or picture a brazen parade full of people joyfully tossing beads to onlookers. Perhaps you conjure images of delicious desserts like King’s cake, which you can indulge in all day long. Whatever comes to mind, you know that Mardi Gras is a day that’s focused on having a good time before Ash Wednesday and Lent begin.

Here are some fun facts that you might not know about Mardi Gras!

It’s Also Called Pancake Day – In some other countries like Ireland, England, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia, Mardi Gras is often called Pancake Day. The name came about because it was seen as a chance for revelers to use up their flour, eggs, and sugar before Lent, and pancakes were a popular choice. People in these countries partake in pancakes and enjoy pancake-themed activities during Mardi Gras!

Mardi Gras Is More Than 400 Years Old – Back in 1582, Pope Gregory XIII added Mardi Gras to the calendar (yes, the Gregorian Calendar) on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras has been celebrated in the United States since the 1730s, with particularly large celebrations in Mobile, Alabama, New Orleans, and, of course, St. Louis!

There’s Meaning in the Colors – You probably already know that the official colors of Mardi Gras are purple, gold, and green, but did you know that they were chosen for very specific reasons? The king of the first daytime carnival in 1872 chose purple, which stood for justice, gold, which represented power, and green, which symbolized faith. The king would then throw beads in these colors to those whom he thought fit the meaning! Now, however, beads are tossed freely to onlookers.

It’s the Law to Wear Masks on Floats – When people began celebrating Mardi Gras, they would wear masks to protect their identities. Now, those who ride on the floats must wear masks under law!

King’s Cake Is the Dessert of Choice – While partygoers enjoy several special desserts during Mardi Gras, King’s cake is the most popular, especially here in the United States. This circular dessert is usually decorated in purple, green, and gold and has a tiny baby hidden somewhere inside. It is said that whoever discovers the baby will have good luck for the remainder of the year!

Mardi Gras is February 28 this year, which means that there’s still plenty of time to find all of the themed pastries and desserts you could possibly want for your friends, family, or coworkers (or even just for yourself!). Come in to McArthur’s Bakery Café to find your Mardi Gras desserts today!

9 Unique Wedding Favor Ideas Your Guests Will Love

small, cute succulents

There are several ways that you can thank your wedding guests for coming to your big day. One of the best ways is by presenting them with a thoughtful wedding favor. The trouble is often it can be quite hard to figure out exactly what you want to give them. Should it be food-based? Maybe something they can use around the house? Or should it be something more on the sentimental side?

If you’re feeling stuck, don’t worry! We came up with 9 unique wedding favor ideas that will help you impress your guests and give them a memory they will cherish for years. Read about them below!

Personalized Tea Packets or Coffee Beans – Are you and your fiancé coffee connoisseurs or tea lovers? Share the love by creating your very own handmade packages that include your favorite blends and flavors! Your guests can enjoy them when they get home.

Cute Succulents – Give your guests the lasting gift of a succulent! Every time they see them at home, they will fondly remember your wedding day and the fun times they had. You can find tiny, hardy, and beautiful succulents for a good price in several local stores!

Totally Awesome Tote Bags – Here’s a favor idea that can be both cute and functional! Create a fun design on the bag and add you and your beau’s names, your wedding date, and the place you’ll be getting married. It’s eco-friendly and perfect for running errands around town!

Paper Fans – Will your wedding take place in the summer? Summer days might feel like a memory now in the middle of winter, but those hot days will be upon us soon. Hand out colorful fans as the perfect wedding favor. Not only will they help your guests stay cool, but they’re also really fun to dance with!

Seed (Packets) of Love – Fill some boxes with flower seeds or fruit and veggie seeds to hand out to your guests. They can plant them when spring arrives and watch the plants blossom and grow!

Parasols – If your wedding will take place outdoors, parasols can be fun and useful gifts to give your guests! They can also be kept as a useful keepsake for future days spent in the sun.

Hot Chocolate Jar – Give your guests a fun treat that they can savor during the fall or winter! Include layers of rich, creamy chocolate with marshmallows and powdered cocoa. Don’t forget to personalize it with a tag or sticker commemorating your wedding!

Keepsake Hankies – Let’s face it – a lot of people cry at weddings and other happy occasions. Help your guests dry their eyes with designed DIY handkerchiefs! This thoughtful gift will come in handy at your wedding and will bring them comfort during other future events.

Show ‘em S’more Love – Who doesn’t love s’mores? Create a little s’mores package, which is just perfect for campfires and breezy autumn nights. Use chocolate, marshmallow, and mini graham crackers to create a recipe for happiness!

You know, even cookies, donuts, and pies make great wedding favors, too! Shower your guests with only the best – come in to McArthur’s Bakery Café, and we’ll hook you up with the tastiest, most savory desserts in St. Louis!

Salads Don’t Have to Be Boring at McArthur’s!

creamy Caesar salad at McArthur's

How are those New Year’s resolutions going? If you’ve aimed to eat healthier foods and live a fit lifestyle, you’re probably working on eating more salads. If you’re trying to include salads in your daily diet, you might be starting to get sick of them. If this sounds like you, then we have the perfect solution for you! Give boring salads the boot by chowing down at McArthur’s!

Listen, salads don’t have to be a sad mix of lettuce, tomatoes, and croutons. You don’t have to settle for mediocre meals! Check out our zesty and flavorful Harvest Salad, which features balsamic dressing, fresh lettuce, blue cheese, spiced candied walnuts, dried apricots, red onions, and toasted sunflower seeds. This salad is sure to be a treat for your taste buds!

Want something that’s a bit more seasonal? Try our very own Winter Salad! You can enjoy a delicious medley of arugula, butternut squash, cranberries, pecans, Parmesan cheese, and balsamic dressing. It’s the perfect salad to keep you full, give you plenty of energy, and allow you to savor the unique flavors of winter!

Feeling like something more on the simple side? We’ve got you covered with our Caesar Salad! Savor a fresh mix of romaine lettuce, house-made croutons, shaved red onions, shredded Parmesan cheese, and creamy Caesar dressing. Trust us, it’s not your ordinary Caesar salad!

Oh, and don’t forget, all of our salads are proudly made with fresh, local ingredients. That goes the same for our other goodies, including our sandwiches, pastries, soups, and more!

So what are you waiting for? Come on over to one of our four locations and enjoy one of our filling, delicious salads today!

Our Healthy Menu Items Can Help You Reach Your New Year’s Goals!

McArthur's healthy Fall Salad which features a delicious medley of arugula, butternut squash, cranberries, pecans, Parmesan cheese, and balsamic dressing.

Happy New Year! We hope that you’ve had a fantastic holiday season full of laughter and fun. Now that 2017 is here, it’s time to get serious – serious about your New Year’s resolutions, that is! Is your goal to lose weight or get fit? Are you aiming to becoming more mindful of your food choices this year? If so, McArthur’s has you totally covered. We have several new healthy menu items to help you reach your goals this year!

First, start the day off right by enjoying our sweet and sumptuous fruit and yogurt parfait. This delectable meal will keep you full and give you all the energy you will need for the entire morning.

In the mood for a sandwich? Don’t let that sad half sandwich of peanut butter and jelly make the cut! Instead, savor our grilled chicken sandwich, which is marinated and comes with tomato, pickles, and dill aioli. We think that’s a much tastier (and healthier) choice than a boring PB&J!

Want something on the vegetarian side? Our Veg Head, which features cucumber, tomato, pickled onion, arugula, Swiss cheese, and miso-mustard dressing on whole wheat Pullman, is sure to delight! Walk on the wild side with our Mofu Tofu, which includes local tofu, roasted red peppers, Swiss cheese, banana peppers, and chipotle dressing!

If you want to warm up with a healthy soup, then you seriously need to try our Hearty Beef Stew. Comprised of tender beef chuck, mirepoix, tomatoes, snow peas, red potatoes, and Italian spices, this dish is sure to fill you up and keep you warm even after you go for your daily run in the cold. For a vegan-friendly soup, try our Vegan Butternut Squash Soup! You’ll enjoy fresh roasted butternut squash, carrots, coconut milk, turmeric, 5 spice, and a tangy hint of lime. You won’t find anything this delicious anywhere else!

Looking to get more salads in your life? We have salads aplenty! Our famous Fall Salad features a delicious medley of arugula, butternut squash, cranberries, pecans, Parmesan cheese, and balsamic dressing. Try something a little different with our Harvest Salad, which includes balsamic, a lettuce mix, blue cheese, spiced candied walnuts, dried apricots, red onions, and toasted sunflower seeds. Of course, you can always enjoy our traditional Caesar Salad, made with romaine lettuce, house-made croutons, shaved red onions, shredded Parmesan cheese, and creamy Caesar dressing. Yum!

So what are you waiting for? Come into any of our 4 locations today and enjoy food that’s both delicious and good for you! Be sure to check out our full menu online at www.mcarthurs.com/menu.

Loyalty Has Many Rewards at McArthur’s!

McArthur's rewards program

Ever wanted to be rewarded for your loyalty at your favorite restaurants? Now you can at McArthur’s! When you join McArthur’s Rewards program, you will earn rewards for shopping at any McArthur’s location. The rewards that you earn can be put toward future purchases, making spending with us sweeter than ever!

For a little instant gratification, you can enjoy a free pastry of your choice by downloading our special app and signing up today! You can also receive up-to-date rewards and points, special offers, news on special events and happenings, and much more! Just download our app on the app store or on Google Play to get started. It’s fun, easy, FREE, and available right now!

Get rewarded for your loyalty – join McArthur’s Rewards program and start earning your rewards right now! Learn more by calling (314) 894-0900.