Valentine's Day Dinner Ideas For The Perfect Date Night

20 January 2021

Valentine's day is around the corner, and that means date night. How to spend the perfect evening at home? With the ideal dinner, of course. Here's what to do.

Valentine's Day Dinner IdeasPhoto By Canva

Valentine's Day has been around for centuries and was popularized during the Middle Ages of the 5th century as the Christianized version of an ancient Roman tradition - the 'feast day.'

Pope Gelasius is responsible for declaring February 14 St. Valentine's Day, and it has been a special occasion since then, especially in the United States.

Today, St Valentine's Day is all about heart-shaped Hallmark cards and Valentine Day dinner with someone special on a very intimate date night.

The thing with Valentines dinners is that we build huge expectations, which means we're disappointed more often than not. The good news? Food and drinks can help. A good meal is uplifting and exciting and can be a fantastic conversation starter as well.

The right meal sets the mood for the rest of the night, so you better get it right. Of course, you can visit a fancy restaurant, but you know what? Service is awful on Valentines Day, and everything is overpriced.

Cooking at home might be a much better choice. At the end of the day, cooking is an act of love. If you want to put together the perfect romantic dinner, here's what you want to do. Easy to prepare food ideas that will take your date in the right mood.

Snacks, A Fantastic Start For A Long Night Ahead

If there's something most people get wrong when putting together a nice dinner at home is snacks. We all want to jump into the main course, and that's just wrong. Appetizers can build the ambiance and open the appetite. You have to build momentum for a great Valentines Day dinner.

Snacks can be relatively easy to put together. A varied cheese platter, for example, is as easy as visiting your local cheesemonger and getting cheese of different flavor profiles and textures.

Along with cheese, throw in olives, dried fruits and assorted nuts. Now you see the big picture. Finger food is sexy, so preserves and jams that you and your date can spread on artisan bread are an excellent way to go.

Talking about bread, it's more important than you think, so get the real stuff from an artisan bakery. It's the small details that show how much you care.

This is the ideal moment for a cocktail as well, nothing too complicated, just a nice drink to loosen you up a little and get the conversation started.

Once you have your snack plan in place, let's talk about food.

Wine and cheese platePhoto By Canva

Main Courses That Rise To The Occasion

Valentine's Day is special, so you want equally unique food. That doesn't mean spending the entire morning in the kitchen, but you have to choose the meal's components carefully.

One way of choosing your special dinner is thinking of comfort foods, like slow cooker stews, sticky pork chops or fork-tender chicken thighs. You don't need a fine dining dish, but something that stirs emotions.

A pasta dish is a no-brainer as well. Think of a creamy Alfredo linguini or a meaty Bolognese.

If you're up to tackling a layered lasagna, even better. Actually, Italian food is a safe bet. How not to love it?

Then again, if you want to go for something more high-end, then choose seafood. How do butter-seared scallops sound? Or how about some garlicky prawns? If you feel like splurging, you'll be happy to know lobster tails are easier to cook than you think, especially if you cook them on a grill.

Make sure you have a wide variety of side dishes, too, from buttery green beans to creamy mashed potatoes. Side dishes complement the main course, yes, but they also make the experience much more unique.

Leave Room For Dessert

No Valentine's day dinner is complete without dessert, tasty treats to end the night with a sweet note. For dessert, it's okay if you go for store-bought. If you make the effort of putting together appetizers, side dishes and the main course, no one will think you're lazy for purchasing dessert.

Then again, if you're outsourcing your last course, make sure it's nice. Visit a chocolatier or a fancy bakery. You want the good stuff because desserts are what everyone remembers the most.

The lovers' day is synonym with chocolate, and everyone loves a decadent, chocolaty treat. Sure, strawberries and other ripe berries are quite sensual too.

Let's not forget about custardy treats. Anything from lemon flan to crema catalana is suitable for ending Valentine's dinner properly.

If you're determined to bake your own dessert, then you can make anything you want, don't limit yourself, but try to have a story behind your dessert ready.

Everyone loves a good story. What does this cake remind you of? Is this a family recipe? Is this the first time you make it?

Here are some recipes you can make on Valentine's Day

Lasagna with Spinach and Cheese
%91Italian

Lasagna with Spinach and Cheese

Spinach lasagna, which is a vegetarian recipe that will appeal to everyone's taste with its melted cheese and garlic spinach. With its rich cheese and...

Roast Chicken
%100American

Roast Chicken

This dinner, which will turn your dinner into a feast, is both light and delicious. Now you should try the chicken, which has become a different flavor...

Mashed Potatoes
%91British

Mashed Potatoes

It is a delicious and practical flavor that everyone loves to eat. It is a great pair meat dishes.

Souffle
%94French

Souffle

One of the most delicious desserts of French cuisine. This exquisite taste of chocolate will make you happy.

Baked Branzino Fillet with Potatoes
%97European

Baked Branzino Fillet with Potatoes

Branzino or Branzini is a type of white fish. It is also known as 'Mediterranean Sea Bass'. This sea bass species, which is especially popular in Italian...

Shrimp Casserole
%87European

Shrimp Casserole

This amazing recipe shared by Gaziantep-born M. Zekeriya Çolak is a must for seafood dinners. Are you ready for a feast that will excite your guests?...

With some tasty appetizers, a comforting main course, assorted side dishes and a lovely dessert, there's just one more thing to consider — wine.

Don't Forget About Wine

Two wine glassesPhoto By Canva

Even if you or your date aren't into wine, you know you must have a bottle of wine on the table. Our favorite fermented drink is more than booze; there are literally dozens of different exciting aromas, delectable flavors and textures in every glass, which makes wine exciting!

Start the night with a crisp white wine to get your appetite going. A herbal Sauvignon Blanc or a peachy Pinot Grigio will work just fine.

Work your way up to a bottle of red. Leave robust, structured red wines made with Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah for summer backyard parties; what you want on Valentine's day is silky and plummy Pinot Noir, the most sensual wine grape on the planet.

Alternatively, source a bottle of Beaujolais. The French red wine is easy to drink and fruity. Never overcomplicated, it is just perfect, even for the inexperienced.

Don't overestimate the power of sweet wine for dessert. Decadently sweet and palate coating beauties like Port will take your dining experience to new thrilling levels.

Other than that, a chilled bottle of bubbly wine waiting tight in the fridge might come in handy, especially if the night extends into the early hours.

Learn more about food and wine pairing.

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