Dates are fun. We all love them. It’s nice to go out and spend some alone time with your loved one. However, date nights can be pricey. Some nice restaurants can run you and your significant other $200 for dinner (before alcohol is even involved). Lucky for all of us, date nights can be easily replicated at home for a fraction of the cost.
Here are my tips for planning your next date night if you’re on a budget like me:
- Decide on a menu together. There’s nothing worse than preparing a dinner that the other person is not a fan of. It is important that you are both on the same page. Select an appetizer and main course (even dessert if you choose).
- Search through cookbooks or blogs for easy and delicious recipes. My favorite go-to is Skinnytaste for recipes that are quick and easy but taste like they came from a restaurant. Two great choices are the Chicken & Broccoli Alfredo or the Spinach Prosicutto & Mozzarella stuffed Pork Tenderloin. Both have easily accessible ingredients. Pair these with a quick appetizer and a simple salad. An easy idea for a no-cook appetizer is a cheese plate.
- Hit the grocery store and look for the best deals on ingredients. I always have the best luck at Trader Joe’s. The food is fresh, cheap and they have a wide variety of options. If you’ve ever been there, you know their wall of cheese is incredible. I highly recommend going here if you plan on making a cheese plate to start! Their english cheddar cheese with truffles is not to be missed.
- Pick a bottle of wine to pair with your food that tastes expensive but won’t kill your wallet. Hunt & Harvest makes a great line of reds that won’t burn a hole in your pocket. Reserve Durand Sancerre is a white wine that tastes great and is inexpensive as well.
- Prepare the food as a team and have fun with it! Don’t make the act of cooking a chore. Split up the duties to make the work go faster. Play some music or listen to one of your favorite shows to watch as a couple in the background.
- Pour yourselves a glass of wine and enjoy! Save your leftovers for meals throughout the next few days.